Treating Dandruff

Are you not looking forward to wearing dark colors in the winter? Is your cold-weather wardrobe full of light colors and textured fabrics? Could the reason behind it be dandruff? If yes, have no fear. There are many treatments to hydrate your scalp and fight off dandruff that you can make at home without breaking the bank and harming your hair with chemicals.

The first step in treating your dandruff is knowing the causes. Irritated, oily skin can cause dandruff in places other than your hair. Your eyebrows and backs of your ears can suffer as well. This seborrheic dermatitis is distinguished by flakey, scaly skin covered in grease and oil. A simpler cause can be from not washing your hair enough. Skipping washes can cause oils and dirt to build up and in turn that can dry your skin out and cause dandruff. Malassezia is a yeast-like fungus that grows on the scalps of most adults. It can cause more skin cells to grow and the buildup of excess skin can appear as flakes and dandruff. Sensitivity to grooming products and dry skin can also produce dandruff as itching the scalp from irritation can make the skin flake off.

There are other factors to dandruff other than external factors. Sometimes age has an effect on how your skin reacts. Some studies have even found that gender can increase your chances. As more men get dandruff, there is some speculation that male hormones might be a factor to consider. If you have a compromised immune system you can also have a higher risk.

Fenugreek seeds soaked in water overnight and ground into a paste with coconut milk will strengthen hair and reverse damages. Add some lime juice to your hair washing routine to give your hair a healthy shine. Whip up an egg with some water and massage it into your hair and scalp. Then wrap your head in a warm towel for a few minutes. Follow this up by rinsing your hair and washing it with shampoo. Mince some aloe vera leaves and combine with coconut milk for another scalp massage. Leave the mixture in for a few minutes before rinsing.

Tea Tree oil is another great alternative. This multi-purpose oil works as an antifungal and antimicrobial solution to many products. Mix it with coconut oil and massage into your hair. Leave this mixture in your hair overnight and rinse in the morning. Make a 30-minute hair treatment from curd and egg and apply it to your hair and scalp. Allow it soak and rinse with water and shampoo. Using this treatment will fight dandruff and add luster to your hair.

If your skin remains dry and flakey and you have cause for concern, you can also make an appointment with a dermatologist. They can help you determine the cause of your dandruff and prescribe some over the counter remedies that will be more beneficial to you. They might recommend shampoos that contain salicylic acid, selenium acid, or ketoconazole, all of which are medically proven to fight off dandruff. If you see results shortly after use, cut back on how often you wash your hair and gradually add your regular shampoo. Use these special dandruff shampoos as special treatments.  

Understanding Body Odor

This is a topic that might make some people uncomfortable: Body Odor. The last thing we want to admit is that we have a little funk but sometimes it is in our best interest to acknowledge when it is there. Having body odor can affect many aspects of our lives from how we’re treated at our jobs to our personal relationships. Smelling fresh can make or break a first impression and there are some easy ways to avoid body odor and even prevent it.

Body odor is caused by bacteria breaking down sweat and is linked to the apocrine glands. These glands are found in the ear, armpits, eyelids, breasts and genital areas. Apocrine glands in the ears help to form earwax and in breasts, they secret fat to produce breast milk. These areas do not produce sweat, however. Apocrine glands in the skin and eyelids do produce sweat, though. The location of these glands are the ones mainly responsible for causing body odor because the sweat they produce is high in protein, which bacteria breaks down. When there is too much sweat, the bacteria can’t break down the protein fast enough and that is when smell starts to form.  

There are many causes of excess sweat that range from what you eat to what medications you take. Red meat, fish, spices that release sulfuric acid that the body breaks down, and cruciferous vegetables are all foods that can cause you to produce excess sweat. Aside from food, weight and medical conditions like diabetes and hyperhidrosis can also produce body odor. Certain medications can have the similar side effects as well.

When it comes to prevention there are so many options and finding the best one for you depends on your personal needs. Prescription deodorant is a useful tool in body odor control. Deodorant makes skin more acidic and in turn that makes it harder for bacteria to thrive. Antiperspirants will block sweat glands to prevent sweating. Along with deodorants and antiperspirants, keeping your body thoroughly clean will minimize your chances of developing body odor. It is also recommended to keep armpits free from thick amounts of hair. This hair traps bacteria and sweat and will only add to your chances of having an odor.

