Men’s facial skin is different from that of a female in that it is more vascular and less prone to hormone induced thinning. The increased vascularity or blood flow is secondary to the dense distribution of hair follicles and it is generally thicker. As well there is not the hormone response of thinning seen with women after menopause. Men do not care for their skin as well as women. They are prone to sun damage and do not routinely maintain their skin. There is no need for make-up application and removal, which makes skin care a non-habit. Fortunately, men who shave their lower face get exfoliated routinely through shaving. This unconscious exfoliation is unfortunately followed by the routine of caring for their freshly shaven skin with the application of a skin drying alcohol based aftershave.
Multiple skin care lines directed towards the male patient exist, though the same basic skin care principles exist for both sexes: cleanser, moisturizer which is skin type specific, sunscreen and an exfoliant or retinol containing product. Male formulations maintain these principles, but the male face needs stronger concentrations to achieve active ingredient penetration because it is thicker, though in regions of the face where the hair density is greater a milder formulation may be needed because of over drying after shaving. Males will not tolerate the side-effects of active skin care like redness and peeling however these are rare because of the thickness and depth of penetration needed to cause these side-effects, therefore in combination with the regional effects of shaving, a simple yet moderate strength therapy regimen is recommended.
Male skin care products are centered around shaving and physical activity. They usually are mildly fragranced or unfragranced. Phytomer has a male skin care line for both face and body. The body line is mildly fragranced and has an exfoliating body wash and moisturizer. The facial line has a daily detoxifying cleanser, and an every other day oxygenating exfoliant. The Rasage Perfect shaving mask is thin for close razor to skin interaction and a clean shave. There is an alcohol free soothing aftershave as well as a Hydra-matifying moisturizer with a higher talc component to absorb oil. This male skin care regimen is active and simple with known ingredients that work.
Male skin resurfacing usually requires a strong pretreatment in order to de-keratinize and condition the skin. Men do have a higher ratio of skin cancer and actinic damage, therefore pretreatment can help plane and smooth any precancerous lesions. Serial lower concentration TCA are more common than full strength TCA secondary to a shorter recovery, but the majority of male skin will tolerate a medium depth peel and a repeat treatment in 6 weeks.
In general, men do want to preserve their skin quality and a recommended simple skin care regimen combined with a daily sunscreen can improve skin quality. Male patients will typically consider skin resurfacing in the form of medium depth chemical peels and even neuro-modulators such as Botox. These in-office procedures can be performed easily with little to no downtime. The male facelift is a reliable and predictable operation, and in combination with these aforementioned procedures can take years off a man’s face.
The most difficult aspect of male skin care is a consultation with a physician, but once the discussion is initiated in a plastic surgeons office they can be very compliant with a simple plan. Men can consult in my Dallas or Frisco office for a skin care and facial rejuvenation consultation.