'I'm a cosmetic nurse, but my job has become turning clients down.'

In 2017, cosmetic procedures became a billion-dollar industry

Advances in technology have made it so these kinds of surgeries are safer, less invasive and less costly than ever before. And for those behind the needle, many feel it's an industry dedicated to helping women and men enhance what they already have.

This is the case for cosmetic nurse and founder of Aesthetic Support Andre Ferreira.

Ferreira has almost a decade of experience in the medical industry — first with a stint in pharmacy; then with a transition into nursing, where worked in critical care and neuroscience; and finally, a move to become a cosmetic nurse, where he found his passion for transforming faces.

Watch: I asked "The Doll Maker" what she'd do to my face. Post continues after video.

Video via Mamamia.

Interestingly enough, the career pivot was born out of his own insecurity.

"Patients don't treat you well in nursing — especially the department I worked, which was neuroscience, where patients who have suffered physical, cognitive or psychological conditions usually come," he explains to Mamamia


"The stress was actually ageing me, I was losing so much hair. I went from looking like a 26-year-old to a man in their 40s. I became so insecure."

So Ferreira decided he wanted a hair transplant, to restore his thinning hair and repair his confidence. But unlike many patients who might be looking for the best price, he was looking for the most qualifications.

What Ferreira found instead startled him.

"I visited highly reviewed and recommended clinics, but these cosmetic consultants who gave me medical assessments had no medical qualifications. They tried to sell me products I did not need," he recalls. 

It got to the point where Ferreira began outright asking in every consultation what qualifications each person had. 

"One person, when his qualifications were queried, disclosed he was a plumber, but claimed he had 30 years' experience in the industry," he says.

"He was a salesman, a good one... he utilised my insecurity, created a feeling of urgency... and offered a significant discount... pressuring me to sign, pay and book now, to get me in ASAP," he continues. "Desperate, I agreed. He was not a doctor, [yet] he wrote my name and pharmacy drugs on a pre-signed doctor's prescription... [He] gave it to me and said to take it. 

"These companies are outright extorting. Even with my health background, I still fell victim to that."


Andre Ferreira (left) rejects more clients than he accepts. Image: Supplied.

Six months and $6,000 later, Ferreira found a doctor (a certified, qualified cosmetic doctor with experience in hair transplants) who found his brazen assertiveness and passion for the industry impressive — and hired him on the spot.


For six months, Ferreira learned the ropes, before going on to work for other cosmetic clinics — where he became disillusioned by the lack of regulations to protect patients.

"[They were about] profits over people. Simple as that," he explains. "I refused to sell products or treatments to patients they did not need. Some of the clinics were furious."

A few years later, in 2022, he opened his own beauty clinic. With hundreds of patients in his Rolodex and a "97 per cent retention rate", it had the potential to be extremely lucrative.

But for Ferreira, the money is secondary. Curating a look the client is happy with, and maintaining ethical practices, come first. To do that, though, clients must pass an initial consultation with him — which doesn't always happen, he shares.

"Treatment is not what people think it is," Ferreira explains. "It's so important that they are going to be happy and that I am going to be happy with the results, so I need to judge whether I can help them when I meet them."

It's more than being able to offer a service a client wants, he continues. It's about whether he thinks they can actually work together.

"I do say 'no' quite often and I can turn clients away up to four times a day. That's on average," he says.

Ferreira will also say no to treatments he feels don't suit a potential client's face or long-term needs, and instead offers alternative solutions he believes will work better, or give them the results they want. For Ferreira, it's about "addressing" a concern rather than "masking" it.


"I work in natural aesthetics and to me, that means undetectable. And it also means treatments over a long-term basis. Because you can't go backwards. If a treatment ruins your face, it's a lot harder to fix — and this is someone's face we're talking about," he says.

Ferreira has traits that are reminiscent of obsessive-compulsive disorder, a condition in which a person can experience uncontrollable and recurring thoughts or repetitive behaviours. In his line of work, he says it's made him a perfectionist.

"My OCD traits of control, order and symmetry come into play when I want to achieve results. For me, it is anxiety that doesn't prevent me from working but means that I cannot do a treatment I don't feel comfortable with or any work that feels wrong. Or else I will not stop thinking about it."

As it stands, Ferreira focuses on long-term care plans that bring gradual changes for his patients, and he declines treatment that may look unnatural.

"People want improvement, not a resolution, which means [I prefer to] over-protect an area and [any] other areas that might impact that area," he explains.

For example, Ferreira continues, if a client wants lip injections, they're typically not considering how it could impact the rest of their face. It may create an ongoing impact, where they will want more work done to then balance out their face with their now-larger lips.

"All of a sudden you do your cheeks and then your jawline is too small and then the chin doesn't look right and then it becomes a problem with the eyes looking too small on the face," he says. "This is how it all starts. So I look at someone's face objectively and I can evaluate what they need, as opposed to what they think they need."


There's a specific type of client Ferreira will work with, and they are the ones who are willing to play the long game when it comes to face enhancements.

"I take on a client that is truly looking at their aesthetic on a long-term basis to maintain their health or improve themselves or otherwise. When it comes to my treatment, I'm creating care plans that are gradual," he says.

"It's important clients receive the aesthetic that they want, so if I'm turning a potential client away, it's not because I don't like them or don't want to treat them — I'm just not the right person for them.

"My work is artistic, and it's important that clients and their practitioners share the same aesthetic and goals to achieve the best results. Your practitioner matters. It's your face."

Andre Ferreira is the co-founder and cosmetic nurse at Aesthetic Support.

Feature Image: Supplied.

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