Dear Patients and LovelySkin Customers,
As the year comes to a close, it’s important to reflect on my team’s accomplishments this year as well as the incredible support from patients, customers and family, and our amazingly dedicated staff. We grew significantly in many ways this year as we continued to add new staff members, patients and customers for the store and website. While many changes were internal ones that simply made our website better and more intuitive, there were also significant changes that were implemented to make your experiences at LovelySkin.com better.
Top Five Most Buzzed About Accomplishments of the Year:
1. Expanded customer service! You are the reason we come in every day and love our jobs so much. We expanded our customer service department from 6 to 12 employees to allow for more hours and better service for you, including quicker live chats, phone calls and email responses.
2. New website enhancements! Now you can easily access LovelySkin on mobile and tablet, search for your favorite products in the expanded search bar and even find the perfect shade for yourself with our popular makeup ‘shade selector’.
3. Video! We expanded our offerings greatly over the year, adding many fantastic tutorials by our terrific staff members (here’s a sample of some of our favorites).
4. Introducing LovelySkin Luxe! We spent 18 months producing five products from scratch, researched in-house and developed to my standards. While most brands are rushed to the market to bring in orders, we took the time to create a product that is truly unique and offers the best dermatological benefit. We’re so pleased with your feedback – thank you!
5. Lastly, your continued support! I am ever grateful for continuing to be a Google Trusted Store and BizRate Platinum Circle of Excellence award winner, recognitions shared with very few etail stores. Thank you for your continued trust and support!
There were also many noteworthy happenings during the year.
I was honored to speak at the Internet Retailer Conference this past summer. While I have spoken at and run many dermatology conferences during my career, I never thought I would have the opportunity to speak on this ‘chapter’ of my life. It was fun to be able to share my methods of taking a ‘medical’ approach to selling on the internet and how I use the lessons from my medical training every day in the management of LovelySkin.
LovelySkin was once again able to lower the price for international shipments from $30 to $25 and $20 to $15 to Canada (with minimum order prices of $100). The result is a significant increase in our reach around the world. With over 200,000 Facebook fans and hundreds of thousands of other users of LovelySkin, our reach around the world (and more ‘pen-pals’ for us!) and involvement in the industry continues to grow. We continue to remain a family organization even as we grow and that is really important to us. We have fun at work, and our team enjoys what they do, every day of the year. Without that, we wouldn’t continue to have our high level of customer satisfaction, and we don’t intend to change that any time in the future!
As I stated last year, we never want to be a ‘corporate’ website – instead, we relish our personal involvement with our users as a family-owned business. We have had many offers to sell to larger companies, but we continue to enjoy being your source for skin care and don’t see any reason to become part of a larger, stock market-based company. Our Omaha-based, Midwestern values-oriented customer service is a distinction we hope never goes out of style. One other value that we have is that of helping others, something that our entire team did this year when we worked to help out at a local charity shelter and many other places. Please see the video here that details the work our folks did.
The invention that my son Daniel and I introduced four years ago, FixMySkin Healing Balm with 1% Hydrocortisone, continues to be very popular! It is now sold in over 175 dermatology offices across the world, 300 Walmart locations and, of course, on LovelySkin.com. Additionally, it continues to get great reviews and offers a low-cost method of improving skin conditions such as eczema, dry lips and cracked fingers in a simple delivery system. It makes us so very happy to know that we are helping people who may not have ready access to a dermatologist for their skincare needs.
The medical side of the business has continued to grow, while we have added several new procedures this year. Additionally, we recently completed two trials on topical botulinum toxins for sweating, several new product trials on hand creams, and neck creams, and a ground-breaking trial on a new biologic medication for psoriasis. The innovation that continues in our field is truly incredible. I am fortunate to be in a specialty, dermatology, that is filled with remarkable individuals who help to advance science, while making products and procedures safer and more effective.
This was the seventh year for our Cosmetic Surgery Forum conference in Las Vegas which I founded to train young and established dermatologists on new techniques in dermatology and cosmetic surgery. Over 375 attendees were present this year, and I personally sponsored 75 residents (now a total of 575 since inception) in dermatology, ophthalmology and plastic surgery so they could learn and be a credit to the profession I love and respect.
The LovelySkin retail store has continued to be successful in its fifth full year, and was once again voted the Best Beauty Supply Store in Omaha this year. Competing against powerful and well-known brands was a huge challenge, but we succeeded! Additionally, our website, LovelySkin.com, was voted one of the top three websites in Omaha, which was rewarding for our entire staff!
Our spas, LovelySkin Spa in the clinic and LovelySkin Spa Express in the retail store, were honored as one of the top three spas in Omaha – for the third year in a row! Both spas are seeing large increases in services performed and customer satisfaction, which is a source of pride for all of us. We finished a complete remodel of the spa and clinic this year, which was a trying, but ultimately happy experience.
I was fortunate and honored to be voted Doctors’ Choice for Dermatology in Omaha for the second time this year as well as receiving Best Dermatologist and Best Cosmetic Surgeon awards for Omaha this year. Thank you to all of you who voted.
On a personal note, my son, Daniel, started medical school in August and is working incredibly hard at it and doing well. He loves it and the lessons he is learning are invaluable. Nancy, my wife, is continuing to work very hard behind the scenes in the practice and website and brings so much wisdom to me. Our daughter, Claire, finished a computer coding course in San Francisco and is enjoying her new profession while she hunts for a job. Our sweet pug dog, Emmy, made an incredible video appearance on the website in our Halloween video in a scary role! At 13 and a half years, she is one of our senior staffers and clearly the most loved member of the LovelySkin family. My parents, June and Bernie, continue to be a source of strength and my inspiration for how to live a good life. They have been married for over 63 years and still help out in so many ways, including proofreading and other sundry tasks. They are a blessing to all of us.
I wish you and your families success and happiness in the year to come. My staff and I deeply appreciate your loyalty over the years and hope to always live up to your expectations by providing you with the best patient care and customer service.
Thank you for an amazing year.
Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!
Joel Schlessinger MD, FAAD, FAACS
Board-certified Dermatologist and Cosmetic Surgeon
Chief Editor, Cosmetic Surgery, Practical Dermatology Magazine