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  1. #1

    Default Overwhelmed by all of the different skin care products, can someone help me sort it all out?

    I thought I was ready to take the next step in my grooming routine, specifically by taking care of my face. Quit smoking 6 months ago mostly because I didnt like the way my face was aging. Whether it was the cause or not, couldnt have been helping. Anyway, was looking at Men's Health grooming awards from last year just to get an idea of what's out there and start from there. In their face section, they had 8 categories. Do people really put 8 different products on their face every day?

    For example, they listed a a moisturizer (task), an age correcting gel (kiehl's facial fuel), an eye lift (lab series), a face scrub (eshu), an exfoiliating cleansing gel (ahava), a daily facial cleanser (kyoku), a "peel" (jack black), and a sunscreen (Cane+austin).

    I've also seen "serums" out there, but I dont what they are and the word kind of scares me, haha. My face is neither dry or oily, and Ive never had issues with acne/breakouts. It does sometime get blotchy, not sure why. I'm just trying to figure out what products I need to add to my bathroom and start using to take care of my face.

    Also, what are some of the more respected brands out there, that have good products across the board? Id rather buy all my products from one company then mix n match, for convenience and to keep the scents the same (if scented). Ive used Jack Black's All-Over-Body wash before and liked it, havent tried any of their other products but they seem to all get pretty god reviews. Lab Series has a wide range of products that also seem to get good reviews across the board, never tried any of their stuff though. Everything else is foreign to me.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Overwhelmed by all of the different skin care products, can someone help me sort it all out?

    You just need:

    1) A good soap. Inexpensive.
    2) A Tretinoin (retinoic acid) cream prescribed by a dermatologist, to be used during the night and not during summer. It really works -it actually makes you look younger- and is much better than any serum or anti-age cream. Depending on the concentration, it can have "professional" results.
    3) A good non-oily sunscreen (SPF 15) for the sunny days. Inexpensive.

    - - - Updated - - -

    P.S. While you are using the tretinoin cream, you must apply the sunscreen before going outside. The skin gets very sensitive with the tretinoin. It makes the skin peel a little bit, revealing new and brighter skin underneath.

    You don't seem to need a moisturizer since your skin is already balanced. If you are using the tretinoin cream, you don't need scrubs or exfoliators. I did not recommend an adstringent lotion (a lotion that makes your pores close) because most of them are alcohol-based and could be too harsh while you're treating the skin with tretinoin).
    Last edited by DanielPlainview; 24th March 2013 at 09:11 PM.

  3. #3
    Renato's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001

    Default Re: Overwhelmed by all of the different skin care products, can someone help me sort it all out?

    If you are going to do fairly minimal skin care (which I don't bother with anymore) you need
    1. A daily or twice daily gentle face wash, and
    2. An exfoiliating face scrub for use twice a week (to get rid of dead skin cells), and
    3. Some kind of moisturiser or aftershave balm.

    You can probably drop Step 1, if you wet shave in the mornings. If you electric shave, be wary, as some of the face washes mosturise your skin lightly and make electric shaving more difficult. I always wash with a medicated, drying-out-skin type soap bar before letting the skin dry and then electric shaving.

    Variations on this theme include the Clinique regime where for the first step they use a mild soap bar, followed by using cotton balls with toner.

    The other variation is to apply some night time moisturiser before you go to bed, containing chemicals that gently exfoliate (or chew away gently) on your skin over night.

    Step three above isn't as easy as it seems, as there are moisturisers and balms that leave your skin with either a wet look, or an oily look, or a palid look, or a matte finish look. I found that Rexona Men After Shave balm gave me a natural looking matte finish, and that most of the sunscreen stuff left a sheen I didn't like (so I only wear them to the beach).

    To my mind, the most effective single thing one can do, is that bi-weekly facial scrub before going to bed. There are dozens to choose from (men's and women's), but while I thought the Lab Series one was the best one, the mucher cheaper but still effective Nivea for Men one is the one I reach for. If you live where there is harsh sunlight, use of moisturiser with sun protection may be advisable the day after the exfoliating face scrub.

    Those eye serums all gave me puffy eyes, so I threw them out.

    Does it work? The best judges are women, and I would often get comments from women that my skin was looking good, while experimenting with one or other of the regimes.
    Last edited by Renato; 24th March 2013 at 10:48 PM.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Washington, DC

    Default Re: Overwhelmed by all of the different skin care products, can someone help me sort it all out?

    There's no limit to how many products one can use, but I'd say that only a couple are necessary. And of course, you need not limit yourself to those for men.

    Absolute must is a moisturizer with sunscreen when there is sun outside. Pretty much all brands now have moisturizers with SPF. The sunnier it is, the higher the SPF. Similarly, you need a lip balm, with SPF as needed. It is better to get something cheaper that you have no problem reapplying throughout the day than something expensive you use only once a day. No sunscreen will last through the day, you need to reapply every couple of hours. Not a bad idea to moisturize at night too, and of course it's not necessary to have sun protection for that. For the winter, rather than going for higher SPF factor, you probably want a thicker moisturizer to protect against the dry wind and the cold.

    As already suggested, exfoliating every once in a while could be useful. It also helps with ingrown hair and the like. Since your skin seems normal and you have no acne, I don't think you should do so too often, I'd say once a week should be enough.

    After that, you can go into more specific products such as those containing retinol for aging, or those for puffy eyes if you get them etc.


  5. #5

    Default Re: Overwhelmed by all of the different skin care products, can someone help me sort it all out?

    Post Scriptum: I also recommend:

    4) A good non-alcoholic post shave balm. Maybe Nivea for delicate skin. It would work even if you are using the anti age cream. And it would leave your face very smooth and protected after shaving.

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