Skincare routine for men was a wholly neglected area for a long time. However, recent years have witnessed more and more men being interested in products for younger and healthier-looking skin.
That said, a significant percentage of the men’s population still think of skincare only when they have specific issues such as wrinkles, acne, redness, etc.
Do you know that your skin is the largest organ in the body and needs daily care to keep it healthy?
This is similar to a healthy workout and eating correctly to keep your body in shape.
Effective skincare takes consistency, care and commitment. You can experiment with a few products to determine the one that is best suited for your skin. But the irony is that markets are flooded with so many products that it creates confusion.
However, a careful understanding of skin types, and the types of products and routines required to be followed are usually the first step to a healthy-looking skin.
Every skin type requires different care, and when it comes to Asian men’s skin care, some things need to be done differently.
How does men’s skin differ from women’s?
Most people think that men and women’s skin is the same. But on close analysis, you can find that both are unique and have a few differences.
Here are some of the differences between male and female skin.
1. Thicker skin
Research has proven that the dermis (the deeper layer of your skin) is 20% thicker than a woman’s dermis. Although this varies from person to person, the percentage remains approximately the same.
This is why men and women have wrinkles in different ways.
2. Greater oil content
Men have more sebaceous glands(oil glands) compared to women. Thus, in short, male skin produces twice as much sebum as a woman.
Oil glands in the skin play an important role in retaining moisture and blocking the bacteria.
3. Greater chance of irritation
Unlike a woman’s skin, male skin is more prone to irritants from various external factors. You might have realised that your skin will be under stress after you shave. On the other hand, the extent of irritation on a woman’s skin is comparatively significantly less than that of a man.
4. Earlier reduction in collagen
Collagen is a specific protein produced by the body, making the skin tight and firm. As a man tends to age, his body produces less collagen than what he is losing. This will result in the skin becoming thin and saggy.
On the other hand, the rate of decline of collagen is comparatively lesser in women.
However, the moment a woman hits menopause, she will start to lose collagen at a faster rate.
5. Size of the pores
Pores are tiny openings in the skin that help the body to release sweat and oil. Men have a greater number of pores than women, and the size of pores are also larger than that of women.
Also read our article on “Can Men Use Female Skincare Products?”
Male skin type
Understanding your skin type is the first step in taking care of your skin. Skin types are broadly divided into five. These are:
1. Sensitive skin
Just like the name suggests, sensitive skin is the one that gets easily irritated or inflamed on contact with any allergens. This rare skin type is less common in men than in women.
For those who have this skin type, it is important to check the ingredients before using a particular skincare product. You can do a quick spot test to determine whether the product is right for you.
In some instances, sensitive skin can also occur if you have preexisting skin allergies, such as dermatitis, eczema.
2. Normal Skin
This type of skin is neither too oily nor dry. Normal skin has no imperfections, is soft in appearance and doesn’t need much special care.
3. Dry skin
In most cases, dry skin is caused due to external factors such as humidity, immersion in hot water etc. However, in some cases, you may also genetically have dry skin that gets itchy, flaky and red when it doesn’t get enough moisture.
To take care of dry skin, make sure that you use gentle products which do not cause skin irritation and inflammation.
4. Oily skin
This is sometimes the most complex skin type to determine and treat. Although it might seem that it might need one thing, in reality, it could be another. For example, people who have oily skin might stop using moisturisers thinking that it is already moist. However, the oil may sometimes be the result of excessive dryness and their body producing oil to counteract the dryness.
5. Combination skin
As apparent, this is a combination of one or many different skin types mentioned above. For example, in one type of combination skin, it will be dry in certain areas while it is oily in certain other regions.
People with combination skin should be cautious about the products they use as their skin is more susceptible to imperfections.
Also read our article on “What are skincare options for men with oily skin?”
6. Ageing skin
This is a condition that is perhaps inevitable for everyone. However, in premature skin ageing, it appears wrinkled due to a lack of care for several years. It will usually need the help of a dermatologist to restore the lost glory.
What do men need in a skincare routine?
Skin care starts with a good cleansing routine in the morning. Use well-suited face cleansing products with room temperature water to thoroughly cleanse your face with running water.
This will help open the pores and remove any bacteria or unwanted impurities stuck on the face.
