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Dermatologist vs Esthetician: Who's Better for My Skin Care?

Dermatologist vs Esthetician

Let's face it, it's been a stressful year and all of us can use a little TLC when it comes to the skin department. But which skin specialist should you see? What are the differences between a dermatologist vs esthetician?   

It's tough to know who should be your go-to when your skin looks in need of some assistance, but we've got the answer!

What Is A Dermatologist? 

A dermatologist is a doctor who specializes in skin health, diagnosing, and treating diseases. They may also be a cosmetic procedure expert and can therefore help you treat any skin concerns or problems you have. Dermatologists are trained to treat both the skin (e.g., acne, psoriasis) and mucous membranes (mouth and eyelids).

Typically, dermatologists are trained to diagnose skin problems that show up on any part of the body. They tend to work with patients who have chronic conditions that require frequent medical treatment as well as those who suffer from more severe ailments. 

A dermatologist's medical training may also assist them in identifying systemic diseases.

For example, if you're out and about in the garden and wake up the following morning covered in itchy spots all over your body please reach out to your Dermatologist for some relief!

Girl checking her arm for a skin condition

Not only can Dermatologists diagnose skin conditions like rashes, and eczema, they will be able to prescribe medications for the treatment of herpes or warts.

It is also recommended to have your skin inspected by Dermatologists routinely since they specialize in making diagnoses of benign (non-cancerous) or cancerous growths on the skin such as moles, cysts, melanomas, superficial spreading melanoma, nodular melanoma, and other lesions like birthmarks.

What Is An Esthetician?

An esthetician is a skincare professional who's trained to help with the cleansing, exfoliating, moisturizing, and beautifying of your face and body. They're trained to offer facials, body treatments, and recommend skincare products that will help you take the best care of your skin. 

Estheticians are also called cosmetologists or skincare specialists—and some are even medical estheticians who can administer certain procedures like Botox injections or chemical peels.

An esthetician works with clients to examine their skin's condition and discuss potential options for treatments. You may find an esthetician at a salon or spa where they use advanced techniques and equipment to reduce fine lines, remove wrinkles, treat acne, and other conditions.

A great esthetician will keep their knowledge current by taking continuing education classes to learn new methods and techniques, including the application of products that can help you rejuvenate your skin.

Estheticians also provide treatments such as waxing for hair removal. This helps keep the skin smooth and hair-free for a longer period of time.

Our convenient and compact Facial Waxing Kit is a must-have if you do a lot of eyebrow waxing and other facial waxing services! 

Facial Waxing Kit - Starpil Wax

You May Be Wondering What An Esthetician Does vs a Dermatologist?

Estheticians focus on beauty-related tasks such as providing skincare advice and improving the overall appearance of the skin, whereas Dermatologists are experts exclusively within diagnosis relating to diseases that affect our skin.

While both can provide recommendations for products that target your specific needs, only a Dermatologist is trained to perform procedures such as removing skin growths, and biopsies.

A dermatologist may be able to help you with skin conditions like rashes or eczema but an esthetician will likely recommend that you schedule an appointment with a dermatologist if you have persistent issues.

While an esthetician works primarily within the realm of beauty and aesthetics, preventing the signs of aging while maintaining healthy skin is one main aspect where their jobs overlap. The great thing about seeing both types of professionals is that you can get the best of both worlds!

Examples Of Esthetician Services

When we think of our Esthie's the first words that come to mind are- beauty treatments, relaxing... in other words - make me beautiful. What does this mean? Well, it means that an Esthetician is able to perform a range of services on your skin such as facials and chemical peels.

A facial can help you achieve smoother-looking skin. This is done by removing gentle amounts of dead surface cells from the outermost layer of your skin, while also helping with dryness and acne-causing bacteria.

Chemical peels are great for those who have an uneven tone or texture in their skin thanks to sun damage over time, but they're not appropriate for everyone, so please be sure to consult with your dermatologist before undergoing any type of skincare treatment!

Exfoliation is also an important part of any skincare routine and it's a service that an Esthetician provides. The process of exfoliation helps you improve texture and pigmentation while preparing you for further treatments.

Here's what else an esthetician might do to improve your skin texture:

  • Give you a facial and use deep-cleaning products that remove dirt, oil, makeup, or other environmental contaminants from your skin.
  • Cleanse with soothing products like aloe vera (helps moisturize dryness caused by cold weather).
  • Distribute pre moisturized creams as part of an exfoliation process to help skin look smoother and brighter.  
  • Use retinoids (medications that help cells grow more quickly) to reduce the appearance of wrinkles.

Whew! That was a lot but don't forget this: when in doubt consult both your Dermatologist and Esthetician for any type of skincare advice because they're experts in two different fields! 

You can never have too much skincare knowledge.

Can a dermatologist help with skincare?

A dermatologist can help you with skincare by examining your skin and telling you what type of routine to follow. Dermatologists have special training in treating diseases that affect the skin, hair, and nails so they are best qualified to diagnose problems. A Dermatologist is also likely to be familiar with new developments in the field of medicine related to these diseases and will be able to offer a safe treatment for a variety of causes.

A dermatologist can prescribe medication in order to help you control your symptoms. Some treatments may include medications such as antibiotics, steroids (milder than cortisone), or retinoids, which are a form of vitamin A used for skin tissue repair. 

Dermatologists can also give you topical treatments like gels and ointments. A dermatologist may also suggest a procedure to help control your symptoms.

Are you ready to see both a dermatologist and an esthetician?

This is the best way to get all of your skincare issues taken care of. Your dermatologist can develop a long-term plan that's best for your skin type and any health concerns you may have. 

Your Esthie will be able to deal with any cosmetic skin problems, advise on what products may work best for your situation, help with skincare routines, recommend procedures like Botox, fillers, and laser treatments.

Both professionals play a role in improving the appearance of your skin. It's best to work with both of them on a regular basis.

When you learn how to care for your skin, your confidence can actually improve as well. It will feel so good to have soft, glowing, healthy skin that you won't want to hide behind makeup or worry about a shiny forehead or an uneven tan line. You'll know what products and routines work best for you no matter what time of year the weather shifts in your area.

With all of this information at hand, it's easy to see why both a dermatologist and Esthetician are part of any current beauty regime!

No matter where you go, just keep in mind that the health of your skin is the number one thing to be concerned about. Your Dermatologist and Esthetician are there for two different reasons so don't expect them to do the same type of work. But at least now you know what they're both capable of doing!


As you can see, both Dermatologists and Estheticians play an important role in our skincare routine. Both of them can help to improve the overall look and feel of your skin, but that doesn't mean one is better than the other.

In fact, most people who are serious about skincare use both an Esthetician and a Dermatologist! 

You'll get the knowledge you need from them on how to take care of your skin as well as better understanding your specific skin type. So go ahead- book a visit with a local esthetician today, and if you live near a dermatologist, see that one too!  

Finally: Dermatologist vs Esthetician. Who do I see? Well, ultimately they are two different types of experts that offer unique benefits depending on what our specific need may be.

So don't fret- with some basic research, you can be well on your way to achieving your skin goals whatever they may be.

I hope this article allowed you to get a better idea of both Dermatologists vs Estheticians and how important it is to work with them together in order to achieve our goal of having strong healthy skin!