How to look after your skin gentlemen
I find that men feel like they don’t need to care for their skin the same way women do and I understand that men and women have different needs for their skin. But this doesn’t mean that men should neglect their skin and I would push men to have a skincare regimen to keep their skin healthy. So here are a few tips to get you guys started:
1. Wet your skin with warm water which will open up your pores and help your cleanser give your skin a deeper clean. Make sure that water is warm as cold water will close up the pores so you won’t be able to clean them out and if the water is too hot – that will sensitise your skin, break up the capillaries – causing broken veins!
2. Choose the right cleanser for your skin. If you have a sensitive skin then look for a gentle cleanser free of harsh drying chemicals. Look for ingredients such as Rosehip seed oil or chamomile and apply cleanser with your hands massaging it over the face and neck gently. Best to use a liquid facial cleanser than a bar of soap. Most soaps tend to dry out the skin and are generally the wrong ph. So that’s another thing to look out for – Ph balanced soap such as Dove.
Note: if you feel your skin is tight or itching after washing, then you are using the wrong cleanser!
If you have an oily skin, prone to blackheads or have acne, then look for a Cleanser with salicylic acid or glycolic acid. These ingredients will give your skin a deeper cleanse, help slough off dead skin cells, clean out the pores and help prevent blackheads and acne. Also, if this is your type of skin then I do advocate the use of a face flannel with your cleanser. Apply warm water to your face and neck, massage in a desert spoon of cleanser and then wipe off with a face flannel pre rinsed out in lukewarm water. The flannel is going to pull of more dead skin cells making your skin feel smoother and look clearer.
3. Exfoliate a couple of times a week. If your skin is oily or you sweat profusely, you might want to use a gentle skin scrub as a daily cleanser and use your normal cleanser in the evenings. When choosing a scrub, look for one with natural exfoliating beads such as amber or jojoba seeds. Exfoliating will strip away dead skin and dirt, revealing lovely new healthier, smoother skin.
4. Rinse skin with lukewarm water and gently pat dry with a towel. No rubbing with the towel as this will irritate you skin.
5. Moisturise. Remember washing your face actually strips it of its own natural oils that protect your skin. You must apply moisturiser after every wash. For dry skin use a moisturiser containing hyaluronic acid. If after applying it, the skin feels tight – then apply another thin layer. If you have oily skin, then only apply a thin layer of moisturiser.
Repeat this easy skincare regimen twice a day. However, if you exercise, go to the gym, play football or rugby, then definitely wash after a workout when your skin has been sweating to prevent breakouts.
6. When shaving think about choosing a razor with one or two blades. If you are prone to ingrown hairs or razor burn, a multi-blade razor will make the problem worse. Multi-blades shave too close to the skin and cause irritation. Don’t forget to throw away disposable razors or change the blades in your razor every 5 to 7 shaves.
7. Wet your skin before you start shaving. Splash warm water on your face or rinse a face flannel with warm water, wring it out and wrap it around your face and neck to help prep your skin.
8. Use shaving cream or shaving gel/cream formulas to create a barrier between your skin and the razor in order to prevent nicks and razor burns. Look for shaving creams with glycolic acid or salicylic acid to prevent ingrown hairs. These two ingredients help exfoliate the skin and prevent clogged pores and acne flare-ups.
9. Shave in the direction of your hair growth. Never shave against the grain of your hair growth.
* be careful shaving around acne and never try to shave off your acne. Shave over acne lightly or try using an electric razor in these areas. You are trying to ensure that you don’t spread the infection.
10. After shaving, splash face with cool water to tighten the pores and help prevent irritation, infection and redness.
11. Vitamin A is an antioxidant that helps keep skin firm, smooth and helps to regenerate fresh skin. So up the carrots, eggs and dark leafy green veggies and think about taking cod liver oil supplements.
12. Make yours an antioxidant rich diet which is going to strengthen cell membranes and protect the skin cells from damage. They also help the body regenerate new cells. This will lead to healthier, more vibrant looking skin. So up the Berries, especially strawberries, blackberries and blueberries.
13. Omega 3 fatty Acids are key to healthy skin. They help cells retain water leading to hydrated, younger and stronger skin. Best source is my favourite – salmon. Also included are sardines and nuts.
14. Stay Hydrated. Water is going to help flush waste products away from your skin and help to clear out the pores.
Try to get in the 8 glasses if you can.
15. Avoid processed sugar. Sugar has been proven to break up collagen fibers which is going to cause lines and wrinkles. Try to limit the junk foods and soft drinks.
16. Use sunscreen to prevent damage from the UV rays and all light rays emitting from mobile devices. UV rays causes 80-90% of skin ageing and again breaks up collagen apart from causing skin cancer. Remember to apply spf every 3-4 hours if you are outside.
17. Commit to getting a full 8 hours sleep as often as you can. This will help skin to repair and renew itself overnight.
18. Exercise is going to increase circulation bringing fresh blood to your skin, filtering in nutrients and flushing away toxins. Sweating also clears out the pores. But remember to wash your face after exercising.
19. Quit the ciggies!! We all know the countless health risks associated with smoking but smoking narrows the blood vessels close to the skin’s surface, preventing essential nutrients from reaching the skin tissues whilst causing a build up of waste products. So do yourself a favour and stop the smoking.