How To Look Great For That Big Night Out

During the holiday period a seemingly never-ending array of social events always occurs. Naturally, you’ll want to look your very best for each and every one – quite a challenge when you’re busy at work, rushed off your feet or hung-over from the previous night’s shenanigans.

But fear not, whether it’s New Year’s Eve, a Christmas night out with friends or a festive knees-up with all the family, we’re here to help you appear well-groomed and fresh-faced for any party season event. All you need is an action plan and the right tools for the job…

1. Give Your Skin A Pep Talk

By far the fastest and most effective way to freshen up skin for a big night out, exfoliation is something that can be done in a matter of seconds. By removing the dead cells that sit on the skin’s surface and exposing the fresh, plump ones beneath you’ll automatically look healthier and perkier.

Simply apply a little face scrub, like Polaar’s Perfecting Face Scrub or Baxter of California’s Face Scrub, and gently massage in with your fingertips, focusing on the forehead, cheeks, chin and nose but avoiding the delicate eye area.

And there’s no need to worry if you don’t have water to hand before going out – you can always freshen up at your desk with the help of some exfoliating wipes, like Simple’s Kind To Skin Exfoliating Facial Wipes:

  • Perfecting Face Scrub PolaarPerfecting Face Scrub Polaar
  • Baxter Of California Facial Scrub 120mlBaxter Of California Facial Scrub 120ml
  • Lab Series Invigorating Face Scrub 100mlLab Series Invigorating Face Scrub 100ml
  • Facial Scrub Anthony LogisticsFacial Scrub Anthony Logistics
  • Bulldog Natural Skincare Original Face Scrub 100mlBulldog Natural Skincare Original Face Scrub 100ml
  • Simple Kind To Skin Exfoliating Facial WipesSimple Kind To Skin Exfoliating Facial Wipes

The big advantage of exfoliating before a night out is that you’re then left with a smooth, polished surface on which to apply an appearance-enhancing moisturiser. Which brings me neatly on to the next step…

2. Photoshop Your Face

In the last few years men’s skincare has come on in leaps and bounds in terms of its ability to improve the look and feel of skin.

Particularly useful are products which contain mattifiers (to absorb excess oil and reduce shine), light reflecting particles (which improve the look of skin and craftily hide the signs of fatigue) and adaptive pigments to give skin a healthy glow.

Skin perfectors worth investing in include Lab Series’ multitasking BB Tinted Moisturiser, Myego’s Fonteint Hydrating Enhancer, Givenchy’s Mister Matt and Nanoblur Optical Skin Cream – all of which act a bit like Photoshop for the face.

If you want something for your eyes, try Dermalogica’s excellent Total Eye Care – an eye cream which helps reduce the signs of fatigue and minimises dark circles due to its special light-reflecting technology:

  • Lab Series Bb Tinted Moisturiser 50ml Spf35Lab Series Bb Tinted Moisturiser 50ml Spf35
  • Myego Fonteint Hydrating Enhancer 40mlMyego Fonteint Hydrating Enhancer 40ml
  • Givenchy Mister Mat Matifying Powder GelGivenchy Mister Mat Matifying Powder Gel
  • Nanoblur Optical Skin Cream 30ml. From Indeed LabsNanoblur Optical Skin Cream 30ml. From Indeed Labs
  • Dermalogica Total Eye Care 15mlDermalogica Total Eye Care 15ml
  • Nivea Daily Essentials Bb Cream 5 In 1 Beautifying Moisturiser Light 50mlNivea Daily Essentials Bb Cream 5 In 1 Beautifying Moisturiser Light 50ml
3. Freshen Your Hair In An Instant

If you don’t have time to wash your hair before a big night out (perhaps you’re going to a party straight after work) the solution is a dry shampoo like Toni & Guy Cleanse Dry Shampoo, Charles Worthington’s Style Setter Dry Shampoo or Batiste Original Clean & Classic Dry Shampoo.

As well as instantly freshening and counteracting greasiness, they also add a bit of volume to thin, limp and lifeless hair. With one UK supermarket reporting a 37 per cent leap in sales of dry shampoos bought by men and the likes of King of Shaves founder Will King swearing by them (as well as our own in-house stylist, Dion Padan) you certainly won’t be the only guy using one during the festive season:

  • Toni&guy Cleanse Dry Shampoo 250mlToni&guy Cleanse Dry Shampoo 250ml
  • Charles Worthington Style Setter Dry ShampooCharles Worthington Style Setter Dry Shampoo
  • Batiste Dry Shampoo Clean & Classic Original 400mlBatiste Dry Shampoo Clean & Classic Original 400ml
4. Don’t Panic If You’re In A Spot Of Bother

You know what it’s like: you’ve slipped into your best shirt, your brogues are freshly polished and your outfit looks on point – then, just as you’re about to head out, you notice a giant spot has reared its ugly head. In this situation regular zit-busters aren’t going to work. What you need is a concealer like Tom Ford’s brand new Men’s Concealer or Menaji’s Camo Concealer.

Easier to use than most men think – just apply a tiny amount to the tip of your ring finger and pat onto the offending blemish, blending in lightly as you do so. They’re the perfect rescue remedy for skin’s annoying little imperfections.

Alternatively, if you want to treat and cover up a spot, try a product like Murad’s Blemish Treatment Concealer which tackles the spot ‘head on’ with a raft of skin-saving antioxidants but, since it’s a concealer, disguises it at the same time:

  • Tom Ford ConcealerTom Ford Concealer
  • Camo Concealer – Light MenajiCamo Concealer - Light Menaji
  • Murad Treatment Concealer – MediumMurad Treatment Concealer - Medium
5. Spray To Play

When it comes to staying power – something you need on a big night out – not all fragrances are created equal. Certain notes, like vetiver, oudh, sandalwood, musk, patchouli and amber are known for their longevity on the skin and are what you should look out for if you want a scent with stamina.

