Mimi Le Fox speaks of her impressive career with such a grounded, matter-of-factness, it’s easy to overlook the work it took her to get there. But hard work is not only one of her personal values, but it’s also one of the main contributions to where she is now as the Clinical Director for Arbutus Laser Centre, Registered Nurse, trained Esthetician, and sclerotherapist. Mimi’s career is just one example of the possibilities that unfold when you pair dedication with drive and determination, letting your passion lead the way!
What led you to pursue Esthetics initially? Was it something you always wanted to do?
When I came out of high school, I had no clue where to start. One of my friends told me about the Esthetics course at Blanche Macdonald that she was taking and so a couple of friends and I signed up and went together. That’s where I learned I enjoyed being around people and helping them.
So you enjoyed your Esthetics program experience?
It was amazing! I wouldn’t have decided to go into nursing without it and I wouldn’t be here if I hadn’t gone to Blanche Macdonald. It created a foundation for me to build my career, and was a crucial stepping stone for me. Blanche became more than a school for me, it gave me life skills I still use today.
Blanche became more than a school for me, it gave me life skills I still use today.
Can you talk about your Esthetics journey and what led you to nursing?
I started working for Atlantis Day Spa in Tsawwassen and was there for almost three years. During my time with them, I had the opportunity to talk to clients one-on-one which helped develop my communication and hands-on skills—I learned so much about myself! I realized that I loved what I was doing and I loved helping people, but I wanted to help in more in-depth ways. I wanted to challenge myself to learn something new and take my career even higher. I left my job and traveled while I decided what my next step was going to be. I decided that I wanted to combine my love of Esthetics with a more medicinal background and do nursing. When I came back from traveling, I started a job with Arbutus Laser and started my prerequisites for nursing. It’s a really long wait to get into nursing. I had to wait 2 years to start nursing school after I finished my pre-requisites. In the meantime, I was learning to do laser treatments at the clinic and continuing my education that way. Once the time came, I started nursing full-time and scaled back my responsibilities at the clinic. When I finished my nursing degree, they created a full-time nursing position for me and I became the Clinical Director a few years later in 2018. None of that would’ve happened without my base in Esthetics. My time in the program at Blanche truly gave me the confidence to work with and on people, and it helped me build a lot of the communication skills I didn’t have before.
Such an amazing story! And you also specialize in sclerotherapy at the clinic?
As a nurse, I am qualified to inject spider veins on the legs. I love injecting leg veins! I actually do a lot of the laser treatments at the clinic. I also do treatments for facial skin resurfacing, pigmentation, anti-aging, rosacea, tattoo removal, birthmarks, and skin damage. Laser covers a lot of ground in my career! One of my long term goals is to do facial injections as well. I’ve started the training and it’s a very complex and challenging field to enter. I really believe that education plus practice is key in this field.
I really believe that education plus practice is key in this field.
What’s your favourite part of the job day-to-day?
We get the opportunity to work closely with people and that’s the best part of it for me. Whether they come in for a consultation or they come in with medical skin concerns, being able to go over their options and then starting the process of treatments is incredible. The most rewarding part is comparing the before and after photos and seeing the results. For patients, you’re changing the way they see themselves, boosting their self-esteem and giving them more confidence. Nothing beats that! We’re ethical, moral, and honest with our clients about what we can help them with.
Take us through a day in the life of the Clinical Director!
Every day is different, which is pretty awesome! Yesterday I was back-to-back with treatments and consultations. Some days, I am doing HR management. Other days, I am working on clinical administration duties. The variety as a Clinical Director keeps me on my toes! I usually get to the clinic around 8:30am to work on admin duties until 10am, which is when my patients come in. I’m also currently leading a study that takes up some of my time as well.
Blanche truly gave me the confidence to work with and on people, and it helped me build a lot of the communication skills I didn’t have before.
What’s your most often given advice to clients?
Oh gosh, SUNSCREEN! I probably say it 20 times a day. Rain, shine—doesn’t matter. I always suggest a mineral sunscreen versus a chemical sunscreen because it is safer for your skin, better in sun protection and environmentally friendlier. Don’t go anywhere without it and re-apply every 2-3 hours.
Having an esthetics background will really set a foundation for being a good medical esthetician.
What’s the typical clientele you see most? Do you find people are well informed when they come to see you?
My clients are predominantly female but since we offer many different procedures, that allows us to have a greater cross-section of clientele. I’ve had 12-year-old teenage boys to 87-year-old grandmas, and everyone in between. As a medical-style clinic, we’re committed to being open, respectful and supportive of any patients that come through our doors, we want everyone to feel welcome in our clinic. My younger patients are definitely more informed because of social media. Some people are well-informed while others are not. There is a lot of misinformation around the industry and I love sharing my knowledge and educating people to provide facts they can move forward with.
If someone is thinking of going into medical Esthetics, what would your advice for them be?
Having an esthetics background will really set a foundation for being a good medical esthetician. Laser training is necessary but much easier to learn once that foundation is set. Work hard and it will pay off in the end!