Ivonne Sanchez is the founder and operator of her eponymous skincare brand, Ivonne Sanchez Beauty. Her brand was nominated for the highly prestigious Top Cosmetic Clinic award in 2020, and her clinic has received more than 300 5-star reviews. Ivonne has well over a decade’s worth of experience in the beauty and skincare industry, having worked across a few clinics in that time. The beauty service industry remains one of the most turbulent industries in the commercial scene, which is why Ivonne’s insights are so valuable.
If you want to learn more about Ivonne’s views on the industry and her story, then check out some of her answers to the interview below.
Hi Ivonne, when did you start Ivonne Sanchez Beauty? What motivated you to pursue your dream of starting your own clinic?
Ivonne Sanchez Beauty was created in the fall of 2017. At the time, permanent makeup and cosmetic tattoo had started to make a comeback. Cosmetic tattoo was now offering improved tools, more stable pigments, and better outcomes, unlike anything that we had seen in the previous 2 decades. Hyper-realistic brows were transforming lives, and I wanted to be a part of this movement of simplified self-care. My goal was to deliver the safest, most natural-looking brows to my clients, and to provide them with excellent service.
What makes the beauty industry so dynamic and challenging?
The beauty industry is very trendy, with new services, ingredients and products constantly being introduced. Regulations are continuously changing and evolving – and these have practical implications for how we are allowed to advertise, and how we operate. This was especially true as COVID emerged early in 2020. For us the challenge has always been to stay on the cutting edge, not the bleeding edge of beauty. The difference is that we want to offer our clients the latest in what is safest, and tested first, over what may be full of risk and unknowns.
What were some of the most challenging obstacles to overcome in the establishment phase of your clinic?
Some of our obstacles were containing the growth. There is such a huge demand for the services that we offer but building the supporting processes were also very important. Ensuring that clients are suited for our services requires a lot of work up front. Cosmetic tattoo isn’t for everyone, so building an informative, qualifying customer journey was even more important than actually doing the brows themselves. It’s something that we continue to work on every day – finding the right clients.
What type of products and services do you provide your clients?
We’re known for permanent makeup (sometimes referred to as cosmetic tattoo), and our skincare.
Specifically, microblading and nano brows, eyeliner tattoo, and lip tattoo are our most popular services. We also offer freckles, and beauty marks. Our clients are usually surprised to learn how pain-free the experience was. In many instances we do not need to use numbing – which in turn leads to greater pigment retention.
An emerging service is camouflage tattoo, which uses many of the same processes as traditional tattoo, to help blend away scars, stretch marks, or even vitiligo. This exciting service produces immediate and long-lasting results and provide clients an alternative to complex and expensive surgical options.
We are also authorized providers of some of Canada’s top skincare brands like AlumierMD, G.M. Collin, and up and coming brands like AnteAGE from California.
In your view, what makes your products superior to your competitors?
We source our products from recognized Canadian manufacturers with strong scientific support. This ensures that we support our local economy and communities, it also means that we are accessing product that is compliant with all of the Canadian regulations. When it’s not possible to find Canadian products to suit our clients we import the highest quality products from around the world, and we take the extra step in qualifying them with the consumer safety directorate at Health Canada. Using the Cosmetic Notification Form (CNF) process we make a declaration to Health Canada about our use of products in Canada. We work with manufacturers from around the world to present their ingredient formulations and concentrations through the CNF administrative process. This ensures that should an ingredient, or its concentration ever be unsafe, we immediately are notified by Health Canada. It’s an extra step that requires much administration and legwork, but ultimately it makes beauty services safer for our clients.
How have you managed throughout the COVID-19 pandemic? How have you changed the delivery of your services/products?
2020 was a very difficult year for us. When forced to close we were being asked to “pivot”, and that meant shifting into new ways of doing business. We implemented e-commerce but the type of products that we carry require a personal approach (a consultation process) where we carefully advise our clients based on their needs and concerns. The skincare and cosmetic brands that we work with are not really suited to a strictly e-commerce client journey. Our clients come to us for a personalized, unhurried, and thoughtful conversation where we explore their concerns, their needs, and find beauty solutions that meet their goals. This isn’t something that a shopping platform filter, or an algorithm can achieve by itself.
For new customers, what would be your advice when they’re looking to experiment with new skincare/beauty products?
Over the past year we have interviewed several clients, and published videos about their experiences with self-directed skincare plans. It is important to involve a professional with all of your skincare choices, and not to incorporate a new product on your own. We see too many horror stories where it takes a very long time to undo the results of incorrect products, or the wrong services, leaving clients with damaged skin, hyperpigmentation, and new problems.
We strongly recommend that clients include their dermatologist or their primary physician in building their skincare plan, and to get their doctor’s approval before proceeding with any new treatment (medical, non-medical, over the counter, or otherwise).
We recommend buying your beauty products only from authorized distributors in order to avoid counterfeits which may contain harmful ingredient replacements, or harmful concentrations.
Finally, never try to resolve what could be an underlying medical condition with a cosmetic solution. Always do a ‘sanity’ check before setting out to fix something.
Remember, when it comes to skincare, less is more. Protect in the summer, treat in the winter. Don’t use retinols in the summer unless you’re applying in the evening and do use a physical sunblock in the morning. Don’t combine microneedling with chemical peels. More damage does not equal better results.
Don’t forget the physical sunblock.
Thank you Ivonne for your time!
You can follow up with Ivonne Sanchez and request a free consultation at https://ivonnesanchez.com