Mind your language when it comes to your anti-ageing clients. A warning from Sex and The City. By Jenni Gilbert
Former Sex and the City star Kim “Samantha” Cattrall (second left, above) echoed the sentiment on many an older woman’s mind when she told a Sydney-based radio show last month that “age has become a disease in our society”.
(Let’s just move right past the disastrous recent encounter between Kim’s SATC cohort Kristin “Charlotte” Davis – above, far right – and Sunrise‘s Samatha Armytage!)
The 59-year-old played a glamorous, sexually rapacious 40- then 50-something Manhattanite determined not to conform to the societal norm – and it seems the actress is every bit as defiant as her character when it comes to ageing and how we ought to perceive it.
“There are anti-ageing clinics everywhere,” Kim told the Kyle and Jackie O show. “It’s all going to happen to us, if we’re lucky enough to age and get older and have a full life. So I would try to embrace it as much as possible.”
Kim’s stance raises many pertinent issues for the aesthetics industry about how clients are treated in the anti-ageing space.
In a nutshell, it’s a matter of choice how a person chooses to age, and whatever their choice is needs to be handled with the utmost tact and respect.
As a salon, spa and clinic owner or team member, you are service provider as well as an expert in your field. This means following a client’s cues very carefully as to what they want to hear and be told (or not).
However much you feel a client could benefit from certain treatments, opinion that is not welcome can have a devastating impact on their self-esteem – and your business.
Learning to read those cues and phrasing advice, whether asked for, or volunteered, is all-important for both client and the treatment provider.
Junia Kerr opened her holistic salon, Sage Beauty, in Sydney’s Bondi Beach 10 years ago this April and business has never been, well, busier.
She believes it is because of the “you’re beautiful as you are” philosophy that underpins Sage to make women feel empowered and inspired.
“I am a homoeopath. I didn’t come from a traditional beauty background, which I find can be very shallow,” Junia says.
“I instinctively created something more comprehensive. I particularly didn’t support the negative input attitude of the beauty industry – the `you’re not good/beautiful enough – you need this or that to fix it’.
“I don’t believe in Botox or fillers. I believe in helping women be comfortable in their own skin, healthy, fit and strong, physically, emotionally and spiritually. And a bit irreverent!
“As well as our wonderful skincare treatments using Eminence Organics, Dr Hauschka and MV Organic skincare, we offer homoeopathy, a herbalist, a naturopath who has had great success in treating hormonal and fertility issues, remedial massage, pregnancy and oncology [for cancer patients] massage, which in our case is mostly about lymphatic drainage.
“Our mission is to make women feel good about themselves, to feel they don’t have to change to be `better’ or that they are competing or having to succumb to peer-driven pressure from other women.”
Incidentally, one of Sage’s most popular “takeaways” is The Beauty Chef’s inner beauty bio-fermented liquid and powder products to promote gut and digestive health, which Junia says fitted seamlessly with Sage’s values.
Says Beauty Chef founder Carla Oates: “I have seen so many skin problems and weight issues improved dramatically by people working on their digestive health and changing lifestyle habits.
“I believe it will become a core part of the service offered of salons and spas in the future. Beauty and a healthy weight begin in the belly. The gut is where 70 percent of the immune system lies, where we metabolise hormones, neutralise pathogens, make detoxifying enzymes and make nutrients; all of these things can impact greatly on skin and weight if they are not working properly.
“In many cases perceived `belly fat’ can actually be bloat and excess fluid the body holds to dilute toxins. So people may be spending fortunes on body sculpting treatments that won’t reap the desired – or any – results as the issue is with their gut.
“Toxins are stored in fat cells, so by having less toxins in the body by improved lifestyle and eating habits, you help bring your body back into balance naturally. By improving gut health, you will see a big difference in not only visceral fat but also bloating.”
SPA+CLINIC is by no means saying you should tell your clients to avoid anti-wrinkle or dermal filler injections or other non-surgical procedures such as laser.
Our mission is to inform you of all available options open to your clients to look and feel the best they can, whatever their preference.
What we do advocate is finding a powerful point of difference in this increasingly competitive space for the better success of your enterprise. Which Sage Beauty has done rather beautifully.