As a black man, my appearance is a top priority. It takes a lot of work to look good, which can be exhausting. But once you get a good skincare routine in place, it becomes a lot easier. The problem is that most men with darker skin tones don’t know how to care for their skin properly. Or you might have a grooming routine that isn’t working right. If that’s the case—relax. We’ve got you covered with some of the best black men’s skincare tips.
1. Figure Out What Type of Routine You’ll Need
Black men face challenges that men with other skin colors don’t. You might suffer from dry skin or eczema no matter how much you moisturize. Or you could continuously be getting razor bumps when you shave, which can resemble pimples. This occurs due to the curly texture of your hair. Additionally, a lot of black men suffer from hyperpigmentation, which is when you get dark spots and an uneven skin tone.
It can be frustrating to try to look good when the cards seem stacked against you. But there are some great skincare techniques to help you look great. Before you develop a skincare regimen, there are some things you’ll need to figure out first.
The most important thing is your skin type. Knowing the type of skin you have will allow you to customize the products you use. There are five types of skin.
- Normal skin – not oily, dry, or sensitive
- Dry skin – it gets tight and flaky; also sensitive
- Oily skin – you often have natural oils on your face, even after washing; you might also have breakouts
- Sensitive skin – you get breakouts after being exposed to the sun or using certain products; you end up with bumps, itchy skin, and sensitivity
- Combination skin – the forehead and nose are oily, but the rest of your face stays dry
If you aren’t sure which of these skin types you have, we suggest consulting a dermatologist. This piece of information will help you create the best skincare regimen for your needs.
2. Pick the Right Skincare Products
Now that you know your skin type, you can start looking for the right black men’s skincare products. Black skin is sensitive, so it’s best to avoid harsh chemicals and toxins that can be found in regular store-bought products. Instead, look for products that have natural ingredients.
Most black men will either have oily skin or skin that’s too dry. If your skin is dry, look for cosmetic products that contain essential oils like cedarwood, sandalwood, jasmine, or lavender.
For oily skin, essential oils like rosemary, geranium, clary sage, and frankincense work great. Keep in mind that using harsh astringents to dry out your skin is a bad idea because it will boost oil production. Experts advise going with light face moisturizers that contain hyaluronic acid (for optimal hydration) and salicylic acid (for acne control).
If your skin is sensitive, it’s smart to steer clear of chemicals and preservatives that can cause unpleasant reactions. Opt for products formulated with vitamin E, aloe, green tea, and other anti-inflammatory ingredients. Vitamin C serums should be on your list as well, especially if you struggle with acne and dark spots. These products nourish the skin and provide healing antioxidants.
Other ingredients that can help keep black skin healthy include shea butter, argan oil, and jojoba oil.
3. Create Your Daily Routine
Once you find the right products for your skin, you’ll be ready to set up your skincare regimen. You should wash your face twice a day and the rest of your body once a day. The following pieces of skincare advice are guaranteed to make your skin smooth, clean, and healthy.
The most important aspect of every skincare routine is washing. You’ll also want to exfoliate to remove dead skin cells. Skin toners help get your face extra clean. And don’t forget to moisturize so your skin will be soft to the touch.
The first step in your skincare routine should be cleansing. It’s essential to clean your face twice a day: once in the morning and once before going to bed. If your skin is oily, you might want to know that some experts recommend carrying a small bottle of face wash so you can clean your face midday. But this might not be practical for some of you, depending on your schedule and job.
When washing your body, experts recommend using lukewarm water, limiting your shower time to less than 15 minutes once a day, and using the right cleanser to keep your skin from drying out. Deodorant soap, which often has perfumes, can be harsh on your skin. Use this type of soap only for your underarms, feet, and genital area.
Natural soap will work for the rest of your body. But not your face. It’s important to use a face wash that’s suitable for your skin type. Cream cleansers work better for sensitive and dry skin, whereas foaming cleansers are more suitable for oily and normal skin.
To wash your face, apply your cleanser and rub your face in a circular motion with your fingers for 60 seconds. Be sure to cover every inch of your face (except the eye area). This gentle massage will clean your skin as well as help heal acne and reduce hyperpigmentation.
