Gone are the days when men don’t care how they look and smell. The boom in male-specific toiletries and services over the past five years is a clear indication that more guys are now taking grooming seriously and are willing to spend on hygiene products and visits to the spa to keep themselves looking dapper.
However, male grooming is more than just using organic shampoos and expensive face creams that were especially formulated for men. It is a lifestyle that is, unfortunately, mired with some inaccurate practices. We list down common men’s grooming habits and identify the truths from the mere old wives tales.
FACT OR MYTH: Regular soap is fine for your face
The skin on your face is far more sensitive and delicate than the skin on the rest of your body. Regular soap will dry out facial skin and may cause irritation, flaking and breakouts. There are all sorts of facial cleansers designed for men out there such as foaming gels, creamy face washes and scrubs with micro-beads. Invest on one and relegate the hand soap for washing your tush.
FACT OR MYTH: Get a closer shave by using more shaving cream
The lather created by shaving creams and gels softens hair shafts and provides lubrication so the razor can glide smoothly over the skin and facilitate a closer shave. A thin layer of shaving cream will suffice. Using more cream is just a marketing ploy of manufacturers so men finish their cans faster than they grow stubble.
FACT OR MYTH: There are no difference between men’s and women’s grooming products
In case you haven’t noticed, men’s skin is thicker and oilier than women’s. It also ages differently and thus requires different vitamins and minerals to be nourished properly. Men’s toiletries are specially formulated to meet the needs of male skin. Move your butt and get yourself some men’s toiletries because the sweet floral scent of your wife’s body wash does not smell good on you.
FACT OR MYTH: Pimples are caused by eating chocolates
Acne is caused by a variety of factors including genetics, hormones and stress but there is no conclusive evidence that eating certain food, particularly chocolate, can trigger a breakout. So go ahead and indulge on those M&Ms but make sure to exercise so they don’t end up on your big butt.
FACT OR MYTH: Teabags get rid of eye puffiness
Partying all night can cause dreaded dark circles around the eyes. While eye creams and gels can reduce the puffiness, they can get quite expensive. An economical way to reduce dark circles are used tea bags. The caffeine, anti-oxidants and tannins in tea bags help shrink blood vessels around the eye. To use, chill used tea bags in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes. Lay down and put the tea bags over your eyes. Leave them on for 15-30 minutes. Wash your face to get rid of tea stains.
FACT OR MYTH: Filthy tongue causes bad breath
The tongue is a haven for odor-causing bacteria and if you let them proliferate, chances are people will not speak to you again. When you brush your teeth, make sure to brush your tongue as well or use a tongue cleaner, that fancy device used to scrape out bacterial build-up, food debris, fungi, and dead cells from the surface of the tongue. Gargling mouthwash after brushing also helps keep microbes at bay.
FACT OR MYTH: Brushing teeth immediately after every meal
It is best to wait 30 minutes after eating before brushing your teeth. Acids in food, particularly citric acid, weakens the tooth enamel and brushing at this state may cause irreversible damage to your teeth. While waiting, it’s a good idea to drink lots of water to help wash away the acids.
FACT OR MYTH: Get a better shave after a shower
Warm water softens hair and opens up pores which facilitates for a closer, cleaner shave. You are prone to nicks and cuts when shaving before a shower as hair is hard and skin is not properly moisturize leading to razor burns. And if you were wise enough to invest on and install that fogless mirror in the shower, you can save precious grooming time by shaving while you shower!