ESSENTIAL GROOMING HABITS FOR EVERY MAN
As we enter a new decade, men are striving to look their best.
For business or for pleasure, staying on top of your grooming game will allow you to build confidence and higher self-esteem. Here are a few essential habits for the well-groomed man.
1. Wear Sunscreen Daily
The sun causes 90% of premature aging. This is by far the cheapest and most effective way to defend the skin against aging.
Use a mineral based moisturizing sunscreen at least once daily to limit the damaging effects the sun has on your skin. Also stay away from chemical sunscreens, as many have been shown to be harmful to both yourself and the environment.
2. Become a Regular at the Barber
Find a barber you like and develop good rapport with him. Consistency is key. If you've noticed your hair needs a trim, then it’s pretty safe to say others have too. Stay on top of your mane, it is a key representation of who you are.
Trim your hair every 2-3 weeks for that well-maintained look. Keep your hairstyle clean and modern, but don’t try to be overly trendy. Work with what you have and style accordingly. Nothing dates a guy faster than trying to look 20 years younger than he actually is.
3. Find The Perfect Hair Product For You
One size does not fit all and the current rotation of men's products reflect this. If you have thicker, unruly hair, know that pomade and waxes are for you. The finer headed should go for lighter products. Moreover, there's stuff for those with no hair at all.
The solution is simple: do your research. Products usually do what they say on the tin. So do some light reading, add in a little bit of trial-and-error, and you’ll find the right kit for your hair.
4. Keep Your Beard Well-Trimmed and Maintained
Maintenance is essential and a good trimmer goes a long way. Invest in one that has multiple applications and different heads. These will not only make the job easier but will save you some dollars down the line. Not to mention, these are always a great gift to ask from others if you don’t want to buy it yourself
5. Cleanse Your Face Regularly
Pollution, dirt and sweat can cause blocked pores and inefficiency in your skin’s ability to shed dead skin layers. Using a proper cleanser can help set the stage for how the rest of your skincare routine goes. Stay away from soap and high alkaline washes. That squeaky clean feeling is actually your skin’s outer defense (AKA acid mantle) breaking down and losing moisture.
Washing improperly can wreak havoc on you skin’s ability to maintain moisture. Use a cleanser that is designed to attach to dirt and pull it away from your skin, not just take the whole layer off. A good cleanser will moisturize and balance your pH, prepping your skin for a hydrating moisturizer.
6. Mind Your Stench
A good deodorant can save you some serious embarrassment. BO (body odor) is one of the top deal breakers when searching for a love interest.
Find a deodorant that is aluminum-free but still effective. Be sure to use unscented or lightly scented, as scented deodorants will often clash with other scents in your lotions, creams or colognes. You can also add a supplement that is high in chlorophyll, like alfalfa or parsley. Chlorophyll is well-known for its deodorizing and cleansing properties.
7. Put Your Best Foot Forward
They might not be on show that often, but a good footcare routine is still important. Maintenance is best after a bath or shower when the skin is softest.
Use a pumice stone and/or callus shaver to remove any dead skin and calluses. With feet still moist, lather foot or body lotion all over your entire foot to prevent dry, cracked skin on the heels and toes.
8. Use An Eye Cream
They claim the eyes are the windows to your soul. If that’s the case, you better start taking good care of them. Sun, alcohol, stress, lack of sleep and dehydration create the perfect storm for developing dark circles, bags and crow’s feet around the eyes. The skin around the eyes is only one-tenth as thick as the skin on the rest of your face and requires special maintenance.
A good eye cream can help eliminate dark circles, decrease inflammation, puffiness and reduce the appearance of fine lines. Find an eye cream that contains ingredients high in antioxidants like vitamins A, C, and E. Antioxidants help decrease inflammation, combat discoloration and neutralize damaging free radicals.
9. Stay Hydrated
Healthy skin is reliant on good hydration levels to function efficiently. Not only does water promote skin elasticity, but the enzymes that help shift and shed dead skin cells also require water to work effectively. Why do you think your skin looks so bad after a night of drinking?
Drink at least 64 ounces of water each day. If you’re active, it can be significantly more. Be sure you’re also getting enough electrolytes to help with proper water absorption.
10. Pluck Those Eyebrows
Ditch the uni-brow. The purpose of your eyebrows is not to attract attention to them but to attract attention to your eyes. Nothing frames your eyes better than nicely shaped brows.
Brows that are too scraggly or bushy can make you look tired, unkempt or just plain messy. Of course, don’t get too crazy with your shaping. Focus on plucking the hairs between and below. Keeping your natural shape and some routine maintenance will give you that clean, polished look.
11. Clip (Don’t Bite) Your Nails
Use nail clippers to cut your nails once a week. It’s best to do this after a bath or shower, as they will be softened and easier to trim. This helps remove dirt and bacteria from under the nail beds that can lead to irritation and infection from scratching areas on your body, especially your face.
Always trim in a circular direction, not straight across. If you’re not careful, you can easily damage or crack the nail and cause a whole host of other problems. Use a buffing block to sand down the sharp edges, otherwise you will be accidentally scratching others or destroying your clothes.
12. Teeth Are The Only Bones That Show
The most common physical features people notice about others when first meeting are the eyes and teeth. A great smile can brighten people’s day.
Tooth maintenance is not only necessary for good health, but it’s also a great confidence booster. Brush and floss every day, at least twice a day, and also after consuming sugary or acidic foods. Be sure to visit your dentist twice a year for a professional cleaning.
If you’re a little lazy, get an electric rotary brush. It does wonders for those that don’t like to floss regularly. In fact, these have been shown to reduce plaque by 11%.
13. Do You Trim In The Land Down Under?
If you don’t like a jungle on your significant other, they probably don’t like it on you. Trimming the pubic region not only reduces bacteria and keeps that area dry and smelling better, it will probably keep your mate happy too.
Use a trimmer with a safety blade to prevent any unwanted nicks on your twig and berries. A razor may cause irritation and ingrown hairs on your skin. Use a toner to wipe the freshly shaven area clean and help prevent any irritation or future ingrown hairs.