While it less of a focus socially, having foot odor can be problematic to your relationships as well. Foot odor is caused when sweat produced on the bottom of the feet do not escape and seep into socks and shoes, heating up while the feet are covered up. You won’t notice any foot odor until you remove your shoes. Foot odor can be prevented by changing your socks regularly and not wearing the same pair more than one day in a row without washing. If you can avoid it, do not wear shoes with plastic lining on the inside more than one day in a row as shoes to not dry overnight. You can also request special deodorants and antiperspirants for your feet that can control foot odor.

House 99

Alright, here’s a name we’re all familiar with: David Beckham. Whether you’re familiar with his work as a British soccer player or his marriage to a Spice Girl, this name is easily recognizable. On top of his already impressive resume, you can now add creating a men’s grooming line to the list. This isn’t the first time he’s stepped foot into the world of fashion, having been involved in a line of cologne commercials. He’s partnered with L’Oréal Luxe to create this new line of men’s grooming products under the brand of House 99.

The House 99 line will include 13 hair, skin, beard, and tattoo products. Among these products, you’ll also find facial moisturizers and hair and beard balms. Beckham has been deeply involved in the creation of this line from the formula, design, and packaging. Each product will include holistic ingredients such as quinoa and spirulina that are protein-rich and have health-boosting beauty properties.

The line was created with his routine and want for quality products in mind. Beckham has often changed his own look over the years and this line will also reflect the changes men make to their own appearance. David wasn’t along in the creation of this line. His wife, Victoria also had a hand in it. Her input comes in for the beard oils as a response to David’s own facial hair that she says needs to be softer and smell better.

The partnership itself is unusual in that companies like L’Oréal generally partner with pre-established brands. It will be the first time in many years they have gone with a partnership like this. The name comes from Beckham wanting to make his customers feel at home while experimenting with their looks using his products. The 99 stands to represent the year his married his wife, had a kid and won three championships with Manchester United (1992). In the official press release, Beckham mentioned he would also be offering his grooming and styling tips to those in his “house” (a.k.a. tribe).

Here’s what Beckham wrote about his new grooming line via W Magazine:

“I’m so excited to finally share House 99 with everyone around the world! For me, grooming is not only about how you look, but how you feel. It’s about being comfortable, trying new things and shaping your next look. I created House 99 to give people the inspiration as well as the right products to experiment and feel completely at home doing so. House 99 is here to support men, to give them the tools they need to create whatever look they are going for. Welcome to the house.”

This product line will be available in the U.K. on February 1st, exclusively sold at Harvey Nichols stores. After that, it will roll out nationwide and then expand to 19 other retailers starting March 1st. You can start looking for it to available stateside starting March 4th. The line already as a decent social media following, having debuted on Instagram. You can keep up to date on news for the release of this line there as well.

Crack a Cold One with Your Grooming Products

Do you feel like you don’t have enough beer in your day? There’s a solution for that that doesn’t include spending your time and money at a bar or drinking at home. Instead, you can have a beer during your morning or evening shower. I’m not talking about an actual drink, though. There are products on the market now made with beer components and they are actually good for you! The science behind it has concluded that the barley, hops, and yeast all contain protein and vitamin B that add fullness and shine to hair. On top of looking great, you’ll also smell great too! These products come in scents you’re probably already using with the additional option for non-scented products.

I’m sure most beer connoisseurs have heard of Carlsberg. If you haven’t, Carlsberg controls over 8% of the global beer market. In the last year or so this company has decided that, instead of just beer, they were going to dive into the world of grooming products. As of now, their line only extends to shampoo, conditioner, and body wash but it is made with the same recipe as their beer formula, just with some modifications so you aren’t pouring a bottle of beer over your head every wash. Each container of your choice in product is supposed to contain 0.5liters of actual Carlsberg beer. If you’re interested in purchasing some of these products, they can be bought from their website located here.

