In a recent survey of 1,000 men in the UK, 56% said they were guilty of stealing their partner’s products to help with their skincare concerns, while 14% owned up to using their partners products every day and 19% admitted that they use their partner’s products often. When I researched just how many men in the UK actually used facial skincare it was difficult to find a definite answer. A study found that one in ten men secretly wear makeup, it no longer has to be a secret that a woman wears make-up, so the same should apply for men. I remember about twenty years ago; male friends been embarrassed to say they were using skincare products and while this has changed to some degree a man using facial skincare would no doubt be viewed as a little vain and not very manly! Which certainly isn’t the case, real men do use and need skincare….
Ask any woman you know and they will most likely have a morning and evening skincare regime that they stick to faithfully. For men, it’s not the same. But why? We all have skin, and we are all exposed to the same elements and a bit of a pampering is great for everyone, no matter what our gender.
The survey revealed that men are most likely to use moisturiser, cleanser, eye cream and spot treatments. And that 90% of men have at least one skincare insecurity. While most products targeted for women will work fine for men, most of them include specific ingredients, which are unnecessary for men’s skin. It’s always better where possible for men to use products that target their specific skincare needs. So guys buy your own products….
“While the results made us chuckle, men’s skin and women’s skin are very different. A man’s facial skin is thicker, and its follicles release more oil. Even the hormones released by men’s skin is different from a woman’s, which is why it seems like men actually age slower.” Marie Schmid, head of training at Clarins
The universal need for skincare is creating a healthy demand for men’s skincare products. The average modern man is becoming increasingly keener on caring for his skin, thereby encouraging many skincare manufacturers to cater for the men’s market. With tougher, oilier and thicker skins than women, men face different skincare challenges. As in the women’s market skincare products sourced from sustainable natural ingredients should be a key factor in choosing a brand. Prominent beauty brands are increasingly focusing on green formulations in response to the growing demand and changing market. There are many affordable natural brands to choose from.
So, what should a daily man’s skincare routine comprise of? To start, a good face-wash is essential. There is nothing better than washing your face after a long hard day at work or first thing in the morning to wake up your face. A face-wash removes dirt, sweat and dead skin cells to reveal a fresher layer ready to be moisturised. It can help in having a better quality shave too.
Next, the number one item on any man’s skincare regime should be a moisturiser. It will protect, energise, smooth and perfect your skin whilst keeping it moisturised all day long. A moisturising after-shave lotion or balm will help to soothe the skin and avoid redness and shaving rashes. It’s a common misconception that oily skin doesn’t need a moisturiser. All skin types, suffer with dehydration due to modern diet and lifestyles. A moisturiser adds hydration and protection against the environment. (It’s best to opt for lightweight, oil-free moisturisers for oily skin)
Oily skin is usually the result of the male sex hormone testosterone triggering sebaceous glands to produce sebum. (The skin’s natural oil) It’s more prone to blackheads, whiteheads and unsightly breakouts. Over-use of powerful cleansing products, if you’ve got oily skin, and aggressive soaps and alkaline cleansers should be avoided says Sally Penford of The International Dermal Institute. Your skin is a well-designed organ that needs a balance of lubricants for protection. If you strip it of all of its natural oils, it will a become dehydrated and probably quite sensitive. It may gradually start to produce more oil in an effort to compensate for all the harsh treatment. Instead, she recommends using glycerine-based cleansers especially formulated for oily skin or those featuring oil-absorbing clay. Regularly exfoliating skin is an integral part of any man’s grooming routine. But it’s vital if you have oily skin, as dead skin cells can combine with sebum to clog pores leading to spots.
Due to the recent upsurge in pollution, more and more people are visiting dermatologists with different skin issues, including men. Doctor Hadley King, a dermatologist based in New York City, states that various skin related issues can be handled before-hand if you have just one tool with you a face toner. What do these do? They remove dirt and oil in a gentle way whilst restoring the skins PH level, which protects skin from bacteria. Try and buy ones with a low amount of alcohol.
Anti-aging products are popular for both men and woman and though you can’t stop aging, no matter what you do, you can slow down the negative effects through a better lifestyle and the right products. Less conventional products, like oils and serums, with anti-aging benefits are rising in popularity amongst older men. To fight the effects of aging, applying sunscreen daily even in the UK, can shield skin and pores from harsh ultraviolet rays. It also assists in decreasing spots, unevenness, blotchy pores, and protects from skin cancer. So, do apply sunscreen each day without fail for fair skins. Darker skin, which is usually oiler, does have a greater degree of built-in protection in the form of melanin, but the pigment cannot be relied upon to protect the skin indefinitely. Oily skin will also wrinkle if overexposed to the sun’s UV rays as well as developing sun spots and uneven pigmentation, so it pays to protect your skin, if you want to retain your youthful looks.
Finally, we all need a bit of TLC sometimes, men included! If your skin is feeling particularly dry or run-down and your complexion needs a bit of a boost, then you can’t beat a face mask. There are lots on the market but Kaolin clay masks are quick and easy to use and are beneficial to the skin. Only use masks once or twice a week anymore and this cause more harm than good.
Increased exposure on social media has been contributing to the healthy demand for men’s skincare solutions. Manufacturers of men’s skincare products are tapping into newer categories, such as facial scrubs, moisturizers, and polishers rather than just shave care products.
We all need some self-care and in turn this does help to feel more confident and better in ourselves, which is healthy and vanity doesn’t come into it at all.