More than Skin Deep – Eleni Med Esthetics
by RONA MANN / Photos Stephanie Sittnick
She’s not a doctor, but she’s everything a good doctor should be.
The’s well trained, invests herself in continuing education to keep on top of her field, has a strong, personal connection with her clients, treating each on an individual basis and giving them all of herself during their appointment, and she’s a thorough professional.
You don’t call this pint sized beauty with the long flowing hair and fiery eyes, “doctor.” You call her simply “Eleni,” but do make sure you call her, because whether a young person, teen, young adult, middle aged, or senior, you have skin; and like the other organs in your body, that skin should be nurtured, protected, and checked.
Yes, skin is indeed an organ…the largest organ in the human body; and while there is a misconception that skin care falls strictly under the heading of beauty, that could not be more wrong. Still, beauty is certainly a wonderful fringe benefit of the medical attention you should give your skin.
Beauty is actually what led Eleni to this profession. Eleni is Eleni Nicholas Pertesis, a ball of energy who was born in Fairfield, but grew up in Old Saybrook always loving makeup, having her nails done, and trolling the beauty and makeup aisles of the drugstore. A very typical young woman. But upon reaching her teens, Eleni developed acne; and suddenly skin was not just about beauty and makeup any longer. She needed more than foundation and powder to solve the problem.
Eleni found that help when she visited a medical esthetician and achieved success. She began using skin care products that were prescribed specifically for her problem and saw how a medical approach could help. “I was a little kid, absorbing everything like a sponge,” Eleni says. “I wanted to know everything about my skin and about the field of medical esthetics. I was hooked.”
Although she grew up in a restaurant family, Eleni had always been drawn to beauty, to skin, and to helping others achieve good health and their ideal look. “I’ve always been a nurturer at heart.”
She didn’t have to go far to achieve her dream, enrolling at the highly accredited Catherine Hinds Institute of Esthetics in Woburn, Massachusetts, which teaches its students progressive clinical skin care technology. It was “medical school” for Eleni who jumped right in, taking a year long full time program with an intense course load of 1200 hours. “I wanted to learn everything, do everything,” Eleni said with her trademark enthusiasm.
There is a marked difference between what Eleni calls “the regular esthetics of basic facials and waxing” and medical esthetics, which is more clinical and beneficial. “As a medical esthetician I am a specialist in treating skin conditions like melasma (dark patches on the face), cystic acne, intrinsic and extrinsic aging, and many other skin conditions.” Eleni is not a replacement for a dermatologist and believes “you should still have a yearly checkup just like any other medical checkup.” But when there are skin conditions, Eleni can successfully treat them. She is not someone who took a course and got hired by a beauty salon, but a medical esthetician who is fully trained and worked in every setting before opening her own practice.
“I was a kid when I graduated 16 years ago and needed to pay my dues.” And pay them she did having worked in varied arenas from day spas and resort spas, to salons and plastic surgeons’ offices. She is quick to point out that there are many different skin care lines too numerous to mention here. But Eleni only uses and recommends the highest quality medical and organic grade products for her clients.
Skin is a very personal organ. Just as no two people have identical livers or kidneys or hearts, that enormous organ that wraps and protects our body is as individual as the person inside and must be protected. Eleni does not consider what she does a spa treatment per se, but rather “skin therapy” meant to heal and/or cure. “Skin care has evolved. That’s why I’ve studied both European and American treatments because there is no one treatment that’s right for everyone.”
A new client at Eleni Med Esthetics can expect much the same experience as an initial visit to a new doctor. “We talk. I take time. I want to know their history, what kind of diet they have, what their lifestyle is like, how much sun and UV exposure they get, and any prescriptions they take. What, if any past treatments, have they had? What worked? What didn’t? Why are they here?” Then Eleni personally tailors skin therapy specifically for that individual; and slowly as their skin therapy evolves, so does the relationship. “My clients are my friends. I’m always on the lookout for something new that might benefit them. We do a lot of hugging around here,” she laughs.
Even those undergoing the ravages of cancer have found great benefit at Eleni Med Esthetics since Eleni is also Cancer Care certified. “Of course they must see their dermatologist, but we can do preventive and post therapies to help maintain where they are and definitely make them feel better. I have products that are 100% safe on cancer patients as well as on kids and pregnant and nursing moms.”
Eleni Med Esthetics is “a one woman show.” But that one woman with the thorough medical esthetics training can also do eyelash extensions, nail therapy, scar treatment, and more, each service personally and individually administered without an eye on the clock. “I’m one-on-one.”
Eleni Nicholas Pertesis is many things: a highly trained Master Medical Esthetician, an inquisitive student who refuses to stop learning, a dedicated professional and friend to her clients who come from all over the state for her expertise and gentle hand. Most of all, she is honest, open, and refreshing.
“When I was a kid just starting out, I was having a blast. Now it’s a complete dedication to clients being their own kind of beautiful. I just want to spread the love.”
The “doctor” is in at The Shops at The Mill House, a beautiful, peaceful setting overlooking the water and bamboo trees at 5 West Main Street in Chester. Www.elenimedesthetics.com
Make an appointment and treat your skin like you treat the rest of your body!