Tipping, it's a tricky subject
It’s been said on the stock market a good tip goes a long way. And as someone who doesn’t have much experience with the stock market, I can see however where that would hold some truth. The experience I do have in the realm of tips however is very extensive. Spending the majority of my early adult life as a server at some of the more popular eating establishments in the Metro Milwaukee area, I relied heavily on my tips. Making $2.33 per hour doesn’t pay the rent, insurance, utilities, grocery’s, etc. you get the picture. With a brief stint of corporate work and as a travel agent, I still kept a few days a week working for tips, as that then provided some “extra” money, but really is there ever any “extra”? I digress.
Since I now again find myself working in the service industry, only on a much more personal level, meaning I am touching people, and helping people feel their best. I find the whole issue with “tips” has resurfaced its ugly head. Sadly, I have been put into this situation to even address this issue, as clearly there is still some confusion out there about tips, how much, when and why? So, then it is my attempt to clear some things up. Personally, I am dedicated to exceeding your expectations and creating a memorable spa, facial experience. As the standard practice within the food industry goes, so does the health and beauty industry. Standard practice for gratuities for excellent service range from 18-20% of the total service fee. So, if you had a excellent experience, 18-20% is fitting.The next question is when to tip? Typically at the end of the service, adding on an extra amount to the final total is standard, just like when you gout to eat, you put thte tip onto the total bill. Why tip, she owns her own business, she isint’ working for anyone? Since we seem to live in a “coupon” society here in the good ol’ Midwest, it seems like everyone can just give everything away, however that is not so. Just as it costs everyone to come and go from work, put gas in the car, pay rent, provide supplies, and pay for equipment to do our jobs, so do we as Aestheticians. Over head is about 50% of our income, further education and staying up to WI State Code is %15 advertising is about %20 which leaves a very small percentage for anything else, such as a living wage.
The next dilemma I found myself in, is what happens if I from the kindness of my heart want to extend a gift to you for say retirement, or I want you to experience how awesome I am so come in and have a facial? Then what? What is the standard for that? Personally, I know if someone extends a service, or offer such as that to me, I am so grateful and so filled with joy, I want to tip at LEAST %18 especially because I know and respect this person who has just made me feel so amazing. It astounds me how when you extend yourself to people, or go the extra mile to provide an amazing service, experience how that is so taken for granted, not really appreciated. Has it come to that, has it come to the point that we just tramp over and stomp over all that is good and generous to us? If it has come to that, I feel even more empowered to be in an field of work that no matter what, I will continue to provide a service to people who will walk away feeling wonderful, amazing and deep down have to haggle with their own shadow about how they were not able to dig a little bit and provide a nice tip, to the person who just made them feel amazing. I have to add one last thing, if by chance I offer you a free service, or want to extend a offer to you, it is from my heart, and I don’t expect anything in return for it, however, please don’t mistake my kindness for weakness.
What's in a word? Beautiful...
When I started on my journey of the senses as I like to say, I had no idea the path of Bio-dynamics, that I feel in love with , was going to lead me to Elizabeth Sigmund. She trained as a beautician and founded her cosmetics institution ‘Salong för Skönhetstsvard’, meaning ‘Beauty Salon’ in Stockholm in the early 1950s, where she then ended up as an esthetician. Starting out in a medical type field, she soon realized her deep love of nature and specifically medicinal plants. During my training and studies with Dr. Malte Hozzle in 1995, I too realized my deep love of nature and medicinal plants. Much like Ms.Sigmund, she had her idol of Dr. Rudolf Steiner and I had mine with Dr. Hozzle. What happens next, is what ultimately influenced my path...
When asked what pushed Ms. Sigmund to pursue a career as an Esthetician, she replies: The key factor was my love of not only medicinal plants but also aesthetics. This made me realize that cosmetics were for me and induced me to break off my medical studies. The confirmation that this was the direction I should take came in 1938. I can still remember the date clearly as it was when Rudolf Steiner published his book ‘The Arts and Their Mission’. In this, he wrote: “The word ‘beautiful’ is related to the verb ‘to appear’. A thing that is beautiful appears, or in other words allows its inner being to come to the surface. For that is the essence of beauty: it does not conceal itself but instead allows its inner being to come to the surface and shine through as an outer appearance. A thing of beauty is therefore something that reveals its inner being in its outer appearance…”. If I had not read this paragraph by Rudolf Steiner, I would never have become an esthetician.
So I say to you dear reader, how beautiful is that? Will this change the way you say the word beautiful, or to whom?Will this inspire you to treat your clients, each other and yourself with beauty? I do hope so. I thought this to be fitting for my first blog post as I felt I had to honor the woman, the men, and the plants in all their beauty, that have guided me to this place I sit today...