Damn Handsome Old-School is another brand throwing its name into the ring with their all natural products. This brand was started by a husband and wife team who loved beer and found themselves in one of the largest brewing cities once they relocated to Portland, Oregon. The couple found that, during the brewing process, there was a lot of waste that included the oats, hops, and barley and those could be refashioned into all natural grooming products. On top of not letting good things go to waste, this company also does good by giving soap to those in need with every purchase. More about this company and their products can be found on their website.

BRÖÖ is another brand founded by a husband and wife team. They too saw the potential in the natural waste created during the brewing process of beer and decided to use it. They offer a wide range of grooming products from hair care to skin care. They offer products for both men and women as well. On top of product listings, their website offers a list of the ingredients used in those products so you always know what you’re putting on your body. This brand also offers a promise that for every purchase, they will donate to clean water initiative around the world.

Craftsman Soap Co was founded by Evan Worthington after he started making soap for himself and his family. It was during a soap making session with his sister that the idea of making soap infused with beer came to fruition. It took months of hard work but he was able to create his signature products with the perfect recipes and techniques, giving him the perfect opportunity to start up his own soap company. Now, if you opt to purchase anything from their online store you won’t find shampoos, conditioners, and liquid soaps. Instead, you’ll find bar soaps, oils, and shaving products.

Treating Hair Loss

Hair loss is common in most people and can be more noticeable for some than others. It can be caused by genetics, hormones, poor diet, or stress. While some men embrace the hair loss by opting for a shaved look, others seek out treatments to act as a cure. However, with so many products on the market designed to act as a said cure, it can be hard to determine what will actually work. That is because not all products work for all men, it all depends on the person. When choosing your hair loss solution, consider your situation and what your needs are in terms of a product. Below are some of the scientifically proven, effective hair loss treatment supplements.

This product was developed based on the idea that the diet consumed by the Inuits, people indigenous to the Arctic regions of North America and Greenland, attributed to their excellent skin and hair. The diets they consume are rich in amino acids. This product line isn’t just an oral supplement. It includes shampoos and an ideology for lifestyle changes. 25 years of research have suggested that taking this supplement with a vitamin balanced and protein-rich diet can provide effective results.

The team that developed this product met at Oxford and aptly named their resulting company Oxford Biolabs. This company is highly regarded in the world of hair loss treatment. Their newest product,  TRX2, is the latest and possibly most effective treatment. TRX2 mimics the effects of Minoxidil 100% naturally, using potassium chloride and L-carnitine-L-tartrate. While those terms might seem intimidating, they are actually naturally produced by the body already.

You might also recognize this as Rogaine. When this product was initially developed, it was meant to treat high blood pressure but researchers noticed it also seemed to stimulate hair growth. Applied as a shampoo, Rogaine relies on the body’s natural production of sulfotransferase to stimulate more hair growth. Unfortunately, if your body does not produce sulfotransferase, this product won’t work for you.

Biotin is also known as Vitamin B7 or as Vitamin H and can be purchased in store that supplies vitamins. While there isn’t a specific link between Vitamin B7 and hair growth, there is one for Vitamin H. Vitamin H helps the body produce keratin, which is what hair, nails, and skin are made of. There is no recommended dosage, nor can you overdose on these like you can with Vitamin B. Biotin is water soluble and more amounts of it are flushed from the body through urine.

Selenium is a natural way to boost hair growth. While you can take it in supplement form, you can also get it from Liver, garlic, whole grains, and fish.

Hair Surge
This shampoo features ketoconazole, caffeine, and saw palmetto as its key ingredients.  Caffeine has been proven to boost hair growth and prevent hair loss, especially in mice that have been exposed to radiation. This finding has led researchers to study how this can help people undergoing radiation treatment for cancer. Saw palmetto is less studied but it is shown to mimic the effects of hair growth pharmaceuticals.

When looking for the right product to help with your hair loss, keep in mind your stress level, diet, and lifestyle. If any of these seem like they might be concerning, they might be involved in the contribution to the hair loss. Do your research as there are many sources out there to help you determine the right product for you.

Grooming Tips from 2017

Here we are, about to close out 2017. It has been a heck of a year right? Let’s start off 2018 with a look back on all of the new, or reinforced grooming tip that came out of the last year that we can bring in the new year with!

