With Father’s Day less than a week away, some of you may be in need of a last minute gift for the men in your life. I thought that a gift bag of personal care items would be a good idea. (Hey, it works for moms right? Why not dads?) So many men get into a rut when it comes to personal care because they just aren’t interested in the trial and error that women are usually more willing to go through to find the best products. Some men will use a so-so product for years and years because they don’t know what else is out there. If you have a man in your life that is uninspired with his routine, he may really appreciate some new products to try that have been specially selected for him. I begged my husband to supply me with a list of his favorite things, and why he likes using them. Because he is awesome and I am the luckiest girl in the world, he wrote up this guest post to share with you. So let’s get into it, Favorite Things: Guy Edition.
When I was asked to put together a list of favorite personal care items, I drew a blank. I’m not the kind of guy who puts a lot of thought into what products I do and do not use. I’m the kind of guy who gets up in the morning and runs on auto pilot as I stand in front of the bathroom mirror. That being said, after I thought about it I realized that I am kind of picky when it comes to the shaving and skin care products I use. So what follows is a list of my favorite shaving and skin care items, and why I like them over others I have tried. Maybe this will help spark ideas for the Dad in your life this Father’s Day.
Shower: I use the Bath & Body Works shower gel in the Oak scent. It’s woodsy, like cedar and sandalwood. It’s a little bit musky so that it still smells manly, but not so musky that it’s overwhelming. I used to shower with bar soap, but I’m glad that I switched out. The soap used to really dry me out, but I hate the way lotion feels on my skin. I get that clean feeling with the shower gel, but it doesn’t dry me out. And I can layer the body spray on days that I don’t want to use cologne, but still want a subtle base scent to linger.
The Razor: Every guy needs to have a razor he can trust. I have sensitive skin. This means that electric razors are out for me. They leave my face looking like a strawberry for the whole day, even if I use a skin conditioner or aftershave lotion. The same thing goes for any disposable razor with a single blade. Given a choice, I like the Gillette Mach 3 Power. At first I thought this razor was a gimmick, and a death trap. If a razor blade vibrates, won’t it cut you easier? Come to find out, it does provide for a closer shave, and I have never cut myself with this blade. It also has an aloe-based lubrastrip that prevents me from having razor burn afterwards. If you do not have the budget for the Mach 3 power cartridges, a great fall back is the Mach 3 Turbo disposables. I get a closer shave with the Power, but the turbo is not as hard on the wallet.
Shave Cream/Gel: At the end of the day, the razor can only get you so far if you have sensitive skin. I have friends who, when they run out of shaving cream, can get by on soap and water if they have the right razor. Unfortunately, that is not me. I’ve experimented with a number of creams and the basic problem I run into is getting something that lathers up thick enough to give my skin the protection and moisture it needs, but is not so thick it won’t rinse off the razor between strokes. Some shaving creams go on so thick that they offer excellent protection, but you spend more time cleaning the goop out of your razor blade between strokes, then you do shaving. I find that Edge for Sensitive Skin works the best for me. No goop stuck in the razor, it rinses away with very little effort when you are done, and it keeps my skin from getting irritated. And you can even get it in bulk from warehouse stores like BJ’s and Costco.
Aftershave: When I was young and uniformed, I used to think that there was no difference between aftershave and cologne. The older I get, the more I realize that there is a really big difference and I need moisture. In the last year I found a product line called Every Man Jack. You can find it at Target. While I do not like their shave cream because it’s too thick for my preference (see above), I do really like their “Post-Shave Face Lotion”. Unlike some aftershaves or other post shave products I’ve tried over the years, this one leave my skin feeling clean and soft. Some products can leave your face feeling dried out, while others leave you with an oily sensation that feels like you just rubbed butter all over your face. Every Man Jack’s Post-Shave Face Lotion makes me feel naturally soft and smooth. It does have a very light and almost unnoticeable mint sent, but it is not strong enough to interfere with the colognes I like to use.
Deodorant: Good news, Old Spice is just not for your Grand Pa anymore. The Old Spice High Endurance deodorant line really is the best I’ve ever used. It keeps me dry and odor free. I like the smell of Old Spice cologne, and I’m looking forward to wearing it someday when I have grand children who have no idea what to get me for birthdays and Christmas. In the meantime, though, I need something a bit more modern. I like the Artic Blast and the Pure Sport scents the most, and they are age appropriate. They also have the standard original scent if you want it.
Cologne: I go back and forth between my two most favorite colognes. If I am going out to do something fun with my wife, or something that is casual like sitting at Starbucks with friends, I will probably put on my Ed Hardy Hearts and Daggers for men. It’s fresh but still manly, and it’s not too complicated or musky. Also, it is not so strong you can smell it from the next room. When I go to work, or want to project a more sophisticated and serious vibe when I go some place, I turn to my Gucci Guilty. I tried the Gucci Guilty Intense, and it was just a little too musky for me. The Gucci Guilty is more sophisticated than my Hearts and Daggers, but not too much. Both scents last for a good while after I put them on, about seven or eight hours.
I hope this list of favorites helps you with your decisions as Father’s Day approaches. Shopping for Dad is always hard for me, and I hope that this helps inspire something more fun than a gift certificate to Lowe’s. With careful consideration of what the guy in your life needs and likes, some new products can be a really nice and thoughtful gift.