Ever wondered if there is really a difference between male and female skin?
The answer is yes, there are a few differences! But what does that mean for the choices we make for our skin?
Here are the 5 key differences between male and female skin:
- Male skin is on average 20-25% thicker than female skin.
- Male skin has thicker and coarser hair than female skin.
- Male skin has about double the amount of oil as female skin.
- Male skin has a higher collagen density than female skin.
- Male skin has more hydration (water) than female skin.
Understanding that male skin is thicker than female skin answers why men seem to age slower than women. But, is it an optical illusion? In the end, aging is inevitable and professionally, the emphasis has to first and foremost be on skin health above all else. While male skin might be thicker, it also has thicker and coarser hair than female skin. As a result, most men shave frequently and this brings about skin irritation and inflammation as it is accompanied by nicks, razor burn, and ingrown hairs, for example.
The male skin is typically oilier as sebum production is known to be associated with testosterone, and as aging takes place, the oil will decline and the skin ends up drier. Female skin is typically less oily, especially in adolescence. The male skin also reportedly has higher levels of hydration (water). According to one theory, it states that men have higher lactic acid in their sweat than women, acting as a natural humectant, thus retaining more moisture in the skin. Who knew!
Collagen is always a hot topic of conversation with female clients, and men do have a higher density of collagen in their skin. As we age, collagen declines. In male skin, the decline is slow and steady over time, making the process consistently persistent in men. Female skin, on the other hand, has a rapid decline of collagen after menopause.
Now that the basic differences between male and female skin have been covered, here are the 5 insider points you must know to care for your (or your man’s) skin:
- If you do nothing else, use sunscreen.
UV exposure increases the enzyme collagenase that breaks down collagen fibrils. It is just another reason, in addition to the well-known risks of skin cancer, to make this a priority.
- Shower, and then shave.
Trust me, your skin will thank you! The heat and moisture from the shower softens the skin and hair which will lead to a shave with less friction, resulting in less skin irritation.
- Use oil
If you use a blade to shave, which is highly recommended especially for sensitive skin, try using oil as a shaving medium instead of a shaving foam. Oil creates a luxurious glide, and you can even use an oil that is anti-inflammatory. This starts to repair the skin WHILE shaving. It’s a win/win!
Replenishing essential skin nutrients is critical for healthy skin with a functioning barrier. A daily habit of moisturizing every morning and every night is highly recommended, but if you can only do one, do it at night. (Providing you are wearing that sunscreen during the day).
- No stripping of the skin
If your skin squeaks, it is stripped. Harsh cleansers are not the answer. Skin is a living organ, not the kitchen floor. Treat it with some delicacy! Harsh stripping will lead to dryness and inflammation of the skin.
In the end, while there are some clear differences between male and female skin, the core steps recommended for daily skincare aside from the tools needed for shaving remain the same. The daily routine is curated for the basic skin type and typically includes a cleanser, toner, moisturizer, and eye cream, complemented with a good quality sunscreen, and for men, a shaving medium.
If you would love to know what skin type you have, you take my skin quiz here!