Inner Beauty, Outer Beauty, and the Miracles of Stem Cells: An Interview with Dr. Robert M. Rey, MD

You may have seen him on E!’s hit show ‘Dr. 90210′ or on Netflix’ ‘Celebrity Plastic Surgeons’…Dr. Robert M. Rey, MD, is plastic surgeon to Hollywood’s most beautiful celebrities, and arguably, to some of the most beautiful people in the world. He very graciously agreed to let me interview him for the blog, and I can’t wait to share with you what he has to say about physical beauty, advances in interventional technology for plastics as well as the importance of inner beauty and of loving the self!

SKB: “Thank you SO much for having me and for your time- I am so grateful! So, I did watch your video on YouTube on how you quantify beauty- I loved how you talked about measurements, such as for the breasts it’s the Isoceles Triangle and measuring 21 centimeters from each corner, etc… I mean… I know that you don’t actually do that… or do you? How do you quantify beauty?”

Dr. Robert M. Rey, MD: “Early in my career I had to get the rulers out and the calipers out. But then you get to this stage in your career, and I don’t want to compare myself to the greats, but I’m sure at some point in Michelangelo’s career, you know, he didn’t get out the calipers. It’s in your hands and it’s in your soul… the music already plays in your soul. I think that when it’s been said that form follows function- that is correct. In nature there is a lot of beauty in function. Function has a lot of beauty in it. Beauty follows function, and we are creatures of extreme function. Therefore, following that logic, there is a lot of beauty in us. But you know, I like to stress this in all of my videos… you can have numerical perfection and be ugly!

When I was in my early career as a surgeon, I would use these wonderful techniques to make beautiful things and at times I couldn’t achieve it and I couldn’t figure out why. I learned a great lesson. Beauty indeed starts inside. If you notice certain people, when they enter a room the whole room becomes dark. Dark of spirit, of energy. I noticed those rich ladies that had that darkness. You know, four divorces, none of them were her fault, she has two grown kids but she doesn’t call them, you know that she’s very rich but she doesn’t give any of her money away… that kind of a person. Or maybe a person who made their fortune from subterfuge….those kinds of people have spiritual darkness. Those people I cannot fix with a scalpel. So sometimes… I get these really really rich ladies like this and I say, ‘You know what? I will do your butt lift or I will do your breasts, I will tweak your nose or whatever…but first of all, look, I’m going to Honduras this month. Come with me to Honduras, let’s do a humanitarian mission and in the Fall I will do your surgery.’

Guess what I discovered? They come back with these beautiful spirits. And with a scalpel I can make up a little bit for that Mommy damage, and they end up truly beautiful people. So! Yes technology is amazing today, what we can do with lasers and a scalpel and even the creams are wonderful today. However- beauty starts inside. If she or he is ugly inside, they will not be beautiful. Yes, we can do miracles with science today, but beauty starts inside. At the same time that we take care of our health and our beauty, don’t forget to cultivate a beautiful spirit. When I judged Miss Universe, Miss Brazil, Miss Bolivia, Miss South Africa- as a television plastic surgeon I get asked to judge some of the top top beauty competitions in the world. And I discovered that some of the young ladies were numerically perfect… they had everything perfect but they were ugly. This was the girl that was cutting the other girl’s dresses in the dressing room, you know, backstabbing. She’s really ugly. Internal beauty is very beautiful.”

SKB: “I completely agree with you! I think it was a Roald Dahl quote from The Twits, a book that my daughter is currently obsessed with, that says ‘You can have a wonky nose and a double chin and stick-out teeth, but if you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely'”.

DRR: “Yes! And just to follow that thought, if you have a beautiful inside which makes up for a lot of flaws… how about having a beautiful inside, following the Paleo diet (watch his video that goes more in depth about this here), and then imagine if we tweak a couple of little things how beautiful you would be. It’s all three [A beautiful soul, good health and outer beauty] and they go together. It’s like a stool and if you kick out one leg the stool falls! We’ve got to take care of ourselves.

