How should men deal with sensitive skin?

Choosing Skin Care Products for Men with Sensitive Skin

Men's skin care products are a $227 million dollar industry in North America, and the market for these products is growing worldwide [source: Balfour]. It turns out that men enjoy pampering their skin with healing serums, lotions and creams.

For men with sensitive skin, remember that the goals of this burgeoning industry aren't necessarily compatible with your goal of minimizing skin problems. Pay no attention to the sophisticated ads for expensive product lines, and instead, learn how to choose products that will soothe and heal your skin. Good skin care doesn't have to be expensive or time consuming.

So how do you choose? Begin by looking for product lines that have been specially formulated for sensitive skin. And the fewer ingredients, the better. Also, try using only soap-free cleansers because soap can be irritating and drying to sensitive skin.

Another tip: Use only fragrance-free products. When fragrances mix with oxygen, they can become more volatile and cause skin reactions -- this also applies to scented household products [source: University of Gothenburg]. Natural products aren't necessarily better, either, since some natural fragrances and ingredients can be irritating. Natural ingredients that are considered safe and even soothing for sensitive skin include rose, lavender, chamomile, aloe and witch hazel [source: Scirrotto]. But even if a product contains ALL of these ingredients, always test it (see sidebar) before using it on your face or body.

When it comes to keeping your sensitive skin safe from the sun, keep in mind that many sunscreens use chemicals that can cause skin reactions. Look for one that contains only physical sunscreens like zinc oxide or titanium oxide [source: WebMD].

Once you've found the products that work for your skin, stick with them. If you find a particular cleanser that works for you, try other products in the same skin-care line. If you're tempted to try a new product, always test it thoroughly before adding it to your regimen.

On the next page, learn about some other things you can do to support your skin's health.