Co-founder of the Rodan + Fields Dermatologists brand, Dr. Kathy Fields has been revolutionizing the skincare market ever since she and Dr. Katie Rodan introduced Proactiv Solution for acne in 1995. In 2002, they launched the Rodan + Fields line, which is now sold through more than 20,000 independent consultants across the country. A board-certified dermatologist, who has been in practice in San Francisco since 1987, Dr. Fields is a graduate of the University of Miami School of Medicine, completed her residency in dermatology at Stanford, is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Dermatology at the University of California, San Francisco, and an Adjunct Clinical Professor of Dermatology at Stanford. She strives to give consumers across the country access to problem-solution treatment products that not only work, but are luxurious feeling too.
Tell us about your history – what influenced you to go in to dermatology?
After graduating from the University of Miami School of Medicine, I completed an internship in obstetrics-gynecology. I loved OB-GYN, but knew the hours would be brutal. With good common sense, my mother said to me that I needed my own life. So I completed a residency at Stanford University in dermatology and switched specialties. Turns out that dermatology is a real passion, it was the right move and has been extremely satisfying ever since.
What is your skincare and beauty philosophy?
As far as cosmetic creams and treatments go, there is no one magic bullet. The cream of the week is a fallacy. I believe in a multi-medical approach for clear, youthful skin. The number one thing you need is daily sun protection. And to reduce damage and fortify skin, current technologies such as peptides, retinol and hyaluronic acid are extremely helpful. Cosmetic treatments should use the best of the new and old technology. Just because an ingredient is older doesn’t mean it isn’t any good. The right mixture of ingredients and technologies is what leads to success.
I embrace the tools of the trade including lasers, fillers and Botox – but extract very high standards. Patients need to be aware of the technology hype, that devices aren’t panaceas. I believe they are overhyped and oversold. Our goal is to give the consumer the right advice so they can make a smart decision. For example, Thermage is a modest tightener – and a patient’s expectations should be in line with the actual results. On the other hand, we are crazy for the fillers that are available now and the new delivery techniques with cannulas are terrific.
How have you seen dermatology change during your time in the field?
Dermatology has dramatically changed. When I completed by dermatological training in the 1980s, we offered just basic skincare and treatment of skin diseases. In the 1990s, targeted technology for anti aging emerged. That was when we first heard about Retin-A, which triggered a revolution in how we approach dermatology and skin aging. Since then, the number of cosmetic dermatologists has risen dramatically because of the advent of fillers, lasers and other devices..
Which dermatological treatments are you especially a proponent of?
I am definitely biased and in favor of the Rodan + Fields product line. We are results oriented and refuse to launch a product that doesn’t deliver. Everything we market has been clinically tested. We use targeted ingredients at full strength to deliver transformational results.
Do you have any at-home skincare tips or secrets?
Sunscreen is a must – everyday of the year. For touch ups, and protection from the sun, mineral makeup is a great alternative. I love at-home devices such as the ones for microdermabrasion.
What comes next for you and Rodan + Fields?
As practicing dermatologists, head-to-toe skincare is our new horizon. We’re focusing on developing products for everything from growing hair to treating cellulite and stretch marks.
This is the era of self-treatment particularly because many people don’t have access to a dermatologist especially for non-life threatening conditions like eczema, acne and wrinkles – after all, there are only 10,000 dermatologists in the U.S. Outside of major U.S. cities, it could take as long as 6 months to see a dermatologist. We’re working very hard on creating home skincare that really delivers.
We are on a mission to transform lives through their skin. We want people to be secure and beautiful in their skin. Your most important real estate is your face and your skin. Ultimately, inside is what counts, but if you don’t feel good about yourself that beautiful inside will never be known because you simply won’t go out.
We also will proudly continue to grow the Rodan + Fields community. Through transforming skin, we’ve created 20,000 jobs and a community. Among our independent consultants, we already have several millionaires. We like to think of Rodan + Fields as a movement and a community with a higher purpose.
Stay tuned for next week’s guru – Dr. Katie Rodan.