Men’s skincare | the testosterone test

Man applying skincare to face. Men's skincare. Image courtesy of www.theidleman.com

Testosterone affects men in many ways, including the structure of their skin. So it’s hardly surprising that men and women’s skin is different. In order to develop a superior line of men’s skincare, and take a share in this booming market, it is important to understand the male physiology.

Male sex hormones, known collectively as androgens, wield a lot of power. Testosterone, the chief sex hormone, acts on androgen receptors either directly, or by converting into the more potent activator, namely DHT (dihydrotestosterone).

Testosterone levels remain fairly stable during childhood and spike during puberty. After puberty, males continue to secrete testosterone resulting in facial and body hair, a deeper voice, muscle development and body odour. By middle age, testosterone levels start to drop and have been linked with hair thinning, baldness and skin changes.

Thick skinned

Many men have been accused of being thick skinned, and for good reason! Male skin is thicker than female skin, thanks to androgens and the presence of hair follicles.

Advantages: Men’s denser epidermis increases protection from collagen and elastin loss in the dermis. Thereby reducing photo-damage and delaying photo-ageing.

Disadvantages: Traditionally, their more youthful skin made the men’s skincare market a harder nut to crack. However, the tide is turning.

Solution: Men, especially the younger generations, are making more effort in caring for their appearance and overall health. The result is a booming male grooming business. Access this market with Trulux’s ready-made men’s skincare.

Facial hair

Testosterone drives the growth of body hair on the face, underarms, genital area, arms, legs, chest and sometimes even backs.

Advantages: A full beard is as good as a hat and sunscreen for providing effective sun protection. There are numerous benefits that stem from this, including protection from UV rays that cause collagen to degrade and damage the skin. So, there is obvious merit in the trend towards growing a beard.

Disadvantages: Men’s facial hair is thicker and coarser than head hair and has a flatter hair follicle, resulting in curly whiskers. Unfortunately, this also provides the perfect platform for razor rash and ingrown hairs after shaving, causing irritable skin inflammation.

Solution: A sharp razor and shaving products that reduce friction and soften facial hair will prevent or minimise the occurrence of razor burn.

Sebum control

Oil secreted by the sebaceous glands increases when levels of testosterone are on the rise, as any teenage boy suffering from an outbreak of pimples will tell you.

Advantages: Sebum is made up of cholesterol, free fatty acides, squalene, wax esters and glycerides. It prevents water loss and provides the skin with natural moisturisation and protection from environmental aggressors.

Disadvantages: Often the amount of sebum produced during puberty can’t effectively be absorbed by the skin, resulting in clogged pores and hair follicles that cause inflammation. Sebum and sweat on the surface of the skin also provides the perfect breeding ground for acne bacteria. Therefore acne can be more severe and long-lasting in males than females.

Solution: Sebum control skincare aimed at young males. Take advantage of Trulux’s bulk buy, ready made clear skin products.

Skin repair

A major function of the skin is to repair itself. The epidermis is a highly organized tissue that responds rapidly when distressed, say through dehydration or foreign matter penetrating the surface.

Advantage: If you cut yourself, the skin responds by quickly and efficiently healing the wound.

Disadvantage: Studies have shown that testosterone can negatively affect wound healing and the epidermal barrier function to maintain a perfect balance. This can be a concern for men, especially older men, who shave regularly and frequently cut or nick themselves.

Solution: Men’s skincare needs to assist in skin repair and protect the integrity of the skin’s barrier.

Image courtesy of: www.theidleman.com

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