Editor's comment: why therapists need to shout louder about their expertise

We hear so much about the dangers of advanced treatments such as injectables and lasers when used in the wrong hands that it’s easy to forget quite how powerful some of the seemingly more basic ingredients therapists handle every day can be.

New investigations into the potential side-effects of mixing and matching gel nail products, and into the often-underestimated fire risks associated with creams and treatments containing paraffin, shine a spotlight on the importance of both in-depth training and communication with clients. See our news section in the May issue of Professional Beauty for more details on both.

Nail brands have long been warning us that using a lamp from one brand with gel polish from another, for example, could result at best in a dodgy manicure, and at worst in a nasty skin or nail reaction. But it’s not just consumers doing treatments at home who are to blame; a huge number of techs out there are mixing and matching to save money, or to try out colours and effects from a new brand.

The potential dangers of paraffin-based products have had less industry airtime, and although the consequences of careless use are less common, they can be far more serious.

Of course, the majority of therapists and techs are fully aware of the power of the professional products they use but all too often they forget to pass this expert knowledge on to the client.

At a time when more and more consumers are trying to replicate salon treatments at home, by watching online tutorials or buying the increasingly sophisticated retail products available, it’s more important than ever to assert and explain your role as a trained professional when they do come into the salon or spa.

As Hellen Ward explains in the May issue, it’s only by offering a service they can’t replicate – and explaining the dangers involved if they try to – that you’ll keep clients coming back, which ultimately benefits both their safety and your bottom line.