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The Difference Between a Medical Spa and Day Spa

ANU Medical Spa

If you’re planning a spa day, you may be wondering whether a medical spa or day spa is a better match. Believe it or not, there are some huge differences between these types of spas, including available treatments, equipment, and staff training. Learn more below:

What’s the difference between a medical spa and a day spa?

Day spas are far more common and offer services that promote relaxation. Typically, day spas offer a wide-variety of massages and basic facials as well as manicures, pedicures, mud wraps and minor peels. On the other hand, a medical spa is a combination between a day spa and a skin care clinic. Rather than solely focusing on relaxation, medical spas seek to improve your skin or body in a drastic way. They offer treatments designed to improve your appearance as well as the same services offered at a day spa.

What are the differences in staff training?

The staff at a day spa often attend cosmetology school or massage therapist/aesthetician training (depending on what service they will provide at the spa). Because staff members at a medical spa operate medical equipment, there must always be a specially-trained and licensed physician overseeing the treatments. Physicians will administer the injectable and invasive treatments. However, for the other medical spa treatments, a licensed medical aesthetician or registered nurse are the other people cleared to perform the services.

What services can’t a day spa provide?

Since there isn’t a licensed physician on staff, day spas can’t perform any procedures or treatments that require medical equipment or invasive techniques. If you’re looking for any of the following procedures, you’re going to need to visit a medical spa:

  • Botox injections
  • Dermaplaning with a surgical blade
  • Filler injections
  • Kybella injections
  • Laser Genesis
  • Laser hair reduction
  • Laser tattoo removal
  • Microneedling
  • Permanent makeup
  • PICO Genesis
  • Pelleve
  • truSculpt
  • Ultherapy
  • Velashape

Most day spas also can’t offer the more effective facials and peels. Remember, day spas promote relaxation while medical spas are for seeing positive changes in your skin and body.

Are there benefits to choosing one over the other?

The short answer is no. If you’re trying to pick between visiting a medical spa or day spa, the treatment you’re looking for will ultimately decide for you. If you’re looking for a relaxing classic massage, a day spa will offer that atmosphere and services. If you want to reduce acne scarring and wrinkles, a medical spa has several treatment options. Maybe you find a medical spa you love and you’ll want to get all treatments there, including facials and massages – it’s up to you! Just make sure if you’re getting injectables or treatments requiring medical equipment that you know the facility has a licensed physician on staff.

Ready to take the plunge and give a medical spa treatment a try? Now is the perfect time! We are currently running September specials on some of our most popular physician services, including Botox, Juvederm, laser hair removal, and truSculpt! Take a look at our specials here and book an appointment today.