Men’s Grooming Tips from TDA Founder, Dr Stephan Helary
As someone who travels and spends a lot of time outdoors, my skin is subjected to many environmental factors, from sun and wind while in the African wilderness to dry air-conditioning and pollution while visiting big cities. Having a sensitive skin has taught me how to juggle these environmental variations and adapt my skincare routine.
What makes the big difference between men and women’s skin is testosterone. The higher testosterone level in men induces the development of thicker skin and hair, and larger sebaceous glands. This results in bigger pores as well as an increased secretion of sebum, which creates the protective oily film on your skin.
That said, men can also have dry, oily or combination skin like women, and you don’t need products specifically formulated for men (that’s just marketing!) but only need to use the right products for your skin type and the right routine.
Your skin is an ecosystem. Your body create a specific environment on the surface of your skin, which is oily and acidic (pH 4-5), called the acid mantle. This protective layer is not only crucial to prevent water loss and to protect your body from external microorganisms and pollution but it is home to your skin flora. Many of these microorganisms are bacteria of which there are around 1,000 species.
The skin flora is usually non-pathogenic, and either commensal (not harmful) or beneficial. The beneficial bacteria prevent pathogenic organisms from colonizing the skin surface.
Make sure to use products that are formulated at the right pH (4-5; pH balance doesn’t mean anything) and that do not strip away the natural oil of your skin as to not disrupt your skin’s ecosystem.
My Skincare Routine
A good skincare routine starts with a gentle mildly foaming cleanser, with the right pH and no harsh chemicals. Men tend to like the foam because it feels like it is cleansing better, but the more foam the more harsh chemicals stripping away your natural oil. Best to use a face wash that has oil in it such as moringa oil, which lifts environmental grime without making your skin feel dry and tight.
Mildly foaming cleanser with soothing properties. 70% organic. 59% fairtrade.
- Aloe ferox: Soothing, hydrating, anti-inflammatory, speed up healing of wounds.
- Rooibos: Antioxidant. Soothing, anti-allergenic.
- Moringa oil: Uplift dirt, impurities and environmental grime.
Massage gently onto wet skin to work up a lather. Rinse well and pat dry. Use at least once a day preferably in the shower to open up the pores and preferably at night since your skin will regenerate itself while you sleep.
Use an exfoliating paste once or twice a week to exfoliate your skin on your face and neck. Scrubbing remove dead skin cells, prevents pores from clogging, activates blood flow, resulting in your skin feeling smoother and brighter.
An organic exfoliating paste that stimulate skin regeneration while removing impurities. 91% organic.
- Sugar and rooibos leaves for exfoliation: The more water you mix with the scrub, the quicker the sugar dissolves. You can manage the strength of the scrub by adding more or less water on your face.
- Marula oi: Rich in omegas it leaves your skin feeling nourished, soft and silky.
Massage with fingertips in circular movements focusing on T area (nose and forehead).
I have never been big on shaving as I always suffered from razor burn and bumps. The beard has always been the best solution for the last 20 years but I prefer a clean neck and shaped beard.I prefer shaving oils to shaving creams. You don’t need to buy a beard oil. You can use good quality face oil made of vegetable oils, which you can use to shave, for your beard and on your face when your skin is feeling dull, tired or really dry. Our face oil is thin and doesn’t leave your skin oily if you use the right amount. It absorbs very easily and leaves your skin not only radiant but also soft and silky. It also softens and tames the beard hair while making them slightly shinny.
A light, dry, deep acting face oil, which nourishes and balances the skin. It restores the natural oily film on the surface of the skin. 95% organic.
- Marula, Kalahari melon, manketti oils and jojoba oils: Rich in omegas and powerful antioxidants, these natural oils help maintain cells membrane integrity, help repair damage caused by free radical, fight acne and help keep skin supple.
Use one pump maximum. Pat lightly onto the skin. Allow 3-5 minute for the oil to absorb. Dab off excess. If you have a beard rub it in your beard from top to bottom to help tame the hair.
Our skin takes a beating over time, thanks to free radicals causing oxidative stress. Oxidation is a normal physiological process that becomes overrun due to pollution, UVs, cigarette smoke, alcohol and lack of sleep.Our serum contains powerful natural actives such as vitamin A, B, E and C, essential amino acids, Cu and Zn, glycoproteins, hyaluronic acids and many others to help you fight inflammation from oxidative stress, tighten, firm and even out skin tone and hydrate. It also contains extract from Cassia alata, which repairs and prevent further damage by UV A&B.
A light soothing and hydrating gel with potent anti-ageing properties. Easily absorbed, this serum will leave your skin feeling firm and soothed. 94% organic. 94% fairtrade.
- Kigelia: Anti-inflammatory, firming, antioxidants.
- Baobab: Hydrating, antioxidants, boost skin elasticity.
- Buchu: Anti-inflammatory and vascular protective agent.
Apply twice daily on face and neck. Leave on until you either feel a tightening sensation or completely absorbed. Follow with your hydrating product.
Whether you are an outdoor guy or a city guy, keep your skin moisturized. As men tend to have oilier skin, use a light moisturizer that won’t clog your pores. Also do not use moisturizers with alpha hydroxy acids in them. They eat away the cement between the cells, resulting in shedding too much of the epithelial cells. Immediate benefits are good but they cause long-term damage by exhausting the skin’s ability to regenerate, resulting in premature ageing later on. A moisturizer is the product you will keep on your skin the longest so make sure it is formulated at the right pH to not disrupt your skin flora.Sun block have become really controversial in the last few years due to the use of many chemicals that are potentially more harmful than good. If you are spending a lot of time outdoor choose an organic sun block.
If you live in a really humid climate, then you probably don’t need to moisturize, unless you spend a lot of time in air conditioned environment, and can make due with just a face oil.
A complex, fast absorbing formulation that hydrates, restructures and regenerates skin, while fighting free radicals and boosting skin elasticity. 84% organic. 70% fairtrade.
- Marula: Improve skin tone and elasticity, restore the lipid phase, regenerate cell wall, fight free radicals.
- Baobab: Fight free radicals, hydrate, improve skin tone and elasticity.
- Manketti: Essential fatty acids restore the lipid phase, soften.
Apply on face and neck after your serum. Apply from bottom to top rather than top to bottom. Mix with a few drop of Facial Glow to make a richer cream if you have dry skin or live in a dry environment.
While the ingredients are meant to fight the effects of outdoor exposure, the products don’t contain SPF, so it is important to remember to put on an additional layer of organic sunscreen if you are spending a lot of time outdoors.
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