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It is proven to be more prone to congestion evidenced by constant bumps, blackheads, and acne. On top of that, lack of proper skincare serves as a gateway to many other health problems in the future.
In response to this new recognition, men have began to transform their skincare practices.
A survey done by a market research firm, Mintel, in 2013 found that 58 percent of men 18-24 and 63 percent of those 25-34 use at least one facial moisturizing product. Admittedly these numbers seem high, but they fall in line with an undeniable growing trend; men are placing a higher priority on skincare than ever before. As proof towards this fact, only 32 percent of men 55-64 and 29 percent over 65 use a skincare product on their face.
Growth in men skincare is a overdue necessity. Skin is the largest organ in the body, yet, most often, the part of the body notoriously given the least amount of attention.
As the skin ages and is malnourished, its function is degenerated.
The body, naturally, produces oil and moisture that serves as a protective barrier to prevent skin dehydration and external harmful bacteria invading. Over time these oils and moisture either don’t hold within the skin or the production of these oils depreciates leaving the skin unable to properly function.
As stated above, skin is essential to overall help because it serves as the first line of defense against external sources. As skin loses its protective barrier, many other health complications often follow.
When beginning to take skincare seriously, men often have a lack of inceptive knowledge. When one is uneducated in what to look for, they often chose products that are counter productive and do more harm than good towards their skin.
The starting point must be with understanding that all creams and lotions are not intended for the entire body.
Face, Hand, and Body lotion and creams are all formulated completely differently because they all must serve very unique functions. Using the same lotion for your whole body is, in a sense, no different than using a charger for the phone which wasn’t intended for that use.
It may seem like it is working but odds are it is overcharging the battery, slowly killing the phone, and the phone will completely shut down in the distant future.
First, how are lotions and creams different?
Understand there is a big difference between a cream and a lotion.
The difference is a matter of consistency. In basic terms. cream is much thicker than lotion. This is usually determined by the types of oils and butter used within the product. So, while they both moisturize, they differ in oil content.
These contain far more oil than lotions and much less water. Thickness is evidenced in more more oil, which requires most creams to come in jars, as they are too thick to squeeze out of tubes or bottles.
They are best suited for areas of dry skin because they offer more protection.
This heavier viscosity is best suited in winter or dry climates because there is less external moisture.
These contain much more water within their makeup. This makes the product less dense and is much easier spread over a larger area.
Lotion works well for daily maintenance for people with normal skin. These work well in summer and humid regions when there is more moisture in the air.
Lotions are usually the prefered option for men because they are easier to spread and work well to treat and prevent mild dryness.
Unless suffering from really dry skin, odds are lotion is better suited to meet your needs.
How are Face, Hand and Body Lotions different?
These creams are distinguishable by the ingredients they contain for specific functions and their strength/thickness.
Body lotion tends to be the strongest, thickest lotion followed by hand then face.
As stated above, this is the thickest of all lotions but would be still thinner than all creams.
The body is often neglected because it is covered by clothing, yet it tends to be the itchiest and most uncomfortable areas of skin.
Body lotions usually instruct to apply after bathing. While bathing the body soaks up water through osmosis.
Body lotions specific function is to trap in this moisture that the skin requires after soap strips it away. Through sweat, clothing, and soap usage, the skin of the body is constantly losing its necessary water contents.
That’s where body lotion come in place and slow this down and helps maintain a healthy moisture level.
Lotions containing petroleum should be avoided as they simply create the illusion of moisturized skin. In reality, petroleum suffocates skin pores. It is water-repellant and not water-soluble, meaning it seals the barrier so that moisture can’t leave the skin. It may feel as if it is softening the skin while actually drying out pores and keeping air and moisture from entering.
Lotions tailor-made for the hands have less thickness and strength than body lotions but are still far stronger than face lotions.
Hand creams require a decent amount a strength to penetrate the hands.
Hands touch a lot of harmful and damaging bacteria. All this detrimental interaction leads to hands being the first places to begin to show deterioration. Due to all this touching, the hands are washed most often stripping off all of their moisture and oils.
Hand lotions are essential to protecting moisture and placing oils back into hands. Without proper treatment, chafing and cracking will eventually be inevitable. There are things that are good to look for in hand creams due to the need for inputting oils and protecting moisture levels.
Dairy based products, nut oils and other substances rich in Vitamins A & E tend to be extremely effective in hand lotions.
Face lotion is the lightest of all other lotions for several specific reasons.
The skin of the face is far more sensitive than almost every other skin area and the thickness of hand and body lotion tends to clog the pores of the face, leading to blackheads and acne breakouts.
The lightness of face lotion works well as it is one of the easiest areas of skin to absorb moisture and oils.
The detriment of the face being receptive to external forces is its sensitivities to sun and the daily harshness of shaving. For this reason, lotions containing SPF protections and ingredients that suppress razor burn are to be looked for.
Mint, menthol, and eucalyptus serve well in men’s moisturizers as they provide natural astringency without severely drying out the skin. Vitamin A is also useful as it works to reduce the appearance of wrinkling.
It is worth noting that men and women have notable differences in skin (in particular the face) due to gender difference and lifestyle and should usually use different products as a result.
For instance, men are more likely to work or spend longer portions of the day in the sun. As a result, men have a strong need for lotion containing protection from the sun which is also why you might need to consider either a moisturizer with SPF or a good sunscreen for men.
Another rule of thumb, men’s skin tends have more oil. Testostrone causes an increased oil production, that begins to reduce after 50. Estrogen, on the other hand, naturally suppresses oil production.
The benefit for men is their skin may naturally age better but are far more susceptible to acne breakouts.
Men have another built in advantage of having thicker skin (not talking about getting feelings hurt easier but physical skin).
