It’s insanely hot in commercial kitchens, even in the mildest climates. Those overly sized chef coats, extremely thick cotton pants, and the flames from the grill in the background. You’d have beads of sweat the size of peas running down your face 10 minutes into your shift, and forget make-up - that shit gets everywhere. There are too many large bodies in one small area, restaurant kitchens aren’t always designed to fit a ton of people and it seems to me that I always chose to work at restaurant kitchens that fit one, and being 5’2” does not necessarily help in case you were wondering. I was overpowered constantly.
My time as a line cook was short lived…I lasted about 4 years post-high school working in a predominantly male field filled with sexism, chauvinism, and let us be honest - complete back-breaking grunt work. So, I decided to do a complete 180 and work with a bunch of women and entered the world of esthetics. Makes total sense.
I never ever thought I would be an esthetician. I re-read old journals and skim over the pages that sweetly and innocently uttered ‘I am going to grow up and marry a rich man and have four children, be a stay at home wife and blah blah blah.’ A bunch of misery if you ask me. But we can skip over that part..
I had been miserable cooking at my last job, I was constantly asked to show up early to get my food prep done and make sure to not punch in for the day until an hour before service started. I was over it. I vividly remember crying to my mom and telling her I didn't know what to do with my life. Zero direction and nobody to guide me. But for whatever reason, call it the universe or the cosmos or even God…the next thing I know I am being directed to a completely different career and I am sitting in the acceptance office, filling out a FAFSA applying to attend the Euro Institute. The elite of the elite esthetic schools in Washington State and I soon realized after working in the industry that I was part of some secret society (which wasn’t really a secret) and was snubbed by colleagues because I attended the most holistic and expensive school in the PNW (insert eye roll).
8 months and 6,400 hours of training I became an esthetician and was thwarted into the world of beauty. She’s a brutal one. I have been an esthetician for over 14 years at this point. Loved every second of the experience. Touching skin, investigative questions, getting to the root cause of someone's skin condition. The process was my obsession, except for one thing…It was difficult to find a job in 2007 as a brand new esthetician and make a living wage.
Along the journey my panda looking shih tzu, Toby and I were living out of my car. Not exactly homeless but we definitely didn’t have a place to call our own (but we can discuss this another day). Struggling was now my reason to hustle…and when you grow up in an unstable environment, you learn to hustle quickly. I’ve evolved in many different ways as an esthetician. Doing bitch work inside a massive retailer, to advancing as an Account Executive for a skincare line and traveling all over the place just to make a sale. But I have always come back to the treatment room. Esthetics is constantly evolving and more and more people are concerned for their skin health. When I first became an esthetician, I don’t believe people gave two shits about their skin. But as the world has evolved and new technology and advancement in products have come to the market, people are getting smarter and focused on taking care of themselves more.
When I first started in my career I don’t believe I understood the true value of what I do. I am a healer by nature and was placed on this earth to help other women to feel beautiful from the inside out. I personally believe being an esthetician has far more importance than applying creams and rubbing faces down with oil for an hour and we call that success. For estheticians, it is a calling to truly understand an individual and to guide clients to understand how taking care of ourselves and is truly one of the most important self care things you can do. Washing your face isn’t just a daily task, it is a ritual. A ritual is described as a ceremony consisting of a series of acts performed in order. So the next time you are performing your nightly skincare routine, remember the ritual of self care, pause and be present with your experience… understand it is more than just a skin deep experience and you are giving yourself so much self love.
I am so excited to share my knowledge and love of skin to the world. It is truly a fascinating subject and one in which many people will have opinions about but I hope you learn something new each time you read a new blog post.
Skin is my true passion. Helping people is my life's purpose.