I know what you’re thinking. You’re a man and men don’t exfoliate. Well, let me tell you, brother, you definitely should. Your skin sheds dead cells at a rapid rate. If you don’t remove these cells, they can become embedded in your pores. Clogged pores can lead to acne, blackheads, and slow hair growth.
If you often experience razor burn after shaving, it could be partly as a result of poor face hygiene. Exfoliating before and after shaving will reduce the appearance of razor bumps as well as bring any ingrown hairs to the surface.
Exfoliation loosens the hair follicles, which allows the hairs to come out more easily when shaving. Otherwise, the hairs might be tugged free from the force of the razor, which can cause irritation and ingrown hairs. After-shave exfoliation will prevent the hairs from curling back into the skin, which also causes ingrown hairs.
For the rest of your body, you only need to exfoliate two to three times a week. You can use an exfoliating scrub or a facial brush but avoid rubbing too hard, especially if you have sensitive skin. Complications that frequently occur from exfoliating too hard or too often are:
- Skin damage
Most men have no idea what it means to tone the skin, so allow us to explain. A good toner will finish cleaning your face by removing any leftover residue from your soap, exfoliant, or shaving cream. It also strips any oils or dead skin cells that are clogging your pores. Keeping your pores clean will reduce acne breakouts.
Another benefit of using a toner is that it shrinks your pores. It also keeps your pH levels balanced, which is a crucial step in keeping your skin properly hydrated. Finally, it can prevent the appearance of ingrown hairs due to the glycolic or other alpha hydroxy acid ingredients.
Although these products are made primarily for face use, you can also use them on other areas that are prone to breakouts or are excessively oily, including your chest, back, neck, and shoulders. Toners should be applied to freshly cleaned and dried skin using a cotton ball or pad. Rub the material across your skin using gentle upward motions, applying everywhere. Let the toner dry, and you’ll be ready for the final step in your new skincare routine.
As a black man, you’ve probably gotten used to having dried-out skin. But you can fix this problem by adding a quality moisturizer to your daily routine. Not only will your skin be soft, but you’ll also get rid of flakes and lose that ashy look. Moisturizing can also reduce wrinkles, fine lines, and other signs of aging, so you’ll look as young as you feel.
Picking the right moisturizer is as important as choosing your shoes. I may sound like a broken record by now but select a product made of natural ingredients! Your skin will thank you. You would also want to find the right product for your skin type. If you have an oily face, look for an oil-free or mattifying moisturizer. For dry skin, it’s best to pick a cream that does not contain alcohol.
You’ll need different moisturizers for different areas of your body, including:
- For your eye area
- For your face, neck, and head
- For the rest of your body
For Around Your Eyes
The skin around your eyes is more sensitive than the rest of your face, so you need to use a separate moisturizer for your eye area. Consider using a men’s eye cream with anti-inflammatory properties. These will help reduce bags under your eyes and any other puffiness around the lids. A quality eye cream helps get rid of and prevent wrinkles thanks to its anti-aging ingredients.
For Your Face, Neck, and Head
You should use a moisturizer on any part of your body that you shave. Moisturizing aftershaves are a great alternative to face moisturizers. They nourish the skin and reduce inflammation after shaving. Avoid aftershaves with alcohol or menthol.
For All Over
For the rest of the body, you can use an AHA or Alpha Hydroxy Acid lotion once a day. These lotions are made from fruits and other natural ingredients, so they’re great for your skin.
Sun exposure can cause a number of skin issues, including dark spots and skin cancer. Even though people with darker skin tones are more protected from the sun’s rays due to the higher melanin content, it’s still essential to be concise about using SPF. There are plenty of face and body moisturizers with SPF on the market, many of which are under reputable skincare brand names.
If you spend a large portion of the day outside, you should use sunscreen instead. Look for one that has skin-hydrating ingredients as well as zinc oxide. You want a product that has at least SPF 30—although more won’t hurt.
Try a New Routine and See What Happens
Once upon a time, we could get away with using a bar of soap to clean ourselves from head to toe (especially if we were bald). But we’re smarter now. We can care about our appearance, and we can spend time on proper grooming without being questioned. Proper skincare is no longer just for women. Keep your body looking as sharp as your wardrobe by following our black men’s skincare tips.