The late Bob Marley once gleefully said: “Sun is shining, the weather is sweet. Make you want to move your dancing feet.”
Ironically, the poor bastard eventually met his maker in the form of melanoma at age 36. And herein lies a bigger issue amongst men: Most of us are either oblivious or just complacent when it comes to proper skin protection during summer – the season where it matters most.
Besides the obvious risk of skin cancer, chasing that “healthy glowing skin” can also toss up a few curve balls in the form of dark patches, oily skin, wrinkles and unsightly spot blemishes – the cosmetic stuff that will earn you the name Leatherface. It’s a big price to pay for a little bit of colour over a few months.
Here are the easiest ways to look after your skin this summer.
Don’t Use A Bar Of Soap
We get it. You’ve heard the myths about dropping the soap. It doesn’t mean you need to hold onto the thing for dear life and use it every chance you get.
Men’s skincare has evolved from from circulating the humble bar of soap between your body and face. In fact most guys wouldn’t know that standard soap actually damages the skin by stripping off the protective layer from it, making it easier for skin irritation and dryness.
Use Face & Body Wash
Men tend to sweat more during the warmer months and this results in an increase of oil and dirt on the skin’s surface. If these dirt particles clog up the pores, there’ll be an increase in outbreaks and acne.
Slathering a layer of sunscreen also doesn’t help in terms of preventing that greasy and dirty layer of skin. The solution is simple – use a body or face wash to rid all of the oils and dirt that has accumulated throughout the day. That means before heading out into the sun and after.
Inherit An Easy Routine
We can’t stress routine enough during summer as this will ensure you don’t fry over longer stints out in the sun. You might have gotten the first step down pat, but without a backup plan serious sun damage is still very possible.
Three key time slots should be followed:
Morning: Start with a decent cleanser that will clean away dead skin cells whilst purifying the skin without stripping it. Try Jack Black’s Deep Dive Glycolic Facial Cleanser before applying Dermalogica’s proven Pure Light SPF30 based moisturiser. This will protect your skin from harmful UVs when you’re not in the water.
Afternoon: If you’ve got five minutes, it’s time to re-apply and replenish before catching that last stint of sun. Wipe down your skin with a cleansing toner which is quite affordable. A good bottle of Cetaphil will set you back no more than $20. Once rinsed, re-apply the aforementioned moisturiser.
Evening: This is the wrap up of the day and also the most important. A build up of dirt and oil means you’ll need to cleanse and exfoliate (it’s faster and easier than you think) to remove dead skin cells in order to promote new skin growth. Top it off with a hydrating lotion or better yet get a two-in-one like Paula’s Choice Lotion Exfoliant.
Look Good, Not Greasy
Regulating your skin’s oil production, especially on your face, will go a long way in curbing the disenchanted sweaty-oil look. The key is to pick a fast-absorbing oil-free lightweight lotion which provides the same protection without making you look live you’ve just run a marathon hungover.
Heading into the open sun with a bit of water action? You’ll need sunscreen for that. All it takes is 15 minutes for the sun to fry your ass, causing proper damage to skin. We hear you though – sunburn goes away after a week or two, right?
Indeed but it will comeback later on down the track in the form of unattractive pigmentation, premature ageing and you guessed it, risk of cancer. Always go for a high SPF rated sunblock and re-apply every two hours. Being in the water and sweating will ensure that sunscreen tends to run off the body quicker.
A few more tips:
- Don’t neglect the lips as these can burn too leaving cracked and painful skin. Use Jack Black’s Intense Therapy Lip Balm.
- Let sunscreen absorb for 20 minutes before jumping into the sea.
- Don’t neglect parts of your body such as the feet, hairline and mid-back which is often hard to reach.
Alas we’ve reached you a tad too late and the sun damage has already been done. Keep your pants on. See our comprehensive guide on How To Treat Sunburn When You’re A Man (Typically A Lazy One).