This month Jason Shankey, shares with us his advice on winter skin care for men.
Guys, have you ever noticed that in the winter, the skin on your face becomes tighter, drier and dishes out spots, redness and chapped skin? In fact this starts to happen around mid-November and carries on until around February or March.
Whats happening is that the winter’s drier and colder air is extracting all of the skins natural defence system from your face and exposing it to the elements. The problem is compounded by the central heating at home and in your work. Central heating lulls your face into a false sense of security by making it think that its summer and this causes your skin to use less of its natural defence mechanism.
Your skin has two natural lines of defence against winter air. Firstly, it produces more oil which acts as a barrier between your skin and the cold, dry air and secondly, it pulls the blood vessels deeper into the skins surface to reduce heat loss and protect the body’s circulation system.
So with central heating reducing this protective effect, what should you do to protect from dry, chapped and red skin?
The solution is really straightforward and its simply a variation on what you normally do in the morning – It’s to do with the way you shave!
By changing just a couple of areas of your shave routine, you can have a face as clear as day.
Shaving foams, gels and soaps surprisingly often contain ingredients which attack your skins protective layer either because they are highly alkaline (your skins protective layer is acidic) or because they contain a high degree of SD alcohol which dries out your skin. If your skin feels tight, dry or if it is very shiny after using your current product, its possible that youre inadvertently causing problems for yourself.
Additionally, after you have shaved you need to help protect your skin by applying a light application of a barrier such as a moisturiser. This will replace lost oils from the skin and create a barrier between your skin and the elements.
I normally use a cut throat razor but this is my advice for a perfect winter shave at home which will keep your skin in perfect condition.
Shave 10 minutes after you get up. Start by either splashing plenty of warm water on your face or by shaving in a warm shower. Next, use a scrub to help lift the hairs from the face and remove dead skin. Look at your choice or razor; is it a cheap single blade razor or a quality blade such as a Mach 3? You get what you pay for so use the best razor you can afford. Quality razors create less drag.
Thoroughly apply a moisturising shaving cream over all of the area to be shaved, preferably with a shaving brush and shave in the direction of the hair growth, stretching your skin in the opposite direction at the same time. This should leave your shave as close as shaving against the grain, but without the razor burn. Shave each area only once if possible.
Rinse with cold water to waken up the skin and to close the pores and apply a pea sized amount of a light moisturiser (or a heavier moisturiser if you have dry skin) over every area you shaved including your neck. Dont apply any after-shave or eau de toilette for at least five minutes.