As a noted.man you are quite evolved and will be au fait with the three-step routine. Our skins are complex things however, and as we get older, things get far more complicated and require more attention. MS MATHAHLE STOFILE has done all the work for you, here’s her edit of the best skincare solutions.
- Cleansing brush
There is some debate when it comes to these little devices. That is apparently because internationally, there are quite a few rubbish facial brushes out there. Luckily for us in SA, we still only have a handful to choose from. Here is something to keep in mind: all skins are different and will respond differently to skin products and treatments.
We have tested the Clinique Sonic Cleansing Brush and here is what we found:
This brush does not exfoliate but deep cleanses the skin very well. The bristles are very gentle (suitable for all skin types and daily use) and the angled tip helps to reach the hard to reach areas, which are usually more clogged and thus more prone to break outs (think of the area around the nose). It also has a built in timer so you do not over-do it and it is waterproof so you can keep it in your shower. The battery needs recharging every 3-6 weeks (depending on frequency of use) and the head needs to be replaced every six months. Because the end of the bristles are rounded and they vibrate (instead of rotate) making the action very mild but effective on the skin.
Result: The skin felt clean but not dry and squeaky. After about two weeks of regular use, the pores appear smaller, skin is brighter and the texture is smooth. If you have sensitive skin, start by using the brush twice a week and increase frequency from there. For normal skin, you can use the Clinique brush once or twice daily. You will never go back to washing your face with your hands once you see and feel how clean your skin is. Proper cleansing is the most important thing you can do for your skin. Please read the instructions on the product very well as proper usage is crucial for desired results.
If you think you do not need a serum because you already use a face moisturiser, think again. A serum is made up of tiny molecules that have the ability to penetrate the skin and work it from a deeper skin layer. A moisturiser has far bigger molecules which cannot penetrate the skin as deeply as a serum can. This means you use your serum to “treat” the skin and the moisturiser to “protect” the skin. Choose a serum that will address your specific concerns such as: unevenness of skin tone, loss of volume, pigmentation, fine lines, enlarged pores… whatever your gripe. Apply it on freshly cleansed skin before your moisturiser.
For many Black men, oily skin that is prone to breakouts is quite common. This is because Black skin, in general, tends to produce more oil that other skin types. This is why we wrinkle later than most. The downside though is that if we do not exfoliate regularly and try to limit the oil production so that it does not clog the pores, we break out in acne. A very good way to reduce excess sebum (oil) is applying a clay mask with activated charcoal as an absorbing ingredient. The activated charcoal acts as a magnet to attract and absorb dirt and oil from the skin. It is also great for minimizing the appearance of enlarged pores.
When babies are born, they almost immediately start shedding dead skin and their skin cells rebuild new ones. This is a daily process for them leaving their skin smooth and plumped (thanks to the rapid production of collagen encouraged by the natural exfoliation process that happens at this age.) As we get older, the collagen production slows down and so does the natural exfoliation process – which is why exfoliating products become so important. If you do not exfoliate, you end up wasting a whole lot of skin products as they cannot penetrate the skin through that dead layer. Regular exfoliation is brilliant for circulation, brightening the skin, smoother texture, encouraging collagen production and cell renewal as well as general wellness of your skin. It is also a very important step when shaving.
Exfoliate the skin BEFORE you shave for a closer and smoother shave. Rinse with cold water and then apply your shaving cream, gel or oil.
Not the most popular thing in skin care but certainly crucial. A suncare product should be applied to the skin daily, no exceptions. Because we live in one of the harshest climates in the world (South Africa), we have to take great care when it comes to the dangers of UV rays. Go for a sunscreen that is at least SPF30 protection. Make sure the sunscreen is broadbased (protects from both UVA and UVB rays).