An expert in all forms of aesthetic and reconstructive surgeries, Dr. Millicent Rovelo is one of the few female surgeons making waves in the plastics business, providing a unique, individualized and comprehensive approach to each and every patient. Her expertise and focus ranges from timeless rhinoplasty to a non-invasive liquid facelift. Emphasizing the journey, she understands that when assisting patients with their respective concerns, it’s important to combine steady hands with a compassionate heart.
Dr. Rovelo received her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Los Angeles and completed UCLA’s rigorous pre-med program with a degree in Physiological Science. From there, Dr. Rovelo went on to pursue her medical degree at Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California (USC). From the very beginning, Dr. Rovelo knew that she was interested in a surgical career. As such, Dr. Rovelo elected to complete a five-year General Surgery residency at Louisiana State University in New Orleans. After completion of her residency, she became board certified in General Surgery by the American Board of Surgery.
Dr. Rovelo returned to Los Angeles to continue her surgical training with a second residency. She was accepted into the highly competitive Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery residency at USC. During this residency, she received training in a wide breadth of plastic surgery including aesthetic surgery, reconstructive breast surgery, abdominal reconstruction, hand, and burn surgery.
BITB had the pleasure of catching up with Dr. Rovelo to learn about her work as a plastic surgeon and the beauty products she can’t live without.
In your experience, how do women balance their desire for having treatments done for their body vs. face? Which areas take the highest priority?
I’ve found that this depends largely on age. My younger patients, oftentimes those under the age of 40, tend to put a higher emphasis on their body vs. their face. These are the ones that are coming in for breast augmentations, breast lifts and tummy tucks. As you get into the older age range (my patients in their 40’s, 50’s and older) tend to be the patients requesting eyelid surgeries, facelifts, neck lifts and other cosmetic anti-aging procedures, particularly those of the face. Rhinoplasty patients run the gamut, as this procedure can have a wide age demographic. In some cases, it can be young patients who are not happy with their nose and in others, it is the older patients whose nose has changed with age. Other than the rhinoplasty, I’ve found that patients are simply prioritizing different areas during different stages of their lives.
Since you started your practice, how have you seen the concept of beauty change?
In regards to the trend of using fillers in the face, we’ve seen a subtle, yet significant shift. Where fillers were once used for anti-aging purposes to restore what was “normal,” they are now being used to create a more enhanced look – people want their lips and/or cheeks to appear augmented. For example, the classic look for the lip used to be for the upper lip to appear ⅔ the size of the lower lip. However, in the age of lip fillers, everyone’s lips are equally full on the top and bottom. We are seeing the standards of the face shifting to appear less natural and more augmented.
It is not just standards of the face that are shifting, but those of the entire body. The idea of having a curvy body has become increasingly more acceptable and there is more appreciation now for full breasts and tiny waists, complemented by hips and a booty. While many may immediately associate this exaggerated look with that of a Kardashian, normal, everyday women are requesting suction on their waists, as well as having that fat added to their booty.
As a plastic surgeon, you probably take great care of your skin. What beauty products are in your cosmetic bag and on your bathroom vanity?
First things first, I always start my day with the double cleanse technique. I begin with a natural face oil that I follow withan Avene face creamwash, using a Foreo ultrasonic cleansing device to reap the full benefits. You’ll find that I use a lot of Avene products, as I have sensitive skin and they carry a bunch of great options that are both gentle and protective. After cleansing, I always use a vitamin C serum – my go to being the Skinceuticals C E Ferulic Acid followed by my Avene SPF moisturizer. After that, I add an additional UV fusion tinted sunscreen by Skinceuticals and finally a SupergoopSPF eye cream. If you can’t tell, I’m on quite the SPF kick.
When I’m on the go, I always carry my beauty bag containing a Jane Iredale SPF powder that I love for touch ups. I also keep a hand moisturizer with SPF and Supergoop lip balm with SPF in there for easy access. Other than that, I have a sunhat that lives in my car and sits on my head for protection every time I’m in the car.