Skin care is a multi-billion-dollar industry that focuses primarily on preventing the appearance of aging in women. Thousands of products claim to prevent wrinkles and fade spots, moisturize, protect and even reverse the skin’s aging process. However, no matter what you do to keep your skin from aging, it needs extra care once you’ve reached your 60s and beyond—and men require skin care as they get older just as much as women do. As older adults, the goal is to keep your skin healthy, moisturized, free of damage and protected from the sun.
“As you age, you are at increased risk for skin injury,” the National Library of Medicine writes. “Your skin is thinner, more fragile, and you lose some of the protective fat layer. You also may be less able to sense touch, pressure, vibration, heat and cold.”
Yet, most men don’t think much about skin care until there’s a problem.
”While you cannot undo the damage your skin has already been exposed to, you can prevent further damage and help reverse some of the changes that have occurred,” dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD, told Men’s Health.
Caregivers should encourage the older adult men they care for to begin a skin care routine as soon as possible. It doesn’t have to be complicated or take a lot of time, but it should cover from head to toe. If every day is too often to complete all of the steps, break them up into a few days a week instead—except for sunscreen: Use that every day!
Products for older men’s skin care
Best facial cleanser
This gentle, easy-to-use and affordable product is good for anyone’s skin, but for older adults, it’s a great choice because it hydrates and doesn’t dry out the skin with unnecessary ingredients.
Best facial moisturizer
Whichever facial moisturizer you choose for your older adult, make sure it’s rated as SPF 30 or more.
This moisturizer will work for older men because it’s lightweight and it isn’t greasy. In addition, it has an SPF of 35, which will protect from harmful UVA and UVB rays that can cause damage to older skin, which gets thinner as people age. Keep a bottle near the front door to make sure they put it on before leaving the house.
Best body cleanser
One of the biggest skin care challenges for older adults is preventing dryness. Dry skin can be itchy, irritating and uncomfortable, and scratching can lead to more significant problems if the skin breaks. Aveeno is the best body wash for keeping skin hydrated and moisturized. Because it’s so affordable, you can encourage your older man to use it abundantly during his bath or shower.
Best body lotion
SPF 15 protects skin from the sun, while vitamin B5 and sunflower oil moisturize. Keep it handy in the car and on your older adult’s bedside table to encourage them to apply it multiple times a day. It’s fragrance-free, too.
This sunscreen gives the best coverage you can find for sensitive, aging skin. If your senior is planning a day outside, add to the Cetaphil facial moisturizer for an extra boost of protection, and use it on exposed parts of the body each day.
Best hand cream
Don’t let the name of this hand cream scare you off. Even retirees will appreciate this heavy-duty product that works to moisturize and repair skin on hands. Use it multiple times a day on your older adult’s hands; you’ll see results quickly, and their hands will feel better if they’re uncomfortably dry and cracked.
Best foot cream
Older men’s feet are often very dry, cracked and possibly painful. Urea cream is used to treat rough skin and conditions like eczema. This over-the-counter cream contains 40% urea cream and salicylic acid to smooth and remove calluses and dead skin. You can help your older adult feel better with a soothing foot massage while you apply this to his feet.
Best shaving product (a splurge that’s worth it!)
Indulge your older man with this delicious-smelling gift set. It comes with luxurious shaving cream, a brush applicator, pre-shave oil to moisturize and protect the skin, and an after-shaving balm to soothe and calm sensitive skin. He’ll feel terrific after shaving and look clean and fresh as well.