Do you need a skin moisturiser? Yes, skin specialists say gone are the days for soap-and-water grooming routines for men.
Moisturisers are important for keeping the skin hydrated throughout the day. It helps combat everything from dryness of the skin and flakiness to shine and excess oil production.
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Men’s beauty market is expanding fast in response to high demand from customers looking for products that make their skin feel fresh and soft.
Aby Amusolo, sales, and marketing assistant at Yves Rocher, a French cosmetics group with stores in Nairobi, says the market for men’s beauty products is growing and makes about 40 per cent of total sales, compared to the previous years.
“Right now men are really embracing skincare as compared to the previous years. 2020 is when we started experiencing men buying face and skin products and we have seen our customers coming back and asking for the whole routine,” says Ms Amusolo.
With consumerism and access to know-how, Ms Amusolo and Winny Mutegi, a marketing manager at Lintons Beauty, which stocks a wide range of international brands, say they have seen a rapid change in perception from male buyers.
A good number of them have embraced a skincare routine and are confident about it that they have become repeat clients.
“Skincare has become immense in the world right now and men are not left behind. Men understand that grooming is key,” says Ms Mutegi.
A good moisturiser helps retain the moisture that is already in your skin.
It also helps to replenish the moisture you lose daily, whether that is from showering and washing your body or from cold air. Nobody likes face wrinkles. The regular use of a moisturiser helps diminish their appearance.
“When it comes to men's skincare there are two things that you need — one is professional care where you do facials by someone trained and certified or buy professional products like Nimue Man, Clinique Man and Clarins Men, among others. We have also recently added the Bullfrog skincare, which is designed purely for men. You can use these products daily or weekly depending on the skincare routine,” she says.
Nimue Man products are the best-selling at Linton's stores in Kenya, says Ms Mutegi.
If you have normal skin, Ms Amusolo, advises that you use Yves Rocher’s hydra vegetal range cleanser and go for the almond range for moisturising the skin. Yves Rocher products range from Sh1, 490 toSh9,000 while Lintons cost Sh3,000 to Sh6,000.
Anti-ageing products for older men are a new growing market.
“One of our bestselling is Elixir Botanique range of products [it has anti-pollution creams, serums and oils for repairing the skin]. We have introduced a range called Filler Vegetal that has hyaluronic, which is something new and it’s being embraced now,” says Ms Amusolo.
As a man, to ensure your skin is hydrated and radiant, the must-have skincare care products are serum, sunscreen and moisturisers.
“Men tend to bloom late, and they have normal to oily skin, so water-based, oil-free moisturisers tend to work best for men,” she adds.
Alvaro Herandez, an entrepreneur and an artiste, is among men who started using moisturising oils about five years ago.
“I learned how important it is to look good, now it makes me feel happier and more confident,” he says.
“The thing about using high-quality men's moisturiser is that it hydrates your skin, and slows down ageing by targeting fine lines, dryness and other imperfections in the skin. Daily moisturising helps improve the appearance of the skin, leaving it smooth and can decrease the likeliness of breakouts or other skin irritations by restoring balance to the skin’s natural oil production, especially with the changes of the weather,” he says.
He sets aside about Sh20,000 for buying skin products, which last for about three to four months.
“I have so many moisturising products, I have a hyaluronic oil, two types of serums, I have creams for my body, every three to three months I use Sh20,000 to buy the products for my skin,” he says.
There is still a misconception about men taking care of themselves, he says, but there is an increasing group that understands the importance of skin wellness and grooming.
Sinda Matiko, 34, also started using skincare products two years ago.
“I started very slow with just a cleanser, Vitamin C oil and some sunscreen. My girlfriend introduced me to the products. For facial grooming, I’d just scrub my face, just like many men, and visit the barber. I was curious when I saw the skin products working for her,” he says.
The growth in the grooming industry is also being fuelled by younger consumers. Years ago, it would be the well-travelled CEO or top-level executive kind of clique that would be spending on designer colognes, hairstyles and skin care.
“As you age, you will notice your skin looking a little tired, irritated, dull or dry, It’s a common problem many men face no matter the time of year, and that’s why using a face moisturiser for men becomes increasingly important in keeping the skin looking healthy and feeling its best,” he adds,
A day-to-day simple routine for a man, Ms Amusolo says, would be to have “a gel cleanser which is sulfate-free but has cleaning properties, a serum, a moisturiser and a sunscreen cream.”