Dr Ashkan Ghavami, Plastic Surgeon to the Stars

Dr Ashkan Ghavami, Plastic Surgeon to the Stars
Singer Iggy Azalea

Dr Ghavami, and I first met back in college in 1995! Today he has traded his signature long hair and scruffy face for a sleek style (although still a little scruffy!)

I always imagined him becoming an artist because his guitar seldom left his sight and his keen eye for beauty was evident.

Charming, Confident, Compassionate and Opinionated – all perfect descriptors for a successful, talented and loved doctor whose aim is to bring joy and self-love to the lives of those he touches daily through his practice.

Dr Ashkan Ghavami, cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgeon, has built a thriving practice, acknowledged and accredited by his peers and patients alike. Succeeding in Beverly Hills is not a given especially because competition is fierce and only the very best can overcome the test of time. And he did it! His clientele is as diverse as his offerings – regular people to Hollywood stars all go to him to improve their appearance or repair damage caused by unfortunate circumstances of life.

What are you all about Dr Ghavami?

Beauty is … self-love and appreciation of one’s soul and its connection to the world with attention to aesthetics and detail.

Glamour is … the expression of beauty in society and through oneself, whether it’s fashion or body and facial aesthetics.

Ugly is … hatred of self and others and unappreciation of love.

Life is … a complicated mis-adventure with glimpses of bliss and joy.

I am … a plastic surgeon by trade, an artist through the soul and a lover of all.

I inspire to … touch at least one life a day.

Big butts are .. sexy (but not too big) and I’ve appreciated them since I was 12 years old!

Toes are … what separate a man from a woman and are one of the extensions of a woman’s sexuality and delicacy.

Small breasts are… perfectly beautiful as long as the shape and the form are appreciated by those who see and touch them and the person who owns them.

My beauty icon … I don’t have one. It fluctuates depending on my mood.

So  now let’s get personal!

Dr Ghavami and I

When and why did you decide to become a plastic surgeon?

I visited a plastic surgeon’s office when my mom had a rhinoplasty consult in Beverly Hills when I was 8 years old. At that time I realised that there was a certain energy and mystic in the air that was very different from my own pediatrician’s office. He didn’t seem like a doctor. I felt like I was entering a world that was somewhere between medicine and beauty. And at that age, my instincts told me that there was something really cool about it.

What is your specialty?

I specialise in everything because I am a true plastic surgeon which means ‘head to toe’. But what I’m recognised for internationally are my noses, my sense of details to aesthetics and quick recovery from breast augmentation as well as the pioneering I have done for a decade now, in buttocks surgery. 

What would you say to those who think that a plastic surgeon should specialise in one thing and do that well?

That could be the case but it is not. Chanel makes hand bags and shoes just as well as beautiful dresses and couture. If you have it, you have it and if you don’t then you don’t! You can apply that aesthetic and talent to any part you want but you have to like what you’re doing and have to have an innate talent for it – it’s not based on body part. 

What’s the best thing about your job?

When someone truly appreciates what I did for them. Their energy and psychology are not so deeply rooted in negativity where they don’t appreciate the changes. When they allow those changes to truly transform certain aspects of their life. When they show me their appreciation with sincere gratitude. 

Have you ever turned down someone?

I turn down people all the time if their expectations are unrealistic or they are so negative that I feel like they won’t appreciate the art of what I will offer to do for them.

How about young teenagers who want to change their appearance too young?

The only thing I would do on young teenagers are their noses because they’re fully grown by the age of 15 -16 and not much will change after that. As far as lips or breasts, I would wait until they are 18-19 when they have a better sense of what they are doing. Because of Social Media, they have become more and more aware of the world, so a 17 year-old of today acts like a 25 year-old of 10 years ago. So I take it case by case basis. 

How about your own daughters? 

I would be fine with it. I jokingly say that I would make their butts flat and their noses even bigger! I will be fine with it if I feel like they’re mature enough emotionally and psychologically to handle it and their mother agrees with it.

How about accepting yourself for who you are and what you look like?

I’m totally fine with it and accept myself for who I am. There are things I would love to change but I don’t have the time. You know it all depends on how much something is affecting someone. 

If someone gets their nose done and looks great but keeps coming back to have more things done then it’s not healthy. But if you have one or two things you want to change and want to subtly rejuvenate yourself and allow yourself to age delicately and slowly, it’s totally fine. There are people who don’t want to change themselves. What I do not like is when someone judges others for doing so when they deep inside wish they had the money or the time to do it themselves and go on Social media or elsewhere to spread hatred towards them.

Do you have any crazy stories or requests?

The requests that I try not to oblige by are patients who want their butt too big knowing that it will droop to the floor five years later. I’ve done this for so long that I can easily judge the tissue response, elasticity to the degree of filling I do with the fat. I match it for the body type, morphology of each person. And if they want their nose too small and not think of shape, contour or proportion then I turn them away as well.

