Ep #192: Feeling Comfortable in Your Skin with Dr. Trevor Cates

If you’re dealing with skin issues, you aren’t alone. My guest, Dr. Trevor Cates, is a naturopathic physician who focuses on skincare and helps people find solutions and breakthroughs that allow more comfort and confidence. She joins the show today to discuss all things skin health, aging, and the realities about the excess skin that comes along with weight loss.

Listen in as Trevor shares how she struggled with her skin for years and eventually found her passion for supporting people who want to have better, healthier skin. You’ll learn how important it is to pay attention to our lifestyles and how we live, more natural and healthy approaches to healing your skin and giving it what it needs to glow, and more.


Listen To The Episode Here:

In Today’s Episode, You’ll Learn:

  • How your lifestyle impacts your skin.
  • The relationship between stress, sleep, and skin.
  • How to lose weight in a way that supports your skin health.
  • The three components that lead to great skin.
  • How to address skin problems from the inside and the outside.
  • Skincare for aging gracefully.
  • What you can do to save your skin while wearing a mask a lot.

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Read the Transcript Below:

Katrina Ubell:      You are listening to the Weight Loss for Busy Physicians Podcast with Katrina Ubell, MD, episode number 192.

Welcome to Weight Loss for Busy Physicians, the podcast where busy doctors like you get the practical solutions and support you need to permanently lose the weight, so you can feel better and have the life you want. If you’re looking to overcome your stress eating and exhaustion and move into freedom around food, you’re in the right place.

Well hey there, my friend. Welcome back to the podcast. How are you? So glad you’re here today. Do you hear that? Do you hear that it’s silent? Do you hear nothing? I have all of my children in school and I’m just going to enjoy it for as long as it lasts. It might only be a couple days, maybe it’ll be a few weeks. I mean, if we’re lucky maybe a few months but it’s kind of funny to me after five months of them being home all the time how weird it feels to just have it be me and my dog. It’s so quiet in here. I keep thinking that I’m forgetting something or I’m forgetting to do something for somebody. I for sure am worried that I’m going to forget to pick them up from school. That could happen. It’s happening. It’s actually happening. I can’t believe it. After all of the rollercoaster and everything. I know that for everybody this is not an option. I know for many people they were choosing to just do the homeschool route anyway and doing it online and luckily for us both of the schools that my children go to have super extensive plans and are doing just, I think, incredible work in terms of taking care of the students and keeping them as safe as possible.

I mean, of course there’s risks for illness any time you send a child to school and so they’re doing their absolute best to minimize those risks as much as possible. So we’re day three in and I’m happy. They’re adjusting to this, from summer schedule to school schedule, so I don’t know that they’re super happy but they will be soon. I think it’s good for everybody to get back into that. So that’s what’s going on here. I also wanted to tell you that I am on Instagram. If you don’t follow me on Instagram my handle is Coach Katrina Ubell MD and you can come find me over there. I share some personal things, as well, if you like just knowing things I’m into or little recommendations or things like that.

I do want to just let you know that some people send me some direct messages and I totally appreciate them. I can’t answer all of them but I do want to just tell you that every now and then I do want to answer one and then I don’t know what happens and I delete one by accident or I hit the wrong button. That just happened recently. There was this woman who wrote me this super, really lovely message and I was totally like, “I’m going to respond to her,” and I hit the wrong button and I deleted it and I don’t know how to get it back. I don’t think you can. So anyway, if that’s you and you sent me something super nice and I didn’t respond, it was probably you and I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry. Anyway, so come hang out with me over on Instagram, Coach Katrina Ubell MD. If you are more of a Facebook person and you’re like, “I don’t know about Instagram,” I will tell you, Facebook and me don’t mesh. I haven’t been personally on Facebook in years because it’s not a good thing for me. Instagram you can curate so much more to really show you things that are exactly what you want to be seeing and I love that about Instagram.

