Skin deep and Beyond
Three renowned South Florida leaders in the beauty, health and wellness realm funnel their expertise through the prism of our current times during a recent Lifestyle Live webinar
Even during the height of the pandemic and shutdown, Lifestyle Media Group connected South Florida communities through a variety of platforms and initiatives. One of the ways that LMG brought people together over the past several months (and will continue to do so moving forward) is through our “Lifestyle Live” webinar interviews.
The company recently invited three of the region’s foremost authorities in their respective fields for a wide-ranging conversation about beauty, health and wellness that offered everything from practical advice to thoughtful insights about life in a post-COVID-19 world.
The distinguished panel included: Brad Glick, the board-certified dermatologist and dermatologic surgeon whose Glick Skin Institute (glickskin.com) has offices in Margate and Wellington; Tamy M. Faierman, the board-certified plastic surgeon who runs her eponymous Plastic Surgery, Holistic Spa & Wellness Center in Weston (reshapeyourimage.com); and Shino Bay Aguilera, the internationally renowned board-certified dermatologist and dermatologic surgeon who leads the team at Shino Bay Cosmetic Dermatology in downtown Fort Lauderdale (shinobayderm.com).
Here are some of the highlights of that webinar.
Aguilera: I lived through the recession in 2008. That was when I went solo. I worried that it was going to be a catastrophe for my career. I ended up growing 64 percent. History has shown that when we, as humans, go through something bad, we then want to feel good about ourselves. Anything that has to do with hair, nails, makeup, aesthetic procedures—you’ll see people returning to these businesses. They may not be able to afford expensive procedures. But they’ll save up and do smaller procedures, like with injectable fillers. Even just a facial. It’s a chance to pamper yourself, to feel good about yourself. And, in turn, it helps to boost your immune system.
Mind, Body and Soul
Faierman: My philosophy is that beauty and wellness are deeply intertwined. I want to offer my patients life-changing services. [Surgical procedures, of course, are part of that], but I wanted to move beyond the scalpel. I really want my patients to consider the body, mind and soul approach to wellness and well-being. It’s not just about superficiality; we’re bonding beauty and wellness.
When we feel good, we look good. And when we look good, we feel good. This goes beyond the aesthetics. It’s also all of the inner work we do. In 2017, we created a spa and wellness center as part of my space so that I could help nurture my patients in this mind, body and soul approach. This means holistic facials, massages, acupuncture, and talking about nutrition and lifestyle. … What does it look like to be the best version of yourself? Now is a beautiful time to look inward and decide how I’m going to look at beauty and wellness for myself—and where are the areas in my life where I might be missing a bit? …
Start with one thing. One thing a day where you’re incorporating a non-negotiable. Something that you need every day to start walking toward the best version of yourself. It might be something as simple as an herbal tea. It might be listening to a meditation app. … Finally, if you do nothing else, walk past your mirror once a day, look at yourself, smile lovingly, and tell yourself that you matter, you count, and you love yourself. You’re starting that connection between your physical self, and your mind, body and soul.
Skin-Care Safety Amid Reopening
Glick: I want to remind people that skin cancer in the United States also is an epidemic. [As we return to a semblance of normal life], get out there safely. Try and get outside before 10 a.m. or after 4 p.m. I could spend a lot of time talking about the pluses and minuses of sunscreen—but really there are no minuses to wearing sunscreen. At least a [sun-protection factor] of 30. I recommend an SPF 50 or higher. The thought used to be that there was no benefit to using anything above an SPF 30, but there’s data to suggest that it is beneficial. So, apply your sunscreen and reapply it every couple of hours. … Also, vitamin D is a hot-button issue, and it’s been one for the past five to eight years. Vitamin D deficiency is rampant in the United States. In other countries, it’s not. Ironically, there’s some data that recently came out that talked about the benefits of vitamin D amid the pandemic. I think all of us should be taking vitamin D; at minimum, consult with your physician and check your vitamin D levels.
Adding to the Toolbox
Aguilera: I don’t think this virus is going away. There are a lot of conversations, mainly on the spiritual level, about how to live with risk. People need tools to reduce fear, to co-exist. Some people lost everything during the shutdown. All of these are things that need to be discussed in the room to ensure that patients have the tools to survive this pandemic. We need to become life warriors. Just because I do aesthetics, it doesn’t mean that I can’t give my patients other tools to make them feel better about themselves.
Safe in Your Own Skin
Glick: There are three types of skin cancer: basal cells, squamous cells and melanoma. All three are derived from different parts of our skin, and they look different. A basal cell carcinoma is kind of like a shiny pimple that doesn’t go away; any lesion like that, anywhere on your body, that’s been growing and hasn’t healed within a month maximum is cause for concern. … A squamous cell is the second-most common form of skin cancer; it looks like a pink, scaly wart that, again, doesn’t go away. … Melanoma, the most concerning one, is really a mole—a light-brown or dark-brown spot, it can vary in size, it can be flat or raised. If you haven’t seen it before, bring it to your physician’s attention or see your dermatologist. … If anyone is concerned about a spot that won’t go away, don’t take it upon yourself to make a judgment.
Faierman: The sooner we start addressing our own wellness and beauty, the more we are connected with ourselves, the more we’ll take care of ourselves and live out our healthiest and best lives. … I have five children, ages 12 to 22. And they come to my [office] space. Clearly, I’m not doing liposuction on them. But I am exposing them to our holistic aesthetician. My girls, 14 and 16, and my son, 19, are getting skin care treatment for their acne. My 19-year-old is an athlete, so he’s getting massages and lymphatic drainage. I’m showing them what self-love, what self-care looks like. And what a better place to start than when you are young. … I have a lot of patients in their 20s and 30s that start with the tiniest amount, usually about 10 units of Botox; might be just between the brows. There are people with deep lines that are genetic, and they’re in their 20s. You know what? It’s time to address it.
Healing Advice, Post-COVID
Glick: Stay positive. I want to be hopeful and positive every day. I try to bring that into my life and my practice. Take the opportunity to do something different; think about how you can change your life for the better moving forward.
Aguilera: A lot of people talk about going back to normal. We cannot go back. Normal wasn’t that great. Look what we were doing to Mother Nature. Let’s pledge to be better. … Second, learn to live with risks. Become a life warrior. Learn to align the mind, body and spirit, as [Dr. Faierman] says. Do things to improve your lung capacity. Meditate. Pamper yourself. Last, is the power of human [interaction]. Without it, we don’t thrive. Now that we’re all wearing masks, it’s even more important to acknowledge people. It was bad enough, when I’d get on an elevator and say, “Good morning,” that the other people would check their phones like I was crazy and had three eyes. If we can’t touch and hug, at least make sure you validate people by acknowledging them.
Faierman: Become your own beauty and wellness and health advocate. Take ownership of your own health. … I invite you to consider that there’s nothing to wait for. This is a time to act. Begin to think about what beauty and wellness in your life will look like. … When you start walking the walk and taking care of yourself in this self-care, self-love fashion, you’re actually modeling it as well. … Once you start being that advocate and taking care of yourself, you’re actually spreading that love and others are learning from you. ♦