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Reflecting With an Industry Master

By: Melinda Taschetta-Millane
Posted: June 16, 2008, from the June 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

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Physicians need the esthetician. “You can’t separate the two anymore,” he says. “Just like you can’t separate mind and body. Today’s society is concerned with how we look, and because looking good is feeling better, the future definitely is going to include medical spas.”

Rechelbacher explained to me how he started integrating change with Aveda in the 1980s when he hired dermatologist Peter T. Pugliese, MD, to help launch a dermatological program at his educational institute. Together, they installed microscopes, and developed the curriculum to include skin and body care. Rechelbacher exposed all departments of his institute to this—including those focusing on hair and beauty. “I don’t want to separate hairdressing from massage and esthetics,” he continues. “Everybody should know a little bit about everything. That is what I call holistic integration. It also is very important in the spa industry, because you cannot do one without the other.” One of Rechelbacher’s current projects happens to be integrating beauty and medical spas.

Philosophy on success

I always want to hear successful people’s attitudes on achievement so that I, too, can learn from their views. Rechelbacher’s philosophy is quite straighforward. “My philosophy on success is selfless service, and to be a student of what is going on now in science—particularly nutritional, and also implementation. We are entering a whole new field of technology. We are reinventing our intelligence on a yearly basis. For me, to live in the moment without studying what is going on scientifically is really missing out because, today, how I study will determine the future. And living in yesterday’s success is really aging. It can age the business, and, sooner or later, the business—or the body—just dies. Success is being here now and being attentive. Being conscious. Because there is so much going on. Not being in the know is just energetically wasteful,” he continues.

I asked Rechelbacher if he would share some words of advice with Skin Inc. magazine readers to help each of you strive to reach your ultimate goal. “Go to every industry convention and show—keep up there. There are two things that will change life in the next 10 years: nanotechnology and instrumentation. Pay attention to what others are doing. For me, this is what keeps me young. And being young is being informed,” he concludes.

Melinda Taschetta-Millane