The New Year is about new beginnings, starting afresh, and of course, new year’s resolutions. With the majority of us feeling mentally, physically, and financially drained after enjoying the party season, January is the ideal time to start devoting a bit more of your day to self-care. This makes it the perfect opportunity to start building the smart skincare habits that will see you reap huge benefits down the line. For this reason, as part of our Groom 101 series this month, we’re taking it right back to basics with a guide to the basics of skincare for men.
Before we delve into any practical advice on skincare for men, it’s important to get to grips with a few fundamental ideas:
Once your fundamental skincare needs have been established, building a routine based around products that address these concerns is the next step. Your overall skincare routine can be divided into four key parts, and fine tuning each of them is the easiest way to guarantee you’re getting the maximum benefits. These parts are:
Your facial cleanser and face wash is the foundation of your routine, and that’s why it’s extremely important you choose a product you know you can trust. Try to identify your skin type, and pick a product that is tailored to you. From their, try a few products out, and see which works best. Experimenting is crucial, as depending on how your skin responds to them, certain products will be relatively ineffective, and once you find one that works for you, your skin will be extremely grateful.
Face scrubs and other exfoliants both clean deep into the pores, dislodging deep lying dirt and grease, and help to buff away dead skin. Besides clearing away flakes and contributing to cleansing, this process is thought to have two major benefits: it prevents the build up of dirt and grease that leads to blemishes such as blackheads and cystic spots, and helps to speed up skin cell regeneration, causing your skin to appear refreshed and renewed. Use these once or twice each week, or more if your skin responds well to them, in order to get the maximum benefits.
Moisturisers perform two absolutely vital jobs for your skin. They firm and plump the skin, combating the signs of ageing, and replenish the moisture lost throughout your skin throughout the day or when cleansing. Through this latter function, a moisturiser helps to restore the skin’s barrier function, helping to prevent flaking, as well as outbreaks of blemishes. Moisturisers come in a range of styles, with some designed to be fast absorbing, more appropriate for daytime use, some packed with antioxidants and other such ingredients to maximise their anti-ageing effects, and some designed to have long lasting moisturising effects, more appropriate for night time use.
Face Masks are made to fill a number of different roles, but the majority can be divided into two camps. Clay and charcoal masks, as well as other cleansing masks, are applied in liquid form, allowing them to penetrate deep into the pores, before rapidly drying. Once washed away, the impurities it absorbs from deep within the pores are removed along with it, leaving your skin brighter, clearer, and free of blackheads. Moisturising masks, on the other hand, are designed to soothe inflamed or tired skin, as well as deliver intense hydrating benefits in a short period of time. This makes them an ideal treatment ahead of an important occasion, or after a big night out.
Last on our roundup of the fundamentals of skincare for men are quick, straightforward treatments and solutions that you can deploy in response to a breakout. A blemish can catch anybody by surprise, so having a spot treatment at your disposal is always recommended. Usually formulated with a medium to high concentration of an anti-bacterial ingredient, spot treatments rapidly dry spots out, preventing them from becoming worse. This will allow them to heal much quicker, and reduce redness and inflammation. When this fails, or if you find yourself with little time to allow the blemish to heal altogether, a concealer is a fantastic way to even out your skin and hide discolouration. Read more about how to apply concealer here.
If you like this content, check out more of our skincare related blog posts. Discover the top eye creams, the best body washes, top 12 face washes, and SPF moisturisers. In addition, read about the 5 changes to your grooming routine you need to make this year. As always, for more male grooming expertise, keep up to speed with the Mankind blog.