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Skincare for a Gentleman

Despite the name of Influential Gentleman, most articles that we write are for everyone: healthy foods to implement in one’s diet, workout ideas to try, self-improvement tips, etc. With the exception of style articles, we really do want to include both men and women and help every individual reach their full potential. However, this one is, as they say, “for the boys.”

This is because if you’re a woman, you already have a skincare routine. You’ve done the research, you know what you need, and you’ve put together an arsenal of products to keep your skin looking good. And of course by “arsenal” I mean you have four or five products that you are currently using and most likely 20-30 more products taking up space in your bathroom cabinets. It’s ok. It’s better to be safe.

Men, however, often have no idea what they’re doing when it comes to properly taking care of our skin. We see all those products our sisters, mothers, or girlfriends are using and are overwhelmed. So, at the end of the day, skincare just seems like something that isn’t really for us. At Influential Gentleman we want to destroy this stigma and make sure all the men that read this article leave the page with a confident idea of exactly what they need. Spoiler alert: it’s incredibly simple.

Now, I don’t want to toot my own horn, but I get a weird amount of compliments on my skin. Part of it is certainly genetics, as my parents both look very young for their age due to their youthful skin. But it’s not just the luck of the draw, it’s a simple and refined skincare process that is low maintenance and low cost. I’m never going to recommend products in any type of article that are expensive, I promise you that. You don’t need that 50 to 100 dollar eye cream to stay youthful, you just need to follow a few basic principles.

The four principles of the Influential Gentleman Skincare Regimen are as follows:

  • Face wash
  • Moisturizer
  • Hydrating Face masks
  • Water temperature

That’s it. Nothing complicated about that. No gimmicks, no hassle, just four easy steps to having great skin. Now let’s go into each of the principles briefly. I’ll also recommend and link a couple of my recommendations so you can take the guesswork out of which facewash or moisturizer you should get. Here we go.

Face wash
This should not come as a surprise to anyone: you need to wash your face. Every day we accumulate dirt and oils on our face that if left unchecked can lead to breakouts. Breakouts lead to irritation and lack of confidence which we actively want to avoid. So, get yourself a face wash or cleanser. There’s not too much else to say here and you really can go a ton of different directions. You can get a nice gentle cleanser, or you can get one of those scrubs with the little beads in it…it’s really personal preference. I recommend something more on the gentle / simple side just because you don’t want to irritate the skin too much. I find that less is more here.

Now here’s where we get into the Influential Gentleman way. Most people I know use a face wash morning and night. I don’t recommend this. I recommend using a face wash once per day. This should be sometime in the evening, either after a workout or heavy activity, or before bed. Here’s why. Throughout the day is obviously when we’re accumulating dirt. Even if we’re not overly active we’re navigating our daily routines, touching our faces, etc. At the end of the day we’re going to want to get all of the day’s grind off of our faces.

So if we’re cleaning our faces before bed, and simply laying in bed sleeping for a few hours, what’s the point of a thorough wash again in the morning? All this is going to do is dry your skin a bit or potentially add some more irritation. Instead, in the morning, simply give your face a splash of warm water followed by cold water. We’ll get into water temperature and why it’s important later, but for now all that matters is we’re giving a very light cleansing in the morning with water only. Save the full face wash with our cleanser for the evening when it’s really needed. Trust me on this, it works.

Here are a few face washes that I would recommend:

  • Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser : this is one of the more gentle face washes I’ve used and leaves my skin feeling fresh and clean. It’s non-irritating and absolutely does it’s job of removing dirt and oil.
  • Clean and Clear Night Relaxing Deep Cleaning Face Wash: I’m actually a big fan of this one. My face feels super refreshed after using it, and it claims to relax you in preparation for bed. I don’t know how accurate that is but it definitely feels good, and since we’re only washing our face before bed, the product makes sense. It uses sea minerals and sea kelp extract which seems natural-ish so overall, yeah, I’m a fan.
  • CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser: this one is probably my favorite option in the winter because of it’s hydrating properties. This is targeted to those with normal to dry skin, and in the winter our skin dries up more easily because of the cold temperature and blustering winds. I feel like this one does a bit of hydrating restoration for me.

This is probably the most important category. If you want to have youthful skin you need to moisturize and you need to moisturize now. It doesn’t matter what age you currently are, if you start moisturizing you can absolutely slow down the effects of aging. Fortunately for me, my parents forced moisturizer on my sister and me since we were in maybe middle school. It became a daily habit and now as an adult I 100% see the benefits. In fact, every year I play on my National Premier Soccer League team with a bunch of of people much younger than me. They often ask me what college I go to, and assume I’m on average about 5-6 years younger than I really am. Minds are always blown when I tell the new members of the squad my age. Moisturizer is probably 80% of the reason for this. I’ve tried to consistently put it on twice a day minimum for around 16 years.

