The COVID pandemic has been an extreme time for the beauty industry. People have whipsawed between feeling nearly invisible to being super-exposed: Masks covered half of our faces for much of the last 18 months — and, after a brief hiatus, the Delta variant means they’re back — while our looks have moved front-and-center during work and social videoconferences.

This dichotomy, per Mary Bemis, editorial director of Insider’s Guide to Spas, who has been an expert on spas for more than 30 years, has meant tough times for some parts of the retail cosmetics industry and a boon for medi-spas (spas that have a medical program operated under the supervision of a licensed health care professional) and plastic-surgery providers.

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