If that’s something that you’re interested in doing, then come check me out. I also wanted to let you know, especially if you’re new here or newish, that if you’re looking at 192 episodes going, “What the heck, how do I even know where to start?” I do have a special guide for you that I wanted to encourage you to go and grab for free. It’s called the podcast roadmap and it is 30 of the best episodes that you should listen to to get started with weight loss. I basically just pared it all down, listen to one episode a day for 30 days and in a month you are going to be noticing significant, significant changes in terms of your relationship with food and hopefully with your weight, as well and you’re going to start really feeling like you’re on track. You’re starting to understand what needs to happen. The way to pick that up is to go to Katrinaubellmd.com/start, S-T-A-R-T, Katrinaubellmd.com/start. Go and grab that and you will be able to get yourself on track, you’ll have some direction. Sometimes we just need to be told what to do and that’s exactly what I’m doing there.

Okay so today I have a fun interview for you and this guest is someone that is a little bit different from what I normally would have on the podcast in terms of content and stuff but I think that this is kind of … This is one of those kind of offshoot topics that I think are a real concern for a lot of people as they age in particular and so I have Doctor Trevor Cates on this week and she is a naturopathic physician who focuses on skin care. Basically just being super healthy with your skin and having the skin that you want. She, of course herself, struggled with her skin. Ongoing all kinds of different issues growing up and it was basically through working through sort of the functional medicines standpoint that she was able to finally get her skin to the place where she wants it and of course her skin looks amazing now. So she is just a really great resource. She has a book called, “Clean Skin From Within,” and it gives you just all that information to what to do to get your skin healthier but we also talk about some other things like aging, we talk about can it just be okay to be wrinkly? Do we have to all go for the anti aging stuff?

We talk about skin, excess skin with weight loss and that’s a huge issue that a lot of people worry about. Especially increased wrinkles if they lose weight and I’ve seen that, oftentimes that’s a self sabotaging mindset. This idea that, “Well I want to lose weight but if I lose weight, I’ll look worse. My skin will look terrible.” Then there’s a lot of self sabotage that ends up happening there. Anyway, she’s just an expert in skin. This is what she does all the time is support people who want to have better skin and so she can help you no matter what your skin issues are. Sometimes the medications, the topicals, even if you’re taking some other ingestible medication like sometimes it’s still just not enough and we have to start looking at other options and that’s what she’s an expert in. Please enjoy my conversation with Doctor Trevor Cates.

Hey, Trevor. Thanks for being on.

Trevor Cates:      Hey, yeah. It’s great to be here.

Katrina Ubell:      I am super excited to talk about this because I think skin is something that comes up a lot and especially when it comes to weight loss and I love how … I mean, obviously dermatologists are skin doctors but you’re even more so like really, really focused in on healthy skin. I would love for you to just give us a little bit of a background. Kind of your story, how you became interested in all of this and who you help now?

Trevor Cates:      Yeah, of course. I guess it really started back when I was a kid. I had a lot of health issues as a child. There were more atopic, allergic type of problems that I had but a lot of it showed up on my skin so all these mysterious rashes and things that would appear and my family took me to see a lot of the … We went the traditional route and it just wasn’t really working for me as far as the results we were seeing and so it was more of an integrative approach that helped me get through the skin issues that I was having. So that’s what led me on the path to be interested in kind of a different approach to helping health issues because I really wanted to figure out what was behind the health problems people were having and that was important for myself and really looking at lifestyle and how we live and how that impacts our health. When I was a child later on I realized there were mold issues in my home, I was eating things that may have seemed healthy but they really weren’t the right things for me.

I learned a lot about how to adjust lifestyle to help support the body. When you start with that foundation it really helps everything else work better. I love the integrative approach because when you do have that healthy foundation, the body can recover faster and when you need medications, when you need antibiotics, when you need certain things or need to have surgery, your body recovers more rapidly. That’s one of the reasons why I got so interested in becoming a naturopathic physician. The reason why I ended up focusing on skin later on, I’ve been practicing as a naturopathic physician for 20 years, and it wasn’t until actually about six years ago that I started to focus more on skin because I was working in a spa, the Waldorf Astoria here in Park City and I was doing weight loss programs for the people at the spa and my patients. They were these two week weight loss programs and at the end of the two weeks they would say, “Doctor Cates, this has been great. I’ve lost weight, I feel great. What really surprises me is my skin. I didn’t know my skin could look like this.”

