One for the men's skin

One for the men's skin

One for the men's skin

Men suffer from skin problems, too. Some of the most common issues result from acne, shaving and ageing, observes Dr Jamuna Pai .

Beauty and skincare have long been considered  women’s forte. The fact is that men need to take care of their skin just as much. And since the past few years, men as well as skincare experts have been addressing this need. Like women, men also suffer from a variety of skin problems. Some of the most common skin ailments affecting men include acne and shaving-related skin allergies.

Razor problems

Every man who shaves is prone to the occasional cut or sore patch. But there are some other shaving-related conditions that can result in more serious and uncomfortable symptoms. These include red-raised-bumps, ingrown hair, irritation and aggressive rashes. The bumps may have a number of causes. Barber's Rash, medically known as folliculitis, is caused when the hair follicles become infected with the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus. The infection leads to redness, itching and small, pus-filled blisters. Razor bumps, medically called Pseudofolliculitis barbae, occur when the hair curls and grows back into the skin. This hair may then be attacked by the body's immune system, leading to redness, inflammation, and increased susceptibility to infection. It may also develop into full-blown folliculitis.

Ingrown hair can also develop when the hair is cut too short, below the surface of the skin. If your problems seem severe or difficult to treat with ordinary remedies, consult a dermatologist. A doctor can provide a proper diagnosis and also guide you if any medical treatment is necessary.

Acne

Men, too, suffer from acne. Since the causes for acne are many, consulting with your doctor is a must before any treatment. S/he can guide you through the tests you may require to help identify the root cause. Next, you will be given a suitable medical plan to treat the active acne and prevent future breakouts. Certain lifestyle and diet changes may also be recommended so as to ensure that you reap the maximum benefit from the prescribed treatment. Once the active acne has been taken care of, the next step is to treat the scars. Most types of acne scars can be lightened to a great extent, if not removed completely. Once the scarring too is reduced, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, fractional laser, subcision and dermal fillers can take care of very deep pits. All this can be done without too much pain and time.

Ageing and wrinkles

It’s true that men’s skin ages slower than women’s. But it is important that you understand the science behind the skin's ageing process. To put it simply, wrinkles occur because, as we age, our skin stops producing collagen. Collagen is a protein that keeps the skin taut and firm. Another key factor in skin ageing is the loss of moisture from the skin. Add to it factors like bad lifestyle, smoking, irregular food habits, stress and of course, genetics, all of it increase the free radical content. This accelerates the skin-ageing and wrinkles. This is more evident in big cities that have skin clinics catering to an increasing number of male clients who want to look younger and have soft, radiant, healthy and blemish-free skin. When fine lines just start to appear, it is the right time to go in for non-surgical treatments like Botox and dermal fillers. In the 40-plus age group, the aim of the person is reversal of the damage that has already occurred due to ageing. In such cases, a surgical intervention might be required to tighten up loose skin and replenish the loss of volume. However, sometimes, it can also be corrected by non-surgical treatments such as  radiofrequency.

Tips to keep skin healthy

n Use a scrub to rid your face of dirt, grease and grime. This will unclog your pores.
n Invest in high-quality shaving materials.

n Use a gentle aftershave and moisturiser on your skin after shaving.

n Use an oil-free sunscreen lotion or a cream of SPF 30 or higher. Make sure you reapply it every few hours.

n Indulge in a clean-up or facial on a monthly basis. It will help maintain a clean and healthy skin.

n Exercise regularly. It is very beneficial to the skin as it improves blood circulation and removes the toxins from the body.

n Follow a healthy diet plan, coupled with the addition of natural multi-vitamins and anti-oxidants.

n Apply a light moisturiser or a night cream before you hit the sack every night.

n Go in for regular chemical peels. They speed up skin cell turnover and are great exfoliation agents. They cause the top-most layers of the skin to shed, revealing the more clear and younger-looking skin beneath. It also promotes the generation of collagen in the skin.

Caution: Consult a dermatologist to determine your skin type, problems, and suitable remedies, before going in for any kind of treatments - even a mere facial.

(The writer is a skincare expert and founder of Blush Clinics, Delhi)

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