Professional Skin Clinic Treatments For Men
By Principal Skincare Specialist Penny Jenkinson
If the words “braaivleis, rugby, sunny skies, and Chevrolet” were formed in your teenage vocabulary you probably belong to the school where real men didn’t worry about their appearances and professional skin clinic treatments for men never came up at the local hangout. Not too long ago, rough and rugged were the norm. Back then, it was unheard of for a man to apply moisturiser and sunblock to his skin, and visiting a skin clinic was completely taboo.
Thank goodness times have changed and the metrosexual man has evolved! He is intentionally well-groomed (hair, face, chest, and hands), wanting to look and feel his best. He takes pride in his appearance and rightly so. Coordinating his outfits and skincare routine are both important, and these are no longer just priorities for women. But do men require different professional skin clinic treatments than women?
DO MEN NEED DIFFERENT SKINCARE TREATMENTS FROM WOMEN?
Whilst we often read that men’s skin is very different to that of a woman’s and how they should use specialist products solely designed for male use only, the reality is that it is not that different. Physiologically, skin is skin whether it is that of a man, woman, or child. The same cells perform the same function to deliver the same end result. This also means that the same skin treatments performed on women can be used on men.
What differs however is the fact that the majority of men shave their skin, in many cases every day. With a higher concentration of facial hair growth combined with naturally elevated testosterone levels; this can create a slightly oilier skin type and a slightly thicker structure when compared to female skin. Let’s go into a little more detail about these differences.
MALE SKIN CONCERNS IN THEIR 20’S
Pimples, acne, acne scarring, and ingrown hairs are all unwanted sidekicks. They are always hanging around you, even though they are not your best mates and with many young adult men, breakouts on the face and back are common. Changes in testosterone levels trigger acne. These hormones create oils that can lead to clogged pores, which sometimes let bacteria grow. Both of these problems cause breakouts. Unfortunately, young men with buffed bodies as a result of taking certain body-building supplements (and pushing some weights), often develop acne as a result.
MALE SKINCARE TREATMENTS FOR ACNE AND ACNE SCARRING
Medical grade superficial chemical peels (AKA fruit acid peels) are safe and effective. Whether you are a man or woman, specific chemical peels speed up cell turnover, refine enlarged pores, control oil production and bacteria that cause acne. Although there is no downtime, you should avoid sun exposure afterward. Just like having to go to the gym on a regular basis to achieve the results you desire, so will you need to have peels on a regular basis until acne is controlled, and then focus on a maintenance plan to maintain your desired results.
Using LED Light Therapy (specifically the blue light) after peels, will reduce inflammation, control bacteria, and speed up the healing process. This can also be used as a stand-alone treatment, between chemical peels.
By treating acne at its onset, you can also minimise the risk of acne scarring. Acne scarring can be red, superficial, or pitted. Based on the depth of scars, we could use lasers to reduce redness or medical needling to remodel collagen to soften scars. But, unfortunately, scars can never be removed, only softened, so here prevention definitely takes precedence over cure.
In Photo-types IV to VI, men might experience darkening of the skin as a result of acne and ingrown hairs. This condition is called Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation. Scientifically proven topical cream, sun protection, and professional treatments (chemical peels and medical needling) will help create an even complexion.
By the way, a healthy even complexion is always fashionable and for some of us, it’s simply irresistible.
MALE SKIN CONCERNS IN THEIR 30’S AND 40’S
Believe it or not, visible signs of aging start to appear: fine lines, wrinkles, sun damage, and uneven skin tone. Rather than females who often want to look younger, we have found that most men simply want to look less tired. This desire to appear more refreshed (be it in the boardroom or at the gym) can be achieved without the tell-tale signs of cosmetic enhancement. Whether this is from skin science treatments with a Skincare Specialist (such as PRP facials or micro-needling) or more advanced aesthetic treatments with an Aesthetic Doctor (such as Neuromodulators, Bio Skin Remodeling, or Dermal Fillers), we truly believe in natural-looking, refreshed results where the best injectable truly is undetectable.
More and more men are also struggling with Rosacea in their 30’s and 40’s. With Rosacea, the skin appears red/ flushed, and broken blood vessels become visible. To an untrained eye, you may look like a heavy drinker, even if you don’t ever consume alcohol. Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) is the gold standard for the treatment of Rosacea. The light is converted into heat which then constricts blood vessels and in turn reduces (and often completely removes) the appearance of redness. This is one of my favourite treatments as the heat also stimulates collagen production to soften fine lines, refine enlarged pores and destroy sunspots. I’ve also had the pleasure of working with men who had the misfortune of breaking their noses during a rugby match (or another type of accident). After a while, blood vessels (telangiectasia) start to appear on the bridge of the nose, but I have seen great success with the removal of these with IPL as well.
