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Posted 19th Apr 2021

Aesthetics Students’ Questions, Answered

Tips for Preventing Filler Embolus and Vascular Occlusion

Doctor, dentist, nurse or midwife: no matter which field our aesthetics students come from, they always have a lot of questions.

Here, Harley Academy creative director and lead aesthetics specialist at STORY Southwell, Dr Marcus Mehta answers four questions often posed by students on our Level 7 Diploma in Botox and Dermal Fillers course.

Marcus Mehta


How long do you wait for a negative aspiration?

Aspirating… Is there an amount of time injectors should aspirate for, ie 1-2 seconds, before we can say it’s a negative aspiration? If so, does this time vary in different treatment areas and/or with different G prime?

Aspiration is a very controversial issue in aesthetics generally and everyone’s opinion will vary. I think when you are starting out, especially as an aesthetics student, an aspiration of 5 seconds anywhere you are using a needle is good practice. If you are treating more risky areas – temples for example then a longer aspiration would be recommended- 8-10 seconds. It doesn’t honestly make a huge difference in aspiration length based on G prime of the filler used.

Injector mentality:

How do we manage post-injectable injector anxiety?

How do we manage post injectables anxiety? I’ve finally treated my first two toxin patients outside of mentoring but it’s been closely followed by this anxious feeling. I’m playing out “what if?” scenarios despite applying all I’ve been taught and feeling confident with my injection points at the time.

Don’t worry. This is completely normal and once you have started to treat a few more patients you’ll feel better doing it. Unfortunately it’s just a matter of time and patient numbers that will help to alleviate the anxiety. With my first few filler patients I actually dropped them a message a few days later to see how they were which helped – it also made the patient feel like they were having better post-treatment care!

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Business management:

I’m concerned about the risk of litigation over errors or complications if I rent a solo treatment space

Wondering about renting a space solo and whether it may put one at risk of litigation in case of errors or complications. I’m just trying to understand what is the best and safest way to establish oneself in the right market? Starting with a salon or aesthetics practice and paying them commission, followed by renting your own space?

It depends on what your insurance covers you for – Hamilton Frasers’ standard policy will cover you to work out of any environment, I believe, but check your own policy. I think either/or can work depending on your appetite for risk and your confidence in acquiring your own patients from the start. Using a salon space and paying commission will probably mean they will advertise you to their client base which can be useful. If you rent a space you’ll be on your own marketing-wise!


Should you offer discounted treatments and promotional offers to increase business?

What is your feeling about offering discounted treatments and promotional offers to clients?

When you’re establishing yourself, if done right, promotions can be ok. Back when I started out, I treated all the hairdressers in a local salon for a discounted price. I said to them that for every person they refer to me, they build credit up on their account for more treatments themselves. You could also do something like, every patient they refer gets 10 percent off their first treatment. This is a promotion of sorts but it also builds up some longevity in your business as you meet and treat new clients who will hopefully stay with you.

If you’re looking to find out more about a potential career in aesthetic medicine, book your place on our next Foundation Training in Botox and Dermal Fillers. This introduction to aesthetics will fully outline the key areas of knowledge and practical techniques injectors require. These are explored in-depth, along with hands-on patient injecting experience, in our gold-standard Level 7 courses. Download our prospectus to find the best aesthetics training course for you and let us guide you to a becoming an effective, ethical and successful injector, or, as we call it: Harley Trained.

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