Take Colder Showers
Alright, no one likes hearing this, especially in the winter when it’s cold enough outside as it is. Hear me out, though. Taking colder showers will reduce the amount of moisture lost in your skin and it will keep your pores closed. Hot showers cause the natural oils your body produces to wash away and the steam from that hot water will evaporate that moisture you need to keep your skin from being dry. If you really must take a hot shower, only use hot water for about 10 minutes and then finish with lukewarm water. Make sure to follow up with a moisturizer so you aren’t facing dry, itchy skin once you’ve dried off.

Shower After Your Workout
This might seem like a given but there are many men or people in general, that will go from their workout to start their daily errands or even go to work without a shower. This isn’t only a matter of hygiene but also a matter of skin care. The longer the salt on your skin sits and soaks in, the more it will irritate your skin. This can lead to rashes and those are unpleasant as it is. Once you’ve finished your workout, take a shower as soon as you can to make sure your skin stays healthy.

Replace Your Toothbrush
Most dentists will recommend replacing your toothbrush everything three months. This is because the bristles can wear down to a state that they are ineffective at cleaning the bacteria and plaque from your teeth. It may not seem that way from where we look at it but the bristles wear down finely at tips. It is also recommended to replace your toothbrush every time you have gotten over a sickness like the flu or strep throat. This will minimize the spread of those germs. A good alternative to having to replace your whole toothbrush is to purchase an electric toothbrush and stock up on replaceable heads that you can change out at the end of those three months.

Invest in More Sunscreen
It might only occur to use sunscreen in the sunnier months (looking at you spring and summer), you also want to keep it in mind in the winter. While your skin might see less sun, it is exposed to more harsh elements that will do more damage to your skin than you might realize. So before you head out for the day, make sure you apply the sunscreen to the parts of your skin that are going to facing these elements the most like your face, head, and hands.

Don’t Wash Your Hair Every Day
If you’re in the habit of washing your hair every day, you might want to reconsider. Using these shampoos strip away the natural oils your pores produce and leaves your hair dry and damaged. Instead, wash your hair every second or third day and rinse it through the days in between. If you feel the need to wash your hair, there are products available that can clean your hair without damaging it.  

Beard Care is Just as Important
Beards have become more and more popular this year. If you’re part of the population that can grow one, take care of it! Your beard hair is just as important as the hair on the top of your head. Invest in a good beard oil to keep the hair moisturized.

Keeping Your Beard Maintained

We’ve talked a lot about beards from Finding the Right Beard for Your Face Shape to the Pros of Growing a Beard. If you have made the choice to grow your beard out and have found the look that suits you and your needs, you’re going to need to know how to take care of it. While a beard might seem like an easy look to keep up, there is actually a lot more than goes into keeping it up than you might think. It’s not just about the hair on your face either; you have to also take care of the skin underneath. When making a first impression it is very important you look your best and keeping your skin and beard in good shape will only help you.

Start by keeping up with regular trimmings. This can be done by you at home or even a professional. Keeping your beard trimmed at any length will help prevent split ends, much like keeping the hair on the top of your head does. Once you’ve determined the amount of hair you prefer for your beard you can use a comb and trimming shears to keep it in shape.  Make sure to invest in a decent comb. Using a comb during trimming will help keep everything even and, if used outside of trimming, it will encourage the hairs to grow straight out instead of a potential curly mess. When you’re trimming your beard or even shaving keep your face as relaxed as possible. This will ensure that your beard will be even for any and all expressions.

If you are of the mindset of needing to remove the beard hair during upkeep instead of keeping the hair and skin healthy, you might be inadvertently putting yourself at risk for irritation, infection, and razor burn. To avoid these skin irritants, make sure your pores are open beforehand and sealed afterward. You can open your pores with hot steam from a shower or even running hot water in the sink. Once you’ve finished your upkeep routine, splash your face with cold water to seal your pores and provide an extra wake-up boost. After you’ve splashed on the cold water, consider applying a beard balm. Beard balms are a styling agent that add volume and shape to your beard. This is not to be confused with a beard oil. Beard oils serve to moisturize and condition the beard hairs as well as the skin underneath.

