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As a little girl, Joanna Czech loved taking care of her dolls. She wasn’t particularly interested, though, in cutting their hair or dressing them up; the focus of her playtime often involved wrapping bandages around their knees and elbows. Czech, who was born in Poland, studied biology and dreamed of becoming a doctor. A poor physics score thwarted her first application to medical school, though. Determined to try again, she engaged a tutor. And in the meantime, applied her proficiency with biology and chemistry to beauty school. “I was so fascinated by everything to do with beauty that I never reapplied for medical school,” Czech says. “Two and a half years later, I became an esthetician.”

Her parents helped her open a studio in Poland, where she provided manicures, pedicures, and skincare treatments. At age 25, Czech took a six-week vacation to the United States—and stayed. She settled into Manhattan and snagged a gig doing facials and waxes at the Paul Labrecque Salon & Spa in the Reebok Sports Club. After four months, she booked her first celebrity—Trish Goff—for the December issue of Vogue.

Before long, she had attracted an impressive client roster, including Anna Wintour and Cate Blanchett. Life often felt surreal; Czech wound up on the set of Sex in the City, and she once performed a late-night hydrating treatment on Kate Winslet when the actress was working on Mildred Pierce. Sometimes, Czech would travel with her clients—like when she accompanied Uma Thurman to the Bahamas. “Uma used to say, ‘You take care of me from my toes to my nose,’” Czech says.

In 2012, Czech moved to Dallas when her husband’s job brought them here. The relocation helped spark the next stage of her career. Since then, she has attracted a new set of celebrities, and four years ago, she opened Joanna Czech Studio, a 1,700-square-foot spa in Victory Park.

“I’m very satisfied to have opened the first headquarters with my name,” Czech says. “And being here in Dallas allowed me to make it huge and beautiful and spacious.”

Her move to North Texas coincided with the rise of Instagram, which helped Czech grow her brand globally. And through Czech List, her editorial beauty site, she leverages her 30-plus years of skincare experience to educate readers.

When it comes to treatments, Czech draws on her knowledge of biology to take a natural approach—but one well-supported by the latest technology. Her services include LED therapy, cryotherapy, and microcurrent, but she’s also a huge proponent of facial massage.

Today, Czech is enjoying her Dallas life and she’s in hot demand­—so much so that her appointment calendar is booked through late 2020. She also spends plenty of time in New York, and recently opened a studio in The Webster in Lower Manhattan. Life is busy, but Czech hasn’t lost sight of her original mission of helping people. And whether the future holds new studios or opportunities to educate, Czech says she’s dedicated to taking care of her clients “from every angle.”