“In Conversation” is a series which offers advice and knowledge from trained professionals within the beauty industry. Delving deeper into the journey of Aestheticians and Dermatologists is the aim, alongside this delivering knowledge and highlighting noteworthy individuals who are sparking conversations and pushing boundaries is also a focus of ours here at PF. The series was curated for the Paradise Files community to learn and discover from real skin experts.
Meet New York based board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Lara Devgan. One of the most reputable industry experts, when it comes to all things plastic surgery. Dr. Devgan launched a medical grade skincare line that primarily focusses on the needs of women, creating hero products that are favourites amongst a-listers such as Jennifer Anniston, Bella Hadid, Kim Kardashian and many more. We speak through Dr. Devgan’s career in aesthetics, how plastic surgery trends are shaping the treatments that are in demand and how she hopes to inspire the next generation of women, whilst herself being a prominent figure in a male-dominated industry.
At what moment did you realise you wanted to pursue a career in aesthetics?
To me, plastic surgery is the perfect marriage of art and anatomy. I’ve loved both disciplines since I was a child. The moment I really realized that plastic surgery would be a perfect fit for me was during medical school when I found myself gravitating toward the concept of reconstructing traumatic and cancer-related tissue injuries. I think plastic surgery is an amazing field, because it allows you to have an extremely unique and personal connection with a person in a way that helps them feel more like themself.
What is your overall philosophy on plastic surgery?
To me, modern beauty is really the permission to be your own kind of beautiful on your own terms–whatever that means to you. In terms of plastic surgery, I feel the same way. Generally speaking, my philosophy is that beauty is in the small details, and that every little millimeter-level change can make a tremendous impact on identity and attractiveness.
What is the most popular treatment that clients have asked for since you were able to reopen?
Patients have been very interested in my concept of global facial optimisation, which is a combination of both surgical and nonsurgical procedures, to enhance without overwhelming the face.
Have you seen a significant change in the way people are approaching the way they look this year?
In terms of plastic surgery, I think that has translated into a more serious and more subdued approach. It’s much less about obvious and exaggerated features, like in enormous lips and oversized buttocks, and more about self possession and confidence. I think we’re all feeling a little bit more mature and restrained, and I’m seeing that in my work as well.
There are numerous trends which circulate every few years which can shift what people believe is the aesthetically-pleasing look of the moment, which isn’t, of course, suited to everyone. How do you deal with this when it comes to clients?
I think trends are best suited for less durable areas, like fashion and make up. When it comes to the human body, trends have less of a role. When I think about plastic surgery, I really think about it like a bespoke and customized, very beautiful, and very high-stakes work of art that I’ve been commissioned to do for somebody, and I think that’s less about trends and more about anatomy and goals.
Which non surgical treatment would you say is underrated and highly effective?
The non-surgical rhinoplasty is the most game-changing injectable treatment of my career. I think it’s truly taken many people out of the realm of surgery who had previously considered a long, invasive, general anesthesia, surgical rhinoplasty. This procedure has gained so much popularity already, but it continues to amaze me how much some extremely well-placed and finesse-delivered product can change the feeling of a person’s whole face.
What is your most asked-for treatment?
I think my patients see me for treatments where details really matter, and so the most asked-for treatments in my practice are surgical and non-surgical tiny, little, meticulous optimisations of the face, breasts, and body.
What has been a significant high point of your career?
I like the Aristotle quote that “excellence is not an act, but a habit,” and on some philosophical level I think the high point of my career is the ability to get up every day and do what I love. To me, it’s taken a certain kind of zen self reflection to be able to find happiness in the routine of my life, but I truly love what I do, and so just being able to do what I do has been a high point. I think on a more specific level, it was a high point for me this past year before Covid hit, to be asked to keynote the largest meeting of physicians and surgeons in the aesthetic space in Monte Carlo, Monaco. That was an amazing experience and a true honour.
You’re a reputable plastic surgeon, an entrepreneur, and many can say an innovator. What do you see your legacy being?
I hope that my legacy encompasses several things. First and foremost, I think that beauty is a concept that should be made to be more empowering and less destabilizing. I hope that through my life and work, I help people feel that beauty is really about confidence more than any singular physical feature. I think this gestures back to my concept of modern beauty, which as I was saying is the permission to be your own kind of beautiful, on your own terms. Second of all, I hope that being a woman who has found success in a traditionally male-dominated field will inspire the next generation of physicians and surgeons, whatever their demographics may be, to aim high, set their ideals high, keep their principles elevated, and achieve success. I think the value of inclusivity and diversity in medicine and science has become extremely important in the past year, and so I hope that I can participate in changing a little bit of what society thinks of as to what a doctor looks like. Then finally, I’m a pretty technical person, and I think that my favourite aspects of my actual day-to-day work are the things that I do with my hands and mind and so I hope that my legacy includes a commitment to details.
What is your day skincare routine?
I love and use my own products, so my skin care routine is really centered around those. In the mornings I use our Advanced Revitalizing Cleanser, followed by Hyaluronic Serum, Peptide Eye Cream, Niacin Squalene Neck Cream, and SPF BB cream. Lately I’ve been using the concealer and dusting powder quite a lot as well just for mattifying and blending. On top of that, I use Platinum Long Lash, our new mascara that’s in development, and depending how motivated I’m feeling, potentially some make up.
At night I wash my face, a few times a week I use our Microdermabrasion Scrub, then I’ll apply our Vitamin C+B+E Ferulic Serum followed by Retinol+Bakuchiol. Right now I’m using the 5x, although I think I might go up to 10x because I just need a little extra something. Then I follow that with our Resveratrol Night Cream.
Favourite anti-aging product?
I think our Serum Superheroes are a very edited and super powerful collection of products to improve skin quality, texture, and turgor.
A beauty ingredient you couldn’t live without?
Your signature beauty look?
Long lashes, some lip plumper, and luminous clear skin.
An at at-home beauty treatment that is a must for you?
I think the daily commitment to a medical-grade skin care routine is the best at-home beauty treatment to think about.
What is the one product we absolutely need from Dr. Lara Devgan Scientific Beauty?
Our Hyaluronic Serum is truly amazing and delivers a beautiful glass-skin look that is suitable for almost any skin type!