The Men’s Ultimate Guide to Skincare
Let’s just get this one out the way: Skincare is for everyone. All types, all tones, and yes, all genders—no matter how you identify. While antiquated stereotypes may have deterred males from pursuing a skincare routine in the past, their complexions (like anyone else’s) can benefit from having one, whether it be just a quick cleanse and SPF or a fully stocked regimen filled with masks and peels. One of our community members Matt Woodcox says it best: “Don't let society’s stereotypes and love of gender restriction make you feel like it’s not normal to take care of yourself. This goes for anyone, any gender. You can wear makeup. You can buy cosmetics. You can do whatever makes you happy and feel good.”Versed is a unisex, genderless skincare brand; our entire product lineup is meant for all. When it comes to building a skincare routine, we recommend purchasing products based on the formula inside—not whether the packaging is pink or blue or showcases a certain model. That being said, because male skin is genetically unique from a female’s, there are some ingredients that men can specifically benefit from. In fact, they’re featured in some of our male community’s favorite products. Read on for the complete man’s guide to skincare.
How Is Male Skin Different?Not all female skin is the same so of course, male skin will differ from person to person, too. Genetically, there are some commonalities that most men share, however. Male skin is generally thicker and produces more oil compared to women. Skin pH tends to be a bit more basic for women than men, too. There’s also facial hair to consider. Men have more dense hair follicles and androgens than women, a hormone that causes hair to darken and coarsen. To prevent ingrown hairs and razor burn, always use a sharp razor, shaving cream, and aftershave. Look for products that are non-comedogenic to avoid clogging pores.
And because men experience higher testosterone levels, they could be more prone to breakouts—including body acne. For bacne, Back-Up Plan is a great option to use after showering or to pop in a gym bag—its 360-degree spray targets hard-to-reach spots on the shoulders, chest, and back.
The 4-Step Skincare Routine for Men
1. Cleanse every single day to remove dirt and impurities that can clog pores. And don’t forget exfoliation, one of Matt’s top skincare steps. “Exfoliation is necessary for me to help renew that surface level of dull skin to help your skin look more vibrant and youthful.” If you’re trimming a mustache or beard, consider incorporating a physical exfoliator like Day Maker—a Men’s Health 2021 Grooming Award Winner—twice a week. Its microcrystalline removes dead skin cells that can inhibit the effectiveness of your razor and lifts hairs to deliver a closer, smoother shave.
4. Protect skin and prevent damage by applying sunscreen daily, rain or shine, indoors or out. Don’t forget any exposed areas on your head, too. “SPF is just necessary for all the work we do; [without it] the products we use on our skin are literally for nothing,” says Matt. “It’s 2021, we should all be wearing sunscreen, period.”
Shop our top skincare picks for men below.