2. Use a scrub
Scrubbing your skin will help to remove dead cells accumulated on your skin. Various face scrub options are available in the market. Choose a product that is gentle on your skin type.
This step helps the healthier skin lying underneath to reveal itself.
However, don’t do it too often if you have sensitive skin.
3. Hydrate and moisturise
Regular moisturisation of the face has multiple benefits. It prevents water loss, makes the skin firmer and has an anti-ageing effect.
When a person ages, the body produces less collagen. As a result, the water holding capacity of the body steadily decreases. Thus to retain the moisture, you need to ensure that your skin is properly hydrated by applying moisturisers.
As our skin is naturally acidic, it requires a daily dose of hydration to improve the body’s PH levels. In addition, using a toner will help you tighten your pores to protect the skin from environmental damage.
Applying sunscreen to the exposed part of the skin helps ensure that you are protected from the sun’s harmful UV rays.
For more details, read our article on “What is a good skincare routine for men?”
Skincare tips for men
Following are some essential tips that men need to incorporate in their skin care routine:
1. Consider ingredients and products
You should choose your skincare products only after considering your skin type. For example, if you have sensitive skin, you should avoid products with strong chemicals that cause skin irritation.
Instead, check the labels for natural/organic products. In addition, also, try to avoid products that come with the label “fragrance-free” as they contain chemicals that mask the fragrance that can still irritate your skin.
2. Wash your face every day after workout
Regularly washing your face with a mild facial cleanser and lukewarm water can help to flush out all the toxic ingredients present in your skin and give your face a smooth and glowing look. This is especially important after any form of exercise since this is when your skin will be releasing excess oil.
3. Shaving techniques
Before you start to shave, use proper shaving cream and wet your skin and facial hair. Ensure to shave in the direction of hair growth to avoid any rashes.
Rinse after each swipe and change your blade after five to six shaves. If you use multi razors, you can shave closer to your skin. This is especially helpful if you experience razor bumps, burns or ingrown hairs.
4. Moisturise regularly
Moisturisers help to trap the water underneath your skin. This will help make your skin brighter and younger by reducing the appearance of fine lines.
To get the maximum results, make sure to apply moisturisers to your face and body immediately after showering or shaving when the skin is wet.
If you have dry skin, you can also use coconut oil as a natural remedy as it nourishes the skin and acts as a natural moisturiser.
5. Stay hydrated
The most important thing to keep your skin healthy is by keeping it hydrated. Drinking lots of water will help balance the fluids in the body and keep it glowing. Consider drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water.
6. Use sunscreen
Overexposure to the sun may cause skin damage such as premature wrinkles, sunburn, age spots, etc. Use sunscreen on all exposed areas of the skin such as neck, face, ears, etc.
You can use water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreens with an SPF of 30 or higher for best results. Other means of protecting your skin from harmful solar radiation include wearing a long-sleeved shirt,sun-protective clothing, sunglasses etc.
7. Select the products based on your skin type
One of the common mistakes that people make is blindly following their friends or relatives for skincare products. However, before you do so, research your skin type. If necessary, consult a dermatologist for the same.
Every skin reacts differently to the ingredients in skincare products. Choose the one that is gentle on your skin and gives you the desired results.
8. Don’t rub your face too hard
If you have a habit of touching your face more often, minimise the touching. This is because your hands carry harmful bacteria and frequently touching your face holds the risk of transferring these bacteria to your face.
Additionally, most men are used to rubbing their face hard with a towel after a face wash. Remember that your facial skin is usually more sensitive than that on other parts of the body. Use light patting motions to dry your face.
9. Use an aftershave lotion
It is always better to use an aftershave lotion as barrier protection while shaving. Using an aftershave lotion also helps seal the skin pores and hydrates the skin.
Skincare products for men
Using quality skincare products will help prevent wrinkle formation and reduce the effects of ageing. These could include products like anti-ageing creams or even acne prevention creams.
Researchers at Andsons Singapore have devised various healthy age-defying formulas to make your skin look young and supple.
Our anti-ageing cream is made out of a customised formula (made with tretinoin) to treat hyperpigmentation and strengthen the skin while reversing sun damage.
If you have sensitive skin and are not used to isotretinoin creams, you can start with a lighter concentration of our acne cream.