Do men and women need different skin care routine?
There are many discussions about male and female skin with the most common question we hear everyday from you - “can my partner use my skincare products I have at home or should he buy different cleanser and moisturizer?
If we want to really understand why women might need some additional products as they age, we need to go a little deeper into the anatomy of the skin.
Differences between male and female skin
Hormones: There is a specific impact of steroid hormones in both sexes. Testosterone/estrogen ratio in males and females gives reason for differences in skin thickness and texture. Male epidermis for example is 20% thicker than female epidermis, being able to bind a larger amount of moisture, and containing more collagen in all ages, thus, making male skin more dense and vigorous It makes a man’s skin thicker and oilier because of how the sebum is produced and the amount of collagen they have.
Thickness: Men naturally have more collagen than women, this makes their skin tighter and firmer in appearance. A man's collagen depletes over time and a woman’s starts accumulated at menopause. Women see first signs of aging in the face, neck and on the hands before anywhere else. First signs of aging for men will happen behind the ears and then spreads.
Aging: Signs of aging seem to appear later in male skin, due to the collagen and oiliness from the sebaceous glands. When wrinkles do start to appear they are deeper than a woman’s with more peaks and valleys showing definite contouring around the eyes and mouth. Where the wrinkles started behind the ears will start to flow around the bottom of the jaw. Women’s wrinkles are generally finer and more spidery until much later.
Oiliness: Men have incredibly active sebaceous glands. This means their skin is oilier because they have more pores, which are also larger than a woman’s. Although oilier skin helps with the tightness and firmness it also creates a lower pH level what in return makes more prone to get acne and maintain impurities that cause pimples and blackheads.
Facial hair: Daily shaving stresses the skin, it becomes more sensitive and reacts faster because the top layer of skin is constantly being removed. This exposes the under layer of younger skin that is not yet ready to face the rough environments men expose themselves to. This means that a man’s skin is more stressed than a woman’s.
As you see there are some important differences between the male and female skin, however unless a cream is specifically prescribed by a doctor, your partner can borrow your skincare products.
What we like to emphasize here is that skincare is UNISEX and there is no shame in taking care of our skin. Men might need less steps in the skincare routine however they should not forget to scrub, use pre-and after shave products and moisturize!
B.WELL Team with sciencedirect.com and skinntonic.ca