The No-Nonsense Man's Guide to No-Nonsense Skincare
Yes, you can let your face become grizzled and lined and wild. You’re a man after all. But then there’s your wife or girlfriend and everybody else, all of whom have to look at your grizzly prune face and worry about your well-being (are you okay?). Caring for your skin is a matter of courtesy, so give the world something easy or, at least, clean to look at—in just four easy steps.
Step 1: Clean it.
Naturally, dislodging dirt, debris, and oil on your face is the first step to Handsome Town, but don’t wash your mug with the soap you use to scrub your body. Traditional bars mess with skin’s pH balance (higher pH is bad) and rob it of moisture. That squeaky-tight feeling? You don’t want that.
Try: Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cleanser
What you want is a goopy liquid that does a great job of busting gunk on your face without making it feel like a desert. In other words, gentle. This leaves skin feeling good and soft, too.
Also: Sensibio H2O Micellar Solution
If you are, uh, too lazy to stand in front of the sink, micellar water lets you clean your face while, say, lying in bed. Soak up a cotton ball and then wipe your mug. This works like a vacuum, sucking up the dirt from your face. At the end, you get a grayish (or blackish) ball of yuck, which is either satisfying or gross.
Step 2: Treat it.
Men, there’s no shame in using toners. They’ve been part of good grooming since the time people started staring into mirrors until they grow roots. The watery solution does two main things: It re-balances the pH of skin and helps it absorb all the good stuff you’ll put on later. It can also add moisture or soften skin. What’s not to like?
Try: The Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing Mattifying Toner
There’s a bracing feeling post-application, which might be the tea tree oil warding skin against acne and blackheads. The powder in the liquid (shake before use) reduces shine, too.
Also: Neal’s Yard Remedies Rejuvenating Frankincense Toner
This light solution is cooler and more refreshing. Of note, it does the job (adjusts pH, prepares skin, moisturizes) with only organic and natural ingredients, a fact that will make you feel even better.
Step 3: Feed it.
There’s many and more stuff that you can slap on your face, but for now just remember to feed it with moisture. Skin is at its best when hydrated: It can heal itself better. It doesn’t produce acne. Wrinkles appear softer and future lines can be thwarted. Skin just feels good.
Try: La Mer The Moisturizing Matte Lotion
The good stuff that makes Creme de La Mer most wanted by women now comes in a light formula that helps skin appear less greasy. In other words, its perfect for men. Also note the vehicle, a pump dispenser, which precisely controls the amount of (expensive) lotion used and ensures its integrity.
Also: Kiehl's Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel Cream
This all-time favorite is like rubbing whipped sorbet all over your face. The cooling gel sinks into skin right away. The texture is invisible. It’s like you didn’t put on moisturizer (but you really did).
Step 4: Cover it.
All that work will be for naught if you skip sunscreen. It’s your shield against the number one cause of prune face and skin cancer, UVA and UVB rays. Wear it every day, even when it’s raining because invisible sun rays exist. Slather on a good coat and remember to reapply. Of course, skip this at night.
Try: Bioderma Photoderm Max SPF50+
That very high protection against UVA and UVB rays is made for sensitive skin. We also like that the watery formula doesn’t give you ghost face.
Also: Nivea Protect & Moisture Sunscreen Lotion SPF50+
The good ol’ beach sunscreen will do. We don’t even mind the scent because it reminds us of slow holidays set in paradise.