As 2012 dawns and we step tentatively into the bright lights of another New Year, the natural reaction is to take stock, assess the passing of 2011 and make plans for the 12 months ahead. Most of you will be back at work, college or uni by now, fresh with a new wardrobe accumulated from Christmas presents and sale bargains and looking for this to be the year.
The first few weeks of January are awash with New Years resolutions, and for some of us that’s as long as they’ll last. The press are all over it with ‘get fit’ this, and ‘diet’ that, encouraging even the most unwilling to make a fresh start and change their lives for the better. So when I sat down to write my first article of 2012, I thought it was only right that I attempt to sum up what’s in store for men’s grooming in the year ahead.
With fewer trends to draw upon than my fashion writing colleagues, I decided to steer clear of the style predictions. I then dabbled (tentatively) down the health and fitness (and ‘New Year, New You’) route before I found myself assessing the fundamental principles of a well groomed modern gent. That’s when I set about creating a men’s grooming checklist for 2012, landing on my Grooming Resolutions 2012.
As we embark on another annual adventure I wanted to go back to the basic principles that make up a grooming routine, and hopefully make 2012 as happy, successful and as well groomed as possible.
I’ve commented many times on these pages about grooming problems and my stance has never wavered – it’s vitally important to find a product that tailored to your specific concerns. You’re not going to combat sensitive skin with harsh products, and likewise you’ve got no hope of boosting thinning hair with a supermarket shampoo – you need targeted professional products.
I could (and have) written separate articles about each concern but for the purposes of this article I’ve tried to do a whistle-stop-tour of the main offenders and recommend the best product ranges on the market for each. So please, if you suffer from any grooming related problems, let 2012 be the year that you find a solution once and for all.
I don’t mean literally give them a shake, that could get messy. But it’s worth considering if your choice of hair styling product is right for you. Often guys stick with a styling product they’ve loved for years even if it’s no longer right for their look or their hair type.
I’m a big fan of having two, or even three products on the go at one time. I tend to use a product with more of a matte hold when my hair is shorter, and something more pliable as my hair gets longer. Sometimes I even mix and match to get the right effect – it’s all about exploring your options.
Taking a punt on a new product without trying it on your hair or researching it first has obvious risks, so my advice would be to ask your barber or stylist to try out a new product next time you go for a chop, or opt for one of these tried and tested hair products to improve your styling credentials…
With hundreds of products and routines it’s very easy to forget about the basics. Sometimes we get caught up on expensive super creams without taking care of the finer details that will make sure we are well turned out at all times. Fresh breath and impeccable hygiene are a given, but what other basics did you neglect in 2011? My money is on your hands and feet.
Not as glamorous as your hair style or your complexion I’ll admit, but taking good care of your hands and feet should be compulsory for a modern gent. Lets be frank – no one (and I mean no one) wants to be felt up by sand paper hands. And unkempt (not to mention dirty) nails are surely one of the biggest turn offs imaginable?
Get the basics right with these essentials and your path to grooming perfection in 2012 will be a much smoother ride.
It’s no secret that the weather and other external factors have a huge effect on our skin. With the central heating, biting winds and downpours of the winter months you may find that your complexion is currently dry, or lacking energy. While we’re still in the grips of winter, its all about hydration and putting some life back in to our skin. These four products are all designed to moisturise, energise and help your skin combat whatever the winter weather throws at it.
As the weather and external factors change in the year ahead, it’s important that your skin care regime changes with it and adapts to your surroundings. By the time summer comes around (or even sooner if you’re going away on holiday) the need for SPF protection goes into overdrive. I’ve picked four of my favourite products to help you ensure all areas of your skin – your face, lips and body – are adequately covered in 2012.
Last but by no means least, my final tip for a successfully groomed 2012 is to treat yourself. It doesn’t have to be every month, and it doesn’t have to be a weekend away at a spa with you and the boys, but there’s nothing wrong with indulging in a little luxury.
Earlier this year I was lucky enough to receive a complementary facial from a Murad professional and liked it so much I’ve been having them every couple of months since. There’s nothing emasculating about improving your complexion, or having a relaxing massage, so let 2012 be the year you embrace one of these ideas…
Here’s to a happy, healthy, successful and well groomed 2012!
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