Another concern amongst men in their 30’s and 40’s is Cherry Angiomas. Have you ever noticed small, slightly raised red “dots” on your body? These are called Cherry Angiomas or Campbell De Morgan and are basically little blood vessels. If you have these, you will find that your mother or father has them too, and most likely, so will your children. Although harmless, they can be unsightly and continue to grow as you age. In most circumstances, one treatment with IPL will destroy the blood vessel that will then disappear within a few short weeks.
MALE SKINCARE TREATMENTS FOR THE NECK
Men who don’t have beautiful beards covering their skin may experience discolouration of the neck. It appears darker (pigmentation) and red (blood vessels) in colour and the appearance of these is often more pronounced on the right side of your neck due to driving and the sun exposure that goes along with it. You might not want to hear this, but you can avoid this by skipping on the alcohol-based aftershave. The alcohol-based aftershaves and sun exposure are a lethal combination and generally lead to conditions such as Poikiloderma of Civatte, unsightly sun damage. Although the application of sunblock and wearing a collared shirt will prevent further darkening, to reduce the appearance of the damage already done, it will need to be treated with professional skin clinic treatments such as IPL, chemical peels, or micro-needling.
MALE TREATMENTS FOR HAIR LOSS AND THINNING
This condition is probably of the highest concern amongst most men, hair thinning and loss. Most men start to lose that mop of thick dense hair as they age. Male pattern baldness (Alopecia) and thinning of hair can occur as a result of your family genes. Other factors, such as stress and illness play a major role too. By addressing these signs early on, we can however restore a healthy head of hair and have seen beautiful results with hair wellness treatments such as PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) and medical needling.
What is PRP?
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) is no foreign substance, it is obtained from your own blood and is injected into the scalp. In short, PRP contains growth factors that act as messengers to help stimulate your hair follicles. It has become a popular treatment at our clinic as men are seeing great results. You will need to start with a course of 3 treatments, and specific shampoo and serums are advised to use at home for optimal results.
How does medical needling stimulate hair growth?
The concept of needling is to create micro-channels in the skin to stimulate collagen production. Needling alone stimulates growth factors to restore healthy hair. As we have created these micro-channels in the skin, it is the ideal time to apply certain hair restoration ampoules and serums (containing growth factors) to achieve better results for people suffering from Alopecia. Men, you may think you are alone here, but it is increasingly common for women to lose their hair or experience thinning of hair as they age too and we are therefore seeing a rise in hair wellness treatments amongst women as well.
MALE TREATMENTS FOR THE SCALP
For those men who are already bald, I can almost guarantee that your scalp has been damaged by the sun. You may have developed sunspots and solar keratosis (scaly patches) from years of hairless sun exposure. Although harmless, this is not very attractive and more and more men are showing interest in treating their scalps as an extension of their faces (which it is). In these cases, performing medium-depth TCA (trichloroacetic acid) peels will help brighten sun damage. Simultaneously, skin quality and texture improve as the peel speeds up cell turnover and stimulates collagen production, resulting in radiantly smooth and even scalps.
SKINCARE TREATMENTS FOR MEN IN THEIR 50’S TO 80’S
Men who are older than 50 today, are probably from the era where skincare and sun protection were not important at all (ask me, I know).
By now, those men who were never concerned about their skin will start to notice changes happening very quickly. Remember, the skin is the biggest organ of your body and the face is not the only area that ages. Have a look at your hands and arms. Have you noticed brown spots, even white spots, and dry thinning skin? Yes? Welcome to the aging process.
There are two types of aging: intrinsic (due to your genetic makeup) and extrinsic (due to external factors such as sun exposure, pollution, cigarette smoke, poor lifestyle choices, etc). Extrinsic factors cause 90% of premature aging. This means that we cannot stop the aging process, but we can certainly delay it. Having a few lines and wrinkles creates a dapper man, but sunspots, thick veins around the nose, and a dull uneven complexion do not have to be a part of the package. By combining and alternating different non-invasive treatments such as superficial chemical peels, Intense Pulse Light (IPL), and medical needling (to name just a few), we can assist in collagen production and repairing damaged cells to help give you a healthy, fresh and naturally rejuvenated appearance.
WHEN AND WHY SHOULD MEN HAVE SKINCARE TREATMENTS?
In today’s society, our appearance is important whether you are a woman or man. You are never too young or too old to take care of your skin. In fact, the earlier one starts to have professional skin treatments and use scientifically proven skincare, the better. Most men are proud to have a beautiful and radiant woman at their side. Well, guess what, the same applies to women – a well-groomed, mature man is a sight to behold.
From a self-less perspective, as we are now also living and working for longer in these modern years, I think it is a good idea for all men to start making a conscious effort to take pride in their appearance. In the workforce, you are probably being challenged by the metrosexual male who is well-groomed and looks vibrantly radiant, never mind his excellent IT skills. While he grew up with skincare advice that will help him age more gracefully, you have the Dr. Nerina Wilkinson + Associates team on your side!
For the metrosexuals reading this, keep up the good skincare work – your future self will thank you for it!
To start your aesthetic couture journey, email firstname.lastname@example.org to get started today.
Written by PENNY JENKINSON