This is where people try to get a bit too fancy sometimes. They look for “anti-aging” creams or just unnecessarily expensive brands of moisturizer because they think those are the ones that will change their face overnight. Consistent application will keep your face looking great, not expensive creams. After your splashes of water in the morning, apply moisturizer. Before bed after you wash your face with your face wash, apply moisturizer. At any point during the day if you shower or go swimming, when you get out, apply moisturizer. Apply, apply, apply!

Here are a few moisturizers that I would recommend:

  • Purpose Dual Treatment Moisture Lotion: this is my favorite one. It’s the one I’ve most often used since middle school. “Did you put your Purpose on?” was probably the question I heard most from my mom growing up, no lie. It’s not too heavy, and comes with SPF 10 so it’ll not only keep your face safe in the sun, but it is better for your skin than most sun screens that have plenty of chemicals in them. This is my overall favorite.
  • Lubriderm Advanced Therapy Lotion: this moisturizer is no joke. If you have dry skin this is what you want. This is my new favorite product for the winter. Like I mentioned above, the skin dries out more in the winter and this lotion combats that incredibly. It feels a little thick at first but that feeling goes away after a couple minutes once it absorbs in the skin. Great product.
  • Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion: if I don’t plan on going outside, this is the lotion I prefer. It is also the moisturizer I prefer before bed. This is because it is lightweight and doesn’t have any SPF protection in it. The lightweight formula feels great and is the most comfortable of the ones above, but again, not as protective for sun exposure. Still a great product though!

Hydrating face masks
Face masks are something that I feel like men don’t think are for them. I definitely thought that. But when I started using them I realized just how incredible they make your face feel. After 15-30 minutes, depending on the mask, your face feels incredibly hydrated and fresh. Now if you want to get masks that help with acne or that have other intentions, feel free to. But I highly recommend a hydrating sheet mask. They’re low maintenance and don’t require effort removing a heavy cream based mask. Just apply, wear, remove. This isn’t something that has to be done every day, but maybe one to three times per week. Your face will thank you.

There’s no recommendations or extra information needed on these. Just stop into a CVS, go to the face masks, and pick a couple hydrating ones. It’s really dealers choice. I generally just look for any buy one get one free deals. It’s probably smarter to buy a bunch of them online to drive the costs down. Just thinking about that now. Maybe I should look into that…

Proper water temperature
This is oddly important. I grew up being told to start with hot water, apply face wash, rinse with hot water, and follow with cold water. Hot water opens the pores to be cleansed properly then cold water closes them. This is technically accurate but brings on one major problem. Hot water irritates and dries out the skin.

When I realized this I switched to all cold water. I knew that cold water tightens the skin in general so I went to all cold all the time. Now my face looked youthful and tight but I did experience a bit of breaking out because I couldn’t properly clean my face without opening up the pores.

So, we need a little compromise. While you never want to be lukewarm in your life, you do want to use lukewarm water with your face. Start with lukewarm to open the pores. There’s no reason to go hot because lukewarm does the same job without excessively drying the skin. Apply face wash, rinse with lukewarm water, finish with ice cold water. In the morning you can do the same process without the face wash. Just splash some lukewarm water on the face and give a light rub, then switch to ice cold and close those pores up and tighten the skin.

Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
As you can probably gather, the Influential Gentleman Skincare Regimen relies on hydration. The more hydrated your skin is the healthier it will be and the more youthful it will look. It really only takes a few minutes a day to have great skin. Men have the luxury of not needing to worry about makeup, which requires plenty of additional facial care and knowledge. All we have to do is cleanse and hydrate. That’s it. No excuses.

Final tips
I wanted to end with the “that’s it no excuses” line as I thought that drove the point home but I realized I have a couple more things to say. The skincare routine we discussed is all about applying the proper products to cleanse and hydrate the skin, but that’s not the whole equation.

It should be obvious, but we also hydrate our skin from the inside by drinking plenty of water. I drink a gallon a day. That’s not easy for me but the benefits are incredible, not just to my skin. Humans are allegedly 60% water, so it makes sense that the more water we drink the better we function as a whole. This is obvious in the skin. If you are dehydrated your skin will show it. Drink plenty of water every day to stay youthful! Check out our article on how important water is for the body if you want more info.

Sleep well! Sleep is another thing that has a huge impact on how you look. If you don’t sleep enough your body doesn’t recover. It’s not just those dreaded bags under the eyes or dark circles. Skin will not be as tight and therefore not look as good. Again, like drinking water, there are huge ramifications outside of jus the skin but clearly we are talking about the skin here so I’m not going to go into huge detail.

Finally, it will help if you eat a healthy diet. Fruits and veggies will help the skin look great, and in general having a well-balanced diet is good for the entire body. The healthier you are and the better you take care of yourself, the healthier and younger your skin will look.

Thus ends the Influential Gentleman Skincare Regimen. Good luck men, and may your skin be youthful!

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