Like most women, you don’t mind getting a little help when it comes to looking your best. But maybe you’re noticing that over-the-counter beauty treatments and anti-aging remedies—even the expensive ones—just aren’t delivering the results you want. You’re thinking of trying a visit to a medical spa, but how do you choose a good one?
Understand the Business Model
The first step in choosing a medical spa is educating yourself on business models. Just about anyone can operate a “day spa” or “skin care clinic.” In fact, today many hair salons offer some of the services found in day spas, such as facials, wraps and so on. Here, the emphasis is as much on relaxation and pampering as it is on refreshing your looks.
Though laws vary from state to state, a medical doctor must oversee a “medical spa.” That said, there aren’t usually many hard and fast rules about how that actually happens. Some of the first things you may want to find out include: who is the physician involved with the spa, what is his or her main practice, how often are they on site and could you have a consultation with him or her if you’d like to.
Some industry insiders recommend giving a chain or franchise medical spa an automatic pass. These businesses tend to take a formulaic, or cookie cutter, approach to their clients. The focus on turning a profit can be such that service suffers.
On the other end of the spectrum, take care if you’re considering a medical spa that’s attached to another medical practice. Some doctors add medical spa services to their ongoing operation—gynecology, for instance—simply to bolster the bottom line. Others, notably cosmetic surgeons, open a medical spa to provide a pipeline for surgery prospects. You don’t necessarily need to cross these medical spas off your list, just be sure you feel there’s a sincere focus on the medical spa side of the practice and its clients.
Evaluate the Services
As you consider whether a medical spa is really integral to a physician’s practice, one indicator is the range of services and options provided. To a degree, the more, the better.