A story in the Huffington Post this week looked at how much time and money men spend on grooming themselves.
Now I like to think I’m a regular guy, and that most guys are like me. My goal with grooming is to spend as little time and money as possible.
At this point, I typically know within a minute or so how long it is going to take from the time I start picking out the clothes I’ll wear that day, to then flossing and brushing my teeth, shaving, showering, and getting dressed. 18 minutes.
That’s it. That’s the extent of my grooming on a typical day. to be honest, I wasn’t really sure what else there could be.
In terms of the cost, it’s pretty low cost. A basic toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss; Head and Shoulders with conditioner, which also serves as my body wash, and the cheapest shaving cream I can find, and a pack of disposable razors.
HuffPost spoke to eight men of different ages, ethnic backgrounds, locations and occupations about their grooming routines. Here are descriptions of what some of these guys do; I’ve highlighted in bold what I consider some of the over-the-top steps these men take when it comes to grooming
- I shower at least once a day, using a bar soap I brought over from India, and I moisturize with Vaseline. The soap is kinda expensive, it’s about $100 for a pack of 25 bars. In the morning I wash my face with the same soap (using a different bar on the body and face) and follow with Thayer’s witch hazel; then I put Vaseline lip therapy on my lips. I don’t have any problems with my skin so I prefer to put my effort into my dressing. I also don’t like to use too many chemicals; I prefer natural products. Occasionally I’ll make a homemade face scrub using honey and coconut brown sugar. I usually get my hair cut every two months but because of the pandemic, I’ve had to wait as long as seven months. Once a week I make a mix of oils (pumpkin seed, tea tree oil, organic coconut oil and argan oil) and wash it out with Pura D’Or Advanced Therapy shampoo and conditioner. I don’t shave my facial hair, I just use a trimmer to shape the beard.
- Every morning I wake up, shower with an unscented white soap, brush my teeth, shave, moisturize, apply cologne, put pomade in my hair and apply natural deodorant (because I hate yellow stains on my white shirts) and I’m out the door. My cologne is one of the few products I don’t buy at Target ― I get four 3.3 oz. bottles on eBay. In the evening I trim my beard, before showering, and then use an anti-aging cream mixed with a little bit of Differin gel because I get closed comedones and have oily skin. When I have the energy, I’ll do a mask and use a cold roller along with a retinol specially formulated for me by my esthetician under my eyes. I get a weekly haircut ($30), which takes about 30 minutes. When I feel like treating myself I will get a mani/pedi ($120), which usually takes about an hour. I am a huge proponent of massages and saunas. I go to the Russian bath house in Miami Beach almost every weekend for a few hours and sit in the sauna or steam room followed by ice water plunges and maybe a full body mud mask.
- My morning routine takes about 30 minutes total. I shower every morning for about 15 minutes using body wash and a loofah, then take two minutes to apply body lotion. I take five minutes to brush my teeth, floss and rinse with mouthwash and another five minutes to wash my face and apply skin care. The last three minutes are spent on hair grooming and deodorant. Once a week, I take a 30-minute bath. I wash my hair once or twice a week and use a hair mask once a week. On days I work out but do not want to wash my hair, I use an apple cider vinegar hair rinse. I get a haircut about every five weeks ($80); the process takes about an hour and includes a wash and cut. I trim my facial hair once a week using a standard pair of beard clippers and after I shave I exfoliate my skin. I clip my own nails and about once a month I get a basic mani/pedi ($75). The service usually takes about an hour. I get professional facials ($150-$200) once a quarter or when I am traveling to a nice hotel.
- In the morning I take about 20 minutes total to do a quick body rinse and wash my face. I get out, spray a prep tonic in my hair and comb, shave and start my skin care routine. I only shave two to three times per week and I have a short beard, so I only shave my neck and the tops of my cheeks. I follow with a softening lotion instead of a traditional aftershave. While that sinks in, I apply natural deodorant and use a serum. While that sinks in, I apply lotion on my body, then an eye cream. Last, I put on my moisturizer ― always a sunscreen unless I’m not going outside. I’m not finished grooming without fragrance — I have probably 40 fragrances I choose from on a daily basis. A few times a week I will exfoliate with glycolic acid. I use a lot of Shiseido products ― my first corporate job was there when I was in my 20s and I’ve just always used their products even after moving on. At night, I shower with a bar soap and follow a similar skin care routine, but instead of an SPF I alternate between four moisturizers. Once a week, I might do a body scrub. I make an appointment online at my barber every five weeks and wash my hair every other day switching between shampoos. I use a pre-styler on my damp hair and comb through, and let it air dry naturally. Before I leave the house, I will put in a styling cream. I clip my own fingernails and get a pedicure ($25) maybe once a year at the beginning of the summer. My feet are pretty dry and cracked, so they have their work cut out and I tip generously.
A few comments from me:
- I’ve never had a pedicure or a manicure, and I don’t think I ever will.
- I’ve never exfoliated.
- I’ve never had a massage, not sure if I ever will.
- I don’t know what closed comedones are; should I be worried?
- I’ve never had a “facial routine”. What you see is all natural (that may be part of my problem).
- I don’t think I’ll ever use a loofah.
Before reading this story, I thought my grooming habits were pretty standard fare for most men.
But after reading the story, I wondered if these men are more typical of what most guys do.
It wouldn’t surprise me to learn that I’m not up with the latest grooming habits, but even if I’m not, I have no desire, or intention, to change my routine.
If anything. I’d like to get my time down to about 16 minutes…