It is said that men’s skin is around 20 to 30 percent thicker. Due to this, women are more likely to take protective measures. Men have the reputation of not taking these precautions and when skin begins to dry out during middle age and thins down, they do not adjust.
Since men shave their faces regularly, men have more sensitive facial skin. Shaving and lack of moisturizing, over time, leads to painful consequences which can be easily manifested as razor burns and razor bumps.
When shopping for moisturizers for the face, one big difference between men’s and women’s is the smell. This is due to men preferring less odor and serves as an added bonus as fragrances can cause irritation to men’s sensitive skin.
Another bit of useful advice when purchasing is to always try to look for lotion that contains active ingredients. Effective moisturizers have a range of active ingredients for the best results.
A few standard additions that are proven effective are hyaluronic acid and glycerin, which maintain skin’s moisture levels and keep it soft and bendable. Look for ingredients that are rich in vitamins deemed antioxidant like vitamins A, C and E, which nurtures and conditions the skin to keep it healthy-looking.
Always try to avoid common alcohol in anything applied to face as it will dry out.
Here are some recommended products
Affordable option: Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion
It will leave your skin feeling the desired softness and smooth. It doesn’t feel greasy, won’t irritate the skin and is non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores). It works well on sensitive and normal skin.
Cetaphil makes a lotion for dry skin that works extremely well for those with rougher skin. It contains specific ingredients to bind water to skin and prevent moisture loss. It is also available in a variety of size and in-shower option.
High Quality Option: Jack Black Cool Moisture Body Hydrator
It continuously nourishes skin and improves texture of skin quickly. It contains numerous high quality, effective ingredients such as
- Capuacu Butter for smooth, soft skin through high absorption capacity for all day long hydration.
- Coffee Seed Oil which is called one of the best free radical scavengers that firms skin and is anti-inflammatory
- Organic Green Tea known to be antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial
- Ginger Root called the most complete antioxidant for skin
- Argan Oil which moisturizes very well and is also anti-inflammatory
- Olive Fruit Oil which softens skin and is not greasy and penetrates skin without clogging your pores.
Affordable Option: Neutrogena Hand Cream
It provides relief for dry, chapped hands. Hands feel soft and smooth after first application. Keeps hands moisture level optimal while being fragrance free.
High Quality Option: Brickell Men’s Maximum Strength Hand Lotion
All natural hand lotion that heals dry, flaky skin without greasy feeling. Packed with natural, vitamin rich ingredients to hydrate, protect, and tighten skin such as
- Vitamin E
- Shea Butter
- Jojoba Oil
It contains zero sulfates, parabens, glycols, phthalates, petrochemicals, silicones, PEG’s, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, or gluten.
Affordable Option: Neutrogena Men Triple Protect Face Lotion with Sunscreen
It helps soothe razor irritation, relieves dry skin, and defends against aging. It contains SPF 20.
High Quality Option: Jack Black Double-Duty Face Moisturizer SPF 20
It constants many of the positive ingredients of the above mentioned body lotion with a few more perfectly tuned to the face. This product is dermatologist tested, certified organic, gluten free, fragrance free, and vegan. It offers protection against UVA and UVB rays had provides lasting hydration without oiliness and heaviness. It is packed full of antioxidants, sheer moisturizers, and vitamins.
How do you effectively apply lotion?
As stated above, body lotion is to be applied after showering. Once finished showering, loosely dry off and apply lotion.
This starts a moisture rich foundation because slightly damp skin absorbs lotion more efficiently.
- Begin with a quarter size drop of lotion on the hand and apply it to a particular region of the body, moving from the bottom to the top. Using a small amount at a time, prevents over saturation of the body. Work section to section, hitting all parts of the body (legs, feet, stomach, arms, etc). Pay special attention to areas that feel particularly dry to the touch.
- Hand lotion should be now applied by rubbing thoroughly on hands. Hand lotion can be used throughout the day for touch-ups and after hand washing. Starting with an application of hand lotion after shower creates a moisture rich environment that aides in maintaining moisture within the hands throughout the day.
- Lastly, after finishing your daily shaving ritual and removing all excess shaving cream by washing face, apply a liberal amount of facial moisturizer or lotion. Never apply a face moisturizer on a sweaty or dirty face. This promotes germs and bacteria to attack your skin, resulting in skin problems. Applying last and to a clean face insures the necessary SPF protection won’t be removed or impeded.
- Reapply facial moisturizer at night. The active ingredients in a quality men’s facial cream or lotion will diminish throughout the day as they are absorbed by the skin or naturally degraded by the elements come across in the course of a day. While skin may feel soft and moisturized, reapplication in the evening ensures that your skin is getting a boost of active ingredients.
For a lot of men, more precedent is being placed on taking care of themselves than ever before.
They eat healthy, exercise daily, and have abandoned other habits detrimental to their health.
The reality that the skin, the largest organ of the body, is the first line of defense to the body against disease and infection is leading many to understand the importance of routine skincare. Therefore, keeping your skin healthy is not merely a matter of personal comfort, but also to overall health.
Skin moisturizer not only helps treat dry skin, current and potential, but it protects sensitive skin.
While the daily routine of showering and scrubbing your body with soap does the positive of removing layers of dry, dead skin, it can also strip your skin of much needed protective oils.
Moisturizing with lotion provides both a barrier of protection so the oils can replace themselves naturally and injects the body with aides to maximize oil production.
Simply put, applying lotion to the body, hands, and face will do wonders for skin and overall health. This addition to the daily routine will leave one looking good and feeling good.
Who among us doesn’t want that, male or female?
Main image courtesy: Image courtesy: Yacobchuk/BigStock.com