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Med Spa vs. Dermatologist vs. Skin Spa: What’s The Difference And Why Should You Care?


As COVID-19 vaccines are becoming more abundant, people are looking to get back out into the world and mingle with friends and family they may not have seen in over a year. This entrance back into society is causing many Americans to flock to spas, looking to emerge from quarantine without showing the wear and stress this past year has left on our minds and bodies. Yet with an abundance of spas and treatments offered, it can be tricky finding the right place to meet your skin goals. In this post, we are going to break down the key difference between med spas, dermatologist offices, and skin spas so when you’re ready to refresh your look, you know just where to go!

a spa treatment room with a reclined chair and art on background wall
For non-invasive skin treatments, ditch clinical, sterile dermatologist offices and stuffy, old med spas.

What is a Dermatologist?

A dermatologist, likely found at a dermatology center, is a medical doctor who has gone through years of medical school and focuses on skin concerns, diagnoses, surgical treatments, and more. This is the most clinical approach to your skin you can get. Dermatologists can perform invasive treatments, non-invasive treatments, cancer screenings: basically anything and everything to do with skin. If you have a serious skin concern (rashes, psoriasis, eczema), this is the person to see. If not, save time, energy, and the hassle of dealing with your insurance company (only to find out they don’t cover much) and keep reading.


What is a Med Spa?

A med spa, or known by some as a medi spa, is a spa that offers non-invasive, medical-grade treatments and cosmetic-based treatments with a licensed physician that, in most cases, serves as a medical director that only advises staff. In certain states, physicians aren’t required to be on staff, so for safety, always make sure you are going to a facility that has one on staff. A med spa is focused more on medical-grade treatments and less on pampering. Unfortunately, med spas typically offer a range of treatments that you have to research on your own and don't specialize in skin health. Ask 10 people what a med spa is and you'll get 10 different answers. They sometimes include everything from hormone therapy, to weight loss, to hair restoration, to injectables!


What is a Skin Spa?

A skin spa, like a day spa or beauty bar, offers non-medical-grade, cosmetic treatments and employs estheticians, not doctors. Think microblading, eyebrows, waxing, lashes, “fluff and buff” (manual) facials. Skin spas focus on purely cosmetic needs, improving our outer appearance and offering a place to feel relaxed. The downside? Many of the treatments and products at skin spas focus only on short-term results, not lasting skin health. In order to see real results, your skin needs data-driven, medical-grade facials (like our awesome Kalvera Med-Tech Facial) and medical-grade products that go in the skin, not just sit on top.

he front desk and foyer of the inside of Kalvera Skin Therapy
Kalvera Skin Therapy: Jacksonville Beach offers the best parts of a med spa and skin spa combined.

What is Kalvera Skin Therapy?

At Kalvera Skin Therapy, you’ll find medical-grade, data-driven treatments in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere. We combine the best parts of a skin spa and a med spa while operating under the medical guidance of Dr. Kalpana Sundar, a Board Certified physician with a specialization in facial anatomy. Dr. K treats each face as a piece of art, highlighting clients’ natural beauty, and takes special care in training and overseeing our licensed Skin Therapists and Master Injectors.


Our mission is to make medical-grade treatments easily accessible to everyone: improving skin health and confidence one client at a time.

We do this by offering long-lasting, effective, and efficient treatments targeted to your skin needs. The treatments are so efficient that they can be done on your lunch break! Not to mention, you can also find our cruelty-free, non-toxic, and effective skincare line, so you don’t have to sacrifice results for clean beauty (we believe you should be able to have both!). No stuffy, dated, medical vibes here. Just lasting results delivered by licensed professionals who choose listening over judgment, sustainable skin health over surface results, and restoring natural beauty, not changing it.


Our treatments include…

  • Skin Scan System: Our advanced skin scan system uses light spectrum technology to analyze conditions deep beneath the skin (things the human eye can’t see!) and deliver your true, data-driven, skin type.

  • Med-Tech Facial: A 3-in-1 facial for all skin types and tones that uses gentle exfoliation, extractions, and personalized infusions to treat the most stubborn of your skin concerns.

  • Laser Facial: A fast, effective, and painless laser treatment that delivers more action than a chemical peel that leaves you with fewer fine lines, smaller pores, and enhanced skin elasticity and tone.

  • Injectables & Fillers: Our Master Injectors use gentle hands to deliver natural-looking results when it comes to minimizing lines and wrinkles and adding fullness to thinning areas.


Interested in visiting a spa focused on overall skin health while also utilizing medical-grade treatments in a relaxed, friendly, and judgment-free atmosphere? Kalvera Skin Therapy: Jacksonville Beach is open, and we invite you to book an in-person appointment and come visit us today!


By Angela H.

🗣️ Looking for the best place to invest in your skin health? Book a consultation at Kalvera Skin Therapy: Jacksonville Beach!