Medical Spa Industry Data Has Arrived: Letter From the Director

Posted By American Med Spa Association, Monday, July 31, 2017

Click here for more information on the AmSpa 2017 Medical Spa State of the Industry Report. AmSpa members: Contact us for a complimentary copy of the report’s executive summary. Medical Spa Data is In: The Industry is Booming The aesthetic industry—and particularly the non-surgical aesthetic industry—is exploding. I’ve had many conversations over the past year—with stakeholders, thought-leaders, representatives, investors, doctors, surgeons, hedge fund managers, CEOs, startups, you name it from all corners of medical aesthetics—and all of them marvel at the incredible opportunity that lies before us. You can feel it. There’s an energy in the hallways of surgery conferences that didn’t exist five years ago. Deals are being made; money is being made. It’s a great time to be in this industry. What is a medical spa? I speak throughout the United States about medical spas, and one thing that is continually mentioned is how clunky the term “medical spa” sounds. It doesn’t really fit what the industry has become. Nevertheless, the term “medical spa” is the term that has prevailed. Consumers use it, mass publications use it, and the industry uses it. Despite efforts to redefine it—the term “med-aesthetic” continues to be thrown around, as well as “non-invasive aesthetic medicine”—the name “medical spa” has become the standard. See our Medical Spa FAQ for more information. It’s important to recognize that the medical spa industry has become an industry unto itself that needs its own definition, its own resources, and its own data. It can no longer be considered a subset of plastic surgery or cosmetic dermatology, especially because more than 70% of the doctors in this industry are non-core. And while there is a growing overlap with the spa industry in terms of customer service and marketing, medical spas have vastly different price points, more advanced available technology, and unique legal and regulatory challenges. An industry that, by itself, generates nearly $4 billion in revenue a year; that has doubled in size during the past five years; and that projects to double again by 2020 is clearly worthy of its own categorization. 2017 Medical Spa State of the Industry Report Launches! Industry revenues are rising by double digits; profit margins are rising as businesses become more sophisticated; franchises—yes franchises—are taking root; and, like it or not, entrepreneurs and non-core doctors are flooding into the market by the tens of thousands. The Importance of Industry Data "In God we trust. All others must bring data." -W. Edwards Deming, American Statistician When AmSpa was founded in 2013 its main business was legal compliance — the idea of producing statistics and data was never contemplated. And as AmSpa grew, so did its responsibility to the industry as a whole. It is not only AmSpa’s desire for the medical spa industry to be compliant and safe, but it also wants the industry to be successful. Putting together the 2017 Medical Spa State of the Industry Report was the logical and natural next step. Nothing like this had been done before for this industry. Sure, there have been bits and pieces that could be found here and there, but there was no data relating solely to medical spas. Even determining how many medical spas there were is a challenge given the lack of defining statistics (there are 4,200, by the way). There were so many questions to be answered: Where are the most medical spas located? What types of revenue and profit margins are they making? What do they pay their staff? What procedures are the most popular? What does the future hold? The answers became clear once the AmSpa team started searching the Internet, region by region, in an attempt to count and identify all the medical spas in the country (yes, we really did this). What became apparent was twofold: Medical spas are distinct businesses, separate and apart from surgery or dermatology practices; and All medical spas typically use the terms “medical spa,” “aesthetics,” or “laser” in their title. Chances are that if you have one of those phrases in your business name, you were included in the report. And that’s where data comes in. Although medical spas have been growing in number and sophistication, one thing that has been glaringly absent was business and industry data. There was no baseline by which the industry could measure itself, no measuring stick to gauge what was actually happening. Yes, it’s well known that the market has been growing, but before any business segment can take the next step and truly begin to scale upward, it needs its own metrics to make cost-efficient decisions following through on what is working and discarding what is not. All established industries have data, but the medical spa industry did not — until now. So with all that, it is my privilege and pleasure to present to you AmSpa’s 2017 Medical Spa State of the Industry Report. The purpose of the report is simple: Capture and publish baseline data about the medical spa industry so that practitioners, business owners, investors and consumers have a frame of reference moving forward. The medical spa industry is stronger today than possibly imagined five years ago. It can be measured in billions. It is growing faster than the general economy. It is churning out millionaires left and right. And it doesn’t appear to be slowing down. I would be remiss if I didn’t give a sincere thanks to everyone who was a part of making this project a reality. The AmSpa team—Cathy, Eric and Aly—worked tirelessly to make this happen and none of this would have been possible without their dedication and commitment. John LaRosa of MarketData was instrumental in compiling and analyzing the data, and certainly he and his team deserve a huge amount of thanks. Additionally, Modern Aesthetics magazine was a terrific partner and sponsor of the report. But most of all, none of this was possible without the many medical spa professionals who took time out of their busy schedules to provide us with data and insight into their business. Click here for more information on the AmSpa 2017 Medical Spa State of the Industry Report. AmSpa members: Contact us for a complimentary copy of the report’s executive summary.