Pharmacy U

Pharmacy U Speaker Aaron Sihota – Pharmacists put skin in the skincare game


Aaron Sihota will be a featured speaker at the upcoming PharmacyU 2021!


by Jack Kohane


Skincare services represent an emerging patient opportunity in the health space, according to Aaron Sihota, a pharmacist and a clinical instructor with a focus area of dermatology at UBC’s Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences. “Visible aging in our society has sparked a renewed focus on the role of skin health and the impact on how others perceive us as well as how we see ourselves,” he says.

Sihota lauds pharmacists as trusted health advisors with a significant opportunity to increase growth in the skin space. “A pharmacist’s understanding and knowledge of the complementary role the cosmetician can play creates a value-added experience for the patient and recommendations of related products.”

Sihota argues that increased prescribed therapy adherence and enhanced patient care of underlying skin conditions for patients can be achieved through strong collaboration between the pharmacy and cosmetics team. “Have joint seasonal events that reward your most loyal patients and educate patients on new treatment modalities as well as allow them to try products for a more clinically oriented experience, better outcomes, and increased brand loyalty.”

He views skincare as a robust revenue-generator. “The category has tremendous growth potential and an opportunity to demonstrate the pharmacist’s clinical expertise and value to the patient.”

Skincare tips

  1. Engage patients in a skincare conversation. Ask patients with certain skincare medications or conditions what they are currently using to manage symptoms or adverse effects.
  2. Recommend and educate. Recommend a product but also provide the education on how, why and when to use it.
  3. Keep staff knowledge up to date. Maintain training for all staff, both pharmacy and beauty, so relevant, educated advice can be offered to customers.
  4. Know what’s hot. Give prominent facings to brands being most heavily advertised. Stay ahead of trends and offer your customers the latest information.
  5. Group products together. Focus on companion sales and recommend a complete line of skincare products.
  6. Keep some products behind the counter. That way you can engage in conversations with patients instead of leaving all interaction to beauty staff.
  7. Make the most of seasonal sales opportunities. Don’t forget suncare as well as skincare.

Aaron Sihota will be a featured speaker at the upcoming PharmacyU 2021!