What Every Man Needs to Know About Soap

Say goodbye to antibacterial soaps.
IMAGE Fight Club

1| Fact: Antibacterial soaps were banned from the U.S. market last year by the FDA.

Manufacturers had failed to prove the cleansers were safe or more effective than normal products. According to the FDA, certain antimicrobial soaps may not actually serve any health benefits at all.

“Consumers may think antibacterial washes are more effective at preventing the spread of germs, but we have no scientific evidence that they are any better than plain soap and water. Triclosan is a common ingredient in antibacterial liquid soaps and an environmental contaminant that is incompletely eliminated in water treatment plants,” says the FDA in their statement.

2| Washing your face with standard hand soap isn’t recommended.

While perfectly good for washing hands, normal soap can be irritating to the more sensitive skin of the face. Men who use a traditional or basic soaps are prone to dry, tight-feeling skin. Men with sensitive skin may discover that these soaps contain additives that can cause irritation. An easy rule of thumb: The shorter the ingredients list, the better. Or: Use soap made for your face.


3| Germs can live on all bars of soap, but it’s very unlikely they will make you sick or cause a skin infection.

Generally, those with a compromised immune system are the only ones who should be extra cautious. Tip: Rinse off the bar in running water before lathering up to wash away the germy goop. And always store soap out of water, allowing it to dry between uses. That way, there’s no moist environment for germs to flock to.

4| What to look for in a soap?

Aside from the fact that many people are deficient in saturated fats and have dry skin from the inside out, most bar soaps and body washes are also stripped of glycerin. This leads to an unbalanced soap that pulls moisture out of the skin. While we think we are nourishing our skin with an infusion of pomegranate and green tea, we are just stripping our skin of natural oils and exposing our largest organ to hundreds of chemicals.

The best types of bar soaps are made from vegetable (not mineral) oil blends and have the glycerin put back into them so they clean without drying skin.

5| Compared to females, males have skin that’s thicker, sweatier, and oilier.

These are actually good traits to have when it comes to extending the shelf life of good-looking skin. The signs of facial aging are caused, in part, by your skin’s thinning collagen. Men have more collagen than women, helping hold wrinkles at bay longer. Due to their thicker skin, however, men can have a buildup of dead skin cells. So find a men’s soap that has a humectant such as sorbitol that facilitates shedding of the outer layer of skin.

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6| As we reach the age of 30, the process of skin renewal begins to slow down, which can result in more pigmentation as well as a duller complexion.

The solution? Exfoliate once or twice a week. Remember that rubbing too hard and too frequently will only cause more harm than good to your skin and some exfoliants have granules with rough edges that can damage the skin. To prevent any harm, make sure to choose an exfoliant with rounded beads.

7| If you’ve got a mild case of acne, wash your face morning and night with a face wash made for acne-prone skin and spot-treat pimples with a benzoyl peroxide cream when they pop up.

If that dries out your skin, use a face wash for acne-prone skin once a day and then a gentle cleanser. You can easily buy these face washes and creams, just look for the magic words: benzoyl peroxide.


8| Going organic and all-natural is a good option.

Try soaps with lavender, whose clean, crisp, floral scent calms the nerves, relaxes the muscles, and opens sinus passages. It even disinfects minor burns and insect bites, is mood uplifting, and is a known aphrodisiac.

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