Cosmetic or aesthetic nurse work with patients who require a range of cosmetic or dermatologic treatments. Alongside a doctor, they assist with major surgical procedures such as rhinoplasty, breast augmentation and liposuction. They can also carry out or support chemical peels, dermal fillers and Botox. Cosmetic nurses will treat many people who have chosen to have these procedures, but there will be others who need work done for health reasons.
What qualifications are needed?
If you are passionate about patient care, as well as skincare and beauty, a career in cosmetic nursing could be right for you. If you are not a registered nurse, you will need to complete a nursing degree (BSN) and then pass the NCLEX-RN exam to become licensed. This will usually take three years. Once you have the necessary qualifications under your belt, you will need to gain core competencies by working alongside a board-certified physician. The clinic that employs you should specialize in facial plastic surgery, cosmetic surgery, dermatology, or whatever aesthetic specialism you are interested in.
Moving into cosmetic nursing with an RN
People with professional nursing qualifications have many transferrable skills that are directly applicable to aesthetic nursing. Along with enthusiasm for the beauty industry, your prior clinical work should open doors for you at cosmetic clinics. You are also a great communicator, a team player, and have a good bedside manner.
Additional credentials give you the edge
Even if you are an RN with clinical experience, working towards certificates and developing a specialism will help you get to where you want to be. There are so many opportunities within the aesthetics industry, from injectables to micro needling and laser treatments, so qualifications in your discipline will give you an advantage. Some clinics will take on nurses who lack experience in aesthetics and allow you to train towards certificates while you work.
Take your aesthetic nursing career to the top
If you are highly ambitious, you will find it easier to work your way up the career ladder with a doctorate. People who have earned a BSN and an MSN can go on to one of two terminal nursing qualifications. The difference between DNP and PhD is that the DNP focuses on practical nursing, while the PhD is a research-based program. Either option could help to further your cosmetic nursing career, and at Wilkes University, you can complete the program online to fit in with your current job. The work is as rigorous as any campus-based PhD with accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
What will your average day look like?
Along with the practical side of your job, you will schedule new appointments, screen patients, and consult with them about their upcoming procedure. You will examine your patient’s skin, provide pre-operative care, and assist them with any post-operative needs. Cosmetic nursing can be very fulfilling as you see patients becoming more confident in their appearance thanks to your hard work. You may have long-term relationships with regular patients and watch as their quality of life improves with each additional treatment.