Ep 132 – Welcome to Our Tech Talk: The Long-Term Plan for Virtual Esthetic Appointments

There is no questioning that the landscape of our industry has changed largely because of the influence of technology. With the limitations of in-person interactions, 2020 initiated a shift (or a shove) toward virtual socialization. We embraced Zoom meetings, oversaw virtual schooling, had virtual doctor visits. Now, many of those practices have become the norm. So, are virtual visits with an esthetician the latest industry advancement, or just a passing trend?

ASCP Esty Talk with Maggie Staszcuk and Ella Cressman

Produced by Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP) for licensed estheticians, ASCP Esty Talk is a weekly podcast, hosted by licensed estheticians, Ella Cressman, ASCP Skin Deep Magazine contributor, and Maggie Staszcuk, ASCP Education Specialist. We see your passion, innovation, and hard work, and are here to support you by providing a platform for networking, advocacy, camaraderie, and education. We aim to inspire you to ask the right questions, find your motivation, and give you the courage to have the professional skin care career you desire.


About Ella Cressman:

Ella Cressman is a licensed esthetician, certified organic formulator, business owner, and absolute ingredient junkie! As an educator, she enjoys empowering other estheticians and industry professionals to understand skin care from an ingredient standpoint rather than a product-specific view.

She has spent many hours researching ingredients, understanding how and where they are sourced, as well as phytochemistry, histological access, and complementary compounds for intentional skin benefits. In addition to running a skin care practice, Cressman founded a comprehensive consulting group, the HHP Collective, and has consulted for several skin care lines, including several successful CBD brands.

Connect with Ella Cressman:

Website: www.ellacress.com

Website: www.hhpcollective.com


About Maggie Staszcuk:

Maggie has been a licensed esthetician since 2006 and holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Stephens College. She has worked in the spa and med-spa industry and served as an esthetics instructor and a director of education for one of the largest schools in Colorado before coming to ASCP as the Advanced Modality Specialist. 

Connect with Maggie Staszcuk:

P 800.789.0411 EXT 1636

MStaszcuk@ascpskincare.com or AMI@ascpskincare.com


About our Sponsors

About DMK:

Founded by botanical visionary Danné Montague-King, DMK is the World Leader in Paramedical Skin Revision™. Our revolutionary concept of REMOVE. REBUILD. PROTECT. MAINTAIN.® aims to match an individual’s biochemistry with the appropriate skin therapy. DMK believes that the origin of most skin conditions is a result of disharmony within the skin. Using the principles of biochemistry, DMK has formulated a range of Enzymatic Treatments and Home Prescriptives that encourage the skin to return to its most balanced and healthy state. For skin care professionals whose business depends on generating long-lasting clinically-proven results, DMK’s education-first approach has become essential. Hundreds of salons, spas, and even industry experts have recognized the effectiveness of the DMK concept, witnessed by thousands of people worldwide whose lives have been changed forever.

Connect with DMK:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dmkinternational/

TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@dmkinternational

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dmkinternational


About Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP):

Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP) is the nation’s largest association for skin care professionals and your ONLY all-inclusive source for professional liability insurance, education, community, and career support. For estheticians at every stage of the journey, ASCP is your essential partner. Get in touch with us today if you have any questions or would like to join and become an ASCP member.

Connect with ASCP:

Website: www.ascpskincare.com

Email: getconnected@ascpskincare.com

Phone: 800-789-0411

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ASCPskincare

Instagram: www.instagram.com/ascpskincare




0:00:00.5 Speaker 1: DMK is the world leader in paramedical skin revision education. With certification programs designed to give licensed professionals a thorough understanding of the skin and an in-depth study of the DMK concept of remove, rebuild, protect, maintain. Created by the botanical visionary Danne Montague-King. DMK offers skin revision training and education for all ages, skin conditions and ethnicities in more than 35 countries, harnessing the body's innate healing mechanisms to change the health of the skin. Learn more at dannemking.com. That's D-A-N-N-E-M-K-I-N-G.com. 


