Fellas, if you're getting up in the morning, washing your face with bar soap and water and running out the door, then it's time to step up your skincare game. We aren't suggesting that you fill up your medicine cabinet with hard-to-pronounce cleansers and creams you probably won't use. But we do recommend committing to memory and practicing these five skincare tips that will make us do a double-take. But seriously, don't let these steps intimidate you... they're only fine-tuning what you already do.
1. Wash your face with a good cleanser. This is a no-brainer. But the reality is, either you guys are doing it all wrong or just not doing it at all. Men are often guilty of taking super hot showers and using harsh soaps or face scrubs, according to dermatologist and psychiatrist Dr. Amy Wechsler. She adds, "This makes your skin dry and when your skin is dry you appear wrinkly and much older." Not quite the look you're going for, right?
"It is important to have a gentle cleanser that will cleanse the skin from the dirt and oil that can accumulate," says Dr. Howard Brooks, a Washington, D.C.-based dermatologist. "Aveeno Men's Face Wash is a perfect choice for daily use. It contains colloidal oatmeal that will hydrate while it cleanses."
2. Stop buying cheap razors. According to Thomas Cheung, master barber at The Art of Shaving at Tysons Corner Center in McLean, VA, most men shave five times a week. (How do you do it?) "A quality razor can be a lifetime item, so choose your weapon wisely. Choose a razor that fits your skin sensitivity and beard coarseness, your face will thank you," says Cheung.
If you're going the drugstore route, Dr. Wechsler suggests pumping the brakes before buying a razor with several blades. "With these types, you're more likely to get razor burn or ingrown hairs because the extra blades pull the hairs below the skin a little too deep."
A moisturizing shaving gel is key to providing a barrier of protection while shaving, so slather that on. Shave in the shower or immediately afterwords, as Cheung states that "the facial hairs are much softer from the warm water and steam." Plus, it eliminates having to clean up a dirty sink when you've got company.
3. Make after-shave your new best friend. "After-shave hydrates and soothes the skin; it also seals in the skin after a nice shave," says Cheung. "Your after-shave should be alcohol-free because alcohol dries your skin -- plain and simple."
4. Don't skip the facial moisturizer. Facial hair can be sexy on a guy, but what really turns us on is when our faces touch and it doesn't feel like sandpaper. Moisturizing daily will get you soft, kissable skin. "Fragrance-free products are easy because they have no smell and aren't considered 'girly,'" says Dr. Wechsler. "Cetaphil is a good moisturizer option. And Clinique for Men is actually the same as the original Clinique products -- it's just in a grey bottle."
5. Never leave home without applying sunscreen. If you can find a moisturizer that contains SPF of 30 or higher, then you're way ahead. But it doesn't hurt to keep a separate bottle of sunscreen handy. Plus, it lets us know that you actually care about your appearance. Bonus points!
Men who don't use sunscreen increase their risk of getting sun damage, which may result in redness, irritation, extra blood vessels and skin cancer. Stay forever young (or close to it) by applying sunscreen every single day.
Makeup for men? Well, that takes a bit more practice:
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