NOV 2014

DAYSPA is the business resource for spa & wellness professionals! Each issue covers the latest in skin care, spa treatments, wellness services and management strategies.

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76 DAYSPA | NOVEMBER 2014 ONE ON ONE WITH... You might say that Crystal McElroy sashayed her way into the beauty industry. "I was four years old when I started competitive dance, and stuck with it through age 19," explains the executive director of Dermatude North America. Like many people who become involved in the performing arts at a young age, McElroy grew up knowing it was important to take good care of her appearance. "My mother was the vision of an iconic Hollywood star—she never aged, and was always beautiful," she recalls. "This was, of course, due to her skincare knowledge." With Mom as her guide, a 10-year-old McElroy initiated her basic skincare regimen. "It was simple things like cleansing in the morning and at night, and using a gentle moisturizer," she recalls. As the years went by and the good habits stuck, McElroy's interest in all things esthetic grew. "Even after my dancing years, I was fascinated with skin care," she says. "As an adult, I received my every-four-to-six-weeks facial religiously." And that wasn't all: McElroy also found herself conducting her own research on the latest skincare techniques. "I'd be the client who would lay on my esthetician's table and tell her, 'Okay, today I need you to focus on…' And one day she fi nally said, 'You need to stop telling me what to do and just go do it!' "So I went to esthetics school in Fort Myers, Florida. My mother is from Florida, so I spent most of my life between there and Pittsburgh. In 2001, I moved to Naples, Florida, permanently, and it was then that my career in the beauty industry took off," continues McElroy. "But I was already planning on how I could use my business background to make the skincare industry better." McElroy had been in a business development role in Naples, where she'd worked for a mainframe software company, before diving into esthetics and beauty full time—fi rst behind the chair, then in branding management with Ritz-Carlton. "My husband and I also started our own business, providing end-to-end logistics for post- secondary education companies," she says. "We launched brands, hosted seminars and offered education. Part of our vision was to empower young women to develop and enhance their business skills by thinking like entrepreneurs. My husband took over that company in 2013 and I moved back into the beauty and esthetics industry full force. That's when I found Dermatude."—Linda Kossoff and Lesley McCave W hat drew you to Dermatude? First, Dermatude is a European company [headquartered in the Netherlands], for which I have a huge attraction. Europeans try to be the most innovative in the industry, while still maintaining quality of life. Here in the U.S., we live to work, but they work to live. I was drawn to Dermatude specifi cally because I understand and respect the company's work ethic and its drive toward ongoing, innovative technology. I truly believe that our META Therapy is the latest and most natural way to fi ght aging. Y ou fi ll many different roles at Dermatude. Which is the most challenging? That's a diffi cult question. I look at challenges as part of my everyday life; I want to be challenged in any role I have. But if I had to choose one thing, I think it's keeping up with each state's esthetic board. No two states in the U.S. designate the same exact scope of practice for estheticians—not to mention the fact that they're all constantly changing! W hat's the most enjoyable part of your work? I love working with people: educating them and motivating them to get excited about what they're doing. I advise them that they must not only be passionate about working in esthetics, but feel good about being a businessperson too, and remind them to always think about the next step in their careers. Above all, I've never been happier or so excited to be a part of something so innovative and fulfi lling. Taking a new brand like Dermatude and sharing it with the whole country has been the defi ning moment of my career to this point. T ell us about your passion for META Therapy. It's the natural alternative to Botox and fi llers. We all want to look younger, but not artifi cial. META Therapy is the most natural way to achieve that. It fi lls the wrinkles from the inside out and actually corrects a huge list of skin concerns. It's not the most common treatment name in the esthetics/dermatology world, but it's also not your average treatment. For META Therapy, when we say 'less is more' we mean it—it provides amazing, long-lasting results that speak for themselves. W hat do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Spending time with my family. My defi nition of happiness is being with them, cooking and entertaining. I like to take chances with recipes. I love [celebrity chef and restaurateur] Jamie Oliver! He's about healthful choices that actually don't 'taste healthful!' W hat do most people not know about you? I'm obsessed with trying new hair products. Traveling and climate change aren't always great for hair so I'm always looking for something to keep it soft and frizz-free. W hat's on your bucket list? Spending a month in a Tuscan villa, cooking! W hat was the last good book yo u read? Younger: The Breakthrough Anti- Aging Method for Radiant Skin (Grand Central Life & Style, 2014) by Dr. Harold Lancer. It contains to-the-point information on why our skin is the way it is, and myths and best practices. W hat's your personal philosophy? There's always a positive side to everything you're presented with. CRYSTAL MCELROY Crystal McElroy, executive director/national educator of Dermatude North America

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