Now, something you might not consider (but really should) is exfoliating. This isn’t something just girls do. Exfoliating will scrub away all the dead skin cells as well as the build-up dirt and oil. Try and pick up something that specializes in keeping your beard and your skin moisturized for a two-in-one effect. You’ll also want to shampoo that beard. How many times has food gotten lost in that chin mane? If you spread some of the lather you’re already building on your hair to your chin, you won’t be wasting more shampoo than you already need. If you really want a soft beard you can pick up beard specific conditioners as well. You won’t need to use this more than one or two times a week, really.  

Grooming Product Ingredients to Avoid

If you were to ask the casual man what ingredients are in his grooming products, chances are he wouldn’t know. Usually, the men that do know are very conscientious of what they apply to their skin, hair, beards. Knowing what is in these products is very important and not being aware can lead to problems like dry, flaky skin and allergic reactions in some cases. Since your face is one of the first things to make an impression, you want to keep it in good condition and protect it from harsh chemicals. When you’re shopping there are key ingredients in the products you use that you want to keep in mind and avoid.

The first ingredient to avoid is Phyhalates. Now, this a blanket term for perfumed products. If the label reads that the product is scented or perfumed, be warned: Phyhalates will be that blanket term that hides what the actual ingredient is that is perfuming your grooming product. While you might expect the scent to come from a natural oil, the producing company may actually opt for a scented ingredient that is cheapest to use. The next ingredient to avoid are Sulfates. This is a common term on the watch list for a lot of things these days. Sulfates are what causes our products to foam up and for some reason, we have been deceived to think that our grooming products have to foam if they are going to work. This simply isn’t the case. Sulfates also strip away the sebum from our skin. Sebum plays an important part in protecting our skin from drying out and being harshly damaged by the elements of the outside.

Parabens are the next ingredient to be on the lookout for. This is another ingredient that is making its way into popular vernacular. Parabens are preservatives found in most shelf-ready products. They extend the life of the products it is found in by a wide enough margin that by the time it reaches shelves, there is no telling how long it has actually been sitting in a warehouse. This can cause a decrease in potency of the product and cause long-term damage to your skin. Now we move on to Triclosan. This ingredient is found in most things that claim to be antibacterial. In reality, this is another skin destroyer, removing that layer of sebum that protects our skin. Good news on this one, though! It is becoming a banned ingredient in the US.

Don’t let the name of this next one scare you too much. We’re giving a little shout-out to Formaldehyde. This ingredient is often associated with preserving dead bodies and medical specimens, not with the grooming products we use on a daily basis. And the worst part is that the manufacturers won’t put this as an actual ingredient. Instead, they’ll list ‘formaldehyde releasers’ which are chemicals that produce formaldehyde. The side effects of this chemical are long just as frightening so be on the lookout. The last product we’re going to mention is Alcohol. This simple ingredient is a major cause of dry skin and dry hair. The components of this ingredient are harsh and can leave long-lasting effects even well after use.

2017 Gift Guide

By now we’re all experiencing the bite of winter as the weather grows colder. While this means bundling up and kicking your feet up by the fire or heater, it also means something else: Christmas is on the way. Now, if you’re a man of simple needs and might be looking to expand your range of grooming products, the holidays are the perfect time to drop some hints and get ready for a new look for the new year. There are many new products on the market to consider so here is a round-up of some of the top rated grooming sets for men that you might want to drop some hints about.

The Side Part Hair Grooming Kit
This kit is available in an Altoid-sized tin. Inside you’ll find hair wax, a mini comb, and a parting string.However, if the side-part isn’t your look, you can also find that this brand offers a Man-Bun Kit with the same travel convenient size.

Port Products Daily Essentials Travel Kit
A little more on the pricier side, this kit includes a Detoxifying Facial Cleanser, Face Saving Shave Formula, and a tube of Balancing Facial Moisturizer. This kit is perfect for men that find themselves traveling often. Since hotel soaps and moisturizers can be hard on the skin this is the perfect gift to keep their skin looking healthy.

Aesop Impassioned Wanderer Gift Set
This kit is the perfect stocking stuffer. In it, you’ll find a low-foaming facial cleanser, a  Moroccan Neroli Post-Shave Lotion, and a Coriander Seed Body Cleanser. This is a popular kit so if you’re interested you might want to act fast as it seems to sell out pretty quickly. If you aren’t interested in the whole kit, these products can be purchased separately.

