Dermatologist or Esthetician

When attempting to remove dark spots, blemishes or correct any type of skin care issue you might be struggling with, it’s good to know what your options are.  When you finally make the decision to see a professional you’ll have a choice to make; whether you’ll visit an esthetician or a dermatologist. Both professionals can be very helpful in achieving your individual skin care goals but they do have their differences. In this post we’ll give you some helpful advice in making this decision!

What’s the difference? 

The simple answer is a dermatologist is a licensed  doctor. They have a medical degree and at least 4 years of special training. They are specially trained physicians who not only can diagnose but also treat conditions that pertain to your hair, skin and even your nails. Cosmetic dermatologists focus on procedures such as collagen injections, laser acne treatments and a wide array of other specialty treatments.

Estheticians on the other hand are licensed professionals who specialize in skin beautification techniques. They provide a wide variety of  services such as facials, makeup application  extractions, microdermabrasion and even aromatherapy. Their job is not to treat illness or diseases concerning the skin, instead they focus on making and keeping their clients beautiful.

Before choosing 

If you’ve never seen a dermatologist or an esthetician, a good rule of thumb before getting any procedure done is to consult a dermatologist.  It’s a smart first step to have a doctor give you a once-over before receiving any type of treatment. You never know when you might be allergic to a particular type of chemical, or have a serious problem that requires medical attention, and this is a job for a physician, not a technician.  Once you receive a clean bill of health, and maybe some valuable insights into your particular concerns from a medical perspective, you can feel more comfortable relying on an esthetician for your general beautification needs.


If you decide to see an esthetician, make sure they are certified and licensed.  Generally you will find the license and/or certification from there state licensed school publicly displayed  within their office. Also be sure to relate any information given to you from your dermatologist, especially concerning allergies, sensitivities, and health conditions. It’s also important to mention any prescription medicines that you are currently taking or will be taking in the immediate future.  Last but not least be sure to use common sense, never let money or time dictate whether or not you should be seeing an esthetician vs. dermatologist, especially when it comes to complex or specialty procedures.

Clearskin Classroom

5 thoughts on “Dermatologist or Esthetician

  1. Bee says:

    This is a great article, I feel that dermatologists can be a great option for certain ailments…but not particularly skincare needs. I noticed I always feel rushed or that I am not getting a treatment plan tailored to my skin’s needs (which are many I might add lol).

    By the way this website, is a great resource!

  2. star says:

    Also, a dermatologist can prescribe medications and treatments that an aesthetician cannot. And quite frankly, often times with insurance, going to see the dermatologist is cheaper than going to a spa!

  3. kelsly says:

    Another factor is time. In Canada, seeing a dermatologist can take 6 months to 1 year for your first appointment, but you can usually book an appointment with an Esthetician in 1 week to 1 month.

  4. Emily says:

    If you’re just wanting to get your skin looking smoother, or healthier you could use an aesthetician, if you’re trying to combat acne or something more medically relevant it would be best to see a dermatologist. I’m thinking about getting a peel done, just to help my skin look renewed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *