You may have noticed by now that at Beau Brummell, we like to boast about creating products designed specifically for men. We've found that men and women's skin is extremely different. The culprit, like most of our other physical differences, are hormones, in our case androgens, like testosterone. With all the differences come different treatments and a unique set of challenges. Thus, both the types of products men use, as well as the ingredients found in those products should be custom tailored to the needs of the individual. We're going into what makes our skin different than her skin.
Sebum is the oily secretion of the sebaceous glands in our skin. Those androgens are causing our sebaceous glands to secrete more sebum, so on average, men's skin tends to look oilier than women's. Here are the two most common problems associated with oily skin:
- Shinier appearance of skin.
- Increased chance of pore congestion, causing blackheads, acne, etc.
To combat these issues, men should make sure to wash their face at least once per day with a sulfate free face wash. Sulfates are harsh surfactants that are mainly used in household cleaning products to de-grease surfaces. While we want the oil off our face, we don't want to over do it, leaving the skin dry and irritated. Use a gentler face wash and make sure to cleanse at least once per day.
Men's skin is on average 25% thicker than women's skin. Because men's skin contains more collagen, our skin retains a firmer appearance. Collagen is lost over time, which is what causes signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles. While men lose collagen at a steady rate, women's collagen loss is intensified during menopause. If you're doing the math in your head, you're right - men aren't going to need to use as many anti-aging or anti-wrinkle products.
You'll need to pay attention to certain areas, the most glaring being the area around and underneath the eyes. The skin around our eyes is naturally thinner, which is why most guys in their 30's look in the mirror and are upset by the look of the skin around their eyes. So when it comes to anti-aging products, try to incorporate an anti-aging eye cream into your daily routine.
For most guys, shaving is no longer a daily ritual. "Casualization" of the workplace, redefining the notion of masculinity, and facial hair trends have all contributed. Though even men with facial hair take a razor their faces from time to time, some are even lining their beards up daily. Any guy who's shaved knows that it's an irritating affair. When you shave, you're removing the uppermost layer of the skin. Think of it as an intense exfoliation. Shaving woes may be the reason more guys are sporting facial hair these days..
Just like anything else, it's got to be done the right way. Using a blunt razor can cause painful nicks and cuts that may leave scars. Using the wrong type of razor may cause you to have to make multiple passes over the same area, exposing yourself to more irritation. Every guy knows how painful shaving bumps on the neckline (ingrown hairs) can be.
Try to shave when your hair is short, if you're looking to get rid of a beard, trim it off with clippers before using your razor. Consider wet shaving to lift up the hair on your face, making them easier to cut. Always use a sharp blade. Follow these rules and shaving might not be so irritating.
The most obvious effect the testosterone we produce has on our faces is hair. It just never stops!
Most bearded men will admit their beard is itchy, dry, and sometimes flaky. The hair follicles on our face churn out coarser hairs than the hair on our heads. It can dig down into our skin causing itching, and when they get long enough the skin beneath can become dry and irritated. Before you go chopping it off, know that there are some steps you can take to live more comfortably with that scruff.
- Moisturize. Don't forget the skin underneath your beard.
- If you're going for a stylized look, use a beard oil daily.
- Your skin isn't exposed to the elements, so make sure to exfoliate beneath your beard to keep dead skin away.
Disparity in Industry
Take a look at your local retailer and you'll likely find that they carry dozens and dozens of products for women and just a handful for men. You can't fault them, women spend more on skin and hair care. However, the demand is rising. New and exciting men's skin and hair products are being released all the time. Whether you're looking to rejuvenate your skin, prevent signs of aging, deal with the complications of shaving, there's a routine for every guy. The most important part of a men's skin care routine is sticking to it. The result will be an elevated appearance, and most of all, more self confidence. Appreciate what you have and take care of it.