When I was finishing school I took a bit of time deciding between studying to become a sports physiotherapist or a beauty therapist and decided upon beauty. I’ve always been a very caring person. I love to help others and I have always had such a passion and interest in the beauty industry so felt it was only right I got into it as a career. It was something I enjoyed watching videos about and learning about before I even studied, so I knew it was for me.
I studied at the London college of beauty therapy and thoroughly enjoyed the course and all the opportunities that arose studying at such a specialised college. I wanted to explore different sides of the industry so I have worked in luxury hotels, cruise ships, salons and now a luxury medical detox retreat in the Austrian alps! The world is your oyster with this job, beauty is something that is in demand all around the world so if you desire to travel whilst doing something you love, then this is a great career for you!
Do you find there are any prejudices (good or bad) about choosing this industry as a career?
A lot of times this industry is seen as ‘easy’ and something that anyone can just do. But that is not true. There are so many advances now with this industry that require you to have high academic and practical skills. It also takes a certain type of person to succeed in this role, it’s something you really need to be passionate about and enjoy to be a great therapist.
How hard/easy was your journey - give some examples of some highs and some lows...
Everyones journey is different and the fun is finding out what your passion is. I decided to take different routes so I could explore all parts of the industry. I have enjoyed travelling the world and seeing countries that I never dreamed I would have visited, but thanks to working on the cruise ships I did. Ive been exposed to parts of the medical industry and the connection between our body and inner health with our skin whilst working in a luxury detox retreat in the Alps. Ive also dealt with the difficulties of being in countries with language barriers and the different cultures. There are ups and downs with every career but I truly believe this is one of the most rewarding.
Whats been your biggest three challenges - and what did you do/are doing to overcome them?
Unfortunately when working in roles where there is a concentration on massage that this can lead to inappropriate suggestions from guests. This is very frustrating because it undermines all the hard work and training you have put into your job. However I became very strong against this and you have to understand that your company and manager will always support you when you are made to feel uncomfortable in any situation with a guest. Also it is very important to know it is okay if someone complains. A lot of the times complaints are nothing to do with you as a therapist but largely to do with the guests personal situation. Don't take things personally and if anything negative is given to you as a therapist you have to take it and turn it into a positive and grow from the situation.
What message would you give to anyone considering a career in Spa?
The spa industry is exciting and will always be in demand. You have so many different career paths available, its just finding what best suits you. it is so rewarding to see the impact you can have on a guest, sometimes physically and sometimes mentally. The spa industry is available all over the world so take that as an opportunity, the world is your oyster.
What message would you give to people already working in Spa?
Always give 100 percent to every guest you see, you really never no what they are dealing with and what an impact you can have on them. You have the power to brighten someones day so embrace that. Also continue to develop and grow as a therapist, it only maximises your career.
Meet Amy Laing, Spa Therapist