In the modern world, it’s relatively simple for almost anyone to buy medical equipment online. This means there are many beauty salons now offering procedures that should really only be performed by board-certified dermatologists or plastic surgeons. Though you may feel lucky to get a great deal on an otherwise prohibitively expensive procedure, the risks are high when you put your trust in someone who doesn’t have adequate training. To help ensure you get the best care possible, here are five red flags to look out for when assessing spas and beauty salons:

1. They allow you to book a treatment without a consultation first

A “one size fits all” approach just isn’t feasible in the beauty realm. Everything from your skin type, pain threshold, and even hormonal patterns can impact how a treatment should be carried out and the expected results. If you’re told over the phone that you’re automatically a great candidate for a procedure, make sure yo do your own research and proceed with caution.

2. Hygiene standards aren’t being met

Cleanliness and hygiene were always important in the beauty industry. However, in the post-pandemic world, they are even more critical. When you walk into a spa or beauty salon, pay close attention to the way you’re greeted and the cleanliness of the space. 

Staff should be wearing masks, hand sanitizer should be available, and all the tools and equipment should be sparkling clean. If you’ll be on a massage table, chair, or bed, it should be clear that fresh coverings have been used. 

3. They’re evasive when it comes to their tools and products

The person treating you should make it clear that they’re using fresh tools for your treatment. If you’re visiting a nail technician, for example, they should open the sealed pack of tools in front of you. 

Furthermore, when you ask about the products being used and their ingredients, the technician should be upfront about them. Sticking with the nail salon example, some cheaper polishes contain scary ingredients like Formaldehyde or Dibutyl Phthalate, exposure to which can cause health problems. If a salon isn’t prepared to give you details on their products, this is a clear red flag. 

4. They have problematic reviews

Every business in the modern world receives feedback on social media and review sites. Of course, there will always be the odd customer who wasn’t satisfied, so you’re not necessarily looking for a perfect score. What you are looking for is how the business addresses negative feedback. If they’re snarky and defensive, if they give a copy-pasted response, or if they simply ignore the unsatisfied customers, this is not a good sign. A great spa or salon will publicly address negative comments in a way that offers a resolution and is clearly personalized to that customer. 

5. Their prices are well below industry standards

Everyone loves a discount, but when it comes to beauty treatments, cheap prices are usually deceptive. Generally speaking, quality spas and salons don’t need to compete on price as their high standards, excellent results, and fantastic customer reviews help them stand out from the crowd. If a deal looks too good to be true, chances are it is. 

Keep the above tips in mind when searching for your next beauty treatment, and you’ll be far more likely to find a professional who’s able to give you the results you’re after.