Grooming Tips For January-June
Most of us will have made one or two resolutions this month – whether it’s to be leaner, fitter or drink a little less Rioja – so how about making a few grooming resolutions while you’re at it?
But instead of having to hurriedly action a whole list of things at once, why not spread your grooming improvements throughout the year? That way, any changes you make won’t be so painful – or so costly.
So, if you fancy ending this year better looking than when you started it, here are some essential tips to help you draft your male grooming manifesto for 2015…
Wear A Daily Sunscreen
Granted, the middle of the winter (in the Northern Hemisphere at least) might not seem like the ideal time to be slathering on a sunscreen, but while the sun’s burning UVB rays are much less intense at this time of year, its UVA ones – the rays responsible for wrinkles – still pose a threat to skin.
“UVA rays are constant all year round, even in winter,” warns Sally Penford of The International Dermal Institute. “So it’s worth protecting with a sunscreen even on cloudy days.”
To do this, simply apply a daily moisturiser which includes a sunscreen – like Dermalogica’s Daily Defense SPF15 or Lab Series’ Daily Moisture Defense Lotion SPF15 – as part of your morning routine.
Whatever you do, don’t dodge the sun altogether. Sunlight is crucial for the synthesis of bone-protecting vitamin D, so you do need some exposure – especially in winter when sunshine is in short supply.
- Dermalogica Daily Defense Block Spf15 100ml
- Lab Series Daily Moisture Defence Lotion Spf15 100ml
- Murad Anti-aging Moisturizer Spf20 50ml
- Clinique M Protect Spf 21
- No7 Men Energising Moisturiser 50ml
- Jack Black Double Duty Face Moisturiser Spf20 97ml
Remember That Less Can Be More
When it comes to grooming products, one thing men often forget is that you can definitely have too much of a good thing.
Nowhere is this more relevant than when it comes to fragrance, and with Valentine’s Day on the 14th of this month, moderation is worth bearing in mind.
Remember, the nasal receptors in the nose quickly suffer from olfactory fatigue – where they temporarily stop recognising a scent once they become familiar with it – so just because you can’t smell your fragrance, it doesn’t mean everyone else can’t.
As a rule, two to three sprays is ample.
- Acqua Di Parma Colonia Eau De Cologne Spray
- Balmain Monsieur Balmain Eau De Toilette 100ml
- Tom Ford Neroli Portofino Eau De Parfum Spray 50ml
- Giorgio Armani Acqua Di Gio Homme Eau De Toilette 100ml
- Dolce&gabbana Light Blue Pour Homme Eau De Toilette
- Hugo Boss Boss Bottled 30ml Eau De Toilette Spray
- Aramis Classic Eau De Toilette
- Christian Dior Eau Sauvage Eau De Toilette Spray 50ml
- Givenchy Gentleman Eau De Toilette
Mask Any Problems With A Spring Clean
“Some men feel self-conscious applying a clay mask but they’re very good for improving the texture and tone of skin, as well as for removing oil and dirt from the pores,” says Nicholas Clayton, author of A Butler’s Guide to Gentlemen’s Grooming.
In fact, a clay mask is a bit like a vacuum cleaner for skin, sucking out unwanted impurities, so if you want better looking skin in 2015 overcome your fears of looking ridiculous (you will, but that’s OK) and slot a product like Tom Ford’s Intensive Purifying Mud Mask or Baxter of California’s Clarifying Clay Mask into your grooming routine.
To turbo-charge its effectiveness, apply after gentle exfoliation with a face scrub.
- Tom Ford Intensive Purifying Mud 100ml
- Clarifying Clay Mask Baxter Of California
- Men-u D-tox Deep Clean Clay Mask 100ml
- Clarisonic Deep Pore Decongesting Clay Mask 60ml
- Deep Pore Cleansing Clay Anthony Logistics
- Botanics Mens Clay Mask 100ml
Say Goodbye To Soap
Cleansing is the foundation of any good grooming routine but what you cleanse with is crucial, especially if you’re prone to oily skin.
According to Dr. John Gray, author of The World of Skincare, harsh, alkaline soaps are especially bad news. “This is because severe degreasing with soap and water can actually lead to a worsening of sebum secretion, which completely defeats the object of cleansing,” he says.
So think about swapping your old bar of soap for a non-drying cleanser like Recipe For Men’s Sensitive Facial Cleanser, Anthony Logistics Algae Facial cleanser or, my own personal favourite, Shiseido Men Cleansing Foam. How’s that for a clean break?
- Recipe For Men Ultra Sensitive Facial Cleanser
- Algae Facial Cleanser Anthony Logistics
- Shiseido Men Cleansing Foam 125ml
Surrender To Thinning Hair
No man likes to admit his hair isn’t as thick as it used to be, but trying to disguise it is a recipe for disaster – not to mention ridicule. You’re much better off acknowledging the fact that your thatch is thinning and tailoring your haircut to go with it, rather than fight against it.
“Since hair thins on top before the sides, the difference between density is often what makes it look thinner than it really is,” says Daniel Davies, General Manager of Pall Mall Barbers in London.
To even the playing field, Davies suggests cutting hair rather than growing it: “A traditional short back and sides works well as it evens out the two densities.”
As for products, he recommends Phyto’s Phytoaxil Treatment to thicken hair and look after the scalp, as well as a matte styling clay (check out Hanz de Fuko’s Claymation or Pall Mall Barbers’ Pliable Clay) to add texture without weighing down fine hair.
Image: Coach AW13
Say No To Sunbeds
At the start of the summer it’s tempting to take a short cut to a beach-ready body with the help of a few sunbed sessions. Bad idea.
According to Cancer Research UK, the risk of developing malignant melanoma – the deadliest form of skin cancer – is up to 25 per cent higher in men who’ve used sunbeds and 59 per cent higher in people who first used a sunbed before age 35.
If you’re determined to hit the beach with some colour, think about a spray tan instead. Don’t worry, fake tans have improved massively over the last few years so there’s no reason for you to end up the colour of a mahogany sideboard.
“Good tanning is becoming a part of the modern man’s grooming regime… guys are constantly looking for a quick, safe and accurate way to tan themselves, without looking fake,” says celebrity spray-tanner James Harknett, who counts Harry Styles as one of his clients.
Operating out of the Away Spa in the W hotel, Leicester Square, Harknett has extended his range to include a new two-hour treatment aimed specifically at men, which is well worth checking out if you live in the capital.
Look out for part two of our Male Grooming Manifesto in July.
In the meantime, if you’re making any changes to your grooming routine this year, let us know in the comments box below…