Your Ultimate Guide to Anti-Aging For Men
Last updated April 15, 2023
Guys, we're calling you out. You brush your teeth, try your best to work out, and eat healthy as much as possible. News flash: your skin deserves the same TLC (and sorry, but a mere swipe of moisturizer post-shaving and a measly bar soap don't cut it). You see, your skin goes through significant changes as you get older. You may begin to notice deep-set wrinkles in your forehead, tiny lines forming around the corners of your eyes, and dark spots that cause your complexion to look uneven. Alongside your skin's physical appearance, you may also be experiencing lack of energy and shifting sleeping patterns as you get older (FYI: all normal). These are the telltale signs of aging and a pretty good indicator that it's time to level up your wellness routine. The good news: it's never too late to begin adopting healthy habits that take aging into account — skincare included.
Our Top Picks
Best Cleanser for Anti-Aging: Aesop Fabulous Face Cleanser
Aesop's Fabulous Face Cleanser is a professional-grade facial cleanser well-suited for men's skin. It's a gel-based formula that lightly lathers for easy application, and contains a mild formulation of purifying, hydrating, and skin-calming botanicals. This plant-based face cleanser effectively removes dirt, pollutants, and excess oil without stripping or drying out the skin. The combination of calming botanicals such as Bergamot Rind, Chamomile Bud, and Rosemary Leaf work together to leave the face looking and feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. This face wash is gentle and efficient, providing a calming sensation that will leave your skin feeling great without any dryness or irritation.
- Great for all skin types, but especially dry skin
- Good hydration, leaves skin feeling refreshed
- Vegan and cruelty free product
The "Could Be Better"
- Priced on the high end
- Gel product can feel oily to some
Best Moisturizer for Anti-Aging: Lumin Ultra-Hydrating Moisturizing Balm
Lumin Ultra-Hydrating Moisturizing Balm is designed to provide mens' skin with the ultimate hydration and luminosity it needs. This lightweight balm absorbs quickly and locks in moisture, leaving you with a healthy glow all day long. Formulated with natural active ingredients such as apple extract and ginger extract, the extra antioxidants help provide all day protection.
- Good hydration without the greasiness
The "Could Be Better"
- Some complaints of irritation
Best Eye Cream for Anti-Aging: CeraVe Skin Renewing Eye Cream
CeraVe Eye Cream for Wrinkles is a solid eye cream that gets the job done. The main ingredients are caffeine, peptides, hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, and ceramides. The caffeine helps to reduce puffiness and the appearance of dark circles, while the peptides and hyaluronic acid help to smooth out wrinkles and fine lines. The niacinamide brightens up the under-eye area, and the ceramides help to lock in moisture.
- Fragrance free
- Kick of caffeine helps reduce puffiness
- Good moisturizer
The "Could Be Better"
- It’s a bit thick
Best Sunscreen for Anti-Aging: Jack Black Oil-Free Sun Guard SPF 45 Sunscreen
Jack Black’s Oil-Free Sun Guard sunscreen is packed with vitamins and offers sweat-proof UVA/UVB protection that stays put during active days in the sun. Its oil-free formula absorbs quickly, offering maximum protection without drying.
- Lightweight, non-greasy mineral formula.
- Absorbs quickly and leaves no white cast.
The "Could Be Better"
- Zinc Oxide may be more irritating to eyes than chemical sunscreen.
Best Serum for Anti-Aging: Caldera + Lab The Good
The Good by Caldera + Lab is a lightweight, versatile facial serum suitable for all skin types, infused with 27 botanicals to fight signs of aging and environmental stressors. Its clinically proven formula includes natural ingredients like wild-harvested botanical oils, fireweed, and CoQ10 to firm fine lines. The Good is easy to use and its MADE SAFE certified formula is free of harmful additives, making it a safe and effective option for men's skincare.
- Organic and natural
- The Good is a multi-functional facial serum that can be used on dry, sensitive, and normal skin types.
- Easy to apply and quickly absorbs into the skin
The "Could Be Better"
- More expensive compared to other facial serums
- Some may not like the scent, which is described as an herbal or medicinal smell
- Glass packaging may not be as convenient for travel
Understand the Aging Process
As men get older, testosterone levels decrease. This may not be news to you, but how this fact affects your skin may be. When testosterone levels are at their peak, skin is firm, tight, and resilient. When testosterone levels start to drop, however, skin becomes thinner, drier, and more sensitive. To make matters worse, decreased testosterone levels also affects your skin's collagen production. "Collagen is the protein responsible for keeping our skin fit and tight," says board-certified dermatologist Dr. Yoram Harth. "As the production of collagen slows down as we age, this can cause the skin firmness to deteriorate and the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles to worsen."