Either their skin issues were clearing up that they had or they just had this healthier glow about their skin and they were getting compliments on it. To me, I thought, “Well that makes sense because we’re working on a healthy lifestyle. We’re removing some of the obstacles to healing and supporting the body’s innate wisdom. Doing all these naturopathic things.” But I realized that a lot of people, it wasn’t just intuitive for people. That’s what led me to write my book, “Clean Skin from Within.” I redid the two week program so it was more focused on skin than weight loss because it seemed to me that as you know with weight loss, it can be tricky. People can lose weight in an unhealthy way but when your skin is healthy it’s a really good indication that you’re on the right track. I love this approach for people and when they get into their ideal weight along with that and they’re balancing their hormones and they’re sleeping better and all of that, that’s just the whole approach is fantastic. It all works well together.

Katrina Ubell:      Great, awesome. Okay, the biggest concern my clients always have with their skin and weight loss is sagging. This comes up a lot. It’s multifaceted because there’s the person who has a considerable amount of weight to lose or even maybe not that much but what they’re thinking is, “I want to lose weight but I’m so afraid that I’m going to lose weight and then I’m going to have all this saggy skin everywhere and I’m going to think I look worse or it’s totally just going to be a really big problem for me. I’m going to look older, I’ll have more wrinkles, I’ll have a saggy neck,” all of those things. Of course, there’s different treatments and surgeries and things that can be done for that but I see that as a common concern. Now from my standpoint I see that as, well the problem is you think that there’s a certain way of looking that’s acceptable and only when you look that way can you actually love yourself or have a positive opinion about yourself so you’re afraid, “Well I could lose this weight but then I’m going to hate myself even more than I do right now.”

So I think of it as well we need to work on just accepting who we are no matter what size, no matter what our skin looks like but weight loss and extra skin is a real concern. I know for myself when I lost my weight I found that it took about a good six months for things to kind of change and they really did change. It really was fascinating to kind of see. Now I think if you have a lot of weight to lose, like there’s kind of probably only so much that your body can do but from this standpoint if somebody said to you, “Listen, I want to lose 50 pounds but I’m afraid I’m going to look 10 years older. I’m really afraid,” what do you say to them?

Trevor Cates:      Well again, it goes back again to healthy weight loss. If you’re dropping the weight really, really fast, your body doesn’t recover as quickly. It doesn’t adjust as easily so don’t expect to lose that weight really fast and make sure you’re doing it in a healthy way because if you do, you provide your body with the right nutrients and give it time to adjust. You’re not going to see those kinds of issues. It depends on how much weight you are losing, though, because like you said if you’re losing a lot of weight then there are just going to be changes that your skin is going to look different. But again, if you can provide with the right nutrients it does make a difference. Also, exercise, stress management, balancing hormones, all of that helps support that. Stress management, when you look at how that plays a role, of course cortisol production and balancing cortisol, getting healthy, getting a good night sleep, that’s all part of it. I think that if people are just focused on just the food and just losing weight without incorporating the exercise, the stress management, healthy sleep, all of that, then they’re not going to like what they see as much.

That’s why in my book I have these four different components. A clean plate, clean slate, clean body and clean mind because what I’ve found is that really to get the best results you want to do all of it. I know it can sometimes seem overwhelming but it’s really not that hard. The food part actually is the hardest for most people, as you know, but getting some movement, getting out and walking, even just walking or not sitting still all day long, getting up and moving around at certain times when you can. Even that can make a big difference. As far as stress management, taking a few minutes to close your eyes and take some deep breaths. It doesn’t have to take a lot of time but making some efforts with each of these is overall going to be a healthy way of losing weight.

