Rob Lowe on Dadbod, Wellness, and So Much Coffee

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Rob Lowe! Photo: David Livingston/Getty Images

"Since I was 15, I’ve had the best in the world all over me, making me look the best," Rob Lowe says, referring to all the skin-care products he's used over the years. When you see Lowe in person, it's clear that the self-described "Energizer Bunny" knows how to take care of himself. And now, Lowe has spun that into a beauty business: a skin-care line called Profile 4 Men, which will hit Nordstrom next fall. He spoke to the Cut about his wellness secrets, his thoughts on sleeping in a coffin, and dadbod

How I start my mornings: I start my morning with as much caffeine as I can get into my body. If I could do it through an IV, I would. Then it’s face wash, water splash. I use my under-eye serum, which is anti-aging and depuffing. I literally carry this everywhere. If I don’t have enough time to do the full regimen, I just do this and I’m off.

Breakfast is all protein, so I do eggs, Greek yogurt, Paleo, granola. If I'm shooting, I’m in my sweatpants. I stumble into my car and my trusty driver drives me the 88 miles a day to the studio. I have a sleep mask on, little pillow and blankie like I’m 7 years old, and I roll up to the studio and stagger out and then they give me my coffee.

How I work out: I’m an Energizer Bunny. Any day I have time, I am doing something. [Surfing is] what I would do every day if I could. When there is no swell in the water, then I’m doing my training regimen, which is not CrossFit proper, but those types of techniques. To my detriment, I find it hard to lay off, which is not healthy because you have to give your body recovery time. I flew in [to New York], and my wife was like, Let’s go to the room and chill. I immediately put on my clothes to go to the Central Park Reservoir. 

For me, wellness is: Health. I’m blessed to be healthy. It’s living a life of balance, perspective, and authenticity.

How wellness has changed for me: I got to celebrate my 25th sobriety birthday this week. Through recovery, as the years go by, you gain perspective. One of the great gifts is your ability to see the world, yourself, and the things you need to work on. If you're doing it right, living a true, authentic life is work that never ends. You’re either doing that or you’re not aware and not present in your own life. There are only two ways to be.

My biggest wellness struggle is: Balance in everything. [Laying off exercise is] one of them. It's the alcohol addict in me. And also realizing that, not kidding, you don’t need to have 12 shots of espresso a day, every day. You do not need to write two books, star in two TV shows on two different networks, launch a skin-care line, have a Comedy Central series, and figure out what the next thing is. 

How I eat when I’m alone: It depends if I’m good Rob Lowe or bad Rob Lowe. If I’m good, it’s no carbs and no sugar. Bad Rob Lowe is a Johnny’s pizza followed by a chocolate egg cream. Bad Rob Lowe fucking goes for it. But again, [balance is] my problem. I’m all-in all the time, which is really, really good. It's why I can do the things that I’ve been able to do, but it can also be a challenge.

How I end my day: If I could sleep in a coffin, I would. I want silence, I want darkness, and I really enjoy the process of falling asleep. I read somewhere that Alexander the Great used to get his battle plans in that weird nether region of being half-asleep and half-awake. I think that’s an important state, especially for creative people. I want that process of consciousness to make great ideas. If sleep were an Olympic sport, I would be Michael Phelps. I think that most guys feel like there’s a badge of honor in “I got five hours of sleep last night." That’s kind of gnarly, I get it, but sleep is really undervalued.

My wellness advice is: It’s no one’s life but yours and you have to take ownership of it. You have to be aware of your decisions. If you don’t actively choose to do it and to do good things, how can you expect good things to ever happen to you? 

On dadbodI’m obsessed with this fucking thing. Did you know that I tweeted about it two weeks ago? I put it out there to my millions of followers:  Be honest with me: Do I have a dadbod? I just need to know. Because I’m not really sure what it means yet and I need to find out. They said absolutely not, although some wonderful internet sleuths found a photo of me when I was not at my finest and said, yeah, you have a dadbod. I am a dad and I have a bod. So by definition, I have a dadbod.

I’m not pro or con [dadbod], but it's great that it is a real thing. My understanding of it is [that dadbod] guys are semi-jacked but have neglected this [points to decidedly anti-dadbod stomach], is that right? My new favorite term … are you ready for this? Skinny-fat. It’s a great one. Because it’s people who look skinny but aren’t, right?  I think it’s time to start objectifying men. I think it’s time.

This interview has been condensed and edited.