I haven’t had crazy requests because the majority of people who come to me know that I am a sensible plastic surgeon who teaches, is academic and published and who would not accept their claims. 

Do you see yourself as a Trend Setter or a Trend follower?

Definitely a Trend Setter! I was doing buttocks augmentation ten years ago when others surgeons laughed at me, telling me that what I was doing was insane and ridiculous. Today those same surgeons are rushing to my seminars to learn how to do it! So with buttocks surgery especially, I have set the trend and I believe to be one of the pioneers. Colleagues recognise me as that and invite me all over to give lectures. And with rhinoplasty, especially ethnic noses, African-American, Hispanics – the difficult, wider noses, I have lectured and wrote text books about them about ten years ago, and now that has also become a trend. There is no more stigma against an African-American or Asian getting rhinoplasty. Now they know that they can alter themselves subtly and naturally without looking odd, weird or not their own race. 

Do you think Hollywood is THE centre of trendsetting?

Absolutely! People have always looked up to Hollywood. Because of social media and the internet, it has become more global. There’s a lot of plastic surgery going on in Asia, but once again we know that Asians look up to Hollywood and almost worship celebrities coming from here. One of the key things with Hollywood is that people have done plastic surgery in secret for decades. Marilyn Monroe had a chin augmentation and was rumoured to have had breast implants later in life. John Wayne, the masculine figure in all Hollywood had a face lift and eye lid lift when he was older. So we have history going back decades in plastic surgery in Hollywood. Back then I actually preferred it because it was more mysterious and secret. Now unfortunately everybody knows and guesses and puts memes on social media. It’s lost a lot of its mystic unfortunately but once again my celebrity client list is top-secret. I have A to Z list that come to me. I appreciate the ones who are vocal but my favourite thing is to know who I have worked on but no-one else does. I love seeing them on red carpets and know that I have part in their beauty and nobody knows about it.

Have you ever failed?

I have had results I wasn’t too proud of or happy about. Sometimes I look at the result and feel just ok about it but the patients will love it and tell me how it has changed their life. I’m very self-critical. But there’s no perfection in life and if you keep seeking perfection and symmetry and unreachable goals you will always be unhappy. 

What advice would you give the young ones out there?

Life is a constant journey, a battle. It’s a self-love and hate relationship, it’s an internal and external struggle with the world, friends and family. At any given moment your life can change so make sure that the decisions you make are for you only and you understand their consequences. Don’t attribute any aesthetic changes to changing your life because you will set yourself up for disappointment. Changing your nose won’t change your reality – it won’t fix your marriage, your work, your relationships. But if you don’t like something about yourself, seek the experts’ opinion and not someone who just has good press. 

Any new projects coming up?

I’m going to Versailles to give a lecture. I’m working on three text-book chapters about my techniques.

I’m also playing around with bringing non-surgical options to my practice. I have been waiting to make sure they work and they are effective and not just trendy. So within the next 6 months I will have available an array of skin tightening technologies. 

Now let’s get to specifics!

Is there a product that is non toxic that could replace Botox?

No there is no product that can replace Botox. If you have lines that appear without you laughing then you can do skin resurfacing peels with chemicals.

What about the long-term effects of Botox?

For what we know it has no long-term effect. I don’t advise using it consistently but periodically for special events. If you do it every three months then you might want to consider a surgical option.

What do you recommend for sagging knee skin?

Depends on the location. Like I said I am considering some tightening devices and technologies which will be effective 20-40% at best. But the best would be to pull that skin and do surgery on it.

What about fat transfer to the breast?

It’s perfect for those who don’t want an exaggerated cup size change but they want just a little fullness and they have fat to do it. We transfer fat to the breast from existing fat somewhere else, above the muscle right under the skin, a little like I do for buttocks. 

What if you lose weight since it’s fat?

Usually you won’t need to lose weight because I’m transferring the fat from everywhere and putting it there, so I’ve done your job for you! But of course it’s part of your body now so you will lose it if you lose weight and gain if you gain weight. I have people who have become triple D because they gained weight and people who have deflated because they lost weight but it will never go back to the way it was unless you lose a lot of weight. 

Do you do fat transfer to lips?

All the time. I do it to cheeks, the laugh lines. I love any fat transfer techniques. It’s a one time thing for the most part. 

How about liposuction?

I love liposuction but it has to be done the right way by the right surgeon. The key is not what you take or how much you take, it’s how much you leave behind because this will determine how well the skin sticks or not. If there’s too much skin left behind then you should consider a surgery like a tummy tuck.

Closing words?

It’s a blessing and a curse to be living in the age we are living now with social media and the internet. So many people are knowledgeable because of Snapchat and Instagram but they’re also bombarded with information from a lot of people who are not experts who post a catchy picture to get the attention. There’s a fine line and a lot of people are crossing it. The mystery and the mystic of what we do is lost and people are misinformed. So be smart and careful about the information you are getting. Make sure it comes from the right person.

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