Grooming products have been a growing commodity for men in recent years. Whether men are in the blistering hot sun or frigid cold, men need skin care products to prevent oily or dry skin. Even the stereotypical manly-men can have skin that is more sensitive to ultraviolet exposure than women’s skin, increasing the chances of skin cancer and brown spots.
"We tend to think of male skin type as tougher, thicker, but actually it's more sensitive. Compared to women, their skin loses moisture faster, is more prone to dryness and doesn't exfoliate as much," says Natalie Semchyshyn, M.D., assistant professor of dermatology at Saint Louis University. Here are five grooming essentials to help men have healthier and more vibrant skin.
1. The Basics
Dr. Semchyshyn recommends a basic routine for men. "A six-step program doesn't work for men. They're not used to putting on layers of different things," she says. Whether it is a shaving gel or moisturizer, using products with antioxidants and therapeutic ingredients like Phloretin, Ferulic acid, and vitamins C and E are a great start to help protect the skin against damage from UV rays and pollution. Finely ground oatmeal or colloidal oatmeal helps soothe the skin and sunscreen helps guard the skin against skin cancer and aging.
2. Less Sweat
Sweating can clog and irritate the skin, causing more acne. This is why men who work out or regularly play sports should take extra care of themselves. “The first step is to wash your skin to get the sweat off,” Semchyshyn suggests. “A gentle cleanser is excellent because it doesn’t strip the skin, it just cleans. After washing the face, using a moisturizer can make up for the loss of moisture from washing.” Benzoyl peroxide along with washing helps cleanse the skin.
3. Oil-free zone
Semchyshyn recommends using a cleanser with glycolic or salicyclic acid, for oily skin. She adds, “These help exfoliate and balance the skin.” Moisturizers with oil control and sunscreen are great for individuals with oily skin. A gel that combines with benzoyl peroxide with oil absorbing ingredients is good for extremely oily skin.
4. Keep exfoliating
Most exfoliation in men come from shaving. This doesn’t exfoliate the entire face. Semchyshyn says, “Dead skin cells can give the face a dull look. Sonic cleansing brushes can help exfoliate the skin and are great for deep cleansing. They can be used daily and can even help with flaky body skin.”
5. Fight Dryness
Cold temperatures can dry the skin up, especially if one showers multiple times a day. “It’s important to moisturize the skin and use a cleanser that doesn’t dry your skin,” she says. “Using a product that has natural oatmeal will moisturize and soothe sensitive skin. Moisturizers with glycolic or lactic acid in it will keep the skin hydrated and also exfoliate.”