As Hollywood’s go-to cosmetic dentist - he counts Chloë Sevigny, Huda Kattan, and designer Vera Wang as clients, not to mention Emirati royalty – Dr Michael Apa is famed for creating smiles so natural, you’d never guess the person flashing their pearly whites (but not too white) has had veneers fitted.
In fact he’s become a bit of celebrity himself, with those in pursuit of the perfect smile flocking to his clinics in New York, LA and Dubai, despite his decidedly A-list prices - a full set of veneers reportedly costs in the region of Dhs295,000.
Here he chats to Grazia about the secret to his success.
What would you say your trademark is? Or is it your ultimate goal to create smiles that look so natural, people can’t tell?
The ultimate goal is definitely to create smiles that look natural. A smile is such a major part of facial beauty that it has to be talked about, and you can really do so much with just changing the position, color, or shape of teeth to create really a subtle detail in someone’s facial beauty. Teeth are a very easy way to make yourself look good, healthy, and younger without having to do anything else.
Are you always mentally calculating how you could make someone’s smile better when you meet them?
Yes and no…this is a hard question because it’s hard to take off the ‘doctor’ hat when you meet someone. And no, because after being in the industry for as long as I have, you know when to “switch off`’ and just enjoy meeting someone new. I would never comment on something unless I was asked in a professional capacity though!
I’ve read that no two Dr Apa smiles are the same, however do your clients in Dubai request very different things to your clients in the US? Have you noticed any trends specific to the region?
Every single one of my clients come to me with something different. In the UAE, most patients come to me with requests to tone down their whitening, or to replaces their veneers for a more natural looking set. Our consultations usually start with people saying, “I’ve come to you because you create natural-looking teeth,” but then they go on to “A little bigger, a little wider, a little whiter”. It’s tricky, but I always try to advise with what would suit them best. Ultimately, you want them to feel like they’ve made the right choice with their investment as it could be a life-changing moment.
Apa Aesthetic Dubai
Where does your passion for dentistry come from? Did you always want to become a celebrity dentist?
Initially, I wanted to be a pediatrician but I shortly learned after being diagnosed with a crazy liver disease at five-years-old I did not want to be on the other end of that phone call. Around the same time, my grandmother worked in a dental office and when I was visiting her people came up saying “Oh, you should do dentistry.” And it just stuck. I have always been artistic my whole life.
Have you or would you ever refuse to take on a celebrity or high profile client if they wanted you to create a smile that didn’t fit with your aesthetic?
Anyone really could be a perfect candidate for a smile makeover. We listen to the patients’ concerns and then try to explain and address how we can achieve what they want. If it’s something that we don’t advise on, then we definitely take a step back in that situation.
- Visit apaaesthetic.com for more information.