Now- let’s talk a little bit about some of the questions you have as far as aesthetics. As you know today we are doing a lot of work with stem cells. I would say about 85% of all the breasts I do today are with stem cells. I still do implants, but a lot of the breasts I do today are with stem cells. Imagine…. God left a spare tire on you, so that fat which is to be our worst enemy, in the old days we used to hate it and today we love it because we can use it for the stem cells. Some girls get nervous about silicone. There’s nothing to be nervous about, but some girls are a little earthier. Ok! That’s fine. We now have another wonderful option.  You can actually put in stem cells. We can lift the breast and use the stem cells and the breasts become perky, and scarless. We make tiny, tiny, invisible incisions and I inject a little bit of stem cells below it. There’s something in the growth factors which is making my scar literally disappear. Lifting the breast, putting stem cells in it- the stem cells thinks it’s inside of an adolescent. So you have these beautiful, youthful breasts- like 18 year old breasts on a 40 year old woman, and the scars disappear. So not only can we address the tissue underneath but the skin is rejuvenated on the surface as well. Stretch marks are an issue for all women and now we can address this too!

95% of women have stretch marks and the other 5% are lying! [laughter] It’s okay- we love your little stretch marks and we can cure them today. Microdermabrasion together with ReFirme radio frequency can virtually cure your white stretch marks. Red stretch marks are easy- it’s simply the pulsed dye laser, very very simple. It’s the white stretch marks that we have studied in my Brazilian clinics we can get rid of now with Microdermabrasion and ReFirme.”

On noses and breast augmentation with a tummy tuck- his favorite techniques

“Can I show you the nose? Also with a tummy tuck.. Harvard taught me such great things. I make the smallest tummy tuck and the lowest cut. Since her belly’s already open, why make a cut in her breasts when you can place the implants through the tummy tuck without cutting the breasts. So, I use endoscopes and I’ve done 7,000 of these (I’ve done 33,000 surguries but 7,000 of this surgery) we make a beautiful tummy tuck and without cutting your breasts endoscopically we can put the implants through your belly, right? I do those trans umbilicals and with silicone too. I want you to find the scar- not the tan line- the scar.” [We are one FaceTime so he is showing me a before and after image of one of his patients]

SKB: “You can’t find it!”

DRR: “No! You can’t find it! So, I can also take stem cells from the fat I took away in the tummy tuck and put it in the tushie! Today we are a butt-centric society. Everything is dictated by the butt. Every girl who comes to me for a tummy leaves with a beautiful butt. We don’t throw away that wonderful material which I got from your belly- we use those stem cells.

For the nose- we take the little hump off that a lot of people have there, and I take that little piece to support the tip of the nose. Not a piggy nose. Look at your cute Grandma- what happened to her over time? The nose falls with time. We know that. So, when we take that little piece from the bridge and I use that little piece to lift your tip! I invented that! And that’s not ridiculous- look at my nose. My nose is not ridiculous- it was done that way. If you go to a guy or a girl who takes parts from your rib or cartilage and puts it in your nose… that’s an overkill. It’s not usually necessary and it also comes with a very steep price- $25-30,000.00. The simple but beautiful way that I do it supports the tip from falling- I’ve only had to re-do one nose in my entire 27 year career. Too much is too much ladies! So we take off the hump on the nose, narrow the bridge of the nose and lift the tip- simple three steps. And that costs about $7,000- much more affordable.”

On why he loves what he does

DRR: “There is a psychology to all of this. What really makes me smile, by the grace of God I paid my tithing, I worked hard, and I was given some wonderful opportunities so that today I don’t have to work anymore, you know? And the reason I continue to work every day, even on Sundays- I just came back from my clinic as you know- is I get these wonderful, overworked, under slept Moms who are totally broken. It’s amazing how the baby sucks everything out of your hair, out of your tush, out of your breasts but they also suck it out of your soul. These Moms- when I close that door [in the clinical exam room for a surgical consult] and that little dress falls on the floor they are fighting not to cry. I can see that they’re really broken. [Fixing that], that’s what gives me a big kick. Every day I go to work and if I’m feeling a little broken (I have teenagers!) or whatever, and I can fix 3 or 4 Moms and see them blossom- I come home and I don’t even touch the ground! I’m floating when I come home. All we do is we return to you your self-esteem. You have to believe in yourself!

