introducing my new improved retinol
B I B A // Q & A
What inspired you to create + launch your signature line of Skin Care?
My product selection is a true reflection of my practice. I offer everything that my clients would need in order to address their skin issues, from acne to aging, and in between, and my intention is to keep perfecting the selection and keep being science and research based.
I started as a strictly treatment oriented Esthetician, but over the course of time I noticed that my clients were seeking very precise product options after their treatment, and than the most of the skin care lines failed to provide excellency in all products offered. Every line had a "hero" product or two and then the rest of were mediocre standard ones at best. Also, there are so many product lines on the market right now, that it very confusing to clients as to which skin care product to buy, why and how to use them in the most effective way. Internet could be a black hole for the knowledge seekers because there are so many conflicting theories, and a lot of quackery. I make it easy for my customers to have a comprehensive and affordable skin care routine. As I always say, more facials, less products!
What was it like growing up in Belgrade?
It was the most vibrant metropolis with fantastic bohemian life, culture, art, culinary and music scenes. Beautiful people, smart and cultured, caught in a paradox of westernization, socialism and post modernism. And as we all know the best estheticians always come from Eastern Europe!
Did you always know you wanted to be an Esthetician?
Yes! My mother was a very vain person and I accompanied her to all of her appointments and treatments where I fell in love with beauty industry. Even though I never suffered from acne myself, I was a devout facial client since I was 14. Over time, while approaching my big career decision, I studied Law and Art and Language ( I am fluent in five! ) but I always the most enjoyed my time off to experience spas, water treatments and retreats. Finally 15 years ago it became clear that my love of hands-on disciplines really fused into one: the art of touch, the art of giving a facial treatment and sculpting clear, beautiful, healthy skin.
How did you know you wanted to start your own practice and emphasize holistic beauty and wellness?
Before I started my own practice there was a tipping point in my career where it became clear to me that people were really in need of good quality and personalized skincare services and that I should venture on my own. Shortly after, I had a waitlist of 30-50 people wanting to see me and that list was ever so growing. As flattering as that might be, I really did not want to expand to the point where the quality of my treatments would suffer, as so often happens. I am still one woman business that is growing and I keep insisting on quality of my life and in-depth studying of the new techniques and technology.
In the last couple of years, it came to me that I had to steer my business to a holistic practice, with a major accent on wellness and health. I have the "dewy" and "clear" skin part down, but I have noticed how much un-wellness there is in Los Angeles and in the busy lives of so many women and men and how I actually have the perfect set of skills to help people. That is where I am deepening my practice now.
What are your best recommendations for a healthy and most importantly beautiful life?
I am 95% vegan and spiritual practicer of meditation, sound bathing, Kundalini yoga, breath work. It is so important to tap into and follow Universal guidance that is available to all of us.
I try to support this to my clients in our sessions and talks.
The natural stress of a daily routine fills one with adrenaline and cortisol whether its a drive across Los Angeles, an irritating encouter, or a simple thing not going right at work or during your day. To get rid of cortisol and adrenaline deposits (which cause Aging, Dehydration, Lines, and Muscular Spasms….!! ), we need to calm the mind, breathe and drain the lymphatic fluids, NOT exercise more.
When client comes to me in that emaciated, run down state and wants "glowvy" skin, I know what to do. Like a war field doctor, Hollywood facialists cannot make mistakes.
What is your best advice for clients navigating the waters in skin care?
Some of my clients I have been treating for 15 years so they know…be careful with taking marketing based advice. Always check the credibility of the author or a source.
So many skin care lines are born out of need for investment and by non skin care professionals, and the question is: where do they get their research from, and if. Today's trend is intimidation from "chemicals", yet the many new lines use similar just not so common but equally bad or unstudied chemicals, and cosmetic chemistry must utilize Fillers, Emulsifiers, Preservatives…etc for the same reason food items require certain ingredients to hold the texture and deliver nutrients. The discussion can go on forever here.
A skin care routine should be short and simple and skin care treatments as regular as massage, nail and hair treatments. Skin care products are NOT collectible and NOT fashion items. They clash with each other, they have an expiration, and often times are redundant or unnecessary.
I dread those photos on social media with mountains of random branded products. What does that even mean?
Layering numerous products is the oldest trick in the book, that is often masking the lack of true understanding of the skin functions and cosmetic chemistry. I deeply respect both my client's intelligence and wallet, and I never lead them to make frivolous choices. In return, I get trust and respect back from clients that interacted with me. I wanted to add that it would be very easy to take advantage of the Acne clients who are desperate to get their skin clear. This is my soft spot and I offer wonderful range of products and both logistic and educational support.
What do you like to do in your free time?
I don't have much free time, but when I do, I meditate, read, paint, play with my dog, cook for my dog (yes Ms. Kiki gets amazing meals, even the green juice), see friends, movies, and listen to world music.
Name your favorite beauty products and services (outside of your line)?
I enjoy body wraps by Premier Labs. I like many random products from random brands, which I will include into my web store offer at some point. The list is too long! Whenever I can, I give myself treatments, or I get facials from my several friends that live in Los Angeles or New York. I personally love Lymphatic Drainage, iDerm and Microcurrent. I find that they are not damaging (heat based) and they revive tissue, when done properly.