Katrina Ubell:      Okay.

Trevor Cates:      That your body can keep up with and your skin can keep up with and really see the results that you want.

Katrina Ubell:      Okay, okay. What I think happens for a lot of people is the market for skincare products, anti aging, all of that stuff. There’s so many things, so many products that you can buy, so many treatments that you can try. Everybody of course says their thing is the best thing ever. A lot of people love doing Botox and then other people are like, “That’s the worst thing you could do and it’s seeping into your brain,” you know? There’s always so much conflicting advice and I want to just touch on this too, just with your background as a naturopathic physician because I’m so curious what your thoughts are about this, I find that often kind of what’s recommended is a little bit of a template. It’s like, “Oh, if your skin’s like this or if your body’s like this or if you have this health problem, this is the way you should eat.” I want to know what you think about the role of experimentation and figuring out what works best for you? I’ll kind of just give you an example.

My listeners know that one of my big projects for this year is getting off of the acid reflux medication I’ve been on since literally I was 23. So 21 years. They put me on this for a cough and just at those times thought you could just stay on it forever and I had some ongoing issues because of it but not being able to get off. Anyway, I’ve been working with an integrative person on this and literally just yesterday he was asking me how I’m eating because I’m only on a quarter dose now so I’m getting close now to be off. I told him what I was eating and he’s really a pro of the paleo kind of way of eating. I just said, “Oh, I’m eating really clean,” and he said, “How are you doing with your stomach?” I said, “Really pretty good.” He’s like, “Oh, it’s the grains. I’m telling you, the grains are terrible.” Well I’m totally eating grains and when I tried eating paleo I felt worse. I had more acid reflux symptoms. So I think that one reason why people end up sort of giving up or they just get confused.

It’s like, one person says you should be eating plant based. This person says you should be eating paleo which are like almost the opposites, you know? Then same with the skincare stuff, you know? Is drug store okay? Do I need to pay all this money for La Mer? You know? That’s ridiculous. How do you even begin, even when you’re a doctor and you’re educated, how do you begin to sort out what you should be doing?

Trevor Cates:      Right, absolutely. Great question and of course it is a big thing individualizing it because there’s not a one size fits all for everyone. You have to figure out where you are and what your needs are. So the way I look at it is with skin I go about it from the inside out but also on the outside. A lot of what we’re looking at is how do we address the root causes that are causing that person’s skin problem? When I was seeing patients I realized there were certain patterns I was seeing with people and I kept seeing the same underlying causes over and over again. Just started realizing that certain people that would have groups of these root causes. So I created my own sort of skin type system for the public. This isn’t for doctors, this is more for the public but it just helps them identify their root causes and puts them into sort of a bucket so that they can manage their skin issues from both the inside and on the outside. So I gave them all human names. They’re Amber, Olivia, and Sage, because I didn’t want to call them dry, oily, you know, acne prone. I didn’t want to really go down that route because our patients are people, right? They’re not just a disease.

That’s the way I help people so I look at the root causes. There are things like blood sugar, blood sugar imbalances, and that’s something that’s really important for weight loss but it’s also really important for skin because we know it can be one of the triggers for acne if people are having trouble with blood sugar balance, PCOS also, hormonal imbalance is another root cause behind a lot of skin issues and of course oxidative damage that happens with the aging process with sun exposure, with pollution exposure, toxins and things, inflammation. Gut issues, there’s great research now between the connection between the gut microbiome and the skin microbiome and so when we look at which of these root causes are truly the issue with the person, then that’s going to help us figure out what kind of diet they need to be on. If they’re going to be taking supplements, what kind of supplements? What we need to be focusing on to help support them in helping with their skin. A lot of that comes from the inside. As I’m talking about these root causes of course blood sugar balance is going to be I’m talking to them about how to cut out sugar and a lot of the things you talk about sugar and flour and those sorts of things.

