Harold Lancer Archive

Housewife essentials

You can Photoshop ¬†figures. You can highlight cheekbones. It’s relatively easy to remove skin blemishes from photos but it’s impossible¬†to Photoshop in the dewy glow of healthy skin.

Kim Kardashian exemplifies this quality. No matter the situation she is perfectly poised and exudes youth and beauty.

Kim¬†is something else. You’d never know if anything was amiss despite the best attempts of the paparazzi to shake her poise.

What a professional. You’d never now if her panties¬†were riding up or if William Shatner was copping a quick feel¬†on the red carpet.

Kim and I have just one thing in common. We have the same dermatologist.

This is all part of my quest to see how far into the realms of Hollywood fantasy a small-town Kiwi girl can stray. That’s me. My Quest.

Back to the glowing facial skin.

Kim credits her glowing skin to the ministrations of Hollywood dermatologist  Dr Harold Lancer. I read about Dr Lancer in Vogue magazine two years ago and rang to see if I could get on his roster. When I first visited Dr Lancer in Los Angeles, I was struck by his holistic and honest approach to skincare.

He won’t advise¬†Botox or lasers¬†on your first visit. You get a combination of honesty, sensible diet advice and a tailored ¬†prescription of his products.

We’re in LA in early December 2014 so I book into his clinic on Rodeo Drive. I take an early appointment, 7.00 am, on a Tuesday so I’ll have plenty of time to rejoin my family for a day in¬†Universal Studios.

That’s right folks! 7.00am! This is Hollywood!


The place is humming before most normal folks have stepped out of the shower.

I set out from the Hilton Universal at 6.15 am. This should allow me to make the trip across town in good time.

Hitting the 101 South I slap my chin upside with my palm. I should have left earlier. Traffic is bumper to bumper. and it’s only ¬†6.30am . I turnoff¬†onto Highland Ave and pass¬†Hollywood Bowl.¬†Even this early the Bowl is a bustling hive of activity.

Fountain Ave is horrible. Santa Monica Blvd is no better. I ¬†scoot in behind Dr Lancer’s Rodeo Drive clinic an hour late.

His valets welcome me, “Hello Senorita!” Despite the stress of running late I smile. I hustle into the elevator with a spring in my step. There is nothing like being called, “Senorita,” before breakfast to¬†enhance one’s mood.

I don’t need to worry about being late. We’re all seen in order of arrival from the time the clinic opens at 5.30 am. I have plenty of time to chill out in the waiting room. The design is clean and modern. The purple asymmetrical seats are incredibly comfortable and relaxing. ¬†I watch TV. A patient walks off the pre-recorded TV segment ¬†and into the waiting room. That’s usual. A lot of patients are visiting Dr Lancer to calm stressed skin prior to or post appearing on cable. We both get called into our respective rooms fifteen minutes later. I get a microdermabrasion¬†whilst I wait for Dr Lancer. I’d never had one until my first visit with Dr Lancer but now the treatment is no longer a novelty.

I browse his book, “Younger”, in between treatments.

Younger Dr Harold Lancer. MD

Dr Harold Lancer. MD

Dr Lancer’s interest in skin care began with a childhood incident where he fell in a vat of boiling water on a farm. The horrific burns took months to heal and he was left with only a few small marks on his body. This experience sparked a life long fascination with the self regenerative power of skin. Lancer and a team of specialists developed a line of skincare.¬†The core premise of the Lancer method is that you polish or exfoliate first. Daily. Then you cleanse to pick up the debris of dislodged skin cells. Afterwards you nourish with a mist followed by the appropriate cream for your skin type.

After the microdermabrasion I cleanse my skin and one of the aestheticians applies dry ice as a skin calmer.

Dr Lancer visits another patient. and I’m asked if I will go through to show her my results. She is familiar but I don’t lock it down. We’re both anonymous patients.

” You have beautiful skin she exclaims!”

That’s gratifying. I’ll remember that when I’m a blotchy faced hag, strung out on caffeine and exhausted from shuttling five kids¬†around San Francisco.

I pick up my prescription from reception. Some are medically prescribed and some can be bought off the shelf at Nordstom.

He’s got a less than phony¬†bedside manner has Dr Lancer and is nothing if not a perfectionist.

Like any successful business person he can be polarizing. Some of the reviews on Yelp are a crack-up. Personally I’m¬†convinced he has the best interests of his patients at heart and I suspect his staff are his devoted fans. I gracefully accept the gentle admonishment that I should visit his clinic more often¬†and hustle back to Universal Studios for a theme park hopping day.

It’s 9.am.

Visit Dr Lancer’s website here. ¬†








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Tomorrow we are driving to Los Angeles. Anaheim to be exact.
My idea of hell is an eternal theme park that you are forced to experience as an adult. However I trust that seeing Disney through the eyes of children will put some sparkle in the visit for us adults.
And there are certain libations that can make the unendurable more tolerable.
Unfortunately I must avoid coffee for a year less I turn my spangley new braces an off-putting curry colour. Curry is another discoloring substance that I must avoid. So it may be shopping or sightseeing of which I partake:
A recent nanny told me what to expect in LA and the attractions to attend or avoid, She is well acquainted with La-la land. One of her last gigs n LA was nannying for Prince Michael Junior (Prince), Paris and Prince Michael II (Blanket) Jackson.
She said the Dad was lovely. Doted on his children.
The children couldn’t of course, go to a normal school so they spent a lot of time at activities and various LA attractions. I got the insiders lowdown from her on the best theme parks.
On my time off, I’m going to Rodeo Drive. To visit dermatologist to the stars,¬† Harold Lancer.

Why? Ever since I was poring over my mother’s 1960’s beauty handbooks at the age of thirteen , I have been an avid follower of skin care trends.I’ve got nice skin which makes up for only sometimes having breasts.
And, I’ve got a benign but ‘Wicked Step-Motherish’, lump on my face and some age spots I want to get rid of. You naturally want to put that shit only in the hands of the best.
It also gives me a kick to have the same dermatologist as Oprah, Ryan Seacrest and Beyonce. It’s a long way from my birthplace in Taranaki, New Zealand to sharing the same waiting room as the stars of Hollywood

 Julia Roberts. Gives good face.
(Nice teeth). 

So here I come, Dr Lancer, oh ye with the dewy glow and the uncanny resemblance¬† to The Muppet’s Swedish Chef:

Just don’t expect me to be talked into your signature¬† stem cell facial ($600) on my first visit.
Though, a treatment with the stem cells from the umbilical cords of newborn calves does sound rejuvenating.
And supplying calf placentas sounds like a great business venture for someone in Taranaki,
Birthplace of some of the best cows. 


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