Due to my double X chromosome, a rigorous skincare routine was drilled into my consciousness from a tender young age – pre-mature wrinkles being a severe threat to women everywhere. The earlier you start the better, I was told by the mature female role-models in my life.
Routine skincare is not common amongst most men and may be why a recent study found that men are more likely to show signs of aging.
Unless you’ve battled chronic acne or eczema in the past, chances are you’re not a stickler when it comes to a regular skincare regimen. As you mature, though, the benefits of preventative skincare become more apparent.
All too suddenly, wrinkles or dark spots appear out of nowhere. Or adult responsibilities incite more pimples than you had at fourteen.
Collagen, the protein that maintains tissue firmness, deteriorates with sun damage causing wrinkles and laxity. Men’s skin is 25% thicker and has higher collagen density than women’s – both great qualities for youthful looking skin. However, men's skin gradually thins over time whereas women's dermal thickness remains the same until menopause, according to the International Dermal Institute.
Male skin happens to be rougher, produces more oil and is slightly more prone to acne than that of a woman. Luckily both collagen damage and oily buildup can easily be prevented.
A recent study shows that the human face is the most powerful means of nonverbal communication expressing emotion, attractiveness and identity.
Your skin, specifically that of your face, is worth investing in.
Proven Skin Savers
UltraViolet exposure is the single most detrimental element to human skin. There are two types of UV light – UVA and UVB.
UVA rays comprise 95% of sunlight and penetrate deep into skin tissue causing dangerous cellular mutations at the skin's base layer. UVB rays make up only 5% of all sunlight, but are very intense causing sunburn and cancer in the top-most layer of the skin.
Studies show both UVA & UVB rays cause cancer, wrinkles and collagen deterioration, however, UVA rays are much more prevalent at all times of day, passing through clouds, thin clothing and glass.
All sunscreens protect against UVB rays but only rarely protect against the more rife UVA rays. You should be applying SPF every morning, specifically an SPF to block UVA as well as UVB rays.
The active ingredients of a sunscreen tell you more about the protection value than the SPF number. Look for at least 5% of one of the below UVA protecting ingredients for best coverage.
UVA active ingredients according to the Skin Cancer Foundation:
- Oxides – Titanium Oxide or Zinc Oxide*
- Benzones – Avobenzone, Dioxybenzone, Oxybenzone or Sulisobenzone
*Zinc Oxide is the only active ingredient that protects against both UVA1 & UVA2 as well as UVB rays.
*Try the Neutrogena SPF Spray to easily protect scalp and ears.
Skin cells are constantly reproducing, the fresh ones rising to the top to replace old dead cells. Removal of dead skin cells, excess oil and dirt reveals these younger, brighter cells and encourages a more rapid cellular regeneration process. Wash your face both morning and evening to bring out your best.
Different cleansing strategies work for different skin types.
You may have heard the below contradicting strategies, one of which probably works best for you:
- warm water opens pores for better removal of buildup
- cold water reserves beneficial natural oils for moisture
- a washcloth best exfoliates
- a gritty facial scrub best exfoliates
- simply lathered palms give a gentler exfoliation for sensitive skin
- some claim that only a damp cloth – no cleanser – helps with chronic acne
However, most people agree that a gentle cleanser is the most effective way to remove facial buildup.
Men have given the below cleansers a resounding thumbs-up, all specifically formulated for men's thicker, more oily skin.
*Try Cetaphil Men Cloths to quickly cleanse throughout the day or on late lazy nights.
Hydration promotes faster cellular turnover and regular replenishment of fresh skin cells, which works wonders to prevent wrinkles. Lotion also energizes these newer cells making your skin appear more vibrant and healthy.
Not only does hydration smooth dry flaking and roughness, it also reduces acne. If skin is dry, it sometimes overproduces oil to compensate for dryness which can lead to more pimples.
After cleansing, apply moisturizer to lock in moisture and avoid tightness. I highly recommend the below moisturizers, all formulated to hydrate without oily residue.