Meet Susan Kincaid: “It’s fun to help people look better.”
At Siti Med Spa in San Diego, our patients know us on a first-name basis, and we like it that way. The field of medical aesthetics requires both skill and artistry, for sure, but it’s also important to establish a rapport with patients so they feel comfortable during their cosmetic procedures.
In our blog, we spend a lot of time talking about the science behind our cutting-edge procedures, but we thought today we’d mix it up with a more intimate look at who we are. Below, our founder and director Susan Kincaid shares a bit about her military background, why she loves her work, and the philosophy of beauty that led her to open Siti Med Spa in 2010.
How did your military background lead to where you are today?
I joined the U.S. Army right out of high school because I didn’t know what else I wanted to do. My parents didn’t make any money, and I knew I wanted to go to college some day. It was a great opportunity to get out of my small hometown, and the military helped with my schooling. I was a combat medic when I first went into active duty, and the military sent me to LVN school. When I was in the Army Reserve, I went to RN school for my associate’s degree, and the military helped me with that, too. I also worked as an instructor and an ATC commander in a nursing detachment unit, which helped give me the confidence I have today. So, it was through the military that I got my early experiences in the medical field and most of my schooling as well.
What was the a-ha moment when you knew you wanted to open a medical spa?
It was a long time ago, when I was working at a dermatology office. We started doing dermal procedures and using lasers and other advanced technologies to address skin concerns, and I knew right away it was a good niche for me. It’s like an art. It’s kind of fun, and I did it well, so it was satisfying for me. I had worked in emergency medicine and internal medicine, and working in dermatology was just totally different. You get more appreciation, and it’s fun to help people look better. I knew I wanted to try and open up my own place some day. Now I have, and I couldn’t be happier.
Can you point to any other important moments from your life that brought you here? Or any people who helped you along the way?
My first place that I worked in dermatology, I worked with a really great dermatologist. Her name is Deborah Atkin. She took me under her wing and helped me grow. She knew I was going to go off on my own later, but she continued to help me. We’re still friends to this day.
There was one point when I was in the dermatology office and I thought I wanted to work in the emergency room. Although I stayed in dermatology, I started doing per diem ER work at Kaiser. I did it pretty consistently for about 4 months, but I really missed dermatology. It was more fitting with my personal life and my lifestyle than the stress of the ER. I still stayed at Kaiser for 10 years as per diem in emergency medicine, but I kept doing the dermatology as well. It’s just a really good fit for me here.
What are some fun facts about you that people might not know?
Good question. I’m not sure. I talk to everyone about my life. Not everyone knows how much I like boating, I guess. I also have eight really close girlfriends, and I like riding bikes and traveling. Some favorite places I’ve traveled include Europe, of course, but also Alaska and the Virgin Islands. I love seeing the sites, especially different types of outdoor scenery. I do like to get away, but it’s always nice to come back to San Diego, too.
What can you tell us about your team at Siti Med Spa?
Well, everyone’s really awesome. We have a good group here. We’re all hard working and honest. We get along, and we enjoy what we do. I can give you some fun facts about them, too:
Antonio loves boating. He and I go out every weekend, and in the summer, we spend the night on our boat two to four times in the week. It’s a lot cheaper than spending money on air conditioning.
Eileen is a ballet dancer.
Sarah has a twin brother, as well as twin sons.
Nina likes to run marathons and travel. She’s always on the go.
What’s great about our team is that we’re all different but we’re like a family. We all have an appreciation for our work, and our patients do, too. They’re very happy when they leave.
What is the Siti Med Spa philosophy of beauty?
To put it plainly, if you’re looking good, you’re feeling good. When people look good, they feel better about themselves. The other thing is that we believe cosmetic services should be affordable. When I was working up in La Jolla, it was very very pricey. I wanted to make it affordable for middle-class people to treat themselves to the cosmetic services that help them feel good about themselves. People should be able to go get their hair done, get their nails done, and get their Botox at a decent rate. I think that’s important.
What do you love most about your patients?
I love their stories. People like to just come talk with me, and I love learning what they’re doing with themselves and what’s out there. Most of our patients are really awesome, and they show a lot of appreciation for our work. It’s great to meet nice people and to help them feel good about themselves.