0:00:47.8 Speaker 2: You are listening to ASCP Esty talk, where we share insider tips, industry resources and education for aestheticians at every stage of the journey. Let's talk because ASCP knows, it's all about you. 


0:01:03.1 Ella Cressman: Hello and welcome to ASCP Esty talk. I am Ella Cressman, licensed esthetician, certified organic skin care formulator and content contributor for Associated Skin Care Professionals. 


0:01:14.9 Maggie Staszcuk: And I'm Maggie Staszcuk, licensed esthetician and ASCP's cosmetology education manager. 


0:01:20.9 EC: Hey Maggie. [chuckle] 


0:01:21.5 MS: Hi Ella. 


0:01:22.8 EC: How are you?  


0:01:23.0 MS: Great. 


0:01:23.9 EC: You look so sunshiny. [laughter] 


0:01:26.8 MS: Well, I am surprised to hear you say that because I avoid the sun. Is that because as we know, as aestheticians, that sun is the leading contributor for advanced Aging and it poses the greatest risk for skin cancer. That's what we've been told. 


0:01:40.0 EC: That's what we've been told. 


0:01:41.0 MS: That's what we preach. 


0:01:42.0 EC: That's right. 


0:01:43.3 MS: Sunscreen, Sunscreen. Sunscreen, it saves lives, right?  


0:01:47.5 EC: That's right. 


0:01:48.0 MS: And we as the professionals, are not the only ones who've been spreading the word. In fact, the general public is also conditioned to understand that sunscreen daily is the necessity. It's a funny story. My dad owns a remodeling business, and on Fridays everybody comes to pick up their checks. Last Friday I was there, I happened to be there, and all the guys were coming in to pick up their checks and I just happened to hear this one guy, he's probably my age, and he was talking to this other guy about sunscreen, [laughter] wrinkles and these little white spots if you don't use... Basically hypo-pigmented. And I'm just listening. And he's like, "That's why you gotta wear sunscreen every day, man, every day, 'cause you don't want skin cancer and you also don't wanna look old," and I'm just dying inside thinking, "Wow, this is interesting how far we've come, right?" 


0:02:41.5 EC: Totally. 


0:02:42.2 MS: That these construction workers are concerned about skin health. Well, and why wouldn't they be, they're in the sun all day long. 


0:02:49.0 EC: Absolutely. 


0:02:49.9 MS: You gotta lube up. Shield it on. And we know that a lot of cancers... Or It's been reported that a lot of cancers are caused by UV damage. In fact, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, one type in particular, Merkel cell carcinoma, there's a really cool excerpt on their website. But it talks about how it has been proven that UV light is the culprit. But what I liked or appreciated so much about this is the way that they describe the process of forming cancer. And so it's a degradation, the UV light is degrading the DNA and then the DNA basically morphs and it damages. And when it morphs so much that the body can't handle it, then that leads to the change in cutaneous cells or skin cells or mutations, and that mutations build up and then that's when you have skin cancer. Interesting, it's not just... It's not like Twilight. And you guys remember the movie... The series twilight where you're gonna go in the sun and you're like, "Oh, it's sparkly." 




0:03:55.6 MS: It's not just that. It's that exposure, it's the continued exposure that's degrading the cells. And the other thing that we don't talk about enough is that not all skin cancers are caused by the sun. We have another interesting story, I have a client who had metastatic melanoma in his brain. 


0:04:19.5 EC: That's crazy to try and comprehend. 


0:04:22.7 MS: It is crazy. And they think it started in his lungs. The metastatic part moved to his brain and he was having loss of vision, and he ended up having really bad headaches and seizures... I don't know if it was a full blown seizure or not. But... And I by the way did get permission to talk about him today. But that was the outcome. And I'm like, "Woah, how does melanoma in the brain? I thought it was a skin cancer." But we have to consider that there are three different types of melanin. We have Eu-melanin and Pheo-melanin, that's in our skin, and that is responsible for tan but also under tones. And then we have neuro-melanin. And the function of melanin isn't just to be malicious and cause sunspots or to hide away and cause hypo-pigmentation. The function of melanin is actually to provide a couple of things, but first and foremost is an anti-oxidant. 


