Why take care of yourself? Tune into Parks & Recreation and see. Rob Lowe is fifty this year, while Jim O’Heir, who plays grey, fat, clumsy Jerry Gergich is fifty-two. Yeah, some of that is genetics. But some of that’s also hitting the gym, eating right, and a little bit of personal maintenance. Start now; ten years from now, your face will thank you.
Start with Soap
This is the one thing every man’s face needs every day, no exceptions. Skip artificial dyes and scents, and if you really want to play it safe, look for soap that’s SLS-free (horror stories aside, it can irritate the skin), paraben-free (it might react with UV rays and promote aging skin), and phthalate-free (they screw with your endocrine system).
Dry skin becomes damaged skin, so moisturize after washing. If you have naturally dry skin, use a cream. For normal skin, reach for lotion. For oily skin, skip the moisturizer.
If there is one thing and one thing only that you’re willing to do in order to skip fine lines, wrinkles, and other ravages of age on your face, wear sunscreen. Additional benefits: helps prevent cancer, sunburn, and you looking like an old leather bag. The bad kind of leather.
Prior to shaving, you need to moisturize your skin and soften your whiskers. Alternatively, just have a hot shower—that’ll loosen those pores.
Ever wonder why we shave with cream? Three reasons. Lubrication, thanks to oil, protects the skin. Shaving cream also moisturizes skin and hair via glycerine, which helps cut hair easily. Finally, good shaving cream emolliates the skin, allowing a speedy recovery.
The point of aftershave is to tighten your skin; your pre-shave oil, hot shower, and shaving cream has opened those pores up, and now that your whiskers are trimmed, you need to tighten those pores down. Avoid an aftershave with alcohol, as it’ll just dry your skin out. In a pinch, go with cold water.
If you’re sporting a beard, then a little bit of maintenance is required—we mean aside from a laser-guided Philips Beard Trimmer 9000 ($80). Obviously you’re washing with shampoo (right?), but good beard oil is necessary, especially in a cold climate. It’ll keep your whiskers from getting dry and brittle, and more importantly, give that skin underneath your beard some much-needed moisture and nutrients.
This post was sponsored by Philips. The views and opinions expressed in this article, however, are purely my own.