We see a lot of advertising overly simplifying men’s skin care by promoting products such as 2-in-1 soaps or even 3-in-1 soaps that can be used for the face, body, and hair. While this all-in-one solution looks convenient, it hardly does anything to help with your specific skin concerns – aging, skin discoloration, skin sensitivities, or even adult acne.
We may think that adding in a few more products to our skin care routine will be overwhelming or time consuming. But if done properly you can still have a skin care routine that does not break the bank, will use the fewest possible products, and will take just a few minutes each day.
Why bother with skin care at all? A healthy skin creates a great impression because it makes you look less stressed to the people around you. This in turn makes you feel happier and gives you that alluring look of confidence and youthfulness. Overall, you just feel great about yourself!
A Keep-it-Simple Skin Care Routine for Men
At a minimum, men’s skin care must cover cleansing, moisturizing, and sun protection. This is considered the core skin care regimen for men. Additional steps in the regimen can then be added to specifically address issues such as wrinkles and fine lines, rough/dry skin, dull/lifeless skin, enlarged pores, eye care, oily skin, skin discoloration, broken capillaries/redness, rosacea, and adult acne.
Let’s now discuss the most basic products that you MUST incorporate daily to keep your skin healthy and protected: Cleanse, Moisturize, and Protect.
What happens when you don’t wash your face? Excess oil, dirt, and dead skin cells accumulate which leads to clogged pores and acne breakouts. Your skin will also appear dull and textured, hiding the radiant and youthful glow of skin underneath.
Cleansing your skin is important and has been important throughout history – soap was mentioned as early as 2000 BC! Using water is not enough to clean your skin of impurities because these impurities are not water-soluble (hence why we use soap when we wash our hands). Similarly, you should be using proper cleansers for your face and should be the first and foremost step in your skincare routine.
Your skin is a barrier that protects your underlying tissues from infections and environmental stress. These factors not only cause dry skin and irritation, but can lead to a variety of atopic dermatitis in addition to skin fissures that make us prone to infection and inflammation. The lack of moisture in the skin can also exaggerate fine lines and wrinkles as well as leave a saggy appearance on your skin.
Moisturizers improve your skin’s hydration and reducing water loss in your skin helps to prevent serious skin conditions. Moreover, moisturizers make your skin looking plump and youthful while diminishing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Failing to use sunscreen can lead to premature aging (such as wrinkles and sagging skin), pigmentation, and skin cancer. Ultra-Violet (UV) radiation from the sun accounts for 90% of non-melanoma cancers, 86% of melanoma skin cancers, and 90% of skin aging. UVA rays target deeper into the skin to speed up aging, and you should get the highest PA (Protection Grade of UVA) sunscreen to protect yourself from these rays. UVB rays causes sunburns and skin cancer, and you should get a sunscreen with a high SPF value. So you need to protect your skin with a sunscreen that protects you from both types of UV rays (often called “broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection”).
Try to use 100% physical/mineral sunscreens instead of chemical as they are not only safer for you but to the environment too. You can read more about sunscreen safety here: https://essentiallifestore.com/is-your-sunscreen-safe/
Additional Skin Care Steps
While having a basic skin care routine will help prevent a number of skin issues, sometimes they are not enough. This is when you need to add specific products to your core skin care routine. These ancillary products will treat specific skin concerns such as acne, wrinkles and fine lines, pigmentation, or redness. Three of the most well-known and researched products to incorporate into your routine are: Exfoliators, Vitamin C, and Retinol.
Our skin naturally exfoliates dead skin cells each day but this process slows down or stops with natural age and unprotected sun exposure. This causes a buildup of dead skin cells which leads to clogged pores, wrinkles, uneven skin tone, flaky skin and more.
Chemical exfoliants such as AHAs (e.g. Glycolic or Lactic Acid) or BHAs (e.g. Salicylic Acid) removes these impurities from your skin to reveal healthier skin, even out skin tone and texture, as well as reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It is not recommended to use physical exfoliants such as apricot scrubs as many of the products on the market are too harsh and causes micro-abrasions to the skin.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that neutralizes free radicals. Free radicals are everywhere (such as air pollution, smoking, alcohol, and sunlight) and damages our cells (similar to when you leave an apple out on the counter and it turns brown due to the free radicals). Free radicals cause premature aging leading to wrinkles and saggy skin, as well as pigmentation and dryness.
Not only does Vitamin C help prevent free radical damage (similar to applying lemon juice on apple to prevent browning), it boosts collagen production, lightens pigmentation, and helps smooth out wrinkles.
Retinol (Vitamin A) is a gold-standard in skin care due to its benefits for all sorts of skin concerns. Retinol fades pigmentation such as hyperpigmentation and sun/age spots, penetrates into your skin to stimulate collagen production as well as treating acne and breakouts. Moreover, it revives dull-looking skin and evens out skin texture and tone.
You must wear sunscreen when using Retinol (you should be wearing sunscreen everyday anyways) as it makes your skin susceptible to sunray damage. A general rule is to use retinol at night.
And in Closing...
A proper skin care routine doesn’t need to be complicated. Just make sure to have the basics down and add in the additional products if needed. If you’re unsure of which products to use, get a free consultation from us today: https://essentiallife.ca/free-skin-evaluation.html or visit our online store to find out more: https://essentiallifestore.com/shop/men-skin-care/