Duquessa thrives in niche

Four years after opening her first clinic in Melbourne, Katherine Millar-Shannon is enjoying success in Sydney too after discovering a niche in the seemingly cluttered beauty market.

Katherine, the owner of Duquessa Skin Sanctuary, said her business’s unique position in the market made her services extremely popular with clients who wanted more than the standard offerings available in a beauty salon but were reluctant to visit a cosmetic surgeon.

“Duquessa is a leader in cutting-edge anti-ageing treatments in an aspirational luxe environment,” she says.

Katherine, who has a Masters of Nursing and 23 years experience as a nurse, is currently one of only 20 cosmetic nurse practitioners in the country who “consult, prescribe, refer and treat clients onsite”.

Capitalising on her skillset, Katherine has made sure that the service offering at Duquessa includes advanced anti-ageing treatments – such as Kybella Belkyra (for double chins), Thermage (for eyes and face/neck/body), PRP vampire facials, Botox, dermal fillers, Vitalite vitamin infusions, and Puppet Threads – which beauty therapists cannot perform.

“We offer all of those treatments in an environment that clients feel very safe and comfortable in,” she explains.

“Most clients nowadays want visible results from beauty treatments but most do not want to go under the knife.

“They want discreet yet effective long term solutions to the ageing process (with little or no downtime).

“We therefore offer them the types of services that cosmetic surgeons can perform but often don’t due to the lack of profits.”

She cites ‘puppet threads’ as a perfect example.

Introduced onto the market 17 years ago, the Silhouette Soft face and neck lift procedure has witnessed significant advances “not only in the material of which the threads are made, but also in the ways they are placed under the skin” but is not heavily publicised in Australia.

“Most surgeons don’t publicise it as they would prefer their patients had a face-lift instead.”

She said she plans to maintain Duquessa’s unique position in the beauty market by constantly improving her skillset and credentials to stay ahead of the competition – and ensuring her staff are (almost) as qualified as herself.

The clinic employs registered nurses and cosmetic nurse practitioners to perform anti-wrinkle injections, dermal fillers, lasers, etc.

“Duquessa nurses have a Bachelor of Nursing, Post-Graduate Diploma in Accident and Emergency and/or their Masters of Nursing,” she says.

“They all have experience both in wards and in the cosmetic arena.

“As the demand is so high in the cosmetic industry our staff are constantly evolving, learning and adapting to the latest advances in cosmetic medicine.”

She concludes that “meeting clients needs is no longer enough to guarantee a beauty business’s success”.

“At Duquessa we don’t just meet clients current needs, we try to anticipate their next ones and adjust our offerings accordingly.”