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31.8.17

Anti-Ageing For Men

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Anti-ageing is predominantly something that only concerns women. Or at least, that’s what you would think if you look at the plethora of adverts and promotional material. It’s always women, using face creams and worrying about their crows’ feet.


Perhaps there is a perception that worrying about ageing is an inherently - for want of a better word - “unmasculine” thing. This is, quite simply, ridiculous. Everyone - regardless of their sex - wants to look as good as possible, through all stages of life. So that means for guys, you’re going to have to develop a way to fight through the unpleasantness that advanced years can bring.


Start Young and Get In The Habit


If you’re in your early 20s, you’re probably reading the above and thinking: “well I see the point, but at the same time, I’m too young to need any of that…”


In truth, you’re never too young to be concerned with anti-ageing. The earlier that you start, the more your skin can benefit. Think of it as prevention rather than cure. It’s a lot easier to stop wrinkles and crows’ feet from forming than it is to try and get rid of them - especially if you don’t like the idea of surgical treatments. If you want to stick to a routine you can do at home, then you need to start as soon as possible.


Anti-Ageing Is Not Just About Skin


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So much of the discourse around anti-ageing tends to focus on the skin. It’s easy to see why this is, to an extent. Our faces tend to be the first thing that people notice about us; they’re also the first thing we see of ourselves in the morning.


Nevertheless, it’s not just our facial skin that can show the passage of time. One problem that is common to men is the issue of male pattern baldness, which tends to get progressively worse as we age. Women do get female pattern baldness, but it’s far less common, meaning the issue is usually swept aside when it comes to discussing anti-ageing.


If you are going to lose your hair, then you have a few options to deal with it.


  • Shave your hair off. There is something a little bit tragic about those who are clearly missing huge chunks of hair who nevertheless try and grow what they can. From the much-mocked combover to crowns devoid of follicles, it’s not a great look. If you’re confident enough, shaving your hair off can often be the best solution.
  • If you’d rather maintain your locks, then investigate products like REGAINE® for Men. These products contain Minoxidil; a chemical recognised to help with hair loss. While expensive, it can make a real difference and is certainly cheaper than surgical methods.


Taking care of the hair you do have becomes more important as you age, whether you have male pattern baldness or not. It’s worth investigating a switch to a natural shampoo, which is devoid of sulphates and SLS chemical compounds. These compounds can cause irritation and weaken the structure of your hair; hair that is already going to be struggling as you age.


One note on natural shampoos, however: if you regularly use styling products, natural shampoos may not be a good choice for you. Check your products to see if they contain silicones; you will find these if the ingredients list features anything with a -cones suffix. If they do, then a natural shampoo won’t correctly remove them, and you’re best off sticking to regular options.


So: Your Skin


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With your hair in good condition and set to stay that way for awhile, we can finally turn attention to the headline act of anti-ageing: your skin.


Our skin loses collagen as we age, which makes us more susceptible to wrinkles and expression lines. The first thing you can do to help your skin is to replace the collagen that you’re using and preventing further loss, which can be managed with lifestyle and dietary changes.


On top of that, you’re going to need to establish a skincare routine. There’s very little point in aiming for products “for men” - let’s be clear about that. There’s nothing special about these products, except their fragrance is usually more “masculine”. Skin is skin, and good skin care is good skin care - so what works for women will work for you too. Don’t be suckered into paying more for a “for men” branding.


You may be thinking that moisturiser is the main component of anti-ageing skin care; that’s what the ads seem to suggest anyway. However, while moisturiser is important, it’s not as important as you might have been lead to believe.


Below, there’s a compilation of the ideal skin routine, along with the ingredients you need to look out for when buying products:


  • A cleanser. Oil cleansers are very of the moment, or even old fashioned cold cream works wonders. Massage onto a dry face and then remove with a wash cloth.
  • An exfoliator. You might have a facial scrub already, but exfoliation in such a manual way doesn’t tend to be good for your skin. It’s better to switch to chemical exfoliation, using products containing AHAs and BHAs.
  • If you’re over the age of 30, it’s worth adding an anti-ageing serum after you have exfoliated. There are thousands to choose from but look for products containing retinol or hyaluronic acid. These can be bought fairly inexpensively.
  • Finally, you do need a good moisturiser. However, this should be just about providing moisture - the clue is in the name! You don’t need an anti-ageing moisturiser, as you should have covered that necessity by exfoliating and using serums.


Is all of the above a faff? Yes - but it will improve your skin immeasurably. While there’s no way of always preventing wrinkles - we get them because of gravity - you can keep your skin looking as good as possible with a regime like the above.


Everything Else


Your skin and hair are the major causes of showing your age a little more than you might like - but they’re not the only factors. Here are 5 quick other ways you can ensure your body, style, and grooming is able to keep you looking youthful for longer.


  1. Watch your weight. Paunch is often seen as a sign of middle age, so keeping your weight down can make you appear more youthful in and of itself.
  2. Dress appropriately for your age. There’s no need to resign yourself to cardigans and “comfy slacks” - you can just tweak your style as your birthdays begin to ratchet up.
  3. Limit your alcohol intake. For one thing, drinking to excess plays havoc with your skin and your weight. Alcohol is also a dehydrator, which means all that work you put into keeping your skin moisturised is going to be wasted if you regularly have one too many.
  4. Controlling your facial hair - such as your nose hair and eyebrows - is a big part of maintaining a youthful appearance. We’ve all seen older gents with long excess hair; don’t be that guy.
  5. Avoid direct sun exposure. There are few things more ageing than sun exposure. Ensure you’re wearing a high SPF on sunny days, and preferably avoid the sun during its hottest hours.


Anti-ageing, when done right, can keep you looking and feeling as good as possible for as long as possible. How many guys would willingly say no to that? Make the effort and you’ll soon see the rewards. In fact, the only question you will be asking yourself is… why didn’t I do this sooner?


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