Clinic of the Month - White Feather Spa
I can’t wait to introduce our September Clinic of the Month, Rachael from White Feather Spa located in Port Stanley, Ontario! I am so excited to have this conversation with you and ask you a bit about your journey with Dermaviduals because your story has so inspired me.
Tell us a bit about White Feather Spa and what things looked like before bringing in Dermaviduals.
I am a solo aesthetician, so there's just me, myself and I. Before Dermaviduals, I was more of a full-service spa. I initially started out offering manicures, pedicures, skincare, full bath, body waxing, even hot stone massage, and relaxation massage. Over the course of a few years, I started to streamline my treatment menu, and I am now down to only doing skincare. I also hurt my elbow and arm earlier this year, which prevented me from being able to hold pedicure tools. That forced me to retire my pedicure clients and focus solely on skincare and what I like to call “small body part waxing.”
That is quite a transition! What did that mean for you? Are you glad that you made that transition to becoming more skin-focused, or are there some things you miss?
It was a hard decision. Pedicures were my bread and butter. I had made a name for myself because I offered a different kind of footcare service than anyone else in my area. But my doctor and chiropractor told me that if I wanted to be able to use my hand in 10 years, I had to do something now. So it was a tough decision, and it was full of fear and emotion. Not to mention, in the midst of all this, we were going through a pandemic.
At the end of the day, it was an excellent decision. I don't miss it, because I don't miss having that pain in my arm.
What was the moment that brought you to switch things up and bring Dermaviduals into your business, especially amid a pandemic?
It started with the knowledge I gained when I took the Pastiche Advanced Skin Analysis Training. That flipped my idea of my business on its head. I always knew I wanted to do something different, but I didn't know how to put into words what I was looking for, so when I took the Pastiche training, it just clicked. Then when I started researching skin care lines and Corneotherapy, Dermaviduals came up, and it matched everything that I was looking for.
Since our business was closed at the time, it gave me enough time to think about how I want to spend my days. The pandemic just made me think “you know what? Life is short. This is how I want to spend my days, and I'm just going to go for it.”
What has the impact on your business been since bringing in Dermaviduals?
It's only been positive! I've become more interested in cosmetic chemistry since bringing on Dermaviduals which greatly benefits me especially when I’m having a discussion with a client, and I also work less and am making more!
We should all be open to receiving what we're worth, and it’s so important to restore your own energy for clients so you can deliver high quality service.
Were there any surprises along the way when you brought in Dermaviduals that you didn't expect?
The vast amount of knowledge that surrounds Dermaviduals surprised me at first. I was a little overwhelmed because there is so much to know about all of the active ingredients and each of the different kinds of products, skin types, and conditions that go with it. But, I’ve never had such in-depth training from any other skincare line before. So, even though there's so much to learn, there is ongoing support and training. I actually refer back to the training videos all the time, I watch the Lives that you've done for our group or for Dermal Systems, and I've not had that support from any other skincare line ever. It was a great surprise!
What advice would you give to somebody who is thinking about bringing Dermaviduals into their business, or thinking about opening a business?
First, I would tell someone who's thinking about it to feel comfortable to reach out to a clinic or a spa who already carries it. The women that I have reached out to are warm, welcoming, and they’re more than happy to answer your questions open and honestly. It's very much like a family, it's not like a competition.
To someone who is thinking about going opening a business or becoming a solo aesthetician, I would say first pick your office hours. Don't try to be everything to every client who calls you because you will burnout so fast. Your life outside of work is critical! I would also say to figure out what you love to do, and do that. That way you can enjoy your days and love going to work.
What do you do to balance life and stay grounded?
If you enjoy 80% of your day, that’s perfect. Every job has about 10 to 20% of things you don't like to do. For me, I don't like to do laundry. Since I have a private studio from my home, there are times where my 11-year-old daughter is home, and she wants to work for me. So, I offered to pay her $1 per load of laundry that she folded and put away. She loves it, and I haven't had to do laundry for a while now!
In terms of staying balanced, I would say I'm not very good at this. There was a time where I said yes to everything. I worked a lot. When my daughter was younger, she was sitting at the table and she was playing with her strawberries and she said “This is the daddy strawberry. This is the sister strawberry. And this is the baby strawberry.” And I said “Oh, where's the mommy strawberry?” And she said “at work.” I continued on for a few more years like that, and I got to the point where I would get up to go to the washroom and the kids would ask, “are you going to work?” That’s when I knew things had to change.
Now I'm much better at balancing. I go for my walks every day, I exercise, I swim, and I’m in nature. So I am better, but only because I was forced to from the pandemic, and I'm very happy because of it. No longer working evenings and weekends has made a world of difference to feel at peace, and it makes me love going to work even more than I did before.
What future plans do you see for your business?
I will transition to corrective skincare with a little flair of relaxation, because I love to tuck my clients in and make the room nice and dim to help them relax. I also have plans to rebrand. Since I've moved away from being a full-service spa and want to focus solely on skincare, I think I will change the name from White Feather Spa to something new.
But honestly, I'm content. I like working from my private studio in my home. I like not having employees. I'm so content with where I am, I hope that I continue saving skin for the next 10, 15, 20 years. I don't think I'll expand and have employees or a commercial space again because I'm just so content with what I'm doing.
It's beautiful to see that you're in a place where you're content and you're delivering wonderful services to your extremely lucky clients.
Be sure to check out more about Rachael’s clinic White Feather Spa on her website, Instagram, and Facebook. She's an extremely talented institution and it has been my privilege to work with her and watch her grow.