Hormonal balance can be a little bit more complicated but some of it also is in the skincare products themselves but a lot of it for me, for my approach, it’s from the inside. When it comes to skincare products, there is some variation but I think we over complicate skincare products. I know, so I make skincare products. I have a Spa Doctor’s Natural Skincare Line and we keep it really simple. We have a four step skincare system that works for everybody. They just have to modify it for their skin type. Then we have a few other add on products that can help customize it. I know with skincare manufacturers, they constantly add more skews on because they want to make more money and that way people are always buying more stuff. Like, “Oh, I got to have that eye cream. I have to have that night cream. I have to have that special exfoliant for this time of the year,” and all these different things, “And this mask.” What I have found is that if you have really great ingredients with really great formulas and they have the right PH to support the mild acidity of the skin, the natural mild acidity of the skin and support the skin microbiome and what we know of that and for me it is so important to cut out the toxic ingredients in skincare products.

Those are the biggest things. If you get that, you don’t have to have all these different skincare products because it’s funny I know, I remember when I was working at the Waldorf Astoria I would go and I’d look at all the skincare products on the shelves and you see the products for sensitive skin, the products for dry skin, the products for mature skin, the products … I’m like, “Wait a minute, I need all of those.”

Katrina Ubell:      Right.

Trevor Cates:      How do I, because I don’t want to look older, you know? I want to age gracefully but I also have sensitive skin and who doesn’t want to use products for sensitive skin? I mean, who wants to be reactive, right? Doesn’t really make sense. That’s why I feel like if you have the right combination of ingredients and the right formulas, then it doesn’t have to be so complicated. It actually can be pretty simple.

Katrina Ubell:      Mm-hmm (affirmative). I think that’s a good point that you made too, though. Once you find something that works for you, too, just be really careful of the squirrel issue, right? Like, “Look there’s a squirrel. There’s a new product. They’re really marketing it heavily,” or you go in to get a facial and they’re like, “Hey, did you know they just came out with this and it’s so amazing.” This is like, ugh, prime example. I was working with an esthetician and she got me onto some products that I super loved to the point multiple, multiple people would pull me aside and be like, “What are you doing? I need to know what’s happening there. Your face looks amazing.” I’m like, “Okay, I’m telling you it’s this stuff,” and blah blah blah. So I felt like things were so good. Then the owner of the spa just totally made a change with her products. It’s not that she didn’t like what she was selling before, what I was liking, she just kind of got onto a different product line and basically wanted to get rid of everything else and only do that product line. So I trusted her when she had first put me on the stuff that was working. She was saying this stuff was better.

I’m like, “Well this is so amazing. If it really is better, okay. I’m game.” Of course, it was a lot more expensive and I did not like it at all. It seriously … I could tell the difference. It was not good. It was just like really, really not good. So I went back to her and said, “Please, I beg of you. Can you special order the other stuff for me?” I was looking online, I’m like, “Maybe there’s another salon that can get it,” because it’s kind of rare and you can’t just buy it off of Amazon and you need to find a dedicated salon or whatever that will sell it. I think just knowing if you’ve got a good thing going just you’re done. You don’t have to think about it anymore, right?

Trevor Cates:      Right and there is this myth out there that, and I don’t know who started it, but people have been perpetuating it for a long time that you have to switch your skincare products periodically.

Katrina Ubell:      I think I feel like I remember reading that in a magazine as a teenager or something, yeah.

Trevor Cates:      There’s really, there’s no science behind that. There’s no reason. If you have a good skincare line and it’s working for you, you don’t have to switch it.

Katrina Ubell:      Just stick with what works.

Trevor Cates:      If it’s not working for you then yes, go switch it.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah, yeah.

