While anyone can benefit from a skincare routine, products are often geared towards women. In order to achieve the anti-aging results many skincare lines promise, men have to factor in differences that impact their skin. So, simply copying a routine from a women’s health magazine probably isn’t going to work. Instead, consider the following differences when putting together your routine.
Men ignore their skin early in life
Until very recently, the cosmetics industry advertising was heavily gendered. As a result, people who identified as masculine were less likely to adopt a skincare routine in their teens or 20s.
Men are also slightly more likely to take part in activities that wreak havoc on the skin, such as smoking and binge drinking.
Dermatologists agree that there are many benefits to starting a skin routine as early as possible. Firstly, preventing fine lines and wrinkles is much easier than minimizing their appearance. Additionally, using products with SPF factor consistently reduces the risk of sunspots, discoloration, and skin cancers.
By the time many men have an interest in their skin, a lot of damage has already been done. If you fall into this category, you should consider products with ingredients with restorative properties, like salicylic acid and antioxidants.
Men are more likely to breakout
Men are more likely to grapple with acne and sensitive skin. That is because men produce testosterone at higher levels. This hormone stimulates the production of sebum, a fatty substance that protects the skin.
However, when it is produced in too high amounts, sebum can clog the pores. This traps bacteria underneath the skin and leads to pimples. These same conditions can cause breakouts in acne-prone skin.
Unlike pimples that are localized and temporary, acne breakouts tend to be chronic and spread out across the face and upper body.
A skincare routine that includes a gentle cleanser can remove oil without aggravating the skin. Products that are too harsh or drying can actually ramp up sebum production. Follow up the cleanser with a hydrating oil-free serum or cream to keep the skin’s moisture locked in. If you have acne-prone skin, choose products like a stem cell face serum that is formulated to regulate sebum production.
Hormone changes impact skin
A high testosterone level isn’t all bad news for skin. In fact, testosterone thickens the skin and buffers it against elasticity loss. Although everyone experiences testosterone declines as they age, hormone loss is less steep in men. As a result, men tend to develop wrinkles and fine lines at a slower rate than women do.
Nevertheless, as their testosterone levels go down, men must adapt their routine to manage their more fragile and less resilient skin. There are a myriad of products with active ingredients that can stimulate skin renewal and boost essential compounds like collagen and elastin.
For example, alpha hydroxy acids, derived from fruits, can be found in serums, moisturizers, and toners. AHAs gently remove the outer skin layer which stimulates new skin cell production. Retinol products can also counter visible signs of aging by increasing elastin levels.
Men are wrinkle-prone in different areas
No one is immune to wrinkles, but gender can affect where and how they appear. Testosterone may slow down aging, but wrinkles on men tend to be deeper and more pronounced. Men are also more likely to develop deeper lines.
Dermatologists attribute these outcomes to stronger facial muscles. Wrinkles tend to appear in areas that are frequently manipulated by facial muscles, such as the forehead, around the mouth, between the eyebrows, and around the eyes.
While everyday skin care products can combat and reduce the appearance of deep wrinkles, they are usually not enough. A good skincare routine combined with minimally-invasive treatments, like botox or dermal fillers, will produce the best results.
Facial hair can cause skin problems
Of course, we cannot talk about men’s skincare without discussing beards. Facial hair can make it difficult to properly cleans the underlying skin. Further, frequent shaving can lead to irritation, ingrown hairs, and opportunities for infection.
If you have a beard, you will need additional steps in your routine to keep every area of your skin healthy. Use an exfoliant or scrub gentle enough for daily use to slough away dead cells.
Like the rest of your skin, your beard also needs to stay moisturized to prevent breakouts. Try rubbing on a few drops of naturally-derived beard oil after your cleanser. If you have dry skin, wash your beard using shampoo with ingredients like salicylic acid or antimicrobials to combat irritation.