The best lessons I’ve learned from Smart Beauty Guide

We’ve been partnering with Smart Beauty Guide for two years, and that’s a lot of time spent blogging about beauty.  Here’s what it’s taught me….

1. Surgeons know what they’re talking about
Plastic surgeons spend their days - and all those years of training - looking at facial and body musculature: how the body moves, what parts connect to each other. The more a surgeon gets to know you personally, the more they know your personal bodily nuances.

Their time with you isn’t designed to get you signed up for a suite of procedures; it’s about making the recommendations for the RIGHT procedures. Every surgeon I’ve interviewed for Smart Beauty Guide has shared with me their concern for their patients, and how to help them find the right mix of treatments to suit the patient’s body, goals and expectations. 

2. Credentials matter
I’ve seen Oh-By-The-Way ads at various doctors’ offices. Like, just in case you want some Botox with your teeth whitening, let us know. I’m not even referring to med spas, I mean the person doing my holistic vitamin testing is also doing injectables.  It’s not hard to get licensed to administer Botox. But consider - who do you really want injecting you full of a muscle numbing neurotoxin?

As mentioned, a plastic surgeon spends ALLL his or her time examining how the face moves.  They know what should or should not be frozen.  And they certainly aren’t doing Botox for the money (it’s, like, the least expensive of their treatments). BUT FYI other people do it for the extra revenue.

Sometimes people forget that aesthetic plastic surgeons are surgeons first and foremost (medically trained for almost a decade) who went on to get more education and training to specialize in aesthetics. So when doing ANYTHING, work with the best professional possible.  (I.e. a board-certified aesthetic plastic surgeon) 

Which brings me to #3…
3. Don’t shop for a deal - the right doctor is worth the cost 
You want a deal on a car because a car is a car is a car. They make thousands of the exact same model. There is only one YOU.  And if you want to enhance this one unique you- go for it.  But work with someone who you trust and who is as wonderful at his or her job as you are of being you. Find someone who will honor your overall body, choose a doctor who checks in with your mental state during the consultation. Work with a team who’s qualified to the do the very best, and has a giant tool kit to do so. You might not need or want anything beyond a non-invasive solution, and that’s great (i’m right there with you).  The right doc won’t force anything; they’ll just advise you on what options you have. And what to do now so you don’t find yourself without a plan down the line. 

4. IF you do want to compare prices…
….compare them between the best doctors in different cities. 

Different cities average different costs for the same procedures because the cost of living differs. So Miami or Dallas may present you with a slightly more affordable option on a boob job (than, say New York or LA). And you can work in a little vacay as well. 

If that’s appealing to you, check in with a board-certified plastic surgeon who offers virtual consultations first, so you can get a sense of their bedside manner. 

PS- what to beware of if traveling internationally for surgery. 

5. It’s never just a “little” bit of work
Phrases like “nip” and “tuck” may make elective procedures seem just, like, NBD. And while common surgeries can have great success rates and few complications in the aggregate, surgery is surgery and should be approached with the care and caution that you would if you were having any other part of your body operated on. The advantage of elective surgery is that you have time to prepare your body for the best recovery. Which is important because a healthier body to start means a healthier body for healing. 
What does that mean? Well…

6. Healthy living is a part of any aesthetic treatment
I hear it time and time again in the many interviews I’ve conducted with plastic surgeons. If an unhealthy person comes into their office wanting a major physical change, the first course of action will be to change some lifestyle factors. I know what you’re thinking - you’re going to get lipo/ tummy tuck/ mommy makeover, then isn’t the whole point to have a surgeon removed the excess?  Yes and no. The body needs to be healthy before a doctor will operate because high blood pressure, smoking, and excess weight are all issues that affect healing and/or the chances for a successful surgery.

7. Shop at your plastic surgeon’s office, not at a department store
I never really gave any thought to the facial products my doctors sell in their office. But one of the tips I got from a surgeon (LINK) was that they have access to higher grade formulations than what is sold conventionally, and these beauty professionals know what ingredients make a difference (and what’s just department store marketing… cough, La Mer, cough). 

Want more tips from surgeons? Here’s the advice they give their family members.  

8) Putting off aesthetic management may lead to more down the line
Let me say, I in NO way want to get plastic surgery. 

BUT I realize that my face and body is changing, and that it’s an option that might be appealing in a fear years. But here’s the thing, by putting off aesthetic improvements, I may just have more to deal with later on.

Starting a healthy relationship with a trusted plastic surgeon means that you get the benefit of their counsel now, which will also help later.  They know how faces and bodies age. They know what moves where, and when skin starts changing. 

If you’re like me, and want to put off plastic surgery as long as possible, consider a few of the advantages of creating a relationship with a plastic surgeon early.

A. A plastic surgeon sees what you look like in your younger years so they know what to restore you to down the line.

B. The enhancements at this point can be just that, enhancements - they don’t have to be as drastic. An aesthetic surgeon’s office has all the fun nonsurgical tools (yay!) AND the experienced staff to make sure you opt for what will serve your ultimate beauty goals. 

Yeah, I know. I just dropped a LOT of knowledge on ya.

There’s this and so much more at


This post is presented to the Girl Around Town audience in partnership with
Smart Beauty Guide and The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.

Posted on August 10, 2016 .