With Father's Day coming up you might be thinking about a little pampering for yourself or the man in your life. However, when it comes to guys, many people still seem to be confused as to whether or not men need to pamper their skin the way women do. The short answer is absolutely. Curious about the particulars of men's skincare? Here are some the basics you need to know:
Keep your routine simple but consistent
Consistency is one area where my male clients excel at skin care. Rather than buying 18 different products and trying them all for a week, they tend to zero in on what works, invest in it and stick to it. And because of this, they get great results. If I had to narrow it down to the bare minimum, the products I would want every guy to be using are a good cleanser, scrub and moisturizer.
Cleansing is non-negotiable simply because there are too many things that can contribute to build up and bacteria on the skin. Sometimes the smallest overlooked things can be acne triggers, such as a dirty pillowcase or phone. Always wearing a hat can cause hairline breakouts due to bacteria on the hatband. The way to combat these things and other environmental debris that sticks to the skin, is with a good cleanser.
Even a gentle scrub a couple of times a week is perfect for keeping the skin exfoliated, which will help prevent blackheads and oil buildup. Although many guys tend to skip moisturizer, because they are oilier, I still recommend one because we need moisture to keep the skin hydrated. Additionally, keeping the skin properly moisturized can actually help balance out oil production.
SPF is important
A no brainer in any skin care routine is sun protection. Yet many guys skip this step, either because they think they don't burn or because they don't like the oiliness of the sunscreen. The bad news is, no should be skipping this step. The good news is, there are plenty of sun protective products on the market now that don't have to be greasy on the skin. Look for a lightweight sunscreen that is designed for the face and non-comedogenic. Not wearing sunblock increases your risk for sun damage and skin cancer. Reapplying is also key for men, especially if they spend a lot of time outdoors or doing physical activity which causes them to sweat more.
How you shave matters
A common skin care concern for many guys is razor bumps or ingrown hairs. These painful bumps occur when shaved hair gets trapped inside of the follicle or grows back into the skin. Salicylic acid, is great for spot treating and helping visibly improve ingrowns. That said, preventing them is even better.
Investing in a good razor suited to your skin type and beard coarseness is key to preventing too close of a shave and causing hairs to grow back inward. A good lubricating shave cream is recommended over alcohol based formulas, which can be too drying for the skin and exacerbate ingrowns.
The same goes for aftershave, which is great for hydrating the skin. Because shaving essentially exfoliates the skin (by removing some dead skin along with the hair) it is actually beneficial for the face. However, what you put on the fresh skin afterwards matters a lot. Stick to moisturizing aftershaves to keep the skin smooth and free of irritation.
Yes, guys get facials
Men's skin care is a growing trend in the spa industry, with more and more products and treatments being catered toward men. Men are coming to recognize they too can reap the benefits of a facial - namely relaxation and professional deep cleaning for the skin. Although there are no huge differences between men and women's skin care, there are some treatments that are particularly beneficial for a man's skin.
Microdermabrasion is a favorite for guys because it's machine-powered, quick and effective. Great for rough texture and enlarged pores, which are frequent concerns among male clients. This exfoliation treatment removes dead skin and debris from the surface and helps stimulate cellular turnover. As a result pores temporarily appear smaller and collagen is stimulated to help plump out lines and wrinkles. Chemical exfoliation - such as a peel or a deep pore treatment - is also great for male skin. Chemical peel ingredients such as alpha-hydroxy acids and salicylic acid are great for getting into the epidermis and breaking up old dead skin cells. Although peels don't have to be aggressive to be effective, the acids effectively target acne and can help with improving overall skin health.