This week, we caught up with Dr MJ Rowland-Warmann for the Glowday Practitioner Spotlight. Dentist, founder of Smileworks Liverpool and owner of the most human cats we've seen on Instagram. She tells us about how she's preparing for clinic-life post lockdown and how she has used this enforced downtime.
Thanks for taking part in the Glowday Practitioner Spotlight. We are chuffed you agreed to answer a few questions. We love the content on your website!
To kick off, how did you get into aesthetics?
My mum is a doctor in Germany and got into aesthetics in the early 2000s, which was way ahead of the curve. So I already knew a little about it. I did a course shortly after qualifying in 2009 and completely loved it, and the rest is history!
That’s incredible! You’re mum was way ahead of the curve!
We are part way through the pandemic. Hopefully, we will be returning to 'normal' soon. Are there any changes you have made to your business that you will maintain once lockdown is lifted?
For me as a clinician, I have seen over 150 patients for online consultations during lockdown. It's been really nice catching up with people in their own homes (albeit remotely) and we've had some really great interactions.
Whilst we did already do online consults before the pandemic, there has been quite a significant increase on that. I look forward to scheduling time in my diary to carry on with these, as they are just great. I think virtual consults, especially for aesthetic treatment, are where it's going to be at going forwards. It's true they're not as involved as a face-to-face can be, but they are a great way of meeting patients and exploring their options with them.
I agree. When we get back to it, I think people are going to be busier than ever, so a 30min e-consult versus getting into clinic for the same...I know what I’d choose.
Everybody has missed something different since we have been self-isolating. What have you missed most during lockdown?
I miss my patients and my team. Going from a team of 40 and a buzzing 8-surgery practice, to seeing one other person in the office, has been odd and difficult. We have such fun, and I miss it terribly.
I have been working on a lot of projects, which I have meant to do for ages but never got round to. Then there's also the improvements I've been able to make around the office for the benefit of staff and patients.
In all, I have relished the time that I've had available, as I've not had this sort of opportunity to really overhaul things since we opened 7 years ago. It's been good, but I'm looking forward to getting back to work!
It sounds like you're pretty positive about the future? Of your business? Of the aesthetics industry?
Very positive! I've got a lot done which will significantly improve the quality of our service for patients and I really am looking forward to sharing that with them. I think there will be businesses doing similar things and that can only be a good thing after this pandemic.
Hopefully it will raise the standard of the industry as a whole and we can get back to work in a more collegiate and professional industry as a result.
I really hope that is the case and agree it’s been a useful time of reflection. Allowing us all time to refresh and prioritise, but we are also more than ready to properly get back to it!
When clinics open, it is likely that they will not operate as they previously did, as social distancing protocols will need to be adhered to. What changes do you anticipate having to make to the day-to-day running of your clinic?
Being part of a dental office means we're a little different. There are very strict measures likely to be coming with regard to the treatment of patients, so we are putting in place protocols to ensure we are doing absolute best practice.
- That means sourcing PPE; including gowns, FFP masks, visors and all protective equipment.
- We are also reducing the number of patients within the practice at any time and restricting visitors so that only those who really need to be in the practice are there.
- Between patients, we have much longer clean-down procedures to ensure the room is decontaminated properly.
- For patients, the wearing of masks at all times when they are on the premises, with the exception of when they are in the treatment room, is mandatory.
- Other things that will be visibly different are screens for our front office team, who will also be required to wear masks, and screens for the waiting room to ensure social distancing measures are adhered to. These have been put in place.
- We're doing a lot of training with our people to make sure that, whether they are clinical or non-clinical, they understand cross-infection procedures and why they are so important, how they can help and how they can ensure that we are not only delivering a world-class service, but keeping everyone safe at the same time.
- It's not just what's happening in the office, but triage services and pre-appointment screening will also be expanded.
That’s a hugely helpful answer. In fact, it’s probably the basis of an article in itself! Thank you!
Many practitioners and clients have been using this time to get their skincare sorted. What is your own skin care routine?
I have been posting daily updates on the skincare I try out and use on my IG stories so that my patients can try the same. It's resulted in a lot of patients getting in touch. It's been great to share this quite intimate routine with them and it's been wonderful to keep up to date with a lot of my patients' routines too.
I have been able to combine e-consults with our online skincare platform, GetHarley, to get them skincare delivered to their door in lockdown. They have a video consultation with me, I prescribe their skincare and GetHarley deliver the products to their door.
We are seeing more of GetHarley on social media. I think it's great that the adoption of video-consultations has really made prescription-based medical grade skincare more accessible. If it means that more people use products with an evidence-based rather than unproven, expensive department store products, all the better!
Exactly! Regarding my own skincare, personally, I use a lot of glycolic acid products - a scrub (Nip&Fab) and a foam wash (Neostrata) in the morning, followed by vitamin C serum (Obagi CRX) and sunscreen (I have a secret mix of products containing SunShield and a couple of others 😎). Then, in the evening, I use a cleanser (Obagi) and a Retinol and Glycolic acid cream mix (Retriderm + Teoxane). I also do weekly mandelic peels, microneedling and skinboosters.
It's not really changed in lockdown, but I have been sharing it more and that has gone alongside more of a buzz around people using this time to look after their skin.
If you could only recommend one skincare product, what would it be and why?
Wear Sunscreen. Otherwise by the time you're 40, you will look 85!
Amen to that!!
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Thanks for including me in the Glowday Practitioner Spotlight! Hope you're doing good! Stay safe, stay classy and see you on the other side!
Thank You!! It's been amazing to hear your perspective on all things aesthetics!