Defying The Odds & Branching Out

Julie Russak MD

Dr. Julie Russak MD is a Board Certified Dermatologist, Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology and founder of the Russak Dermatology Clinic in New York City. Dr. Russak has received numerous honors and recognition of her clinical excellence, including being selected as a “New York Super Doctor” by The New York Times for four years. She also knows a thing or two about defying the odds and pursuing her dreams.

Born and raised in Siberia, Dr. Julie Russak moved to the States without speaking a word of English and left her parents and loved ones behind to attend medical school. “The biggest hurdle was switching my mindset. Back home, we were taught never to say anything good about yourself as it was frowned upon, culturally,” says Dr. Russak. “But not exuding why you’re capable is definitely not helpful when interviewing or paving a way in a city like New York City. I had to quickly learn to flip the switch.”

Once here, she excelled in her undergraduate studies at Hunter College earning a B.S. Magna Cum Laude in Biological Sciences with Phi Beta Kappa Honors. During her undergraduate tenure, she garnered a prestigious award from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute for her studies and excellence in genetics and immunology. Dr. Julie Russak later attended New York University School of Medicine, graduating with Honors and the prestigious Marion B. Sulzberger Dermatology Award.

Finally in March of 2013, she branched out and founded her private practice, Russak Dermatology Clinic, with the intention of fulfilling her vision of providing comprehensive medical and cosmetic skin care to her patients in a unique setting complete with VIP checkouts, a separate aesthetic center, and in-office testing for food sensitivities and culprits as part of her holistic wellness program for “beautiful skin from within.”

“The idea that you ‘work less as a business owner’ is probably the biggest myth about entrepreneurs I’ve learned firsthand,” says Dr. Russak. “The upside, however, is that I get to create the kind of environment I believe in and want to work in,” says Dr. Russak.

Q&A with Mom of 2, entrepreneur and (inner) beauty enthusiast, Dr. Julie Russak

Skincare secret: Being thoughtful about a beauty regimen to follow consistently and seasonally. And one you can adapt with age.

Favorite beauty superfood: Avocado, frequently referred to as “nature’s butter” for a reason. It contains twenty vitamins and minerals, riboflavin, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, magnesium, potassium, lutein, omega-3 fatty acids and anti-aging antioxidants. Warm lemon water is also a favorite beauty secret!

Best piece of advice you’ve been given?Not dwelling on the past!

Biggest beauty myth: A big myth is that fillers will stretch your skin and another is you shouldn’t start botox and filler so soon because you’ll become dependent on it – both are untrue.

What is beauty to you? A person’s presence and the energy they bring into a room.

If you could tell your 18-year old self one thing, what would it be? Don’t rush to figure it out- stay present. Enjoy every moment of your journey. Disappointments and mistakes are little things in the big journey of life.

What are you reading right now: The Order of Time by Carlo Rovelli and The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long Term Health by T. Colin Campbell.

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