Most men develop some kind of necessary skin care cleansing routine in the teenage years. Acne, blemishes, and the attentions of the opposite sex are usually the reason for such routines. However, many men ignore the toning and moisturizing steps that can improve both the appearance and feel of facial skin. Skin care products and routines may seem likely stuff for women only, but men have skin too. And just like women, men can do wonders for their skin by simply learning a few basic principles of skin care. For starters, men need to understand what type of skin they have, how to care for their skin, and how to develop a skin care routine they can live with.
Know Your Skin Type
Before you can select skin care products, you need to know what type of skin you have. Although women often learn these differences as soon as they can hold a bar of soap, many men find the question perplexing. Skin is skin, right? Wrong! Your skin can be normal, oily, dry, sensitive, or a combination. Here’s a primer for men on deciphering your skin type.
Normal Skin: If you’ve never had problems with oily skin or dry skin, it’s likely that you have “normal” skin. The pores of normal skin are small and the overall skin tone is even. If you’ve never given a second thought to your skin before, your skin type is probably normal.
Oily Skin: As its name implies, oily skin is slightly to moderately greasy. If you have oily skin, your pores are medium to large in size and prone to blockage. You probably have problems with pimples, blackheads, whiteheads, and acne cysts. Oily skin is usually thicker and firmer than normal skin and it’s less sensitive to environmental damage.
Dry Skin: Dry skin characteristically feels tight and itchy. Winter is especially rough on this skin type. Dry skin is usually thinner than normal skin and may even be slightly rough to the touch. If you have dry skin, you may have noticed that your skin is also easily irritated.
Sensitive Skin: Men with sensitive skin are usually the ones who actually know their skin type. Sensitive skin is prone to rashes and breakouts from any kind of irritants such as sun, perfumes, shaving cream, temperature extremes, and even soap. Be very careful about the skin care products you choose if you have sensitive skin. Avoid products with dyes, perfumes, or unnecessary chemical ingredients that may irritate your skin.
Combination Skin: This skin type is used to specifically describe facial skin that has both dry and oily patches. Most commonly, combination skin exhibits an oily “T-Zone” (forehead, nose and chin) with dry skin on the cheeks and around the eyes. It is not uncommon for these oily zones to be reversed. If you have this skin type, you will need to purchase skin care products made especially for combination skin.
A Skin Care Routine For Men
Now that you know what kind of skin you have, and you’ve purchased skin care products to accommodate your skin type, how do you know what to do with them. Many men have a fitness regime, a financial plan, and a daily schedule. But mention a skin care routine and they run for the hills. Skin care is not just for women. In fact, men who exercise regularly are prone to having more skin problems than women who do the same. That’s because you’re stretching your skin, not cleansing it properly, and not protecting it from elements such as sweat, sun, and wind. But don’t worry; taking care of your skin doesn’t have to mean spending hours in the bathroom. It just means establishing a simple routine to keep your skin looking and feeling its best.
Wash: Sure you take a shower in the morning before work, but do you take time to wash your face as well? (with products made for your skin type?) Gently wash your face twice a day. In the morning, facial cleansing will remove any perspiration and debris from sleeping and at the end of the day it will get rid of sweat and pollutants that have accumulated on your face throughout the day. Use a all-natural herbal soap.
Tone: If you have dry or sensitive skin, skip this step. Toners are usually alcohol based and may irritate these skin types. But normal, oily, and combination skin can benefit from the extra cleansing and pH restoration of a alcohol free toning product.
Moisturize: Hydrate your face with a quality, skin-type appropriate moisturizer. And if you spend any time in the sun at all, choose a moisturizer that includes a sun block of at least SPF 15. This will protect your skin from the sun and save you the hassle of remembering to apply another product.
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