Right, I’m going allow myself to be really vulnerable with you now and tell you something:
I’ve battled with myself and my choice of business since I started it, many years ago.
On one hand, I love what I do. I love the difference I make to my clients – how awesome they feel and look after they’ve seen me. I get very excited by the results we achieve. This aspect of my work energises me which is great, I know.
But, on the other hand, in the past, I’ve literally been crippled by feelings of guilt and shame about what I do.
I’ve been conflicted and have kept this a secret for years! *rolls eyes*
I’ve felt bad about offering cosmetic treatments because I worried that I could be adding to the ridiculous amount of body image pressure we’re all under.
I get it – I feel all the pressures of what we ‘should’ look like and I’ve battled with my weight my whole life. I know how it feels to not feel truly happy or comfortable in your own skin.
And It’s totally sh*t!
We’re all bombarded with constant images of celebrities looking unrealistically young (and often, a bit weird) on TV and on social media. We all see the reality show contestants with these plastic, unexpressive looks they all have now
…and it’s becoming normalised.
It’s got to the point where some young girls think having cosmetic procedures is normal and necessary. That it’s the path to making them happier and more popular; that it’s the key to getting that perfect selfie. Not only does this erode away their self-confidence, instead of building it up, but it also can, and often does, lead to mental health issues.
If I, as an adult(ish), question my looks in comparison to who I see on my Facebook feed, then what impact is it having on our younger more vulnerable generation? I don’t want to be a part of that.
I have a daughter
She is my absolute world, but she is also young and impressionable. She is great fun, confident, clever and thoughtful – I don’t want this description of her to ever change. I am wholly aware that I’m her main role model and she’s constantly observing what I do and learning from it. As a result, I don’t let her see my Instagram feed, or read my blogs, because I don’t want to normalise what I do. But l also don’t want to have to hide anything from her. She doesn’t know what Botox is yet and that’s great but I hate that I am not completely honest with her about what I do.
In the past, I’ve worried that what I do, primarily Botox and dermal filler injections – isn’t good or caring (as a Nurse I trained to be the epitome of ‘care’). That I could be adding to the unhappiness and body dysmorphia that surrounds us all. BUT then I remind myself of where I CAN and DO make a positive difference to my clients.
This, in the past, has kept me up at night.
This, is the reason I’ve turned most young girls away: refusing to touch their already beautiful lips to make them bigger.
This, is why my business hasn’t grown at the speed it could have.
This, is why I’ve not shown up more, and quietly worked away without getting my business out there.
And THIS is why it is now my policy to only treat people over the age of 30.
Now, I can be more open with my own daughter, or any other young person, about what I do. I can now explain that some of what I do is inappropriate for young people. That, just like movies on Netflix, age restrictions are in place for their safety and protection; often from themselves.
It’s not like I have loads of young clients, but this has been a big block me for me. I can now concentrate on the people I can help while focusing on the bigger picture. I can keep the parts of my job that I love while doing away with those that caused me guilt.
I don’t feel conflicted anymore.
I realise young people will still seek out these treatments and someone else will happily take their money. But I hope by doing this, at the very least, they may question it a little more.
So there you have it: It’s now officially my policy to only treat people above the wonderful age of 30.
I just hope the rest of my industry catch up with me on this…
I’d love to hear your thoughts, so please do drop me a line or find me over on the socials. Yep, even Instagram, which isn’t just for the kiddos anymore! 😉
Louise, The Skin Nurse x