Potions for him
Kiehl's, established in 1851, has been making men's grooming products longer than any other brand. Natural ingredients, a lack of perfumes and years of experience make the products a reliable option for men seeking skin care. The simple approach appeals to mature men in a way that the hip packaging of other brands does not. The Soothing, Nourishing Face Cream for Men is a top seller, along with Men's Alcohol-free Herbal Toner. No fancy names here - this is straightforward skin care for the straightforward man. Available at Joyce Beauty.
Lancome does a great job of attracting old-school and techno-style consumers. With Clive Owen as the official 'face' and masculine packaging, the firm straddles both market segments with product names as diverse as the simple Men's Ultimate Cleansing Gel and the more complex Hydrix Micro-Nutrient Moisturizing Gel. With Lancome's powerful expertise behind it, the men's range has exploded in popularity. The focus is on moisturising and anti-ageing, and the Men's Exfoliating Micro-dermabrasion is one of the top exfoliants available to men. Available at Lane Crawford.
ClarinsMen has developed a specific range of nine products for men. 'Having a thicker epidermis and a dense dermal layer, men need formulas that give energy to their skin,' Christian Courtin-Clarins says. Bison grass, which gives vodka its flavour, has medicinal properties in the treatment of cough, sore throat and vascular disorders. Its cell energising and blood vessel toning properties make it suited to the specific needs of men's skin. Visit the Clarins Institut in Central Building or find the firm's products at Seibu and various outlets.
Clinique Men has the motto 'Great Shave. Great Skin. Great Scent'. The firm advocates a simple three-step system of cleansing, exfoliating (or scruffing, as the company calls it) and moisturising. The products come in regular strength and extra strength, and the moisturisers have varying degrees of SPF sun protection, from zero upwards. There is even a self-tanner and cover stick in various shades for hiding dark circles or blemishes formulated especially for men. Clinique has counters in Seibu and elsewhere.
Boutique brands Since the late 1980s, and especially this decade, men's grooming companies are increasingly popping up. Website Men's Ultimate Grooming (www.mugonline.com) carries ranges that cover all brands a man could desire. Clean and natural, scientific and edgy lifestyle brands are represented. Look for more men-only retail beauty outlets to open in coming years offering special men's treatments, such as a hot shave in a club-like atmosphere.