Turning the Volume Up on Howard Stern

October 17, 2013

(and His Radio Team)

When I was asked recently to offer my suggestions for facial improvement to the staff of The Howard Stern Show, I have to admit I was excited. I used to listen to Howard on AM radio growing up, so the chance to share my knowledge with him and his staff was one I couldn’t pass up.

The invitation came as a result of a spread in the New York Post over the summer, in which I made suggestions to New York’s mayoral candidates on ways they could improve their non-verbal communication with some simple cosmetic procedures. A member of Howard’s staff happened to see the spread and asked that I do the same for their team.

And so, on October 9, 2013, I found myself a special caller on The Howard Stern Show to offer my critiques and some “before and after” pictures demonstrating how the show’s staff could improve the messages their appearances were sending out to the world.

There was plenty of joking around from Howard (of course), like his comment that my recommendations to improve Gary “Ba Ba Booey” Dell’Abate’s often-teased smile would be detrimental to the comedy of the show. It was a lot of fun, but also, I hope, educational for Howard’s audience—and for you, as you take a look at the subtle but powerful changes that could be achieved with the suggestions I made.

The Importance of Non-Verbal Communication

Our faces are one of our biggest tools for communicating with others. Unfortunately, as we age, our faces can start to send messages to the world that aren’t consistent with the messages we’d choose to send. We may appear sick, tired, sleepy, or older than we really are—even if in reality we feel perfectly alert and vibrant.

Not only does this affect the way others perceive us, but seeing a certain appearance in the mirror every day can actually begin to make us feel sleepier, older, etc. than we really are. For me, facial restoration isn’t about vanity; it’s about improving communication so our outside is a truer reflection of who we really are inside.

What follows are my recommendations for the staff of the Howard Stern Show that would help their appearances communicate better with the world.

The Critiques

Benjy Bronk:


  1. The face is best balanced in vertical thirds: from the chin to the tip of the nose, from the tip of the nose to the top of the area between the eyebrows (the glabella), and from the glabella to the hairline. In Benjy’s case, his high hairline doesn’t allow the thirds of his face to be vertically even.

    A hair transplant at the front of his hairline would shorten his high forehead and bring his face into better proportional balance.

  2. Benjy’s neck fullness distracts from his jaw line and mouth area, which is a critical part of the face when it comes to non-verbal communication.

    A slight liposuction of this area would better define the jaw line.

  3. The redness of Benjy’s face is likely due to dilated blood vessels and slight Rosacea. A cleaner complexion would result in a healthier appearance.

    BroadBand Light (BBL) treatments can reduce this redness and can be done in a short amount of time through an in-office procedure. These treatments would bring his face into better balance, making his appearance communicate a more youthful and approachable message.

Fred Norris:


  1. The eyes are such a critical part of the face in non-verbal communication—they truly are “the windows of the soul.” Fred’s face, like those of most people around his age, demonstrates changes in the eyelid region that make his upper lids appear heavy and droopy and his lower lids appear heavy and baggy.

    In the upper lid area, he has heavy eyelids and a drooping eyebrow. Eyelid and eyebrow surgery could improve the appearance of his upper lid region and make his whole face look more awake and alert.

    In his lower eyelid region, he has a fullness to his lower eyelids and swellings on his cheeks that are known as Festoons. These can be improved with lower eyelid surgery and a Laser RESET® Festoon treatment, which would dramatically remove the tired appearance from his face.

  2. In the area around his mouth, Fred (again, like many his age), demonstrates a loss of facial volume. In addition, he has dilated blood vessels on his face likely related to Rosacea.

    Restoring the youthful volume he’s lost with facial fillers and addressing the redness with a BBL treatment could dramatically improve these two areas. My RadiantLift® procedure addresses both of these issues.

    By repairing facial descent, facial deflation and skin deterioration (what I call “the 3 D’s of aging”), a powerful, more harmonious improvement would be seen in Fred’s appearance.

John Hein:


  1. John has lines in his forehead due to compensation for a hidden drooping eyebrow. A Botox browlift would raise his brows and, as a result, lessen the furrows in his forehead.

  2. John also has a side profile in which the temples indent to a moderate degree. The subconscious brain likes to see horizontal as well as vertical balance in a person’s face. In the horizontal dimension, John’s head has a slightly indented shape, with the temples bowing inwards.

    A non-invasive volume replacement in the temples would reverse this inward bowing, giving John a straighter, more masculine side profile that would be more in balance with proper horizontal facial ratios.

