Providing patient care has long been one of the main responsibilities of registered nurses. They distribute medications, administer medical treatments and observe those in their care. When working for a medical spa, these responsibilities don’t necessarily change. But the medical treatments are often more aesthetic in nature, such as chemical peels, laser resurfacing, injections and fillers, among others.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, RNs averaged $67,930 a year as of 2012. The bottom 10 percent of earners made less than $45,040, while the top 10 percent earned more then $94,720 annually. But these figures don’t account for employer. RNs working for medical spas can expect to earn closer to $73,620 a year. Indeed, a global job seekers’ website, provides a similar figure, placing the average salary at around $70,000.
As with any job, location affects earnings. RNs in California earned the highest pay in the nation, at an average of $94,120 a year. Those working at medical spas, however, earned much less, at an average of $77,000. RNs in Hawaii earned the second highest wages, at an average of $84,750 a year. Those at medical spas didn't fare as well, averaging just $49,000. New York appears to be a better location for RNs looking to work at medical spas, where the average salary was $85,000 annually.
Becoming a registered nurse at a medical spa is similar to that of a registered nurse at a hospital, clinic or other health care facility. Employers seek candidates with at least an associate degree in nursing, but a bachelor’s degree in nursing is becoming more common. You also must hold an RN license for the state in which you’re seeking employment. Passing the National Council Licensure Examination, or NCLEX-RN, licenses you as a registered nurse. You may also improve your employment opportunities by earning professional certifications in aesthetic medicine, such as certified aesthetic nurse specialist, as well as taking advanced courses in Botox, dermal fillers, chemical peels and fat grafting.
The BLS anticipates employment opportunities for nurses will grow by as much as 26 percent through 2020. This is much faster than the growth rate for all U.S. occupations, an average of 14 percent. With roughly 400 nurses working in the personal care industry, the 26-percent growth works out to the creation of just 104 new jobs. Expect competition for jobs to be strong.
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook – Registered Nurses
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Registered Nurses
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Personal Care Services
- Indeed: Medical Spa RN Salary
- Indeed: Medical Spa RN Salary in California
- Indeed: Medical Spa RN Salary in Hawaii
- Indeed: Medical Spa RN Salary in New York
- American Association of Aesthetic Medicine & Surgery: Aesthetic Nursing
- Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images