Some fragrances renowned for their staying power are La Lebo’s Patchouli 24, Givenchy Gentleman, Roja Parfums Vetiver Extrait, Chanel Antaeus, Issey Miyake’s L’eau d’Issey, Czech & Speake No 88, Aramis Classic, Terre d’Hermes and Creed Original Vetiver, to name but a few.

Remember that where you apply your fragrance can also improve its longevity. Avoid the neck (where the pulse points only encourage a faster ‘burn rate’) and apply to your chest, back or biceps instead. That way the fragrance will be trapped against your skin but will still waft upwards as you move during the evening.

Since hair is porous and holds fragrance well, you might want to apply a little there too. ‘Little’ being the operative word though:

  • Le Labo Patchouli 24 50mlLe Labo Patchouli 24 50ml
  • Givenchy Gentleman Eau De Toilette 50mlGivenchy Gentleman Eau De Toilette 50ml
  • Roja Parfums Vetiver Extrait 50mlRoja Parfums Vetiver Extrait 50ml
  • Chanel Antaeus Eau De Toilette Spray 100mlChanel Antaeus Eau De Toilette Spray 100ml
  • Issey Miyake Leau Dissey Pour Homme Eau De Toilette Spray 75mlIssey Miyake Leau Dissey Pour Homme Eau De Toilette Spray 75ml
  • Czech & Speake No. 88 Cologne 100mlCzech & Speake No. 88 Cologne 100ml
  • Aramis Classic Eau De Toilette 60mlAramis Classic Eau De Toilette 60ml
  • Hermes Terre D Eau De Toilette SprayHermes Terre D Eau De Toilette Spray
  • Creed Original Vetiver Eau De Parfum 30mlCreed Original Vetiver Eau De Parfum 30ml
6. Get Fresh (With Your Breath)

It’s a cruel irony that partying and bad breath often go hand-in-hand. That’s partly to do with the food we eat, the talking we do and the drink we consume. Alcohol, for example, dehydrates you, leading to a dry mouth which, in turn, leads to bad breath. Luckily, there are a few simple steps you can take to control the problem…

If you’re at a party, try reaching for some crudities or chew on sugar-free gum. Both are great at stimulating saliva production and saliva is the best line of defence against the bacteria that cause bad breath.

Another useful tip, suggested by my dentist, is to carry a few cardamom pods or fennel seeds with you and chew on them to instantly freshen breath. Alternatively, pop some Ultradex Oral Spray in your pocket – it’s antibacterial so doesn’t just tackle nasty smells but the cause of them too. These pocket sprays are perfect for storing in your office desk drawer or car glove box for an instant refresh.

If you have more time to prepare, consider using mouthwash and a tongue cleaner/scraper before you leave the house. Did you know: up to 90 per cent of bad breath comes from odour-generating residue on the top of your tongue?

Effectively cleaning the tongue is as essential as flossing and brushing your teeth to maintain fresh breath, a healthy mouth and gums. It only takes a few seconds and it dramatically improves your oral health, helping tackle bad breath at the source rather than masking it with temporary fixes.

Oh, and hard as it may be, try to avoid the champagne – it may be the drink of choice for toasts and celebrations but it’s also notorious for giving people bad breath.

  • Ultradex Fresh Breath Oral Spray 9mlUltradex Fresh Breath Oral Spray 9ml
  • Swissdent Pure Mouthspray 7.5mlSwissdent Pure Mouthspray 7.5ml
  • Dentiplus Breath Fresh Spray MintDentiplus Breath Fresh Spray Mint
  • Orabrush Tongue Cleaner Ultra SoftOrabrush Tongue Cleaner Ultra Soft
  • Ultradex Tongue CleanerUltradex Tongue Cleaner
  • Dr Tungs Tongue CleanerDr Tungs Tongue Cleaner
7. Don’t Forget The Details

One of the mistakes a lot of men I know make when it comes to grooming is focusing on the face and hair and forgetting about everything else. In reality, especially at this time of year, few things matter more than your fingernails. I say this because when we’re celebrating we’ve often got a glass (or some food) in our hands, which means that your digits are on constant display.

So whatever your pre-party grooming regime, never forget the details. Always ensure fingernails are neatly trimmed (cut straight across, ideally with nail scissors, which provide a cleaner line) and make sure they’re scrupulously clean. If you need to clean them on the go the corner of a business card makes a fine – and inexpensive – cleaning tool.

  • Anthony Logistics Manicure/tool KitAnthony Logistics Manicure/tool Kit
  • Nappa Leather Manicure Set MerkurNappa Leather Manicure Set Merkur
  • Tweezerman Ltd Deluxe Nail ScissorsTweezerman Ltd Deluxe Nail Scissors
  • Fiskars Straight Nail ScissorsFiskars Straight Nail Scissors
  • Elemis Pro-radiance Hand And Nail Cream 100mlElemis Pro-radiance Hand And Nail Cream 100ml
  • Shea Butter Hand Repair Creme – Travel SizeShea Butter Hand Repair Creme - Travel Size
Further Reading

The tips above apply to most gentlemen, however, below you will find some specific guides that may also be applicable:

Final Word

So there you have it, all the gear you need to ensure you look great for a night out. Now you just need to focus on having a good time. Oh, and don’t worry if you have too good a time – there’s always Nickel’s famous Morning After Rescue Gel!

Do you have any wonder products that you always use before a night out and would recommend to other FashionBeans readers? If so, tell us about them using the comments box below…