Some members of the Medspa industry call it “the Zoom effect”.
Many of us are spending lots of time on video calls due to the pandemic. And we might not always like what we see.
This factor is driving some people to look at their options for a refresh—things like medspa treatments.
Jessie Martinez said she was searching for a medspa rejuvenation for a while. When she came across World Wellness Health Institute in Bala Cynwyd, she felt she found the right option.
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“I called. The lady was very nice. So I went ahead and paid for the services,” Martinez told NBC10 Responds.
Martinez paid nearly $2,000 upfront for a package of three sessions.
Martinez said she had the first treatment with no problems but when it was time for the second, the medspa canceled on her.
That was in September.
“I'm still waiting for the appointment or to get my money back,” Martinez said.
The medspa’s owner, Doctor Daniel Lebowitz, told NBC10 Responds his financial challenges were exacerbated by the pandemic. According to Lebowitz, he was behind on rent, and was evicted from his Bala Cynwyd office.
Lebowitz’s attorney told NBC10 Responds he plans to file for bankruptcy and patients will have to go through the court system for a refund.
Impact on the Industry
According to the American Medspa Association, seeking long-term savings with medspa services may result in a situation similar to Martinez’s.
“The thing that you need to be careful about is that they sometimes are taking cash in the front door for services they owe to pay their bills to keep their doors open,” Alex Thersch, President and CEO of the American Medspa Association, said. “The minute they have to close for any amount of time, they don't have any type of cash backup to survive.”
Thersch said anywhere from 10 to 15 percent of medspas had to permanently close due to financial challenges in 2020. Other medspas had their best year ever. That’s due to the so-called “Zoom effect," according to Thersch.
Before You Buy
The American Medspa Association advised taking the following steps to take before paying for medspa services.
- Ask about payment options, such as pay-as-you-go.
- Look into financing options that allow you to pay for the treatments over time.
- Research the doctor and the facility. Read reviews and make sure they are established with a positive reputation.