This Doctor Will Bring Your Dream Transformation to Life
Written By: Charlotte Farrell
Photographed By: Tae Kwon
It’s true that you get what you pay for when you visit Dr. Marc Mani. It’s also true that his work speaks for itself. What makes celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow recommend him to her millions of fans on Goop.com? What made Forbes Magazine name him as one of the country’s ten leading plastic surgeons? The reasoning not only lies in his skill, but also in a hidden talent that anyone who hasn’t visited his office yet might not expect.
At his home in Beverly Hills, it is easy to miss a small, detailed sketch of a young child hanging above the couch. Even as a young boy, he exhibited mastery with a pencil in hand, and that unassuming sketch suddenly became remarkable as he revealed he was the artist. With accuracy and a likeness that seemed as though it was done by a pro, it was a shock to hear he was only nine years old when it was completed. “My mother was an artist and her mother was an artist. Art was always in my blood and in my genes,” he said. “Since I was four or five years old, I was pretty much able to draw what I saw.”
Fast forward to 2017, and that pencil has been replaced with a scalpel. His father was a surgeon, and a self-made one to boot. Having left India on his own to pursue his dreams, his father was granted a scholarship from Cambridge University in England. Mani, born and raised in Abilene, Texas, wanted to follow in his footsteps. Once accepted into Harvard, Mani dove head first into the most technically difficult field of surgery he could study: cardiac. It wasn’t until he saw a big reconstructive surgery on his plastic surgery rotation as a medical student that he fell in love. “Everything kind of crystallized…I remember that specific moment when I knew that this was what I needed to do. It was kind of like a calling,” he reflected. “In plastic surgery, we operate from head to toe. We can operate on any part of the body, including the brain or outside the brain, and a lot of people don’t understand that.”
But, on reflection, Mani revealed the underlying truth that brought aesthetic surgery to the forefront when it came to choosing his field of concentration. “What really got me into plastic surgery is that fact that I’ve always been able to draw and paint faces in particular.” He knew that doing more art would enhance his vision of beauty and humanity. When starting his private practice, he dedicated himself to doing more. He felt like it was something he had to do in order to strengthen his work. “I depict things in very realistic form. I never thought I would use it in my profession, but it ended up helping me in getting better results,” he said.
It’s surprising to him that most people cannot see the relationship between his practice and art. Mani explained that the photo realism aspect is what is most applicable to plastic surgery. “My style is accuracy, but at the same time, when I am painting from the heart, I want to show an emotion. It stirs something in you when you see it.” In a sense, his understanding of the human form is intensified each time he brings pen—or pencil—to paper. He focuses on what he knows: human faces and bodies. “I love human beauty and capturing it is my goal.” Surgery is his “zen place.” But when it comes to art, he calls it an “obsession” or a “compulsion.” He noted that art “takes me more time because I’m so perfectionistic.”
Whether with his creative process or in practice, he takes his time and the result is beautiful, subtle and flawless. Mani’s appreciation of facial anatomy and the accuracy and the artistry of doing surgery has gained him the deserved reputation of achieving results that look very natural. “It’s not for everybody; it’s definitely a personal choice. I don’t really envision a plastic world. I think we should be more real. I guess what it leads to is my overall philosophy, that plastic surgery is something that we do that should be a deception. That’s the art of it—the art of deception. It is a part of our biology. It’s a nerdy approach that I have.”
His skill has brought on the development of a new treatment aimed at achieving those artistically beautiful results that Hollywood stars crave. MIST, or Minimally Invasive Stromal Transfer, involves emulsifying the fat from your own body to isolate the stem cells and inject them into the areas of concern. In other offices, Mani notes that “people are getting it from other sources like animals, but the best source is your own.” It regenerates new tissue, with a result that starts working within six months, but the effects are permanent and realistic. “You can see the patient’s skin is brighter, more healthy looking and younger,” said Mani.
Ultimately, it all comes down to Mani’s passion for people and the trust his patients have in his expertise. With honesty and an ethical approach that can sometimes be lost in the industry, Mani has established direct connections with his clients that will keep them coming back for more. “I think that your best potential is measured in how you help people and what you leave behind.” Whether in art or in his practice, sounds like a stroke of genius.
¡Delicioso! Marc’s favorite restaurant is Red O Taste of Mexico. He’s a Texan at heart, so that means a love of all things spicy! He also loves the menu, the staff and the atmosphere.
The Big Screen: This year, Marc will be playing himself in the film Billionaire Boys Club with Kevin Spacey and Ansel Elgort.
For the Gentleman: His style icons are Tom Ford and Giorgio Armani.