Statista says that 29% of men aged 18-34 follow a skin care regimen. Not a big percentage. If you ask women, it would be more like 100%. Keep in mind that these stats are for the U.S. market, where marketing campaigns on cosmetics target us from all over the place.
Why do men keep resisting the need to apply products on their skin?
It’s time for us to change this.
In fact, things are already changing. I mean, it shouldn’t be that hard. Ulta dedicates an entire section to men’s products at its website. So you just pick a few and you start using them.
Wait, is it really that simple?
You still need to choose the right products for your skin type, and you should decide what types of products you’re going to need.
If you’re completely new to skin care routines, this will be a valuable lesson for you. Are you ready?
Things to Figure Out before You Start Buying Cosmetics
Don’t go spending your money without having a clue what the hell you’re doing. Sure; the employee on a cosmetics counter will recommend some products and tell you how to use them. But do you think it’s their job to teach you an entire lesson on skin care and provide you with a detailed plan just so you could know what you’re doing? No.
It’s your responsibility to learn something about your skin and its needs.
The good news is that it doesn’t take much. Here’s what you need to do:
- Understand Your Skin Type
There are four skin types, and your skin belongs to one of them.
- Oily skin produces excess oils, which clog the pores and often cause acne. Since it has natural moisture, it’s less prone to wrinkling.
- Dry skin feels tight, especially when you don’t apply anything to it. It’s dehydrated and very prone to wrinkles.
- Combination skin is oily in the T-zone (forehead, nose and chin), but dry in the cheeks.
- Normal skin is normal. It’s not too oily and not too dry.
Any of these skin types can also be sensitive. If your skin reacts to different products with redness, it’s sensitive.
How can you know what skin type you have? It’s simple: wash your face with a mild soap and pat it dry. Don’t apply any product. After half an hour, look at the mirror. Do you feel like your skin is too dry and is about to crack when you make different facial expressions? Or did it start to produce shine, especially on the forehead? Maybe you see a combination of these symptoms?
- Understand the Need for Frequent Cleansing
The skin care routine for men must start and end with a cleanser.
Most men didn’t bother with their skin too much when they were teenagers, so they didn’t develop such a routine. They don’t realize why it’s necessary to wash the face in the morning when you already washed it before going to bed.
Okay. You might not understand it, but you still need to do it.
Your skin produces natural oils overnight. If you wash your face with a high-quality cleanser and apply a cream after that, it will feel much nicer.
As for the evening wash, it’s absolutely necessary because it removes all the dirt your skin caught on just by being exposed to environmental pollution.
Plus, you have to wash your face after exercise. You sweat a lot, and that clogs your pores. Do you want to get acne breakouts just because you’re trying to stay fit? No. So wash your face!
And no; you can’t use plain soap for this. It contains too much sodium, which disturbs the skin’s balance and sucks the life out of it.
- Nutrition Matters
What you eat shows on the skin. If you eat too much fast food, your skin will get oily. If you don’t drink enough water and don’t get all the vitamins you need, it will get dry.
If your skin is in a really bad condition, you shouldn’t avoid your daily multivitamins.
And if you’re wondering what type of diet would make a difference, here are a few tips for you:
- Water is essential. If you’re dehydrated, your skin will show the first signs of the condition. But your entire body suffers from water deprivation. Drink away!
- Sugar is the devil. Ditch the Red Bull and Snickers for real! There are so many nicer snacks you could have. How about some fruit? As for the Red Bull and soda, substitute it with water. Yes; it’s possible. Stop complaining!
- Eat avocados. They are loaded with vitamin E, which your skin needs a lot!
- Eat tons of fruits and veggies. Take more veggies with your main meals and snack on fruit all day long.
What Types of Skin Care Products Does a Man Need?
Have you heard about the Korean-style skin regimen?
Oh. My. God.
I tried it once. It includes eight steps in the morning and ten (!) steps in the evening. I was spending hours taking care of my skin… per day! I was in college at the time and this was my solid excuse for hiring a pro to get reliable assignment assistance. I’m not even kidding; that’s how much time the skin care routine took.
So, if you’re looking for a simple way to start taking care of your skin, that’s not it. You need a few essentials to get you through a day.
Trust me; the results will still be visible!
Here’s what you need:
- An Appropriate Cleanser
Water is the best cleanser in the world. Of course, you’ll use it. But it’s not enough to get all the dirt out of the skin’s pores. You need a nice face wash product, which will be appropriate for your skin type, especially if you are prone to acne. This is the type of advice you can ask for at the drugstore. You already know your type; you just need suggestions on products to buy.
It’s best to go for non-aggressive facial cleansers with natural ingredients.
And if you’re ready to go real fancy, you can use it with a Clarisonic face brush.
- A Nice Serum
Can’t you just apply some moisturizer and call it a day?
But a great serum will improve the quality of your skin. You’ll need less moisturizer and other products. This product will nourish it from the deep layers out. It’s an essential part of the skin care regimen on the long run.
You’ll use a single package for months, since a little goes a long way.
Estee Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair is a classic in the category of serums. It works for all skin types. But if you’re looking for something more affordable, you’ll easily find Vitamin C serums from more accessible brands.
- The Perfect Moisturizer
It doesn’t have to be too expensive. It’s more important to invest in a good serum. So if you’re budgeting, that’s where the largest chunk of the budget will go. As for moisturizers, you can find an affordable one. As long as it’s right for your skin type, it should work.
You need a specific recommendation because you’d rather not spend time in research?
Well, Vichy has nice products. But from all moisturizers I’ve tried, Mario Badescu holds the top position. This brand offers products for all skin types, so you can easily figure out what product would work for you.
Now, the question is: do you need a day cream and a night cream?
Most brands came out with 24-hour moisturizers, which are perfect during the day and night. But during the summer, you’ll probably need to wear a day cream with an SPF. You have to protect your skin against harmful UV rays. They cause premature aging… and cancer.
- BB Cream
Isn’t that makeup?
But a BB cream is nowhere near a foundation. It contains moisturizing and nourishing ingredients, so it replaces the day cream. If you use a BB cream, you usually apply it right after washing and patting the skin dry. It needs a naked face.
It will keep your skin hydrated throughout the day, but it will also achieve an even tone. Don’t worry; it will still look natural.
- Shaving and Beard-Care Products
Shaving is not a simple process. If you just use the foam or gel and get it quickly done with the razor, you’ll dry out your skin and it won’t look nice.
These are the essential grooming products you need:
- Cleansing gel, so you’ll prep the skin before shaving it. You can use the daily one; no need for special products here.
- Shaving cream, of course. If you want to get really serious about shaving, you can apply a pre-shaving conditioner, too.
- After-shave lotion or balm, which should be mild enough to calm down the irritated skin but strong enough to disinfect.
Keep It Consistent
The problem with skin care regimens is that most people fall off the wagon at one point or another. They start well. They buy all the products and use them daily. But then they get lazy and go back to their old practices.
You won’t do that. You made a firm decision to start taking care of your skin, right? Well, you’ll do it!