“Does my skin look extra oily today?” These are words you most likely will never hear from your main man, no matter what condition his skin is in.
We love our guys! Whether he is your boyfriend or husband, your significant other has a special place in your heart and you find him adorable. Cute as they are, some guys may need a little extra assistance in the skin and haircare department, but may not be as open or enthusiastic about doing beauty research as we are.
When was the last time you and your man indulged in a couple’s facial at your favorite salon?
Generally speaking, men probably won’t ask for your advice when it comes to their skin and hair, but it isn’t unheard of to find your significant other rifling through your make-up bag to locate that incredible (and incredibly expensive) anti-aging moisturizing serum that works so well.
There are some easy-to-find skin and hair treatments to solve common issues your guy might experience (whether he is willing to admit it or not). According to skin and hair care experts, the key to finding less expensive, easy-to-use products is mainly about reading the key ingredients. In some cases, improving skin and hair is about diet and lifestyle choices.
Dr. Debra Jaliman, dermatologist and author of Skin Rules: Trade Secrets from a Top New York Dermatologist, recommends searching for the following products at the store (products containing the below ingredients) to keep around the house. These treatments may help improve his skin (and yours!).
Acne – The sonic cleansing systems are great to really clean the skin. They take off dead skin and bacteria better than washing with fingers or a cloth. Salicylic acid in a concentration from 1 to 2 percent is good in pads or an astringent to unclog pores. You can also look for benzoyl peroxide to kill bacteria.
Excess oil – Oily skin can be treated with glycolic acid pads and/ or wash and blotting papers.
Bags under the eyes – Under eye bags can be treated with products containing topical caffeine and ice gel packs. Sleep on 2 pillows… when you sleep flat all the fluid goes into the under eye area. When you are elevated it doesn't.
Cynthia Bailey MD, Dermatologist and Founder DrBaileySkinCare.com, offers the following advice for other common skin issues the men in your life may be facing:
Dandruff on the scalp, face, back and chest – Yes, dandruff really happens in all of these places, and it might explain the greasy redness on the skin and the some of the acne too, in some cases. Dandruff can be treated with a zinc pyrithione dandruff shampoo. Using a scalp scrubber on the scalp will help lift scale. An exfoliating shower cloth or sponge on a handle for scrubbing the back will exfoliate the skin to help it look better right away.
Dry skin – This can be treated by changing the shower steps to include warm instead of steamy hot water, soaping only the body odor or oily areas like armpits, groin, buttocks and feet and chest/back/face/ears/neck. (Hands, arms and legs are more prone to dryness.) Soap should be mild such as a glycerin soap. Moisturizing cream or lotion needs to be applied within a few minutes after toweling off, to trap water and keep the skin hydrated all day.
Dr. Alan Bauman, board-certified hair restoration physician recommends some hair treatments for men.
Use the right shampoo and hair products – While the concept may be hard for some men to grasp, not all shampoo is created equal! The hair products you use can make a limp head of hair look thicker and shinier, while the wrong products can lead to damage and unhealthy hair and scalp. There are so many types of shampoos because there are so many types of hair and scalps (oily, dry, thick, thin, etc.)
If you have a dry scalp, you'll need to avoid harsh shampoos, but if you have oily scalp and hair you might need a deep cleansing shampoo. For those with thin/fine hair, use a deep cleansing shampoo to remove oil and dirt and use a light conditioning conditioner that doesn't weigh your hair down. If your scalp is itchy/flaky, look for a shampoo with pyrithione zinc.
For volume and control, avoid the gels (so '80s!) and dip into the pastes and clays. They provide the hold and coverage you need avoiding the 'wet' stick-together look that lets too much scalp shine through. If you have thinning hair and you want to keep what you have, seek advice from a hair restoration physician because untreated hair loss always gets worse with time.
In addition to using the right products for hair, Dr. Bauman advises that your guy may be able to strengthen his hair by eating certain foods and taking the right vitamins.
Hair-friendly foods and vitamins – Iron and protein deficiencies are among the most common nutritional triggers for unhealthy hair, while vitamins, especially B, are important to the overall health of your hair and preventing hair loss and thinning.
Salmon -- loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, nuts-- one of nature's best sources of selenium, and eggs-- high in protein, along with Biotin and B-12, are some of the many foods that can help you naturally improve the health of your hair. Crash diets can have nasty effects on your hair--when your body thinks it's starving, it doesn't make 'luxury' items like hair.
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Danielle Miller is a freelance writer and editor from the Boston area. She is a publishing project manager and has written articles on health and relationship-related topics for various outlets for several years. She is also a book editor, working mainly on books relating to science, technology, and user experience.