Decoding the lead look

Hair: Short and wavy hair. Set in place using hair wax and a round metal brush.

Brows: Thick, bushy and trimmed brows

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Face: Clean shaved and buffed

Skin: Smooth and blemish free

Lips: Thin narrow lips

Others: Charcoal grey bath robe

Three quick hacks for your eyebrows:

1.Scanty eyebrows

You can use a mascara to make your brows look fuller and darker. Apply just a little over the brows, working your way from the inner to the outer corners. Be warmed though, sweat or moisture will make the mascara run.

2.Long bushy brows

Use any hair gel to set the eyebrow hair in place. Use a water-based gel by taking a little product on your fingertips and applying it evenly over the brows. Ensure the gel does not look clumpy or feel sticky when it dries out.

3.Uni brows

Use a tweezer to pluck the extra hair between the brows. Ensure you balance both sides. Keeping the centre clean, will open up your face and instantly make your eyes look bigger and more defined. Shaped brows also enhances our facial symmetry.

Five grooming mistakes we make, but shouldn’t:

1.We are driven by habits

We all are used to regimes and products that we feel work best for us. By nature, we men tend to get fixated on these, but a little amount of flexibility and openness to change can go a long way in bringing out some positive changes.

Take shaving after a shower. Most men I know tend to shave before a shower but after I advised them to do it the other way round, they found that their shave was faster, smoother and easier. It’s not magic, just simple science – a shower makes our skin soft and more ready to go under a razor.

If you prefer not to do it drastically, introduce changes slowly but surely. Start with one small change then take this further.

2.We don’t know what we are using

The stuff they put in off the counter men’s grooming products today is scary. Take shaving cream, for instance. A can of your favourite shaving gel or foam contains ingredients such asbutane and propane, both of which are highly inflammable chemicals that you shouldn’t be putting on your face.

While cheap to produce, off the counter and chemical made products can damage your body, skin and hair, with side-effects ranging from irritation to full-blown hair loss.

Men’s grooming products that come with natural ingredients provide more than cleaning; they provide health benefits as well. Common ingredients that are good are aloe vera, eucalyptus oil, neem, fruit and vegetable extracts. Natural ingredients that heal the skin while strengthening and nourishing it or which condition the hair are the ones that you should be using.

3.All products have a certain use and purpose

A lot of guys have a tendency to blindly use just about anything on their skin, hair and body.

Soaps, for instance, aren’t the same. You need to choose soaps according to your needs. Soaps are designed and formulated for various skin types – some are natural, some medicated while others come with exfoliating properties.

It’s your choice if you prefer to use a soap, a shower gel or body wash. Learn to read ingredients, what they do and who they are made for and how they are to be used before you make a purchase. This column is full of valuable inputs, tips, guidelines, honest, tried and tested reviews of grooming products that will make you feel just as good as you look. Follow or be left out.

4.Not everything can be used together

Products react with each other and while some work well together, most aren’t designed to work when combined with one another.

A shampoo and conditioner are complementary products, and a conditioner needs to be applied and used after a shampoo. They work best together when they are made by the same brand so that the ingredients don’t react adversely with each other and cause permanent damage to your hair.

I know of some men who mix different creams together. This is a sure shot recipe for disaster. Each cream has a purpose, and every brand has a unique formula with certain ingredients. When you mix formulations together, you are risking one ingredient overpowering or reacting with the other. Use a hand cream for your hands, a facial cream for your face and a body lotion for your body.

5.Using larger quantities of a product does not give you more benefits

Our skin and hair are different and what works for one person will never work the same way for the other, even within the same family! Using heavier quantities does not translate to additional benefits!

Use products sparingly or as advised. Brands encourage you to use more so you buy the product again, even faster. Normally its best to use the amount as much as would get absorbed easily by the skin (creams, lotions, massage oils and moisturisers) or work up enough lather (shampoo, shower gels and shaving foam).

Some products work faster or slower on some people as compared to others.

Be patient – remember, every product takes roughly two months of regular use to show visible and effective results.

Four grooming products to use this season:

1.Hair mask for damaged hair

The Onion & Egg Hair Mask by Bombay Shaving Company works well on damaged hair

Made with ingredients found in the kitchen, this hair mask promises to reduce hair fall, strengthen the hair and keep your hair looking shiny and feeling strong. This is the product to use if you have hair-related issues.

Usage: Apply a small amount on the hair and scalp, leave for about 10 minutes then rinse off well with water.

2.Skin cleanser for daily use

The oil balancing cleanser by SUKIN (Available on Sublime Life) is ideal for regular use
The oil balancing cleanser by SUKIN (Available on Sublime Life) is ideal for regular use

This daily cleanser for men removes build-up of dirt and oil with a mix of Baobab Extract and Tasmanian pepper to soothe. Also contains aloe vera, which helps to leave the skin feeling refreshed, clean and hydrated. The product is suitable for all skin types and especially those with oily or acne prone skin.

Use: Once or twice daily as a substitute for soap.

3.Skin pack for tanned skin

The Peony & Turmeric Ubtan by Reeves Clive helps get rid of stubborn tans
The Peony & Turmeric Ubtan by Reeves Clive helps get rid of stubborn tans

This natural, soap-free Ayurvedic cleanser exfoliates, moisturises, and detoxifies the skin. Peony and turmeric act as anti-inflammatories and antioxidants that help minimise open pores for an even-toned and glowing complexion. The product is especially effective on tanned skin that has been exposed to the harsh sun.

To use: Apply once weekly or after long exposure to the sun.

4.Fragrance to smell sexy

Just apply Original Musk fragrance by Kiehls on your wrist, under the neck and ears, and you’re good to go
Just apply Original Musk fragrance by Kiehls on your wrist, under the neck and ears, and you’re good to go

With aromas of Bergamot Nectar, Orange Blossom and Musk, the signature unisex scent from Kiehls, begins with an initial creamy, fresh citrus burst of Bergamot Nectar and Orange Blossom and dries to leave a warm and sensual note of patchouli and musk. Ideal for an early evening and even better to use on your date night.

To use: Apply on the wrist, under the ears and neck.

Two style essentials for men:

1.The sling bag

Crimson red bag from the Fleet Collection by Daily Objects
Crimson red bag from the Fleet Collection by Daily Objects

A small shoulder bag like this eye-catching crimson red sling is ideal to carry some of your basics including your phone when you are on the go. The bag is made with lightweight natural fabrics and will work well with any casual look. Has an interesting printed striped lining on the inside.

To wear: With your casual or day look.

2.The multipurpose air purifier

The air purifier and heater by Dyson
The air purifier and heater by Dyson

The innovative air purifier from Dyson protects you from all forms of pollution including exhaust fumes, tobacco, soot, heavy metals and other toxic organic compounds that are unfortunately found in most urban environments. It also kills chemicals of cleaning sprays. Works well to combat pet allergens and makes the air as pure as possible – which isn’t just good for your body, but also great for both your hair and skin.

The product works remotely with an app and has the unique ability to keep the room warm or cool, is extremely slick and has a very modern look. This is my pick for the best design for a functional home appliance, especially if your style quotient extends beyond your clothes and accessories to your home and if you are a man who likes his gadgets looking just as good, if not better than him!

Product rating: 5/5

The author is an image, style and grooming consultant and trainer.

From HT Brunch, January 31, 2021

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