Oscars: Jennifer Lawrence's Dermatologist Reveals Her Pre-Awards Treatment
Dr. David Colbert is just one of several New York-based experts who are flying west to treat clients before Sunday's Academy Awards.
Step into the lobby of the four Seasons in Beverly Hills during Oscar weekend, and you will see a parade of visiting esthetic experts hurrying in and out of elevators, armed with all manner of beautifiers, from brushes to portable lasers. "I bring everything that's not nailed down,'' says Joanna Vargas, a New York facialist who is heading west to perfect the porcelain complexions of Julianne Moore and Brad Goreski, among others. "I go to L.A. for every awards show, but the Oscars is my longest visit; I stay for a week,'' she says. Among her cutting- edge tools are microcurrent, oxygen, microdermabrasion and radio-frequency devices. "I use microdermabrasion on the whole body because it's nice to prep the skin everywhere, and radio frequency increases collagen production by 20 percent,'' she says.
Even though Los Angeles is one of the world's most legendary beauty capitals, some boldfaces attending the Academy Awards rely on their New York gurus to be on hand for the hours up to red-carpet arrivals.
"I arrive on February 23rd to prepare my patients,'' says Dr. David Colbert, a Manhattan dermatologist whose following includes everyone from Naomi Watts to Mick Jagger. This visit, he will be tending to nominees Jennifer Lawrence, Cate Blanchett and Michael Fassbender, along with Robin Wright, Sienna Miller and Michelle Williams. He plans to give them all his Triad treatment ($800-$1,200), a three-step process of microdermabrasion, laser toning and a gentle lavender acid peel. For Fassbender, he prescribes his Stimulate Serum with extracts of coffee Arabica and goji berry as well as silk peptide, to be applied daily leading up to the big night ($160). "It's an instant wake-up call for male skin, no matter what someone did the night before,'' he maintains. Lawrence gets his Illumino Brightening mask, containing epidermal growth factor, and coconut bio cellulose ($110). "Jennifer wants to have that extra glow,'' he explains. "This gives a massive influx of antioxidants, which stimulate collagen production and make the skin look luminous.''
Vargas, too, is prescribing coconut for her clients. "I treat skin all over with coconut compresses,'' she reveals. "They are anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and hydrating; they prevent breakouts and make skin radiant.''
Supporting actress nominees Kate Winslet and Jennifer Jason Leigh, as well as Patricia Arquette and Sofia Vergara, are relying on New York esthetician Tracie Martyn, who heads west for the week, toting along her Resculptor machine and delivering her Red Carpet Facial, which includes lifting microcurrent, light therapy, organic ingredients and natural cosmeceuticals ($585). "I use multicolored LED depending on the skin challenge I am facing — green for discoloration, blue for breakouts, and amber and red for fatigued skin,'' says Martyn. "It's very effective and gentle before the big event.''
Dr. Patricia Wexler, a Manhattan dermatologist who famously performed liposuction on Joan Rivers' back so she would fit into a red carpet gown, says the fact that the Golden Globes and Oscars are now closer together, has made beauty planning easier for her celebrity patients. "They come in to New York a couple of weeks before the Globes for their fillers and toxins, and that lasts, so now they just come in to get polished before the Oscars with something like my Red Carpet Peel" ($450). Another Manhattan cosmetic dermatologist, Dr. Howard Sobel, says he treated two nominees and one former Oscar winner within the last couple of days who are then planning to fly back out for the Academy Awards. "Besides the obvious Botox and fillers, what has become the rage is to remove age spots and freckles with Fraxel. They are no longer cute on the face, and they are signs of ageing on the decolletage and hands. Because of big HD TVs, there is more of an emphasis on treating all exposed skin areas" ($2500 per area).
Colbert has become so busy with awards season that he has installed a satellite office in Beverly Hills. "We don't allow cellphones in the collagen beds,'' says Colbert. "Apart from stimulating collagen all over the body, the beds give a sense of well-being, which is important when you need to look poised in front of millions of viewers" ($350).
A version of his story first appeared in the March 4 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.