When was the Catherine Hinds Institute of Esthetics founded, and what was the motivation behind starting this company?
AH: The Catherine Hinds Institute of Esthetics was founded by my mother, Catherine Hinds, in 1979. She was an early advocate for a simple skincare routine, and after spending time in Europe, where she saw women taking care of their skin, she felt that there should be a better esthetic program that took care of the skin. My mother opened Cyclax of London, a heritage beauty salon from the UK, in her hometown of Boston in 1965 (which was later renamed Catherine Hinds in 1967). She pioneered exfoliation as part of the at-home routine with her famous “grains,” which were one of the first-to-market manual exfoliators.
As her salon became increasingly successful, she turned herself into a female beauty entrepreneur—an unfamiliar term for the times. Wanting to spread her knowledge and offer opportunities to other women, she heralded the notion that the simplest skincare is the best kind of skincare. Believing you should approach skincare the same you do medical care or dental hygiene. She developed a highly in-depth training program that took a medical approach to skincare.
In 1979, my mother opened the Catherine Hinds Institute of Esthetics, which became the first 1200-hour medical esthetics program in 1996. To this day, the institute has been responsible for training and placing thousands of successful estheticians, earning Catherine multiple accolades and awards including the ACCSC School of Excellence Award.
I took over the institute in 1998 and was focused on modernizing the curriculum by implementing cutting-edge treatments, technologies, and advanced equipment. At the time, there were no tech treatments available such as peels or LED, which today are common facial treatments.