Do you find yourself fascinated with different medical procedures designed to enhance people’s appearances?
If you want to spend your workdays giving clients botox injections or performing laser hair removal, you should consider becoming a cosmetic nurse.
Your job title may also fall under aesthetic nurse or plastic surgical nurse, but either way, you’ll play an important role in assisting physicians during clinical procedures.
Cosmetic Nursing at a Glance
In Canada, people working as cosmetic nurses typically start as registered nurses or nurse practitioners before entering a more specialized role.
Once you become a cosmetic nurse, you’ll have the best luck finding work at an outpatient surgical center or medical spa. The role of cosmetic nurse works well if you’re seeking a flexible working schedule. Both full and part-time positions are commonly available.
To make the dream of becoming a cosmetic nurse a reality, you’ll need the necessary education, training, and certifications.
Prerequisites of a Cosmetic Nursing Career
Here’s a quick overview of the credentials you’ll need to land a job as a cosmetic nurse:
- A minimum of a bachelor’s degree in a nursing specialization
- A nursing license for your province or territory
- 2-3 years work experience under a board-certified physician
- Optional certifications and mandatory continuing education
Let’s explore all the required steps in further detail:
Step 1: Get the Proper Education
If you take a look at cosmetic nurse job postings, you’ll notice almost all of them require a nursing degree.
Depending on the prerequisites for the position, you may need to obtain a registered nurse (RN) or nurse practitioner (NP) license.
If you’re going to become a registered nurse, you’ll need to spend around two to four years to receive your bachelor’s degree in nursing.
According to the Canadian Nurses Association, all provinces and territories, excluding Quebec, require at least a bachelor’s degree for an RN to start practicing.
To become a nurse practitioner, you’ll need to achieve a Master’s Degree. Completing an advanced degree program will require more time and a larger financial investment on your part.
Keep in mind that how to become a cosmetic nurse in Canada differs from other countries because the registration of nurses does not occur at the national level. You will receive a license for the province or territory you work in.
Before making any considerable financial investment into higher education, it’s worth taking the time to understand the educational requirements for your regulatory body.
Step 2: Attain Your Nursing License
You’ll need to have a license for your province or territory before you can start practicing as a nurse.
In Canada, nursing falls under the purview of self-regulation. As a result, the requirements for licensure vary based on where you work.
You’ll need to reach out to the regulatory body in your area to learn how to qualify for licensure in your region. In most cases, you’ll need to pass one or more licensing exams demonstrating proficiency in the nursing field.
Once you’ve passed the necessary provincial exams, it’s time to take the National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX). Contact the regulatory body in your region, and they will provide you with the requisite material to get your application started.
Once you’ve finished your application, you can register for the exam online.
If you prefer to register by phone, Call Pearson VUE NCLEX Candidate Services at 866.496.2539 and pay the exam fee.
Step 3: Gain Experience in the Field
Once you’ve got your license in hand, you can start sending out applications to medical spas and surgical centers.
You’ll want to focus on entry-level positions that let you shadow an experienced cosmetic nurse.
Make sure you get significant exposure to standard procedures such as fat grafting, liposuction, administering botox injections, and providing postoperative care.
Once you have two to four years of experience, you should be ready to advance into a more senior role within your organization.
Step 4: Pursue a Certification to Stand Out
While this last step isn’t required, it can help you differentiate yourself from the masses when trying to advance your career.
If there’s a specific job function you want to become an expert on, such as cosmetic injections, getting a certification proves your competency to prospective employers.
Qualifying for certifications consists of getting the necessary education and field experience in your subject area. You’ll also need to pass your certification exam.
Each specialty has a national association. Joining one could help with your networking and professional growth.
Step 5: Complete Continuing Education
It takes a commitment to continuous learning to become a world-class cosmetic nurse.
Beyond certifications, there are continuing education requirements to receive your license renewal.
In a competitive job market, obtaining more formal education than the competition helps you bring more value to the table.
If you’re concerned about fitting courses into your busy schedule, consider online education. You can take classes on useful topics like injecting dermal fillers from the comfort of your home.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here’s your quick guide to job functions, salary expectations, and working conditions associated with becoming a cosmetic nurse.
What Are the Essential Job Duties of a Cosmetic Nurse?
Your scope of work will include the following responsibilities:
- Handling patient consultations and scheduling
- Performing skin-aging assessments
- Providing preoperative and postoperative care
- Facilitating injection procedures such as Botox and dermal fillers
- Administering non-invasive procedures such as chemical peels
- Assisting physicians during cosmetic surgery
How Much Money Can I Make as a Cosmetic Nurse?
The average cosmetic nurse earns a salary of $86,483 per year in Canada.
Where Do Cosmetic Nurses Work?
Cosmetic nurses typically work out of plastic surgery clinics, medical spas, and hospitals.
It’s uncommon for cosmetic nurses to run private practices. You’ll work in tandem with cosmetic surgeons and physicians.
How Long Do I Have to Study to Become a Cosmetic Nurse?
It will take two to five years to achieve a relevant degree and pass the National Council Licensure Exam.
After that, you’ll spend two years working under a board-certified physician, learning core competencies, including plastic surgery and dermatology.