Recognize the Signs of Aging
You know you're getting older, but what are the actual signs? Along with fine lines and wrinkles, aging men see a decrease of volume of the face as well as age spots, dullness, and sagging skin, says Dr. Harth. Your skin type can also experience change: The oily skin you experienced in your 20s is likely being replaced with a drier, flakier complexion as a result of your sebaceous glands producing less sebum (or oil). While much of aging is natural, Dr. Harth notes that genetics play an essential part in this process, determining aspects such as skin type, aging rate, and susceptibility to skin disorders.
Switch Up Your Diet
A healthy diet can do wonders for an aging man's energy levels, mood, and productivity, not to mention their internal health. As far as your skin is concerned, it certainly plays a role. Think about it: Ever notice how your skin is more prone to breaking out when you're on a greasy food streak? Or how dehydrated and puffy it looks the morning after you've consumed alcohol? The same goes for treating your body with healthy, nutritious foods — you're more likely to see a boost in your skin's tone, evenness, and overall moisture levels when you eat better.
Dr. Harth recommends upping your intake of healthy fats, such as omega-3 fatty acids found in fish and plant oils, as they "supply necessary nutrients to the skin and can aid in skin hydration and inflammation reduction, resulting in a more youthful appearance," he says. Also, berries, leafy greens, and nuts are high in antioxidants, which can help protect against free radical damage (molecules that can cause skin damage in the form of wrinkles, fine lines, and loose skin), says Dr. Harth.
Struggling to stay on track with your fitness goals? Know that regular exercise can enhance blood circulation, oxygen flow to the skin, and skin cell regeneration, all of which can make your skin look younger, notes Dr. Harth. You don't have to become a gym enthusiast overnight to reap the skincare benefits of exercising — start small with a 20-minute workout each day and increase the time and frequency week by week.
Manage That Stress
Easier said than done, we know, but stress isn't doing your skin (or your body) any favors. Cortisol, a stress hormone that gets released into your body when you're stressed, can contribute to inflammation as well as the breakdown of collagen, resulting in accelerated aging and wrinkles, says Dr. Harth. On top of this, stress can increase your heart rate, elevate your blood pressure, and lead to long-term issues for your body.
Catch Some ZZZ’s
Night owls will attest to this one: Lack of sleep can take a toll on how your skin looks. We've all been there — staying up late (or all night) and waking up to undereye bags, puffiness, and a lackluster complexion. Getting the adequate eight hours of sleep a night is essential in maintaining youthful-looking skin that's well-equipped to protect itself from damaging elements like UV rays and oxidative stress.
Adopt (and stick to) An Ant-Aging Skincare Routine
An anti-aging skincare routine doesn't have to be intimidating or lengthy — it's about quality over quantity. Basic anti-aging steps of sunscreen, eye cream, and moisturizer may be enough for most men, and things like toning, exfoliating, and indulging in a face mask can be add-ons a few times a week if you're feeling fancy. Sunscreens like the Jack Black Double-Duty Face Moisturizer SPF 20 double as an SPF and moisturizer for a one-two punch of hydration and protection. For nighttime, try dabbing on the Kiehl's Age Defender Cream Moisturizer (which increases cell turnover via salicylic acid for brighter, smoother skin) and the Brickell Men's Restoring Eye Cream (to minimize dark circles and puffiness underneath the eyes).
In terms of ingredients, Dr. Harth recommends seeking out retinol as a prime ingredient, as it boosts collagen and elastin production in the skin, which can help reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and enlarged pores in addition to improving the skin's texture and tone. Other ingredients like hyaluronic acid and niacinamide keep the skin hydrated and bright, and can effectively combat the drying, dulling effects of skin aging. Try the CeraVe Anti Aging Retinol Serum — it combines retinol with hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, and ceramides to boost skin's moisture levels and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
There's no vitamin that'll magically make you look younger (that's wishful thinking), but supplements can help you age more gracefully. Dr. Harth recommends biotin and coenzyme Q10, both of which help to support healthy moisture levels in your skin, promote smoothness, minimize sun damage, and replenish healthy skin cells. Always make sure to check with your doctor before incorporating a supplement into your routine.
You may not be getting any younger, but basic skincare and wellness practices like applying sunscreen, consuming nutritious foods, getting enough sleep, and exercising frequently can help keep you looking (and feeling) more youthful.