Trevor Cates:      Because it’s not working for you but once it’s working … So what we’ve noticed, I’ve had my company now for four and a half years and the people … We’ve got customers that have been on since the very beginning and they love it. We have an auto ship program and people stay on for a year or longer is the average, which is very unusual for the subscribe and save skincare products because they love it and they continue to see results. 30 days they’re seeing results, another 60 days they’re like, “Oh my gosh, this keeps getting better.” Why would I stop doing it if you’re still moving in the right direction? Even people who get to a certain point, sometimes they’ll say, “Oh well I’m going to go try … My girlfriend introduced me to this new product,” or, “My neighbor has this MLM company and they’re pushing this skin care line on me so I’m going to try that.” Then they go, “Wait, that’s not working for me.” Just like you experienced.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah.

Trevor Cates:      So then just go back.

Katrina Ubell:      Go back. Exactly, exactly. Let’s talk about anti-aging. I think I have probably a little bit of a unique approach to aging. I feel like most people when I tell them this they’re like, “Oh.” So I’ve traveled a little bit to Europe and I’ve seen some of the most beautiful older women that I’ve ever seen in my entire life in Europe and they’re totally wrinkled, right? They obviously take excellent care of their skin. Their skin is glowing, it looks so healthy but it looks like a normal age for their age, you know what I mean? It doesn’t look like they’re trying to be 20 or 30 years younger than they are. All their muscles work, everything. I am not dissing anybody who wants to do that. Truly to each their own. This is just what feels right to me and I always say I reserve the right to change my mind at any time. So if I wind up deciding I want to do something else then I’ll change my mind. Maybe I’ll do the full works, who knows. For right now that’s kind of what I’m thinking. So I think that so much of anti-aging is kind of if you really look at what it is it’s kind of shaming, right?

Getting older and looking your age is bad. Therefore, you should be doing all of these things so you can look younger because youth is better than non-youth, being older, whatever we want to call it. I think that this is something that I kind of just play around with in my mind. I mean, we have young, young women starting Botox as a preventative so much. That’s great, maybe that’ll work awesome for them but I guess kind of one question is how early is too early for anti-aging? At what point is it like, “Listen, you really should probably be doing something just because in 20, 30 years you’ll be thanking yourself?” How do you answer that?

Trevor Cates:      Well and I’m so glad you’re talking about this and I completely agree that everybody needs to do what they feel comfortable with, right? What feels right to them and if it’s Botox and it’s fillers and it’s plastic surgery, of course that’s up to people. I do feel like we have this kind of warped sense of what aging should look like and that with all the social media, the filters and people only post the best pictures of themselves, right? You don’t post the pictures that show all your wrinkles or with just the right lighting. Then sometimes we forget what people look like without Botox because there’s so many women getting Botox we forget what it looks like to just age naturally. So I do struggle with that, too and I feel very fortunate in that with my family there are so many beautiful women in my family that I watched age gracefully without doing any of that. I remember with my grandmother, I remember she was one of the most beautiful … My grandmothers were some of the most beautiful women that I’ve ever known. It was that inner radiance, that inner beauty and that confidence. They didn’t need to do any of this extra stuff. They were just classy and they were elegant and confident and intelligent.

That’s beauty, right? That’s graceful aging to me and I hope that more people will see that and recognize that. That that’s what truly helps people look youthful forever. Not all of the procedures and things. And again, it’s totally up to the person as to what they want to do. I tried Botox and when I did it, I didn’t like the way that it made me look. I would look at myself in the mirror and I thought, “That doesn’t even look like me. I can’t even … When I smile …” I looked at pictures of myself and I thought, “That doesn’t even look like me.” I choose not to do it but that was my own personal choice because I just don’t like the way it looks.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah.

Trevor Cates:      It doesn’t feel right to me. I think that there is … But to answer your actual question which was when should we start and when should we be thinking about anti aging. First of all, I’m not a big fan of the word anti aging. I think graceful aging is healthy aging is a nicer, gentler way because none of us … We can’t stop the clock. We’re all getting older and I think it’s a fantastic thing. I’m 47 and I love it. I’m happier now, I feel fitter now than I was when I was in my 30s and my 20s. I think it’s fantastic. Now, talk to me in 20 years and I don’t know, like you said, maybe I’ll say something different. Maybe then I’ll have plastic surgery by then, I don’t know.

