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What Men Need to Know Before Sharing Their Partner’s Skincare Products

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By: Adam Williams

There you are, looking in the mirror and noticing that your skin is dull and dry…

…and you realize that you need a bit of lotion.

But you don’t have your favorite moisturizer with you – or perhaps you were too afraid to purchase it for fear of being judged. After all, your dad probably never moisturized, so why should you?

So sneakily, you reach for your girlfriend or wife’s moisturizer, put a few pumps to the hand, and begin to rub it into your face.

Ahh, it feels so good!

Sure it might smell a little feminine, but who cares? Not only does your skin feel both soft and supple, but you instantly look a few years younger as that handy moisturizer has all those ingredients that your skin craves.

But then you stop and think:

I can’t keep doing this forever – or else she will catch on!

So what do you do?

Keep sneaking a dab of moisturizer every day? Or actually do something about it once and for all!?

Answer: Do something about it!

Today, we want to share why you shouldn’t be stealing your girl’s face cream (and some tips to keep in mind when buying your own).

Let’s go!

Editor’s note:

While the scope of this article was to answer whether men can use women’s skincare products – the information is applicable if you are using your partner, brother, sister, cousin’s, dad’s, mom’s, or boss’ skincare products! We don’t want to exclude anyone here 🤗

Do men have different skin care needs than women?

man applying face cream in mirror

Look:

Men have skin too!

Just because you are a guy doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take care of your skin. Taking care of our skin is just as important as brushing our teeth, showering, and eating healthily.

Just like women, we men should be cleansing, exfoliating, toning, and moisturizing our skin regularly. By doing so, we can make significant strides in reducing the signs of aging, preventing breakouts, and keeping our skin looking healthy and youthful.

So no, men don’t necessarily have different needs or requirements when caring for their skin – we just need to be more consistent with it.

So, can’t all products just be shared, then?

squirting skincare product into hand

Sharing products depends on a few factors, including skin type, allergies, scents, and product intent. Here’s why this is important:

  • Skin Type: If you have oily skin and your significant other has dry skin, it would be best to keep your products separate. For example, if you applied a moisturizer containing a high concentration of occlusive ingredients (like shea butter), it would likely clog your pores, leading to breakouts. Instead, men with oily skin should be applying an oil-free moisturizer that’ll help restore moisture without causing acne. There’s a reason why there are different products for different skin types.
  • Allergies: While you may be best friends with one another doesn’t mean that both your bodies are tolerant to the same ingredients. When dealing with skin care products, dermatologists always recommend doing a patch test before using a new product. What works fine for one person does not guarantee the same results for another.
  • Scents: Many skincare products have a fairly muted fragrance that makes it nearly impossible to discern whether it has a feminine or masculine scent. However, some cleansers or moisturizers in particular may have a more pronounced scent that may be overtly feminine or masculine making them less than ideal for sharing.
  • Intent: As you familiarize yourself with skincare products, you’ll find that many are designed for specific use cases. For example, there are products designed for dark circles, wrinkles, blemishes, and so much more. For example, if you are using an anti-aging product to get rid of some dark circles under your eyes, you may be disappointed with the results – even if you apply it religiously.

In short, you must use skincare products that match your specific needs and desires. Sometimes using someone else’s products may work, but it may not always be the best option.

What products are safe to share?

oil dropper bottle

When it comes to sharing skincare products, there are definitely some products that are easier to share and others that we recommend getting separate products for one another.

  • Often Good for Sharing: Many cleansers, face washes, moisturizers, and toners are usually gender and skin-type neutral making them suitable for sharing. Just double-check the label and see if they work for your skin type or if you like the fragrance.
  • Share with Caution: Physical exfoliators may be suitable for sharing. However, chemical exfoliants fall into the “don’t share” category. This is because chemical exfoliants often contain skin-specific ingredients and can cause mild irritation if used incorrectly.
  • Avoid Sharing These: These include products containing powerful or concentrated ingredients like retinol or benzoyl peroxide and highly scented body washes and scrubs. In addition, it is not recommended to ever share lip balms or tubs of eye creams or face creams as they could easily become contaminated with bacteria and lead to infection.

Speak with your significant other to cut costs and lessen your impact on the environment

Using unisex skincare products is not only a great way to save money but also an excellent way to reduce the amount of packaging waste created when purchasing new products. Unisex products often come in larger containers that last longer and require fewer replacements.

Additionally, even though these items may have specific instructions for each gender, their ingredients are pretty much the same. You and your partner can use them without buying multiple products with differently labeled instructions.

Furthermore, reducing your number of product purchases will help lessen the burden placed on our environment by declining resources needed to produce these goods.

Is it worth going with men’s specific grooming products?

In most instances, yes! Men’s grooming products tend to cost a fraction of the price when compared to women’s products – this is commonly known as the “pink tax.” In fact, don’t be surprised if your significant other begins using your skincare products with great success, cause apparently it is quite common among women!

Need to get started?

Here’s a few posts on eye creams, face creams, and face washes we have rounded up on men’s skincare that we think you’ll love.

Adam Williams

As the lead editor of Tools of Men, Adam loves men's grooming products. Particularly of interest is managing facial hair and perfecting the art of the modern man's skincare routine. His work has been featured or quoted in several publications, including New York Magazine, Vice, Sharpologist, MIC, Elite Daily, and more.

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