Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Male Isn't A Skintype - Skincare and Marketing

Saul's Beauty Shop prides itself on striving to be as gender neutral as possible, luckily as a result we have a high percentage of male clients. One of our biggest gripes, that even some of our favourite lines are guilty of, is the gender-ing of skincare. Despite what the marketplace might say, male isn't a skintype.

Skincare products targeted towards males are usually a summary of what market research shows the stereotypical male wants (although sometimes they seem to overlook the fact that everyone first and foremost wants results). This usually creates a not heavily scented product that is light, cooling and/or mattifying. From a professional standpoint, this reads as a description for an oily, thick skin. Maybe you're reading this and going, "great, I'm an oily skin!" but nearly 90% of the clients we meet who describe themselves as an oily skin aren't. Oil production can be a result of dehydration, something your skin becomes very quickly when you're not using an appropriate skincare product. When someone describes their skin as oily, they're describing their skin type. Which leads to the next question, if male isn't a skin type, what exactly is?

Skin types are established in the skin analysis component of a facial. We look at pore size, feel the thickness of the skin and consider age range for the client. You can have a thick, thin or normal skin that's oily, dry, normal or sensitive. As you grow older, your oil production slows down and the fat layers below your epidermis can thin out. Skin type is a permanent structure in your skin, if you were a dry skin when you were 13 years old, you'll be a dry skin when you're 83 years old. Skin conditions on the other hand can change the way your skin acts, but are treatable.

Skin conditions are generally: sensitivity, dehydration, hyper pigmentation, and congestion/break out activity. All of these have varying degrees and different options for treatment plans. Like we mentioned earlier, dehydration can increase your oil production. Dehydration can also come hand in hand with sensitivity or trigger congestion.  When you use a product that is too aggressive for your skin (or in some cases, any skin) or that isn't appropriate for your skin type, you can see conditions flare up. This is a particularly sore issue with male targeted skincare, as they love making them stripping (using aggressive cooling agents or overly harsh detergents for cleansing) and not rich, because men are more inclined to complain when they can feel product on their skin.

Never in nearly 10 years of esthetics experience have I, or anyone I've worked with, looked at skin under a magnifying mirror and gone, "Oh I see you have male going on with your skin". The main difference between male and female faces is how facial hair is treated. This isn't as big of a game changer as you'd expect, each gender has their own dominant trends for how they've been convinced of a product/action that's actually very severe or not a great process for the skin, but the repairing process is the same thought process whether the skin you're looking at is male or female.

If you do come to Saul's and notice some of our products seem geared towards men, it's because we actually like the product and ingredients, sometimes they're a lower price point as well, it doesn't mean we don't recommend those products for all of our clients it'll work for. Otherwise we prefer to treat our clients skin, not their sex, and urge everyone to see that gender in skincare is just marketing, and we can do better than that.

You can request an appointment for a custom skincare treatment or beard conditioning treatment online by clicking here!