Turning fifty is the perfect opportunity for some self-reflection … In my work as a cosmetic doctor, I devote each day to improving the appearance of every client, and regularly contribute to the prevention, reduction or elimination of the external signs of aging.
What I don’t tend to do, is pause to consider what it was that made me the cosmetic doctor that I am today, or why I pursued this professional avenue in the first place. Helping others achieve a healthier, fresher, more beautiful appearance is my vocation. And, over the years, it has inevitably evolved into a more personal preoccupation :). It’s certainly a challenge. I realise all too well that retaining a natural appearance isn’t important for me in isolation; it’s also a major consideration for the majority of my clients. Aging gracefully is my mission! We all want to age in a healthy, beautiful and natural way, and taking good care of your skin is essential to achieving this.
I didn’t experience the type of dip that’s typically associated with turning 50, or with no longer looking like I once did some 20 years ago. I have had the occasional dip; but they were never related to my advancing years or jaded beauty. No, my dips weren’t caused by aging, but rather by life-changing experiences. And it was these dips that have helped shape the person I am today.
My family life influenced my decision to study medicine. My father was a GP with a practice at home. The fact that my brother was diagnosed with a melanoma at the age of 17 also helped me understand the importance of lifestyle and skin protection. The skin is our largest organ. When healthy, it protects us from external harm. But if that protective barrier fails, you become sick, you contract skin cancer. For me, preventing skin disease through the protection and care of the skin is therefore of paramount importance! I have been known to labour this point with my clients and social circle on occasion. Yet, I do so in the firm belief that promoting healthy skin can help save or prolong lives. Fortunately, I’m not alone in this. A number of internationally-renowned doctors have served as a continued source of inspiration for me, including Dr. Des Fernandes, plastic surgeon and founder of the world-famous Environ, an advanced vitamin step-up system containing vitamin A, Dr. Zein Obagi, skincare expert and creator of the ZO Skin Health therapeutic skin enhancement protocols and deep peeling, and Dr. Pinell, dermatologist and chemistry professor who developed the integrated SkinCeuticals skincare range. That our collective badgering on the importance of skin health additionally helps to prevent wrinkles and maintain a fresh, radiant appearance is, I’m sure you’ll agree, a welcome bonus!
My mother was taken from us much too soon. She died unexpectedly when I was only 27. It was my mother and grandmother (who, together, survived the Japanese camps) who lovingly taught me from an early age to persevere in everything that you do. My mother ran her own business and I frequently observed how she overcame the professional challenges that she faced. My mother and grandmother were jointly responsible for my metamorphosis from a shy, young girl into an inquiring go-getter who was determined to establish her own cosmetic clinic.
We’ve all gone through personal experiences that make us who we are today. A little self-reflection helps explain my calling. As a KNMG (Royal Dutch Medical Association) accredited cosmetic doctor and owner of 3 Van Lennep Clinics, I and my near 20-strong team of employees will steadfastly pursue our current course. The client will remain our number one priority, we’ll persist in striving for innovation and the further development of our progressive skin-enhancing treatments and injectables, and we’ll continue operating as top-tier cosmetic physicians and skin therapists to deliver outstanding results.
I look forward to looking after your skin and appearance for many years to come,