Alumni Stories: Dr. Dhaval Bhanusali

August 6, 2021

Dr. Dhaval Bhanusali, Honors College alumnus, constantly embodies how Spartans Will. He is a leading dermatologist, researcher, and digital health entrepreneur based in New York City. Dr. Bhanusali regularly provides an expert opinion in media outlets from Cosmopolitan to The New York Times. Beyond medicine, Dr. Bhanusali works at the cutting edge of health and entrepreneurship, including Skin Medicinals, a platform that works to help lower drug pricing, Amazon’s first skincare line, and multiple celebrity projects. 

Several of Dr. Bhanusali’s technology projects focus on improving healthcare and improving access to healthcare. As a dermatologist, Dr. Bhanusali does both medical and cosmetic dermatology, with a focus on scars and hair. In late 2020, Dr. Bhanusali provided life changing scar treatment to a young dog-bite victim who was protecting his sister. “It all kind of stems from that beautiful humility that Michigan State teaches us, that it is an honor and privilege to be a doctor and our duty and mission is to care for others,” Dr. Bhanusali said.  

Dr. Bhanusali received a B.S. in human physiology from MSU’s College of Natural Science and Honors College. He also received his M.D. from MSU’s College of Human Medicine. “You have to go through a lot to grow as a person and to become a doctor. The support network and the kind souls that we were surrounded with and allowed to grow with was the greatest privilege.” 

“I know it’s super cliche but if you love what you do, it doesn’t feel like work. It’s a beautiful thing when you build something like a community you’re proud of,” Dr. Bhanusali said when asked from where his motivation stems. “It truly doesn’t feel like work. I’m a big believer that if the second it does feel like work, you should do something different. You should wake up everyday with a smile on your face.” 

In his everyday work, Dr. Bhanusali reflects on the lessons he learned at Michigan State both in the classroom and outside of it. “I was taught at Michigan State the importance of being well-rounded. Understanding a little bit of everything really helps you later in life,” he said. “You don’t have to be an expert on everything. Whether it's the skincare side, the media side, the tech side, being able to talk between all different worlds and understand and appreciate everyone’s viewpoint is the privilege of being a Spartan.” 

Skincare is one of the areas Dr. Bhanusali is an expert in. For college students, he recommends Fast Beauty Co. Most of their products are under $20 and can be found on Amazon. 

Dr. Bhanusali’s advice for college students is to, “Always jump. More often than not, we weigh ourselves down with our doubts and fears. The truth is, what’s the worst that can happen? We make a mistake, we learn from it, and we grow. We paralyze ourselves with the fear of the unknown. The people who are most successful in life learn to appreciate that fear, understand that fear and also let it go.” 

Undoubtedly, Dr. Bhanusali is one of the rare people who has learned this skill. However, it wasn’t always easy for him. “In college, I was so scared of everything and nervous. Nobody has it figured out from day one and we all have trials and tribulations to go through. Every single mishap and mistake is an opportunity to grow. I wish I could go back and give eighteen year-old me a hug, completely scared of what is to come because at the end of the day we always figure it out.”