Guys: What do you need for an effective skin-care routine?
Let’s face it; you could have the best makeup in the world but without an effective skin-care routine, you won’t be doing your skin – or the cosmetics you’ve put on it - any favours. It’s easy to slap on a bit of men’s foundation or concealer and head out for the day – sweeping the blemishes under the carpet – but to maintain healthy skin, you really need to look after it – both before and after the makeup. Suffer from acne, wrinkles or sun damage? Good skincare is one of the most powerful tools you have in both combatting and preventing these.
So, what exactly should you be doing? On one end of the spectrum we have the theses available across the internet which might have you believe that skincare is a science akin to astrophysics; on the other, the multi-use supermarket products which claim to do everything all-in-one. The reality, however, lies somewhere in the middle.
Feeling overwhelmed? Relax – War Paint For Men is here to tell you everything you need to know.
- Exfoliation station
Regular exfoliation (2-3 times a week) is vital as it gets rid of dead skin cells, excess oil and dirt, which would otherwise lead to clogged pores – leading to an array of complications such as dull skin, acne and getting in the way of your products working their best. Face scrubs can be a bit too harsh, so look instead for a gentler exfoliator – especially if you have sensitive skin.
- Be cool and cleanse
Arguably the most important step in your daily routine as it’s the first line of defence against dirt, bacteria and other environmental nasties. You want your face to be clean, sure, but not in the same way you clean the rest of your body. Sound confusing? We hear you, but it’s really quite simple; if you scrub too hard with harsh chemicals, you’ll end up disrupting your skin’s protective barrier which, subsequently, will strip away the good oils that keep it moisturised and dry out your skin. Instead, look for a facial cleanser or face wash with moisturising properties.
Splash your face with warm water beforehand to open up your pores, rub the face wash into your skin in a circular motion, clean off with cooler water and pat dry with a towel. Repeat twice daily - on waking up (seriously, your pillow is a cesspit of grime) and before bed, to cleanse your skin of the day’s build-up. Et voila – you have a clean canvas for all your other products to work off effectively.
- Tone up
Toner is an invaluable step in keeping your skin clear and shine-free as it helps rebalance your skin’s PH level after cleansing. Simply swipe over your face with a cotton pad. (If only it were as easy to get a toned body, eh?)
- Moisture mayhem
Yeah, we know we’ve already touched on this, but keeping your skin hydrated really is ridiculously important in an effective skincare routine as it delivers a soothing burst of vitamins and nutrients, acts as a protective barrier against unwanted toxins AND is a vital anti-ageing tool You may hate the idea of a moisturiser because of how it feels on your face, which is totally understandable, but then you probably haven’t tried Warpaint For Men’s tinted moisturiser! A few tips:
- You should invest in a special night-time moisturiser, too, as these are – typically – ultra-hydrating, and contain specific active ingredients, like peptides, which help the skin regeneration process.
- Drinking water is equally as important in keeping your skin fully hydrated. Without it, it will be dry, wrinkly and flaky – never a good look! Aim for 2-3 litres a day.
- Beard control
Don’t forget about the skin underneath your beard! Make sure to use an appropriate beard shampoo, conditioner and oil to keep things healthy.
- And always use protection!
Ahem, no – not that kind of protection (which obviously goes without saying); here we’re talking about SPF, which is an absolute must in preventing sun damage – no matter the weather. UV rays from the sun (which, by the way, can even penetrate through glass), not only cause skin cancer but are also the biggest factor in our skin’s ageing. It is imperative, therefore, to wear sunscreen daily with a minimum SPF 15 (although the higher the better) – making sure to reapply every few hours on a particularly hot day.
And for the uber keen among you …
There’s even more you can do for a truly effective skincare regime, if you have the time and desire to do so:
- More potent than your average cream, the great thing about serums is that they deliver active ingredients and nutrients quicker and more effectively, boasting both anti-ageing and anti-blemish properties. The good news is that no matter your skin type, there’s a serum for it. The bad news? It can be hard to know what you need. The best bit of advice we can give is to choose an all-in-one serum that addresses a variety of issues (they’ll usually contain hydrating and skin-building ingredients).
- There are hundreds of different kinds of masks for hundreds of different skin concerns, but what they all have in common is that they’re intended to supplement a core skincare routine. Like serums, they deliver more concentrated ingredients. The best kind of mask for men – especially if you’re a beginner – is a clay mask, which delves deep into your pores to remove dirt, oil and debris.
- Eye cream. Definitely optional but – when using a small amount morning and night – can help fix a whole host of concerns, from puffy bags to early signs of ageing.
Skincare is not a ‘one size fits all’ kind of thing. As such, you must know your skin type before buying. Oily skin? Look for non-oily products. Dry skin? Stick to natural. Non-alcohol-based products. Combination? Yup, you’ve guessed it, choose products that are somewhere in between!
It’s time to put your best face forward!