0:05:15.5 EC: Oh, interesting. 


0:05:16.9 MS: Yeah. 


0:05:17.0 EC: Well, I always think melanin as protection. 


0:05:20.0 MS: Yes, and I explained that too. It's like a sun shade. Like transitional lenses in your glasses when you go outside and they become sunglasses, that's the way I used to talk that about them. "Oh, it's good. It's meant to be there and it's meant... " Because we're not supposed to wear clothes, that's our sun shade that comes up. But it's actually an anti-oxidant that's fighting the free radicals that are coming in from the UV exposure. 


0:05:45.0 EC: Interesting, I have to process that one for a little bit. 


0:05:48.9 MS: Isn't it something?  


0:05:50.0 EC: Yeah. 


0:05:50.5 MS: And so when I first read that, I was like, "Woah, that's crazy." [laughter] "That's interesting." 'Cause I would have never put those two together, but that's what it's doing, it's actually assisting the body's immune... Or the skin immune function. Interesting. 


0:06:06.8 EC: It is. When you say neuro-melanin, that means it's like in our neurological system. 


0:06:13.9 MS: Is formed in the brain. In the middle of the brain is where it comes and that's the anti-oxidants that are released into the brain... 


0:06:20.1 EC: Wow. 


0:06:21.5 MS: When they need it, not because of sun exposure, because that area doesn't see sun, where eumelanin and pheo-melanin, those are in the... Melanocytes. Those are in the basal layer of our skin, two different types, and that is what contributed to my client's melanoma in his head. 


0:06:43.1 EC: Very interesting. 


0:06:43.2 MS: A mutation of neuro-melanin. So with that in mind, there was a recent article published in June 2022 that challenges the rise of melanoma diagnosis and the relationship to the sun, and I think that's interesting because we've heard this over and over, there's a rise in skin cancer, there's a rise in melanoma cases, and in fact, you know the ABCDs?  


0:07:09.0 EC: Oh, totally, yes. Everyone learns that if you're an aesthetician, you know it by heart. 


0:07:11.6 MS: You know that's for melanoma. 


0:07:12.7 EC: Yeah. 


0:07:13.7 MS: Those are not necessarily for basal cells or squamous cell. Those are for melanoma. And you have to be aware of those things. It's one of the things because melanoma is the deadliest form, and what this article is talking about, and basically they've taken a bunch of different studies and some other articles and publications and really reference back to the British Journal of dermatology and talk about the increase of melanoma diagnosis is due to benign disease and not sunlight, so we're correlating with sun exposure or this environmental change or our atmosphere hole in the... 


0:07:51.6 EC: In the ozone. 


0:07:52.7 MS: Don't know where that word. It was far far away. My neuro-melanin knock again... That this was, there must be a correlation here. But this study in particular, says there was no change in the combined incidents of other stages of the disease, what they say, long story short is actually there was a change in the way they were diagnosing it. And so considering the ABCDs, they would have these benign lesions, if you will, and like, Oh, that's melanoma, that must be stage one, when it wasn't necessarily cancer yet, it must be stage one, so that's what they're saying was the reason for the rise, and here's the excerpt from their conclusion from this article. It said these findings should lead to a reconsideration of the treatment of early lesions, a search for better diagnostic methods to distinguish them from truly malignant melanomas. 


0:08:53.8 MS: Re-evaluation of the role of ultraviolet radiation and recommendations for protection from it as well as a need for a new direction in the search and cause of melanoma, 'cause they hypothesize that it's not sun exposure, rather a lack of sun light. That could be the cause. 


0:09:08.6 EC: Yeah, blows your mind. 


0:09:11.0 MS: Mic drop. 


0:09:12.5 EC: Yeah, you shared this article with me and there were a lot of things that were swirling through my mind when I read it, was specific to this excerpt that you just read, and maybe this is the cynical side of me coming out, but the first thing that I thought was, of course, all of these people have benign lesions and they're being diagnosed with melanoma because that's just a reason to charge the patient, remove the lesion and collect money. Right?  