    By improving his brow droop, forehead lines and the perceived hollowing of his temple region, John’s face would assume a more powerful, youthful and masculine appearance.

Gary Dell’Abate:


  1. In this photo of Gary, we see a few common changes that affect all of us as we age. First, we see the difference in his eyebrows. As we age, our brows often descend, and our faces compensate for this by contracting the forehead region. This results in horizontal lines in the forehead. Botox could be used to raise Gary’s eyebrows and treat these lines in his forehead.

  2. Next, we see the effects of the sun. These sun spots create an irregular appearance in Gary’s facial skin. Using BBL treatments, these spots can be improved in a quick, effective office treatment.

  3. Finally, with Gary’s face in normal repose, his appearance demonstrates a mouth region with the teeth visibly showing. The reason for this is a bit technical, but it involves overgrowth of the top part of the jaw called the maxilla. In addition, his lower jaw is a bit retracted, which goes along with his long face and gummy smile. The face is best balanced in thirds. With his mouth in normal repose, the lower part of Gary’s face is larger than the one-third it should be. The surgery to repair this would involve taking some bone out of the top part of his jaw and moving the lower jaw forward. This would improve the proportional balance issues in Gary’s lower face.

    These 3 changes affecting the eyebrow region, the skin, and correction of the larger lower third of his face would dramatically improve the appearance, balance, and nonverbal communication of Gary’s face.

Robin Quivers:


  1. Robin is beautiful already, but these changes could make her even more stunning:

    She, like many women over the age of 40, demonstrates a few common issues that women face as they age. These are fullness in the neck region and the loss of volume in the areas around the nose and mouth. Her neck could be improved with a liposuction procedure to better refine her jaw line, and the loss of volume in her nose and mouth areas could be improved with facial fillers.

Howard Stern:


  1. Howard has an issue that many do at his age, which is a loss of facial volume. When we’re younger, our faces have a natural fullness to them. As we age, the fat in our faces changes asymmetrically, with loss in some areas and gain in others.

    Howard would be a great candidate for a facial volume replacement treatment using Sculptra®, an interesting product that originated from the field of surgery. In surgery, we use a suture called Vicryl (which is also known as Poly L- Lactic Acid). This material is usually placed in the deeper part of the surgery wound and causes collagen to form around it. We as surgeons like this suture because the new collagen growth associated with the body’s response to this suture creates a stronger wound, which allows us to remove surface sutures earlier than usual because of the strong bond in the deeper wound.

    Someone tried putting this suture material by itself in the deep skin and found that it caused new collagen to form in that situation, as well. As a result, the suture material was micronized into tiny bits, suspended in water, and then injected into the face to restore volume in places where volume had been lost. The water reabsorbed after two days, and the body then created collagen around the areas of the face where the Sculptra particles had been placed. This worked so well it began the use of this product for facial rejuvenation.

    I like this product for Howard because it works gradually and naturally and the results last for years. Sculptra treatments are an in-office treatment, and results are visible immediately afterwards. This volume restoration will last in its initial phase for two days, after which the results seem to disappear as the water reabsorbs back into the body. Then, over the next eight weeks, the body creates collagen around the Sculptra placements so that the patient looks better and better as time goes by. This process is known as “looking better gradually.”

    I like this product for my patients who are TV reporters because they can’t show up on TV one evening with an instantly changed appearance. Gradual improvement over weeks is more appropriate for them.

    By restoring the lost volume in Howard’s face, his non-verbal communication would give off a younger and more energetic appearance.

  2. Howard also has heavy eyelids, which can make a person appear sleepy or tired. With an upper eyelid blepharoplasty, his upper lids can be refined, giving him a more awake, youthful and vibrant appearance. In addition, lifting his central brow upwards with Botox would open up his eye area and give him a more approachable appearance.

    With these two changes, Howard’s face would appear more energetic, vital and youthful from a non-verbal communication standpoint.

The Takeaway

By paying attention to and improving the non-verbal messages our faces communicate, we can enjoy appearances that are more in balance with the way we feel inside and the message we want to communicate to the world. (Even those of us who have, as Howard’s website cheekily put it on my segment page, “Faces for Radio.”)

By paying attention to the proper ratios of the face, we can get results that are powerful in impact yet subtle and natural-looking at the same time. It’s not about making a person look like someone else; it’s about making them look like a better version of themselves.

My thanks again to The Howard Stern Show for having me. I had a great time and, I hope, also helped educate some listeners about the power of non-verbal communication and our facial appearance.