We know skin care may not exactly be the hottest topic of conversation in the men's locker room, but here at HIMistry we're trying to flip that script. Lately, it seems that more and more men are paying attention to their skin and how to take care of it, causing dermatologists everywhere to jump for joy. In fact, the beauty industry has reported men's skin care as the largest growing sales category in recent years, indicating a shift in attitudes surrounding men's personal care. The market has seen men's skin care formulas go from basic to booyah, which means you don't need a skin doctor on speed-dial to establish a kickass skin care routine.
Here are our top six tips for creating your own customized skin care regime based on real dermatologist recommendations.
1. PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR SKIN TYPE
When you visit a dermatologist, one of the first things they'll want to determine is your skin type. Are you oily? Are you painfully dry? Is your skin sensitive or easily irritated? Skin type will play a determining factor in identifying which products and ingredients will work best for you. For example, a skin type that produces excess oil will benefit greatly from a pore-shrinking astringent like witch hazel, while a dry skin type might react to the same product by becoming the Sahara-desert.
2. IDENTIFY YOUR SKINCARE NEEDS
When building a custom skin care routine, it's important to address your skin's basic needs as well as your aesthetic needs. If a dermatologist put a mirror in your hands and asked you to take a closer look at your face, what parts of your skin would you most want to fix? For some men, their primary need could be reducing redness due to rosacea, or targeting the bacteria that is causing breakouts. For others, it could be dark under eye circles, or those wrinkles that suddenly appeared after a night of heavy drinking. Once you've honed in on your problem areas, you can begin to correct them with dermatologist-approved ingredients.
3. KEEP IT CLEAN
Did you know some men go weeks or months without washing their face? Please don't be that guy. Any dermatologist worth their salt is going to recommend you start your daily skin care routine with a gentle yet effective facial cleanser. (And no, that old bar soap in your shower that you use to suds up your backside isn't going to cut it either.) Most generic body soaps have high pH levels that can dry out your skin, so be sure to use a face-specific, water-based product to thoroughly wash away all impurities. If you're really smart, you might choose a multi-tasking cleanser that also fights the signs of aging with natural ingredients like black tea and lactic acid.
4. TRUST TARGETED TREATMENTS
Do you get razor burn easily? There's a treatment for that, and chances are it'll include soothing natural ingredients like aloe vera or chamomile. Are you cringing at your adult acne? There's a treatment for that too, and it is probably formulated with a hefty dose of salicylic acid to keep the pores clear.
There are treatments for nearly every skin concern, whether you'd like to see a little softening of the crow's feet around your eyes, or if you want to smooth out the dead skin clinging to your rugged cheekbones. Oftentimes, the treatment step of your routine will immediately follow your cleanser step, usually in the form of a clarifying toner or a potent serum.
5. EXFOLIATION EXPLAINED
Over time, dead cells accumulate on the skin's surface and should be gently removed with a good exfoliating skincare product. You may consider either a gritty scrub that manually buffs away that rough texture, or you could go the chemical route with an acid that eats it away. One of the easiest ways to introduce an exfoliation step into your skin care routine is with a peeling pad saturated with an alpha hydroxy acid formula—just sweep it over clean skin and you're done! Don't forget that exfoliating products can be quite intense, and can make your skin more susceptible to sunburn. Dermatologists only recommend you exfoliate 2-3 times a week.
6. MOISTURE IS MANDATORY
How strong is your moisturizing game? If you aren't hydrating regularly, you may be contributing to your skin problems without realizing it. Daily moisturizing not only keeps your skin's natural moisture barrier in tip-top shape, it also plumps and tones surface texture which reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. As a good rule of thumb, heavier and more emollient moisturizing creams work best for dry skin, while oilier skin types will prefer a lightweight lotion or hydrating serum. Many moisturizers are also formulated with extra benefits like brightening vitamin C so you can target specific concerns like dark spots and aging. Most dermatologists will also recommend using a day cream with a high SPF and a separate night cream with an advanced formula that goes to work on the skin while you sleep.
Navigating your skin care needs doesn't have to be a struggle. Using these tips, you should be better equipped to identify your skin's needs and build a basic multi-step skin care routine for men that features effective, natural ingredients. If you have more questions, get the conversation started by contacting the skincare experts at HIMistry today.