Clinic of the Month - Monika Speitelsbach, Simply Skincare

Welcome to this month's Clinic of the Month featuring the wonderful Monika Speitelsbach from Simply Skincare! I am so excited to share Monika’s brilliance and business journey with you all. 

What was your business like before Dermaviduals and Dermal Systems? 

In my area of Lake Country, it's a bedroom community of two larger centers. When I looked at who was in my area and what they were offering in terms of aesthetic services, it was definitely lower-grade services. It took a little while to wrap my head around the fact that I could charge more and offer more because, at the time, you felt you had to be competitive in the marketplace with whoever else was out there. It led me to believe that I couldn’t charge what I was worth. 

After going through Corneotherapy training, doing pastiche, and then bringing in Dermaviduals and having a better understanding of the skin in its entirety and the support with business training, it was a model where I could say, “This is what I'm worth. I'm not the chop shop, fluff, and buff down the street. I have 25 years of experience, I do ongoing training investing in my education, and I bring that back to my clients.” It's shifted my business from predominantly waxing and pedicures, to more skin-focused. 

It's also been a massive tectonic shift from going what someone told me when I first entered into aesthetics in 1995. After high school, someone said to me, “Aesthetics, isn't that for dumb girls?” I thought that's how our industry was perceived by many people. It was hurtful to hear that but it was also an eye-opening awakening that there is now more than ever, an appetite and desire for skin-centric clinics. 

Could you tell us a little bit more about the services you offer and the way you’ve restructured your approach to your business? 

Since I have a business degree, I've always liked numbers and spreadsheets. I worked out all of my services down to the cotton balls so I knew all the factors and what I was looking at. I also really enjoy presenting expenses and the overall cost per minute, which is really valuable. So, I looked at certain services like pedicures that are at a lower price point than facials and determined you could be earning more money in the same amount of time. 

An educator years ago once said to us that people die from their feet up. By keeping them healthy and keeping the feet in good shape, it means overall wellness for the whole body. Once they come in for their feet and a little bit of waxing, I keep them as long as they're also buying skincare. In other words, I'm not taking any more clients for the lower hanging fruit like waxing, unless they're coming in for skincare as well. 

COVID was a perfect opportunity to look at the eyebrows, the upper lip and chin and say, “that's lovely to come in for that. But it's now part of a package.” So now, if they want to come in for service, it's a bundled service. 

Was there a particular moment in time that you remember making the decision to bring in Dermaviduals? 

I got to dip my toe into the Dermaviduals water through a friend, and she kept talking about the training. I had done pastiche, and she let me know that you were doing in-person training in the Kelowna area. I attended that but still wasn't quite ready. I kept learning more about the product at pastiche, and Corneotherapy kept driving home that Dermaviduals is in line with my beliefs in skin and skincare and how I want to operate. Then, the obvious choice for filling that void on my retail shelf was Dermaviduals, all our roads were pointing in that direction. It took a little while, but eventually, I thought, okay, let's do this.

The other thing I really like about Dermaviduals is that the company is very transparent. We've physically gone to the lab, we've met the scientists, the formulators, the researchers, we've done hands-on education, and they show you how it's made. It was fantastic. Whereas lines that I've used in the past, there was always this feeling that what you're buying into is an idea. You're buying the sizzle, and there's no steak. Dermaviduals is the opposite. 

What has the impact been on your clients since bringing Dermaviduals?

I have one client in particular who has been with me for years and years and has done all sorts of different treatments. She was my guinea pig and I gave her our first Dermaviduals facial and she said to me, “Oh my gosh, Monika. I just need to let you know, not that I didn't love my other facials, but my skin just feels so happy.” I've seen that time and time again. They all say the same thing: “My skin feels better. My skin looks better. The texture is better. It feels more hydrated.” It also takes fewer products to get to that point. We're seeing happier clients, and they're coming in more regularly. 

The other thing that's really fantastic about Dermaviduals is that they have to come into a clinic to purchase. Its loyalty is fantastic. Once their skin loves the product and the customizable nature of it, they love it. When you look at the combinations of different serums that we can create for clients, they get quite excited. Then, once we start explaining the science of why we're using something, why we're not using something, and change it up seasonally as their skin requires as opposed to having a product on a shelf that a formulator has decided for you that your skin needs, people are really excited about that.

What does the level of customization mean for you as a skincare professional?

That the back bar is where the fun happens. You're only limited by your imagination. It depends on how much you want to charge for service because you need to make sure you know your costs and make sure you're charging accordingly, but it's integrated really well. I don’t find that clients get bored.

Was there anything unexpected that came up when bringing in Dermaviduals or in the world of entrepreneurship in general? 

For those that had never seen nor heard of Dermaviduals, it was a bit of a hurdle to get them to understand that this product doesn't have to have the fancy packaging, doesn't require the model on the front, and doesn't need a celebrity endorsement or an influencer. The product speaks for itself. So, it was a bit of a hurdle for some clients because they don't see it anywhere. 

What would you tell anybody contemplating bringing Dermaviduals into their business?

Pastiche Training is a fundamental base for any skin-centric business. That's an amazing place to start, and it is a game-changer. If I didn't have that foundation, my business would be very different. It wouldn't be skin-centric, it would probably still be waxing and charging a fraction of what I'm currently charging. So, get your business training, research Corneotherapy, talk to Rene, interview people currently carrying the line, get in there. Make sure that it's in alignment with your core values and beliefs and how you want to run your business. I can't see that you would go wrong with Dermaviduals. Everyone should be carrying it. 

You never stop learning, which is so exciting, but I know it can be daunting. But having a group of people, like Rene’s Facebook Group, is an amazing way to get in there. 

What advice would you give your younger self?

Take some basic business courses like financial management accounting. I know it sounds boring, but at the end of the day, you need to know your numbers.

What is one key thing you think every entrepreneur or business owner should be doing for themselves regularly to stay sane? 

You can get really lost in the shuffle of working in the business and on the business. Scheduling time for whatever it is that recharges your batteries is so important. If it's crocheting, kickboxing, stamp collecting, whatever it is that you have to do to recharge those batteries, do it for yourself. I hear from women over and over again of always putting themselves last. If you don't look after yourself, how can you be expected to help anyone else?

What does Simply Skincare look like 10 years from now? 

We looked at the possibility of purchasing a spa with a colleague and going to business together and expanding. After some number crunching, I thought, “Is this what I want to do? Do I want to work seven days a week? Or do I want to have a quality of life?” I used to book seven days a week, and then it was six, but my charge rate has gone up so I’m still making more money than I was before doing services that I love. I find I'm happier. I think I will eventually cut out certain services of the lower-hanging fruit and focus more on the skin-centric things.

Is there anything else you wanted to share? 

Thank you for the opportunity, Rene, and thank you for everything that you're doing for us and for skin professionals because it really helps elevate our entire industry. I am just looking forward to seeing more people join Dermaviduals!

Thank you so much for joining us, Monika. To hear more about Simply Skincare in Lake Country BC and read more on what they’re all about, be sure to stop by their website, Instagram, and Facebook Pages.
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