Katrina Ubell:      Right, right.

Trevor Cates:      For now, I’m really happy with it but I think it’s never too young to start and it’s never too late to start, really. Again, it goes back to both what you’re doing inside and outside. It’s not just one or the other. It’s not some magic, and I make skincare products, it’s not just the Spa Doctor Skincare Products that are going to keep you looking youthful. You’ve got to do it from the inside, too, and healthy eating, movement, stress management, all of that is so important to help your body age gracefully. The antioxidants that we need, the fats that we need, the healthy fats, cutting out the sugars and as we know with blood sugar balance, if we’re eating a lot of sugars, those foods that cause spikes in our blood sugar, that’s going to create problems with glycation issues and glucose binding to collegian and speeding up wrinkles and the aging and sagging of skin. So it’s never too early to start. I think that people get in their 20s are getting a little obsessed about it in some ways.

Katrina Ubell:      Right and some days I’m like, “Listen, just enjoy it. You don’t have to worry about it in the future yet.”

Trevor Cates:      Just be practical about it. I think living a healthy lifestyle, being proactive, using a good sunscreen, and I prefer the more mineral sunscreens. The zinc oxide based ones. Using those and being smart. The sun is a big factor that causes, of course, the aging of the skin and blood sugar issues, eating healthy foods and also reducing your exposure to toxins as much as possible and air pollution and pollution in general, toxins, we know those speed up the aging process as well. So just being smart about all of that. That’s not only going to help your skin, that’s also going to help you achieve just a healthier lifestyle overall.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah, yeah. Okay, one final question. So there’s people who have a baby and then immediately are putting on the waist trainer, right? Trying to get their skin to go back and stuff because so many people don’t want the mommy pooch or like the kind of raisin skin or whatever from that. I seen something on Instagram, I don’t know how, I must have once clicked to look at it or something and so now they’re like, retargeting me. It’s some metal ball thing that you are supposed to rub all over your face and it’s supposed to reenergize something or other. I don’t even really know what it’s supposed to do. It’s supposed to help with toning your skin, all these … That’s just two of the gazillion different things that you can do. I think there’s that new face thing, there’s so many different external tools you can use on your face, right? We talked about internal and we talked about topicals. Thoughts on the other stuff? Worth even investigating or not really?

Trevor Cates:      I’m not really a big device gadget person. I know that there are a lot of them out there and some of them certainly seem to have more science behind them and good testimonials than others but I just, I really go back to the foundation of a healthy lifestyle and having the healthy eating and the stress management, the movement, all of that is really key and I have three kids and I get it. When you have the babies it’s never quite the same and there’s some expectations. Just like the aging process, there are some things like you have these beautiful children that you didn’t have before.

Katrina Ubell:      Right.

Trevor Cates:      Yeah, sure our bodies change with that. Our bodies change with age and that’s okay. Love that. At the same time I understand that there are things we could do, exercises certainly can help and there are some things about body work, massage, fascia work that can also help with some of that to a certain extent. Some of these devices can provide some of that and helping the texture of the skin so I’m not saying not to use them but there’s a lot of marketing hype in those.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah.

Trevor Cates:      Just be realistic in your expectation.

Katrina Ubell:      In some ways I’m like, “If you’ve just had a baby you should, rather than spending a bunch of time worrying about your skin, maybe just try to sleep. Take that time and sleep during that time and that will probably help a ton or prepare yourself a good meal,” you know?

Trevor Cates:      Yeah.

Katrina Ubell:      Maybe focusing on those things, first. Yeah, I feel like I’m glad that I got through having my children before social media really, really took off. To be totally bombarded with all of that all the time and all the different things. I like to, in general, I like to keep things simple. As simple as possible in my life and well I’m still always curious, you know? Like, “What is that thing? What is that thing?” My husband has a Clarisonic, which I think actually really, really helps him with just some of the issues that he’s had on his skin and you’d love this because he was having some breakouts and they just kept happening. Recently he’s like, “I think it’s because I’ve been wearing scrubs at work.” With COVID and everything they’re trying to do that instead of regular clothes. I was like, “Maybe you should try just taking a break from sugar for a little while just to see,” you know?

