More than skin deep
Beauticians in demand
D EMAND for beauty professionals trained in massage, aromatherapy and reflexology is increasing as women look for more than traditional ‘‘ touch-ups’’ on a trip to the salon.
Employers and educators say while appointments for maintenance beauty, such as waxing and tanning, still are strong, consumers are choosing additional treatments in the hope of not only enhancing their look but also their health.
At TAFE SA, about 120 students each year complete a Diploma of Remedial Massage, a Diploma of Reflexology, a Diploma of Aromatherapy or a Certificate IV in Massage Therapy Practice.
Beauty lecturer Patsy George says there are two distinct trends in the industry.
They focused on the concept of ‘‘wellness’’ – balancing the mind and body.
‘‘It’s no longer just about your waxing,’’ she says.
‘‘People are looking for things like remedial massage and aromatherapy. Interest in the wellness side of things is rapidly increasingly.
‘‘Advanced machinery is also becoming more prevalent.
‘‘You’ve got $50,000 machinery being used to do permanent hair removal, skin rejuvenation.’’
Complementary Healthcare Council of Australia executive di- rector Dr Wendy Morrow says increased demand means the range of jobs available for anyone qualified in anything from naturopathy to remedial massage has grown significantly.
‘‘Just look at massage as one example. That’s now offered at gyms and sports centres, health stores, even cruise ships and, of course, in the health and community service sector,’’ she says.
‘‘When it comes to your naturopaths and herbal medicine, there’s not only health stores, but pharmacies. It really is seen as complementary, rather than alternative.
‘‘I’d say we’ve had steady growth within the industry. As with any change, you hit a point where there’s a slow realisation there are jobs out there in this area. There is growth and demand and we’ve just gone beyond that point and now there’s a real momentum.’’
SA College of Natural Medicine deputy principal Marni Morrow says attitudes towards natural therapies are changing.
‘‘We’re no longer seen as an alternative by a lot of people, we’re seen as complementary and run alongside conventional medicine,’’ she says.
‘‘The view that it’s a bunch of hippies is absolutely long gone.’’
Ms Morrow says each year about 12 to 15 students from the college graduate with diplomas ranging from specialising in naturopathy to Western herbal medicines.
‘‘I’d say the feedback we get is that there could be easily double this amount and that they would have jobs, no worries, and there would still be vacancies to fill,’’ she says.
‘‘Mature-age students looking for a career change and people who have seen the benefit of complementary medicine are among those we see the most of.’’
Massage therapist Claire Farnden, 29, has spent the past 18 months working at Endota Day Spa on Rundle St and chose the career as it meant she could work and travel.
‘‘I’m from Tasmania so I had the opportunity to work at Cradle Mountain and I’ve also worked in Queensland and London,’’ she says.
Massage therapist Clare Farnden applies her skills to Somaly Pech at the Endota Spa in Rundle St.