Dr. Fredric Brandt, dermatologist to celebrities including Madonna and '90s supermodel Stephanie Seymour, was found dead in his Miami home Sunday. He was 65.
Publicist Jacquie Trachtenberg told Page Six he was "suffering from an illness," but a Miami Herald blogger tweeted sources told her Brandt was depressed and "devastated" the Martin Short character in the new Tina Fey Netflix comedy "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" appeared to parody Dr. Brandt's preternaturally taut, lineless appearance.
The dermatologist, known as the "Baron of Botox," also had a successful skincare line and has widely been acknowledged as pioneering the use of Botox and fillers -- rather than a scalpel in surgery -- to help the middle-aged and beyond maintain a youthful appearance.
Sources: Dr Fredric Brandt was "devastated" over comparisons to the protagonist on Tina Fey’s new Netflix show, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt"
— Lesley Abravanel (@lesleyabravanel) April 5, 2015
The successful dermatologist saw nearly 30 patients a day, a 2014 New York Times profile said, some patients paying as much as $7,000 for a full treatment. "With Dr. Brandt’s methods there is no cutting, no faces pulled back behind the ears leaving a mask without character and detail," wrote Stephanie Seymour and former Warhol superstar Jane Holzer in Interview magazine. "He restores faces by the artful administration of injections of Botox, Restylane and collagen."
Brandt experimented on his own face over the years, he told the New York Times, which perhaps accounted for what journalist Guy Trebay described as Brandt's "mask of serene immobility, a face with a creaseless brow, a square firm jawline, lips feminine in their puffy fullness," adding, "His skin is impressively smooth and so pale as to lend him a lunar aspect." Asked if he would have changed anything, Brandt replied, "I might not have used as much Botox, because you don’t want to look quite as frozen.”
— rbdc (@rbrowndc) April 6, 2015
In 2008, Jonathan Van Meter investigated what he saw as a paradigm shift in how women -- and some men -- of a certain age were altering their appearances to look younger -- a shift he attributed in large part to Brandt's methods. In his article in New York magazine called, “About-Face,” he wrote, "There's a new face in town -- and it's a baby's." His description of this "new aesthetic" or “New new face” -- which usurped the old paradigm of “gaunt and tight” -- would come to be known colloquially as "pillow face."
In trying to account for what made a friend suddenly look different, and in trying to figure out what exact procedures she'd had done, Van Meter wrote, "Her whole face looked as if it had been pushed out and plumped up -- not unlike a slightly tired but still very stylish down-filled sofa that looks almost new if you keep those cushions fluffed." He described the "new new face" as answering a problem: the "gauntness" that was the result of women over-exercising and dieting.
"It was only a matter of time before a certain segment of the female population would figure out how to have it both ways, even if it means working out two hours a day and then paying someone to volumize their faces," wrote Van Meter. "As a friend of mine recently pointed out, there is now a whole new class of women walking around with wiry little bodies and big ol’ baby faces.”
"Everyone who knows him is devastated," Trachtenberg told Page Six regarding Brandt's death. "I worked with him for over 20 years and he was an amazing man, not only was he a brilliant doctor, but he was the kindest human being.”