0:09:38.5 MS: No, I would say I agree with that too. So let's talk a little bit more about something, and I don't know if you thought this jumped out at you or not, but this is... In this review, because again, this author from this June 2022 article, he takes different studies that have been published at different times, one of the most important facts you should know is that an epidemic of disease has in fact broken out among indoor workers, so they were seeing a rise in melanoma among those who were working in doors, so they were... And let's just say science and these findings... Science is a race with no end. If we stopped at certain things, we'd all still be smoking in the doctor's office, or pregnant drinking martinis or lunch meat, all scary, but it's a race with no end. So initially, I don't think it was malicious to say, Hey, we see a correlation between UV and skin cancer, I just wanna put that out there. But now looking further, they're saying, Wait a minute, these people work inside, they have minimal UV exposure yet here they are with melanoma, here's what they said. We hypothesize that one factor involves indoor exposure to UVA... 


0:10:52.3 MS: Yada, yada yada. So the long story short of this is that yes, there was UVA that was coming through the windows, but there wasn't UVB, so where are we connecting the dots here, but the only explanation was there wasn't a synthesis of vitamin D... Natural Vitamin D inspiration, if you will. And so maybe this is... Where's the correlation here? So is it a lack of vitamin D that's causing melanoma?  


0:11:19.7 EC: So I had some thoughts here too, one was, well dang I better up my Vitamin D intake, and two when I have researched and learned about both cancers and melanomas and then also UVA and UVB. The consensus in my mind, me in my mind has always been that if you have this constant chronic wound that's never healing, and this goes back to the beginning of this article and what you were saying about damage to DNA, that constant chronic wound that never heals and damage to DNA ultimately is what's causing that DNA damage that becomes cancer, so you have that person that's sitting by the window receiving one or both types of the UVA and having chronic damage with no healing, and maybe that's partly where that vitamin D comes in. 


0:12:21.6 EC: Then yes, they're ultimately developing some form of cancer, whether it's melanoma or it's Basal cell squamous cell. Right?  


0:12:29.0 MS: There's an imbalance. 


0:12:32.2 EC: An imbalance, yes. Compared to that person that goes out and is getting 10 minutes here or there, but they're never burning. There is that balance. They're also synthesizing vitamin D, they never have that chronic wound, their body is always able to repair, they then never form melanoma. 


0:12:40.9 MS: I would say that sure, there's not an opportunity for mutation, granted, full disclosure, we are just hypothesizing, we are not doctors, we just pretend to be. 


0:13:00.8 EC: We are not doctors, we are not diagnosing we're just sharing our thoughts. 


0:13:04.0 MS: Yeah, I would think so. I would think that that sounds rational. I don't know if you felt this way when you first read this article, but I was like,"No way. No way is this true. What's going on?" And then I dug in, I read it, and then they I dug in a little bit more, and just even after hearing your explanation, I think that's true, and I think what it boils down to is sun protection in our industry is for more than just preventing cancer, it's for stopping wrinkles, it's for stopping hyper-pigmentation, it's for a lot of other co-factors, and we don't want cancer, who does? But I think, to your points about this chronic wound or this constant wound, and at this point you're getting into telomeres and you're allowing for that mutation because the cells are dividing so much to try to repair that this could all be slowed down or prevented. 


0:14:01.8 MS: How we have that foundation of healthy skin, so it's more than just Zinc Oxide or chemical sunscreen, and I think that is, as estheticians, is the takeaway for us. Keep in mind, we do need to keep our ABCDs, we need to be aware. We don't have to fear the sun because it's also job security [chuckle] if you will, but we have to look at it as skin health, and so when we're supplementing or when we're referring products, we're looking at the entire formulation and its histological effect, what is it doing in the skin, not just bouncing rays off, what are the antioxidants? Plural. What are they doing? What are you doing to inspire collagen synthesis or keeping the skin fresh and renewed at a normal cadence, not too much, not too little. What are you doing to not cause inflammation? What do you think?  


0:14:56.6 EC: I think you totally nailed it, it's not just about the sun exposure, it's about the whole health of the skin, and I think it's also very likely that if your client has a particular lifestyle that would allow them to develop health issues in general, one of those being cancers, then you have to factor that in. So all those things that you just mentioned are paramount to just good overall health and good skin health. I agree, not just sun avoidance. 


