In recent years, television shows like "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" introduced thousands of average guys to the idea that they can be manly men and still take better care of their skin. Since that show’s final broadcast in 2007, a lot of men are taking the time to take better care of their skin. And, beauty product companies are now marketing many more skin care products to men.
If you look on drug store shelves, or browse the department store cosmetics counters, you can find lots of products designed for men’s skin care. Plastic surgeons, dermatologists, and aestheticians are also reporting that more men are coming to them for treatments like facials, chemical peels, laser skin treatments, blemish removal, and facial fillers.
Despite the increased interest in men’s skin care, there are still those men who don’t take care of their skin as well as they should. Your skin is your first line of defense against the world, keeping all the nasty stuff from getting in. Taking care of your skin keeps it soft, supple and looking good, but it also keeps it strong and helps it do its job.
Follow these four tips to help you take better care of your skin:
1. Use A Good Cleanser
This applies to both your body and your face. A lot of regular soaps contain ingredients that can dry out your skin, and dry skin can crack and flake. Dry skin also shows wrinkles more easily, which makes you look older. Trade in regular soap for these alternatives:
- For your face consider a gentle, exfoliating cleanser, such as a mild apricot scrub
- For your body, consider a moisturizing, non-soap body bar or body wash
2. Use High-Quality Shaving Supplies
Cheap razors, shaving creams and aftershaves can do your skin more harm than good. Cheap razors can scrape up your face, leaving your skin raw and irritated. Shaving creams and aftershaves can contain alcohols that dry out your skin. You don’t have to spend a lot of money, or go all hipster with a vintage straight razor to get a smoother shave. Just switch out your can of shaving cream for a moisturizing type and, if you choose to shave the old-fashioned way, just be sure to use a rich shaving soap to soften the bristles on your shaving brush.
3. Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize
You know how your skin gets all itchy in winter, and your lips get chapped, and your knuckles split? That’s because your skin is dry. Cold dry air, followed by hot dry air, sucks the oil and moisture right out, making you look like a giant cornflake. And this doesn’t just happen in the winter; your skin can dry out year-round.
One of the best way to combat winter-dry skin is to apply lotion daily; several times a day if you need to. There are many unscented skin lotions available now, so that you don't have to worry about smelling "like a girl" after you moisturize. Here are some guidelines for moisturizing your skin:
- In the winter you should use a thick formula; some companies even make winter formula lotions
- During the warmer months you can use a lighter-weight lotion (like using different weight oils in your engine in the winter vs. summer)
- For best results, apply the lotion when your skin is slightly damp, so it will absorb it better
- There are several facial moisturizers on the market targeted toward men. Find the best one for your skin type: oily, dry, or combination (If you break out, or your skin tends to be shiny by midday, especially along your forehead and nose, you probably have oily skin, so choose an oil-free moisturizer)
4. Consider These Professional Skincare Options
Over-the-counter products and services are great, but if you have more serious skin issues, like acne scarring or unsightly moles, you may want to seek the help of a professional dermatologist. A dermatologist can help you with skin blemishes, minor scars, moles and discoloration, and sagging skin, using a variety of procedures including:
Men are increasingly seeking more professional procedures that refine their features or give them a more youthful look. If you want help with larger issues or seek to combat the signs of aging, a plastic surgeon can help with treatments that include:
- Face, eye and brow lifts
- Cheek and face implants
- Rhinoplasty (nose reconstruction)