Ladies, girls, please.. you know you’re the daughter of our Heavenly Father. Literally, the daughter of the creature that made one hundred billion billion planets… literally running in your blood is the DNA of that creature that created the Milky Way- that’s your father! Our father in heaven does not make garbage. So it’s time you start believing in yourself. Let’s go back to the Paleo diet, let’s choose to be happy. Life is impossible. Look, by the time I was 12 in Brazil I’d already been to jail three times. I carried a gun in the Brazilian Favela.. I mean, I’ve seen things that a child should not have seen. I chose to be happy. Have you ever seen Rey sad? Let’s choose to be happy. Maybe pregnancy ruined your vagina- let’s fix it- it’s nothing! It’s a nothing operation. Your breasts got a little bit sad? Look, either a little silicone or a little stem cells- no big deal. Let’s make that Brazilian butt, it’s time for you to have the Brazilian butt [laughter from both] And let’s start believing in ourselves, because you’re destined for greatness. I don’t want you to come through life in these precious 80 years and do nothing. I want you to believe in yourself, I want you to open up that store, I want you to go open that clinic, write that book, invent that recipe…. let’s change the world! Let’s do something great!”

Dr. Robert Rey specializes in MINIMAL SCAR Plastic Surgery. Dr. Rey brings to Beverly Hills, from Harvard Medical School’s Beth Israel Deaconess fellowship, the absolute latest minimal scar, endoscopic, fiberoptic and laser techniques. By treating a large number of film, television and fashion industry patients, Dr. Rey is keenly aware of the importance of minimal or no scars and is highly dedicated to a natural look. Dr. Rey completed a plastic surgery fellowship at Harvard Medical School’s Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital. The focus of this fellowship was primarily in the areas of breast and cosmetic surgery. He is also fully trained as a Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon. In pursuit of his craft, Dr. Rey has attended some of the top American educational institutions. From U.C.L.A. School of Medicine to Tufts University School of Medicine, to Harvard University to Harvard Medical School’s Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital.

Dr. Rey has conducted academic research in both cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery. He has published in some of the most prestigious medical and plastic surgery journals in the World. He has not gone unnoticed by his peers. He is the recipient of numerous scientific honors, including the Southeastern Society of Plastic Surgeons Resident’s Award and the American Association of Clinical Anatomist Student Award for original anatomy and biomechanics research. Dr. Rey also served in The Office of the United States Surgeon General, as health policy speech writer to Dr. C. Everett Koop.

While the term “Renaissance man” is frequently overused, Dr. Rey is the rare individual to whom this might apply. Author, lecturer, medical broadcaster, actor, artist and martial artist, his ability to focus and excel is noteworthy. He is a current Screen Actors Guild member, and was a consultant on the Academy Award-nominated motion picture “Seven.”

Dr. Rey has recently been featured on CBS, WB, E! Channel, Elle Magazine and in the foreign media, for his innovative through-the-navel breast enhancement surgery. Although Dr. Rey did not invent this procedure, he has helped develop it. This procedure, performed by only a handful of surgeons, allows a small incision to be hidden deep in the belly button. He utilizes an endoscopic camera, a miniature subcutaneous image transmitter that allows him to manipulate the implant by watching the entire procedure on monitors. This technique is much less invasive, resulting in less pain, less bruising and a quicker post-operative recovery (Dowden. Plast. Reconstr. Surg. 106: 190, 2000). Additionally, it has the advantage of single incision placed in an already existing scar, the belly button. Dr. Rey recognizes that not every patient is interested in this innovative technique and he is able to offer the traditional through the nipple, arm pit or under the breast approach as well.

Dr. Rey also enjoys all other areas of cosmetic and reconstructive surgery. He has expertise in the latest techniques in liposculpture, breast lift, breast reduction, brow lift, endoscopic face lift, nose improvement surgery, ear reshaping, laser eyelid rejuvenation surgery, neck lift, male surgery, tummy tightening, lip enhancement, Botox and Collagen.

Dr. Rey is concerned about the integrity of the plastic surgery industry. He encourages all patients considering image enhancement procedures to do their homework, ask questions and always insist on the very best. 

IG: DrRobertRey 

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