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Laguna Beach

 Volume 14, Issue 5  |  January 18, 2022


Executive Esthetics, a new Laguna one-stop esthetic shop for facial and body transformations

By DIANNE RUSSELL

Photos by Mary Hurlbut

During 2021, the lives of Raquel and Joe Snowden changed dramatically. Not only did they open their business Executive Esthetics in May – in July they welcomed daughter Julietta. 

Executive Esthetics is family owned and operated – with an emphasis on family. Julietta accompanies the Snowdens to work, along with their dog Gustavo and Oppie, Raquel’s mother Ingrid’s dog. With the presence of Julietta and the two dogs, the space takes on a relaxed and convivial air. On especially busy days, Raquel’s mother or Joe’s mother can be found tending to Julietta. Additionally, good friend Dyan Russell often jumps in to help.

Executive Esthetics was founded on quality care and patient education, offering treatments from Botox to full face and body transformations – a one-stop esthetic shop. They specialize in custom service and care that one doesn’t get at a spa.

In every aspect, Executive Esthetics is a product of teamwork – Raquel, a former ICU nurse, is the esthetic specialist, and Joe, who comes from an extensive hospitality background, takes care of the business operations. Dr. Allyson Berkey serves as the medical director.

executive esthetics family

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Raquel and Joe Snowden with Julietta

A dynamic partnership

Raquel was born in East Los Angeles and attended Los Angeles City College where she received her undergraduate RN degree and then graduated with honors from California State University Long Beach in 2016 with her Bachelor of Science in Nursing. She mastered Intensive Care Medicine after rigorous and continued education with the Los Angeles County Medical Level 1 Trauma Center from 2014-2019. Raquel would then go on to develop a passion for work in plastic surgery and aesthetics while under direct observation of Dr. Paul Nassif. Raquel is currently enrolled in the University of Southern California’s Nurse Practitioner program to receive her master’s degree.

Joe grew up in Spring Lake, Michigan and went on to study Business Management at the University of Cincinnati. He began working for Hyatt Hotels in 2005 and would eventually go on to manage at every level over his nine-year career from Cincinnati, to San Antonio, Seattle and finally Napa, California. In 2015, he took over as general manager of a historic Michigan resort hotel before returning to California where he would assume the role of services director for WeWork’s Southern California Portfolio. Over a period of three years, he would manage all of the 35 SoCal locations operations, service contracts, lease agreements, opening plans and much more.

Together they melded their unique talents and founded Executive Esthetics.

executive esthetics exterior

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Executive Esthetics opened in May 2020

Services

With an emphasis on the most advanced technology and technique, Executive Esthetics offers a complete menu of the latest and most desired aesthetic treatments: peels and facial services, injectables, PDO threads, laser hair and vein treatment, body sculpting, vitamin and IV infusion, Morpheus8, Lumecca IPL, skin tightening and resurfacing.

They also carry a medical skin care line created by Dr. Zein Obagi in Newport Beach, a pioneer in skin care. 

The name Executive Esthetics reflects their vision for the clinic. “We wanted a high-end medical office instead of a spa, an expert level boutique,” Joe said. “So, we wanted the name and vibe to match.”

Raquel’s devotion to patient education translated seamlessly into opening the clinic.

“We were initially going to go into the homecare business,” Joe said. “We had a lot of ideas, but with Raquel’s dedication to education, this is where her passion is.”

“Because of Dr. Nassif, I got into aesthetics,” Raquel said. “I was burned out in ICU. During COVID, we weren’t bringing people back. Before that I enjoyed putting patients at ease and talking people down when they were anxious and aiding in their recovery. It was rewarding.”

executive esthetics three generations

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Three generations (L-R) Julietta, Ingrid (Raquel’s mother) and Raquel

When consulting with her patients, Raquel focuses on education. “I’m very visual, and I use a mannequin to explain procedures,” she said. “I want the patients to understand what the body is doing, and that it’s an end game. We can do big gun treatments and then a maintenance program. However, if a patient is more comfortable with non-invasive treatment, we can start on the journey a different way. The treatments are customized based on what the client wants. There’s an entire protocol to get ready and I take time to explain. There are a million ways to accomplish the end goal, and I want to find what works best based on pain tolerance and budget.”

Client Carolyn Chingros said, “My skin has never looked better and I have Raquel to thank for it! She carefully explained the different procedures and options that would best serve my needs and the outcome was amazing. I chose the Morpheus8 and after my first treatment, my skin was noticeably tighter and the area around my chin was much smoother. I am excited to see the end results in a few more weeks. Also, their office is beautiful.”

executive esthetics lobby

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Beautiful lobby

“All the patients fall in love with Raquel,” Joe said. 