Herbivore Botanicals Beard Tonic Kit
Unable to shake the efforts of No-Shave November? HInt at this kit that includes cedar scented natural oils that stimulate new growth and keep your beard hydrated through the winter months. Keep your beard healthy while smelling like a lumberjack.

Proraso Vintage Collection
This isn’t your ordinary gift kit. This set includes full sized products such as a Refresh Preshave Cream, Refresh Shaving Cream Tube, and Refresh Aftershave Balm. Instead of having just a sampling size of these products, enjoy them in their full-size packaging.

Olivina Men Bourbon Cedar Exfoliating Bar Soap
If you’re looking for another perfect sized stocking stuff, give this product a shot. The bar is easy-lathering and crafted with organic shea butter, red kaolin clay, and certified sustainable palm oil. The bar is infused with a blend of a warm bourbon scene and spicy cedar notes to keep you smelling great throughout the day.

Brickell Men’s Purifying Charcoal Soap Bar
We’ve all seen charcoal make it into the spotlight this year with their highly praised cleaning qualities. This bar soap will draw impurities to the skin and then protect the cleaned skin with a mix of organic coconut and olive oil. The added peppermint and tea tree oil is a kick at the end that is sure to wake you up in the morning.

Imperial Barber Bergamont After-Shave
This after-shave refreshes and smooths the skin using macadamia nut oil that also protects skin cells that might have been damaged during the shave.

These are just a few of the great options out there that are great for the bearded, or non-bearded, friend or family you still need to shop for.



Beard Transplants

Men with baby faces know all too well the struggle to be taken seriously in the workplace. While some men can hide their softer features with a beard, there are some men who don’t have the luxury. This isn’t their fault, they have the genetics to blame for being unable to grow a beard. They can take solace in knowing that men that cannot grow beards are less likely to go bald compared to the beard-full counterparts. Of course, that isn’t always a comfort overall so here is an idea if you’re really craving the rugged look that comes with a beard: Beard Transplants. This isn’t as widely known as, say, hair transplants which take hair from the back or the face and implanting it into the follicles on the scalp.

SOURCE: Foundation for Hair Restoration

Beard Transplants take hair from the back of the head, where hair grows the thickest, and implants them into the follicles on the face.Dr. Jeffrey Epstein, a dermatologist at Foundation for Hair Restoration, has found that hair from the back of the head grows very much like beard hairs and make the perfect temporary substitute. While the color of the hairs may differ from what grows on your face, the difference isn’t noticeable enough to be worrisome. You won’t even have to settle for the goatee area as the hairs can be transplanted to the neck and sideburns if you are so inclined to go out that far.

SOURCE: Foundation for Hair Restoration

A decade ago, dermatologists only executed these procedures maybe five times a year. Nowadays, these specialists perform these procedures over five times a week. Beard transplants are done using single hair follicles transplanted to the face. A decade ago this wasn’t possible as hair transplants were done using plugs. These plugs, once placed on the face, would leave the patient with a cobblestone-like skin in the aftermath. The follicle transplants leave the patient with a more natural looking beard in the end that can be shaved and re-grown to the wearer’s liking.

SOURCE: Foundation for Hair Restoration

Now, if you’re wondering about the costs, these transplants can run up to $7,000 for one procedure. This might seem costly but if your goal is the single look you go in looking for, it’ll be the only amount you’ll spend. Be warned, the transplanted hairs will fall out after two weeks. However, within three months your face will grow a natural beard that you can shape to your liking. If you’re looking for something fuller, later on, having started from a smaller look, you might have to shell out another $4,000 to achieve it. If you’re struggling with a baby face this might seem a small price to pay. Just make sure to bring in a reference for the look you want so you won’t be at the mercy of the surgeon. Also, keep in mind that you might have to take a sick day as these procedures can take two to five hours depending on what look you’re going for.

SOURCE: Foundation for Hair Restoration

Make sure you consult your dermatologist if you’re thinking of looking into getting a beard transplant. While there are many speculated home ‘cures’ for those who struggle to grow a beard, this transplant is, by far, the safest and proven route to go.