0:15:26.9 MS: Yeah, good overall health or supplement when you can't. 


0:15:29.9 EC: Yeah. 


0:15:30.3 MS: If you're gonna eat a hot dog, take your multi-vitamins. 




0:15:34.6 EC: Maybe a probiotic. [chuckle] I'm not saying that from experience, I'm just saying. So the key to skin health and long-term vitality is a healthy immune function, not just of your body, but of your skin. 


0:15:46.3 MS: Are you one of those... I've had this client to wear the gloves when they're driving and who have the long sleeve swim suits?  


0:15:58.5 EC: Yeah, I have a lot of contradicting opinions about sun exposure, beginning with the fact that I'm very, very fair. I do not tan, but I wish that I did, so I will say this, I will put this out there to the world, when I was younger, I would purposely burn... I have had blisters and everything convinced that I was gonna tan and it never happened, but I still... I never learned my lesson. 


0:16:24.5 MS: You know what, that's an admirable quality stick-to-itiveness and keep trying. 


0:16:29.8 EC: Yeah, man, I kept trying, let me tell you, and still now I go out without the sunscreen and I burn and I know it's gonna happen, but... I don't know, it's just one of those things, but I will say to my face every day, I have sun- screen on my face, never fail, it doesn't matter if it's cloudy out, it's just... And I think it's probably more habit than anything. 


0:16:52.7 MS: Is it European standard?  


0:16:54.5 EC: It is so European standard. Be sure you check out that podcast. 


0:16:56.0 MS: Absolutely. Cool. I think for me, well listen. I'm experiencing some challenges right now too, because I'm concerned, I am... I do have some conflicting opinions 'cause previously I'm like, "I'm not a finger wager... You should go out in the sun. It's job security for me. I do it too." And then this summer, I've realized I have like a... Might be Melasma on my forehead and then on my upper lip and I'm like,"Oh." Even though I always wear facial sunscreen, I think I'm knocking on the door of the change, and so that said I feel better when I'm in the sun, I love the heat, I love the vibe, I love all of that, I feel healthier with a tan, I am a Fitzpatrick 3 plus, and so I do tan, but I also am noticing age spots. 


0:17:50.3 EC: Oh, yes age spots are happening, yeah, I get that. 


0:17:51.7 MS: But I have the tools to take them off, so I'm like whatever... 


0:17:53.6 EC: Right, yeah, see for me, it's like purposeful damage that I'm gonna burn off later, and I'm like Fitzpatrick zero. So... 


0:18:04.5 MS: Is it minus? [chuckle] 


0:18:05.7 EC: Mine zero, yes. 


0:18:09.4 MS: Cool. Awesome. Well, I guess we're both like, "Yeah, go on the sun. Do it. Just be careful. 


0:18:13.2 EC: Yeah. 


0:18:13.9 MS: Call us when you're damaged and will help you... 


0:18:16.1 EC: Yeah, that's what I told one of my clients, "It's job security. Go have a good time. Go to the festival." [chuckle] "Here take this product with you... " 


0:18:21.3 MS: Totally. 


0:18:22.7 EC: Well, we wanna know what you think listeners... We really wanna hear from you, what are your thoughts on sun exposure, how much is just enough, what do you think about this article, be sure to comment on our social media platforms, especially Instagram and Facebook, or reach out via email at getconnected@ascpskincare.com. We wanna know all the details, but in the meantime, we thank you for listening to ASCP Esty Talk and for more information on this episode, or For ways to connect with Maggie or myself, or to learn more about ASCP, check out the show notes. And stay tuned for the next episode of ASCP Esty Talk. 


0:18:56.6 S2: Thanks for joining us today. If you like what you hear and you want more, subscribe, if you wanna belong to the only all inclusive Association for estheticians that includes professional liability insurance, education, industry insights and an opportunity to spotlight your six skills join at ascpskincare.com, only 259 per year for all this goodness, ASCP knows, it's all about you.Page Break 


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