Dermatologist vs. Esthetician: What’s the Difference?


Here's the very first thing they teach you in Esthetics training: You are not a dermatologist. What does this mean? Basically it means that Estheticians are not qualified to make diagnoses for medical conditions such as Rosacea or Psoriasis. Estheticians are also not able to prescribe medications.

However, Estheticians can (and regularly do) make a major difference in their clients' skin. By performing facials, recommending customized skin care regimens, and ensuring that you're doing everything in your power to reveal your skin at it's most beautiful, Estheticians play an important role in the appearance of skin. Estheticians can even make an impact on their client's health in some cases. For example, your Esthetician will be sure to double-check that you're wearing some sort of sun protection every day. Having an esthetician take charge of your waxing and other forms of hair removal is a wise idea as well- improper hair removal from certain areas can be dangerous. Both a dermatologist and an esthetician are skin care specialists who sport fancy white lab coats, but what exactly is the difference between the two? Continue reading to get a quick snapshot of what specifically distinguishes a dermatologist from an esthetician.


  • Is a medical doctor
  • Can diagnose and treat skin conditions and disorders including skin cancer
  • Can prescribe oral or topical medications
  • Can perform surgeries on skin abnormalities

Visit a Dermatologist when you're due for a full-body scan (to check for skin cancer and other abnormalities). You'll also want to see a dermatologist if you have (or suspect you have) a skin disease such as Eczema. In some cases, severe acne can only be treated properly by a dermatologist.



  • Performs facials, body wraps, waxing and makeup application
  • Conduct skin analyses
  • Recommends a complete at-home regimen for the client

Visit an Esthetician to maintain beautiful skin with regular facials and for help in choosing the right skin care products for your skin. Your Esthetician will also show you the proper way to use your skin care regimen. Other things an Esthetician can do for you: Hair removal, eyebrow shaping, body treatments, etc.

The general difference between a dermatologist and an esthetician is that the experience with a dermatologist is typically clinical whereas the experience with estheticians can be luxurious.

Be sure to visit us at our New York City Skin Care Salon OR treat your loved one to a special Spa Package this holiday season.

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