There are many different situations that may lead you to pursue a career as a cosmetic nurse. The types of credentials, training, and experience needed in order to find employment can very significantly. The licensing requirements and prospects for employment will also vary based on your location. In addition, having skills like being trained in Botox can increase your employability.
You can become a vocational or practical nurse if you want to take the least amount of training. However, these nurses are not eligible for the best positions, which may only be open to registered nurses and nurse practitioners. A nurse practitioner is able to perform many of the procedures that are often reserved for doctors.
If you want to become a cosmetic nurse you can choose the level of training you want to complete and this will in some ways determine how far you can advance in your career. Some people choose to start out as a licensed vocational nurse and then complete training to become a registered nurse. This is a good choice for someone who is not sure of their future career path.
After you determine how you will proceed, here are the next steps to take.
Step 1: Get the Right Education
For a licensed practical nurse (LPN), your educational program will last about a year and includes classroom work, as well as, supervised patient care. The classroom education includes subjects like physiology, nutrition, pharmacology and pediatrics. The supervised practice is usually conducted at a hospital.
For a registered nurse (RN), a Bachelor’s degree in nursing is generally required. This can take four or more years. However, some RNs only have an associate’s degree, although there are fewer employment opportunities for RNs with this level of education. If you have an associate degree, you can always go back to school to get a Bachelor’s degree later.
A nurse practitioner would have a Master of Science Degree in Nursing or something similar. There are additional requirements in some states.
Step 2: Get a Nursing License
The licensing requirements for nursing vary from state to state and depends on the type of license you desire. An LPM must pass the National Council Licensure Examination-Practical Nurse or NCLEX-PN exam. There may also be specific state mandated licensing requirements.
An RN must pass the National Council Licensure Examination-Registered Nurse or NCLEX-RN exam. You must also present proof that you graduated from an approved nursing program. A nurse practitioner must have an RN license and a Master’s degree.
Step 3: Specialize in Cosmetic Nursing
You may be able to gain experience as a cosmetic nurse while still training. Specific educational opportunities may be offered in relevant areas, including chemical peels, liposuction, and fat grafting. You may also be able to get Botox training while in school
For many cosmetic nurses, the first action to take in seeking employment is to find an entry level nursing job at a place where plastic surgery or cosmetic procedures are performed. In some cases, an LPN can get this type of job right out of school. However, some employers require nursing experience even for entry-level positions. Employers may also look for specific skills when hiring nurses, such as knowledge of handling clinical applications, assessing skin aging, doing Botox injections and post-surgery patient care.
Step 4: Consider Certification
You do not need to get certified to work as a cosmetic nurse. However, if you plan on making a career as a cosmetic nurse, certification will help with professional development and career advancement. However, there is no single organization providing certification.
A cosmetic nurse can be certified by the Center for Nursing Education and Testing or the Plastic Surgical Nursing Certification Board, or one of the other groups that offer certification. You can also become a member of the American Association of Medical Esthetic Professionals which is one of the groups with the greatest respect within the industry.
Step 5: Never Stop Learning
Cosmetic nurses are required to have continuing education in order to maintain their nursing license, as well as other voluntary certifications. They can take courses in Botox training or learn how to inject dermal fillers. There are many seminars and courses available that can help a cosmetic nurse gain the skills needed in their career.
By following this process, you stand a good chance of prospering in a career as a cosmetic nurse.