Your skin is your body’s biggest organ by surface area and its role is not just to cover your flesh. Besides shielding your internal body organs from the elements such as dust, cuts, burns, and cold, it enhances your immunity against pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, and fungi. It also regulates your body temperature and secretes metabolic waste.
Thanks to being on the frontline, your skin goes through repeated scratches, burns, bruises, severe cold, dirt, and grime. To survive, the outermost layer, called the epidermis, constantly regenerates itself. This is a paper sheet sized layer of skin cells which regularly shed and are replaced by new cells. Below it are two other layers, the dermis and the hypodermis, responsible for oil, elastin and collagen production, products that maintain your skin’s shine, elasticity, health, and vitality.
These skin cell activities are what determine your skin type, whether you are male or female. The major difference between male and female skin is hormonal variation. For instance, due to hormones, men grow hair in areas that women don’t. The other major difference is that men have more oil and sweat producing glands as well as a bit thicker skins.
Reading this guide will help you know where you stand and the best men’s face wash for your skin type.
So what are the men’s skin types
Skin types for men
There are 5 basic skin types: oily, dry, normal, combination and sensitive skin types.
For this skin type, your skin has overactive sebaceous glands (oil-producing glands) that produce excess oils. The fact is that the oils and lipids are needed to protect your skin from the elements while trapping moisture and heat from escaping from your body. However, the excess oil gets clogged in your skin pores, mixes with the dirt collected throughout the day and your skin’s dead cells to produce pimples, blackheads, and whiteheads. Ingrown hair follicles also get trapped and that’s why you get razor bumps whenever you shave.
The causes of oily skin range from hereditary, hormonal variations, diet choices, hot weather and reaction to some skin care products.
To take care of this skin type, you need to clean your face regularly, if possible twice a day. You also need to use an exfoliator that will extract the excess oil from the pores without over extracting you skin moisture as this would paradoxically stimulate even more oil production.
You should also check to confirm that your skin care products are labeled ‘noncomedogenic’, which means that they won’t clog your pores.
You have a dry skin if your sebaceous glands do not produce enough oil to trap moisture leading to a dry and non-elastic skin especially when exposed to the elements such as sunny, windy or frosty weather.
This skin type often frequently changes from normal to dry and back depending on the weather conditions. It also varies between people, such that for some, the dryness may be unnoticeable while for others due to inelasticity, the dry flakes peel and form a powdery appearance. Causes of dry skin may be hereditary, deficiency of vitamins, and other conditions such as eczema and dermatitis.
To take care of this skin type you need lots of sunscreen and moisturizer. You also need to avoid face cleansers that are dying, such as soaps, and exfoliators with dehydrating ingredients such as alcohol or methanol. Frequent washing should also be avoided.
A normal skin has the ideal moisture, oil and pH levels. It has no clogged and bulging pores, flakes, and stretch marks, and the only care question is how to maintain this state. You need to cleanse and moisturize it at least twice a day and exfoliate once a week. You also need to regularly apply sunscreen to prevent UV rays from accelerating your skin’s aging.
A combination skin is a mash-up of all the other the skin types but they tend to happen in sections. The T-zone (nose, forehead, and chin) may have an oily skin with the cheeks being normal or dry.
The best strategy for handling this type of skin is using different cleansers for the different patches of skin. The oily sections will need a water-soluble exfoliator while the dry and normal parts may need hydrating cleansers.
You have a sensitive skin if your skin’s natural protective barrier is weakened, leading to reactions such as redness, itchiness or blemishes when exposed to triggers such as;
- Sun rays
- Air pollution
- Hot shower
- Hard mineralized water
- Frosty weather
- Wrong skin care products
This skin type needs creamy and anti-inflammatory cleansers that will oil and soothe rashes. Avoid facial cleansers that affect the skin’s pH level such as those with alcohol or methanol. You also need to avoid harsh soaps that will irritate your skin.