Men also have skincare needs and should follow a skincare routine. We all want healthy, glowing skin right. It’s not too late to start following a routine. This will improve your appearance.
There are a lot of skincare lines out there and some confusion on what does what. It is never too late to get educated on what products to buy. And we can clear up a few things.
Shaving, facial hair and working outdoors (although women also do this), can present different concerns. Shaving the face should be done in the right direction so the skin doesn’t become “nicked”. With the growth of facial hair special care should be taken to skin underneath. And sunscreen must always be applied for outdoors even in winter (Sun Damage Haunts Me). Each of these can affect the skin.
Men have more collagen and elastin in their skin making it thick and firm. Lucky them, the signs of aging appear later compared to women. However, they have more sebum (oil) production, with their hormones, that may lead to acne.
More and more product lines are taking into consideration men’s skincare needs. Compared to decades ago, there are products available now to address skincare for men. The salon/spa industry also offer services tailored for men, examples the Men’s Facial and the back wax.
Folliculitis is a skin condition common among men. Instead of the hair growing up and out onto the surface it will grow slightly under the skin, causing a bacterial infection. The hair follicles become inflamed. The infection can spread and become non-healing, itchy/crusty sores. This can last up to several days.
If the condition becomes very painful and more pus filled sores develop you should see your dermatologist. A swab may be taken of the infected area.
It is best to avoid shaving when this happens, use an anti-bacterial soap and apply lotions or a compress.
The Skincare Routine
Cleansers-These are used to remove dirt and impurities like those dead skin cells, makeup (worn in rock bands, just saying) and excess sebum. Soaps used to be highly alkaline, which dried the skin and striped away its acid mantle. But there is vegan and organic made now. Soaps may also leave a dull film on the surface where cleansers rinse off easily. They have more water. Soaps are more for oily skin types.
A cleanser (foamy liquid) will clean without stripping the skin of your protective oils. This is more for sensitive or dry skin types.
Cleaning the skin should not be overdone. Twice a day, morning and night is enough.
Toners-These help where the cleanser left off if there is any dirt or impurities left on the skin. These help to bring back the acid mantle and hydrate the skin. So are made for dry skin types. They don’t contain alcohol or other drying ingredients. Any product that gives a stinging or burning sensation is not good and should be avoided.
Astringents-are made for oily skin and usually contain alcohol to dissolve the excess oil.
Fresheners-are for normal to dry skin. They are alcohol-free to hydrate and revitalize the skin.
Moisturizers- will help to prevent the loss of moisture from the skin and to protect from the environment. It softens by keeping it moist, slowing the effects of aging.
The moisturizer should contain oils and emollients as well as water. Many moisturizers are adding SPF for during the day. This would be two products in one and very convenient.
A heavy product may be used to repair and nourish overnight.
Exfoliant-(scrub) is a bit abrasive with small granules that can be used as your cleanser if you have oily or acne prone skin. These products remove dirt and impurities from the pores and slough off dead surface skin. They also stimulate and improve the circulation. Use twice daily.
Facials-Are a professional service given in a salon/spa. They are recommended once a month to maintain healthy skin. The movements during a man’s facial should flow with the hair growth if he has facial hair. Massage movements in the beard area would be downward.
The esthetician can also help you with recommending a skincare line or what products you should use.
A facial also relieves stress and is great for pampering. We all need that! A minimum of once every season can be done, that’s just four times a year (Facial for Healthy Skin).
Don’t forget care to eyes and lips
The eye area is the thinnest skin we have and deserves special attention. You may want to add an eye cream.
Men can also use Retinol (vitamin A) products for wrinkles if you have a concern. Those crow feet. Using this daily may cause dry, red and sun sensitive skin so use caution. And don’t forget a sunscreen with SPF. Retinol products can be expensive.
Lips can also get sunburned and could use SPF too. This is available in lip balm.
To Shave or Not
Shaving can result in razor burn, shaving bumps, ingrown hairs, nicks and cuts. A regular cleansing with a facial scrub will exfoliate dead skin cells and free those ingrown hairs. This routine will also help manage bumps.
Using a scrub with salicylic or glycolic acid will help fight razor bumps. If bumps are an occurring problem you might want to give a pre-shave oil a try. This protects your skin by softening stubble and creating a firm barrier between the razor and your face.
Use aftershave products that contain alcohol with caution. This may cause drying skin. If a product gives a burn or sting when applied it shouldn’t be used. Remember the kid in Home Alone, that facial expression, yeah not good.
Beards can also have split ends, fly-aways, unwanted waves and unevenness. It is hair after all. Beards should also be well-maintained and groomed. And then there is the skin underneath there.
There are product lines for your facial hair too. Beards can be conditioned or oiled, straightened or curled. There is also beard wax to help maintain the unruliness.
Working outdoors can be a harsh atmosphere. To deal with the cold, wind, damp and sun all that Mother Nature throws at you. Protecting you by covering up or using the correct product is important.
If you are in a big city you also have air pollution which means more dirt landing on your face. Having to work outdoors this would be a concern which has developed into a market for products with anti-pollution ingredients.
If your job requires you to be outdoors sunscreen is a must add to your skincare routine. Whether you have it in your moisturizer or alone, you must apply it regularly.
In the summer you may be tempted to take off your shirt (dress code permitted) this exposes that skin to damaging sun’s rays. So sunscreen is needed beyond your face. So don’t forget to apply here also. You may want a product with a high SPF. Also seeing your Dermatologist once a year for a skin cancer screening is recommended too. Protect and maintain for healthy skin.
https://www.webmd.com/beauty/features/men-shaving-grooming#1 accessed 03/01/2020
https://www.aad.org/public/public-health/skin-cancer-screenings accessed 03/01/2020