“Raquel and Joe make you feel so welcome when you come into their beautiful office,” said one of Raquel’s patients. “Raquel is an excellent esthetic nurse. I am getting laser treatments done to tighten my skin and she knows just how to make you comfortable with the treatment. I will be having other treatments with Raquel. I’m going to be her patient forever! Can’t even think about going anywhere else.” 

 “We have hired two new staff members, so we can maximize the rooms,” Joe said. “One person will take over the laser treatments. Another part-time staff member will be doing medical weight loss.” 

One of the new staff members is Jessica Weisenbach.

The additional personnel will also free up some time for Raquel, who will soon begin her clinicals for her master’s degree in nursing at USC. 

Partners in life and business

At the end of 2019, Raquel and Joe met on a dating app. 

“Both of us had recently gone through divorces,” Raquel admitted. “Neither of us was interested in having a serious relationship.”

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“When we met, from my last relationship, I knew what not to do,” Joe said. “She embodied everything I wanted.”

executive esthetics Gustavo

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Gustavo greets patients and then brings them his ball

They soon decided they wanted to be closer to OC since Joe’s parents live in Corona del Mar. “One day we were driving through Laguna,” Joe said. “We were looking for a location, and Newport Beach and Beverly Hills were already saturated with spas. We saw this listing and thought it would be the perfect place to build out.”

During the remodel, they moved walls and reorganized the space into a sophisticated boutique with four treatment rooms (and breathtaking ocean views).

Since Executive Esthetics opened, they have enjoyed becoming part of the local culture. 

Julietta, Gustavo and Oppie bring life into the office and the feeling of family. 

“Clients bring Julietta clothes and toys,” Raquel said. “We have very interesting patients and I’ve enjoyed meeting local residents.”

“They will get to see her grow up,” Joe added. “It’s nice to feel a sense of community. It’s a diverse crowd. There’s such a range, and some of our clients have been here for generations.”

Most of their business is by word of mouth recommendations, and their clientele is 80% female and 20% male.

Rave reviews

Diana, one of Raquel’s clients, gives her the highest praise. “My experience at Executive Esthetics has been nothing short of excellent. My first visit was with nurse Raquel to inquire about thread lift and Morpheus8 treatments. Raquel was welcoming, patient and detailed. She possesses a wealth of knowledge in multiple areas of aesthetics. Her approach is natural, science-driven and never pushy. Since my first meeting with the staff at Executive Esthetics, I have had thread lifts, evolve body treatments, HydraFacials and neurotoxin treatments. Raquel is a perfectionist, an artist and her staff is a breath of fresh air. Oh, and there are incredible ocean views from every treatment room. I highly recommend Executive Esthetics to all my closest friends and family.”

executive esthetics treatment room

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Treatment room with a spectacular ocean view

One of the draws is Raquel’s insistence on the comfort of her patients. 

“In many salons, the patients are in and out, but my clients are usually here around two and a half hours,” she said. “For invasive treatments, they need breaks. We provide beverages, snacks and food.”

It’s clear that they cater to their clients. “In that way, it’s like the ICU,” said Raquel. “Some people have a lot of fear about the injections, and I want them to be comfortable, so I need to ease their anxiety levels.”

Each consultation lasts from 30-90 minutes. “We want to allow enough time to interact with every patient so we can give 110% to everyone and develop a care plan. We want time to establish a good rapport so they can be comfortable before we start,” Raquel said. 

executive esthetics Oppie

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Oppie spots something outside the window

For this level of care, patients come from Beverly Hills and some from as far away as Mammoth Lakes.

“Aesthetics have come a long way,” Joe said. “It’s more natural and subtle.” 

Raquel admits that she has had to say, “no” to a client if she feels the treatment they request is not right. For example, a client already had overfilled lips yet wanted more injections. Raquel refused.

However, she is adamant about ensuring that a patient is satisfied with the results – she doesn’t want one unhappy patient. 

Executive Esthetics offers a boutique experience where patient education and empowerment are paramount.

Executive Esthetics is located at 31655 S. Coast Highway, Ste. A, Laguna Beach.

For more information, go to http://www.execesthetics.com/, or call 949.715.0768.

Follow them on Instagram @executive.esthetics and Facebook at executive esthetics.

Lana Johnson, Editor - Lana@StuNewsLaguna.com

Tom Johnson, Publisher - Tom@StuNewsLaguna.com

Dianne Russell is our Associate Editor.

Michael Sterling is our Webmaster & Designer.

Mary Hurlbut and Scott Brashier are our photographers.

Alexis Amaradio, Dennis McTighe, Diane Armitage, Maggi Henrikson, Marrie Stone, Sara Hall, Stacia Stabler and Suzie Harrison are our writers and/or columnists.

In Memoriam - Stu Saffer and Barbara Diamond.

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