We had the good fortune of connecting with Dr. Christie Prendergast and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dr. Christie, how do you think about risk?
You cannot progress in your life or career without taking risks. Every progressive step in my life has represented some type of risk. Many times in my life I have had to be brave enough to take the risks to get where I am at today. Brave enough to stand up for what I believed in even if it risked my own career, brave enough to set boundaries, brave enough to get rid of people who bring you down, brave enough to take financial risks, brave enough to try something I have never done before. Sometimes my family gets scared for me when they hear of the risks I take but bravery is not the lack of fear, but the ability to move forward in spite of fear.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
What makes my company different is our underlying philosophy built around The Beauty MatrixTM which is a guide that I developed to help patients navigate through cosmetic treatments. I developed The Beauty MatrixTM after seeing patient frustrations, lack of education and expertise amongst providers, and misguided beauty treatments within our profession and I realized that there is no expert putting everything together! For example, many patients want to start with rejuvenation but don’t really know where to start. They end up hearing from a friend or reading about a treatment that they think will be the answer to their aging problems however, every patient requires an individualized approach and an understanding of your skin types and problem areas is necessary to formulate a good longterm anti-aging strategy. If you just show up to a random medical spa (most of which are not performed by well-trained professionals) and they do injections for everyone, guess what you are going to get? An injection! If you go to another spa and they do threads, your aging plan with them will start with threads and so on. This might be fine to start with but over time if that is the only tool in your shed you are going to start looking bizarre and more importantly loose your unique features or identity. I really want to help educate patients and providers on how to approach patients rejuvenation goals and provide patients with a good long-term strategy that will be a better return on their investments and most importantly, prevent them from getting botched. I had a very unconventional path to medicine that didn’t start until I was in college. I actually grew up in Europe and Asia and as a child from a very poor family with 12 siblings. My childhood was consumed with surviving and caring for my younger siblings that I never really thought about what I was going to be when I grew up. I left home at 17 and moved to Los Angeles and my first job was as a secretary. One of the skills I had developed as a teen was touch typing from a computer game that was donated to us. I used this skill to get my first job because I really had no other job-friendly skills. With no formal education and working odd jobs to make a living, I quickly realized that I needed to change my world because I wanted to give myself and my siblings a better life. I wasn’t sure where to start, but I knew that if I started with school, I would eventually figure it out. I started off by enrolling in junior college while working a full-time job At the time, my only influence was traveling all over the world and so I thought I wanted to be a journalist. Because of my lack of formal education as a child, I had really never had any exposure to math or science at this point in my life. As soon as I was exposed to science I was immediately fascinated. I never really considered being a doctor as I just didn’t think this was in the realm of possibility and did not have exposure to doctors as a child so it wasn’t even on my radar. It was through mentorship when I was at University while teaching organic chemistry that one of my professors asked me if I had ever considered becoming a doctor that first made me consider pursuing medicine as a career. Of course this was no easy task! Getting into medical school requires letters of recommendation, experience, essays, top standardized exam scores, and money to apply. I can attest to how difficult this can be for someone that comes from a disadvantaged background which is why I help mentor other students that are in my position. Through a lot of hard work, I was accepted in to medical school and fell in love with plastic surgery and have never looked back!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Well, during COVID its hard to talk about these items. Currently I am just socially isolating and I am not sure how these locations have been doing since the pandemic. Best fine dining restaurant: I love Mastro’s Ocean Club in Malibu. Spectacular food and views! Best place for a power business meeting: I love power meetings close to my office so I can power back to the office afterward. Having a central office in Beverly HIlls and Newport Beach we have so many options. I always like Avra for ambience and its great to meet up with colleagues. There are honestly too many great places in Beverly Hills. In Newport, I love Fig & Olive in Fashion Island as well as R&D Kitchen. Best hotels: Gosh, I usually leave LA or OC when I go out of town. I love San Diego. I did my general surgery in San Diego. My favorite place to stay down there is the Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa. It is a beautiful relaxing destination! Favorite shopping venue/boutique: I really like the Century City Mall. It has a wide range of stores and excellent restaurants so I can productively get everything that I need to in one location. Favorite charity event: Favorite charity event is Children’s Hospital Orange County (CHOC), Annual Gala. I got involved in this gala through my friend who is a pediatric surgeon. I learned from him how funds are allocated to help the children at CHOC. It is always so much fun! It is filled with amazing people, good food and dancing, and fun auction items. Orange County knows how to dress up and I love the fashion at this gala. Helping children always makes you feel good! Favorite cultural institution: Hollywood Bowl. I love all the different concerts and the venue. Best museum/exhibit: Petersen Automotive Museum! This is an amazing collection of cars. You must get a private tour of the vault. So worth it to see a spectacular collection of original cars. Best weekend getaway/staycation: I also love a Vegas getaway with a luxury hotel, spa, a show, and a little fine dining (who doesn’t love this?). Favorite historic/legendary place to see or explore: Getty museum! Just beautiful art and architecture. You can also burn some bonus calories walking around the massive grounds. Nothing else needed in life!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Curated Beauty Rx Maria Prendergast Hair
Linkedin: Dr. Christie Prendergast