The changing face of the beauty industry

By Tina Viney – CEO, APAN

With industry and government activities currently reviewing regulatory changes, have you noticed the issue of recognised qualifications being discussed in several forums within the beauty sector?

Historically,  modalities such as laser,  IPL, cosmetic tattooing, and related grooming services were taught through suppliers and non-accredited trainers.  While these delivered a level of skill to enable someone to move into the industry and practice, there were no mechanisms in place to ensure ongoing uniform standards of training, a good balance between theory and practical, or any clear accountability in the area of health and safety.  Without rules to control standards there is no way of protecting our industry from being exploited and pulling down the reputation of the profession.

While we got away with this in the past, the industry is maturing.  New modalities are reaching deeper into the skin and may create bleeding to deliver results.  This requires a level of numbing  to ensure client comfort, so the use of anaesthetics comes into consideration.  All these challenges require safety measures to protect the consumer and need clearly defined practice measures. This is because once our procedures move into the deeper layers of the skin, they cross over into health practices.

Additional Challenges 

As health practitioners start to perform some of these treatments, we find we are competing with higher qualified professionals who are offering similar treatments to ours.  All these dynamics are influencing and shaping our industry with more advanced scopes of practice for which clearly defined standards of training need to be set and objectively measured. This is where the role of qualifications is going to provide the answers.  While experience is important, the new breed of highly qualified graduates will hold greater prospects for employment possibilities, and with time these qualifications will become the expected norm.

Professional qualifications are becoming increasingly popular across a wide range of industries- not least of all our own- because they not only help to provide employees with industry-specific skills, but also demonstrate a commitment to training and career development. Additionally, in today’s super-competitive employment arena, professional qualifications give you that essential edge when applying for a new job or internal promotion.

Research from multiple industries confirms the highly beneficial impact professional qualifications can have on your entire career,with the potential to add tens of thousands of dollars to an employee’s lifetime earnings.

Whether you are currently working or looking for work, you can never be too qualified for a job. With the ever-changing practices and information available to different fields of work, there are always new things to learn. Getting a qualification will enable you to improve your standing within the workforce.

Here are some advantages for gaining a government-approved qualification for the services you provide:

1. Improve your job security
If you are currently employed, completing further studies also shows your employer what you are capable of and demonstrates you are keen for career progression. Learning portrays you as someone who is persistent and disciplined. This will encourage your employer to invest more time into your career and give you the opportunity to take on more responsibilities, leading to promotion and higher pay.

2. Expand your skill-set and confidence
Although you may already feel confident in your current abilities, completing a qualification will allow you to expand your knowledge, while giving you a recognised qualification that will elevate your professional status.

3. Improve your earning potential
Fair Work maps wages against qualifications, not experience.

4. Open doors to pursue higher credentials – If you choose to add to your current scope of practice, your existing qualifications will determine your entry to higher education and this can open the door to improving performance and broadening employment and career options.

5. Safeguard your professional future – Regulations are based on recognised skills and knowledge and are mapped against clearly defined and measurable qualifications. If our industry does not invest in qualifications it risks, through future regulations, for certain procedures to be reserved for only those with clearly defined qualifications.

6. Competitive advantage – qualifications will allow you to achieve and hold professional recognition with consumers.

7. Gain professional recognition – meet with new industry accreditation programs and improve your ability to interact with health practitioners and allied health professionals. APAN’s Registered Aesthetics Practitioner Registration Program is based on qualifications. This is the new industry standard for recognition.

8. Feel empowered

Aside from all these career and financial benefits, completing a qualification gives you sense of fulfilment and accomplishment. Attaining and updating qualifications will leave you more motivated in life generally, as well as your career!


If you are currently working in areas above your present qualifications and a government-approved qualification exists in your modality, seek, through an appropriate Registered Training Organisation to map your competencies through a recognition of prior learning process (RPL) and pursue the benefits and recognition of a full qualification.

With advantages ranging from personal and interpersonal, to financial and educational advancements and recognition, it would be hard to deny that it’s worthwhile investing your time into becoming more qualified! Be proud of your professional status and gain the recognition you deserve.  The future will expect if from you.

If you require assistance in upgrading your qualification or potential government funded support please feel free to contact me at APAN on 07 5593 0360.


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