Sante Med Spa’s goal is for clients to say, ‘I finally feel like I look like myself’ – Chicago Tribune
Business: Sante Med Spa
Address: 648 N. River Road, Naperville
Phone, website: 630-586-6278, www.santembb.com
Owners: Abby Jesse, 35, and Jason Whiteside, 44, both of Plainfield
Lead esthetician: Stephanie Castanon, 36, of Oswego
Years in business: Opened in June
What does your business do? “We are a full-service med spa. We have facial procedures, lasers for the face and body, all sorts of injectables, botox fillers, different bio-stimulatory agents, fat dissolving, laser hair removal,” Jesse said.
What’s a med spa? “It’s short for medical spa. We are headed by a physician so we offer prescriptive medication. Botox filler you put in the face is all prescription. You can’t go to your local hand salon and get them. You have to be licensed,” Jesse said.
What does “sante” mean? “It is French for ‘a toast to your health,'” Jesse said.
Why do you own this business? “I started injecting almost seven years ago,” she said. “I worked at a dermatology office. I really liked it. I worked there almost five years, A mentor of mine asked if I’d like to work for her in the city. I worked for her a couple of years. I live in Plainfield. The commute to the West Loop was killing me. … I wanted to be closer to home, to bring it to the suburbs.”
Is Naperville good city business? “I think for ours it’s good,” Jesse said. “The demographics,” Castanon said.
What happens when someone comes in? “We’ll have a consultation. For skin, Stephanie sees them. Injectables? I see them. … I ask them, ‘What did you see in the mirror that made you want to come in?’ Maybe it’s, ‘I’ve always had this line here and it makes me look angry.’ Or, ‘I have real bad sunspots. They’re getting darker. What can I do?’” Jesse said.
Then what? “I point out things we can change if it bothers them. Things we can leave alone if it doesn’t. Then we agree on a plan. Some people tell me, ‘Do what you think.’ Others are like, ‘I’m a little nervous, maybe we’ll start with a little Botox in the forehead.’ … I don’t push anything on them that they don’t need,” Jesse said.
Can you explain? “Say they want a lip filler. If you have a weak chin, I cannot put filler in your lip area. It will make you look very odd, like a duck. … If people come and they’re full of filler already, I don’t inject into a mess. It’s like painting over chipped nail polish,” Jesse said.
How about your department, Stephanie? “I do visitation as well. I ask them what they want to look better. We can do lasers on you to help with texture,” Castanon said.
It’s not a one stop fix? “No. Several sessions,” Castanon said.
“You’ve been aging your whole life. I don’t like to say we turn the clock back. We just try to make you a refreshed version of yourself. … We both really try to educate patients about what the aging process looks like. If you don’t understand how you age, you’re not going to understand why you need these procedures, injectables to take away some of that aging,” Jesse said.
What about people who want to look as they did in college? “I’m not a magician. I ask them why they want to look so much younger. We can turn the clock back maybe five years, a refresh. But I can’t get you back decades,” Jesse said.
Are most of your clients women? “Fifteen percent are men,” Jesse said. “Women between their 30s and 50s are our biggest market.”
What do you like best? “A patient will text me and say, ‘I finally feel confident’ or ‘I finally feel like I look like myself.’ … I’m doing it so you feel good about yourself,” Jesse said.
Any negatives? “Because we’re in the United States, all our products are expensive. It’s not affordable for everyone. I wish stuff was a little cheaper,” Jesse said.
What misconceptions do people have? “That if they get injectables or any esthetic treatment, they’re going to look fake. … We want you to look like a refreshed version, not a blowup doll. When people tell you, ‘I love your Botox, I love your fillers,’ I’m not doing my job,” Jesse said.
What’s your favorite story? “A woman had been in a horrible car accident years ago. She had half a (lower) lip. … I have never worked so hard. … She called me and said when she was driving home, she pulled over and broke down. She hadn’t had a lip for 35 years,” Jesse said.
What’s your advice for someone starting a business? “You are never going to work as hard in your life but it will be worth it,” Jesse said.
If you know of a business you’d like to see profiled in Down to Business, contact Steve Metsch at [email protected]
Steve Metsch is a freelance reporter for the Naperville Sun.