Trevor Cates:      Yeah.

Katrina Ubell:      Why not just to see? I don’t think he has but that’s okay. His life.

Trevor Cates:      There are a lot of challenges people are having with the masks.

Katrina Ubell:      Yes.

Trevor Cates:      Wearing the masks all the time.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah.

Trevor Cates:      More people are breaking out, having skin issues in those areas.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah.

Trevor Cates:      If people can, I encourage women, you don’t need to wear makeup under it first of all.

Katrina Ubell:      Right.

Trevor Cates:      Just skip the makeup. It’s not worth it. Then using skincare products that don’t have occlusive ingredients. Drop the mineral oil, drop the dimethicone. There’s certain ingredients that will trap in the heat that have kind of occlusive-ness to it that’s going to disrupt the skin microbiome. So choosing more of the plant based oils instead of the mineral oils and things like that. If you want to use moisturizers and things, use that instead.

Katrina Ubell:      Okay.

Trevor Cates:      Keep it light because you know you’re going to be getting more heat under that mask and then if you can, have an opportunity to do your skincare routine during the day where you actually cleanse your face and cleanse your skin. Whereas we didn’t really used to need to do that in the middle of the day but now if we’re using a mask all the time, it’s kind of nice to take a break and to be able to do that.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah. Well and so breakouts are … One thing I’ve also seen some people with actual breakdown of the skin, right? Whether it’s pressure or just friction or something like that. In that case, would more of a occlusive kind of, I’m just thinking like Vaseline, which is probably the worst thing in your world. Something that you’re like, “Don’t use Vaseline.” Something along those lines that’s very thick, is that helpful to protect the skin?

Trevor Cates:      Right but I would use something more along the lines of like, Shea butter, even maybe like … Some people do well with coconut oil but a lot of people can’t really put it on their face. Something more along those lines. Gosh, it really depends on your skin type.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah.

Trevor Cates:      We have, at the Spa Doctor, we have a plant based oil blend that’s things like pomegranate seed oil, raspberry seed oil, so they’re kind of lighter oils but they still have that hydration that people need so that’s the one that I’m usually recommending to people because it’s not so heavy that it’s going to create people to break out. It’s finding that right balance.

Katrina Ubell:      Yeah.

Trevor Cates:      It does a lot go back to the skin microbiome and what’s happening there and I really do think using a good cleanser. So the cleanser that I have, it’s not a foamy strippy cleanser. It’s an oil based cleanser. So that actually is going to damage the balances of the oils in the skin and the PH of the skin. I encourage people to do something more along those lines.

Katrina Ubell:      Okay, awesome. Good tips.

Trevor Cates:      Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Katrina Ubell:      Very, very good. Okay, awesome. So if people are interested, where can they get their book and more information about your skincare line?

Trevor Cates:      Yeah, everything is at Thespadr.com, so doctor is abbreviated, “Dr.” It’s T-H-E-S-P-A-D-R.com. I’m also, we’re on Instagram and Facebook-

Katrina Ubell:      All the places.

Trevor Cates:      All the different places.

Katrina Ubell:      Okay.

Trevor Cates:      Yeah and to get my book you can find it on the website but my skincare line’s on the website, too.

Katrina Ubell:      Okay, great. Okay, awesome. Well thank you so much for all of your tips on skin. These are things that I think many people are just like, questions that they have but don’t want to ask or don’t know who to ask. So I really, really appreciate you coming on today.

Trevor Cates:      Absolutely. Thank you, Katrina.

Katrina Ubell:      Did you know that you can find a lot more help from me on my website? Go to katranaubellmd.com and click on, “Free resources.”


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