Intake & Consent Forms: Do They Take Away from the Experience?
Imagine that your client walks into your beautiful luxury spa, ready for her appointment. The décor is nothing short of stunning with soothing music playing softly in the background. Your client takes a seat on the plush sofa while she waits, feeling like she’s on cloud nine (literally). As your client is soaking in all the dreamy vibes and finally breathes a deep sigh of relief in preparation to be completely pampered, you walk over to her with a smile on your face and …
Paperwork?! Talk about a total buzzkill, right?
WRONG! Client intake and consent forms are a critical step prior to any sort of skin care treatment. Think of them as a professional extension of your handshake, consultation, and skin analysis, all rolled up into one. (But don’t forget to do each of those things too!)
Intake forms are a comprehensive way for your clients to tell you important aspects about themselves that may be relevant to not only their skin treatments, but to their safety as well. This can include information about their current skin care routine and products they are using, their skin care goals or concerns, any known allergies, medical or health conditions, etc. This is wildly important because this form can now serve as your first indicator to any contraindications, allowing you to further discuss any red flags during the consultation, conduct a seriously thorough skin analysis, and then proceed with a game plan that has been completely customized to suit your client’s needs and ensure their safety.
And speaking of safety, consent forms are essentially your disclaimers about the treatment and serve as a written agreement between yourself and your client. This not only informs the client of what type of treatment they’re signing themselves up for, but it can protect you in legal matters as well! Let’s say your client requested a chemical peel and did not disclose on the intake form or during the consultation that they were still actively using a Retin-A product and had received a facial laser treatment a month before. Your client has an adverse reaction to the chemical peel and tells you she is going to sue you for the damages that were done to her face and will be seeking additional compensation for her medical bills, lost wages due to missed work, overall pain and suffering endured, etc. Not an optimal situation, but trust us, it happens. Having your client complete, sign, and date a consent form will provide you with tangible evidence of what information was disclosed and proof that the client understood and accepted the risks involved.
While it may not be the most enjoyable aspect of skin care, client intake and consent forms are absolutely essential! Aside from impressing your client on your high levels of professionalism, intake and consent forms are insightful, protect your client from getting hurt, and ensure that you are protected from possible liability issues. So happy form filling!
P.S. To take some of the stress out of creating or locating your own client intake and consent forms, ASCP has a full library of forms available for download as an exclusive members-only benefit. If you’re already an ASCP member, you can view them all here. If you are not an ASCP Member yet, join now for this exclusive benefit and much more!