It’s fair to say that today’s over 50s live their lives differently than their parents and grandparents did; for a start, everyone seems to look far younger than people of the same age did 40 years ago. To make the most of this youthful outlook on life comes with a few challenges - not major ones, but challenges none the less.
How to look after your hair in your 50s and beyond
Firstly, let’s look at hair. Over time, we start to lose the pigment in hair, which is what we see as ‘going grey’. As the pigment dies away, it leaves a transparent ‘tube’ that’s devoid of the colour we sported in our youth. Visually, this new colour can and does look great, with many younger people deliberately dying their hair a striking shade of grey; however, the downside of naturally grey hair is that without the original pigment, it begins to look duller, loses its ‘oomph’ - and on top of this, hair becomes thinner.
Grey hair = no problem
But all is not lost; there are certain things we can do to counter dull, thinning grey hair. It’s likely that no one wants visible signs of a thickening product in our hair, so we need to use base products that have a dual effect, the first being a swelling of the hair shaft to give the appearance of thicker and fuller hair with added vigour, and the second an added shine. A finishing product like a leave-in conditioner provides both these benefits. A combination of a leave-in conditioner, along with a contemporary men’s haircut by a stylist who knows the nuances of shaping a mature person’s hair, will work wonders. Don’t be nervous about asking at your local barber for someone who specialises in cutting mature hair – they will be able to take into account the unique factors attributed to older hair, and should produce a more tailored, visually pleasing image.
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How to look after your skin when you get older
The importance of good shaving does not go away with older skin. Try applying your shave crème with just your fingertips, using less but rubbing it in more with some water. This way the active ingredients in the shave cream will benefit your skin too, rather than being wasted. Use a moisturiser, ideally a matt moisturiser so there is little or no shine, and try putting any excess product on the back of the hands – here you’ll find the skin that ages most. With this in mind, a good way to apply moisturiser is by putting product on the back of one hand and using the back of the other hand to rub it in to the skin on your face.
Maintaining healthy skin on your scalp is also important as dandruff is not a good look on anyone, regardless of age. If you struggle with dandruff, perhaps try to wash your hair daily.
Something that many men leave out is conditioner, but well-conditioned hair will give shine to your hair so it is not a step you should miss once your hair starts to go grey.
We can do nothing about getting older, but we can make our skin and the hair look as good as it did in our youth, by taking care to be clean shaven or sporting a well-maintained beard, glowing skin, and a good looking head of hair with the least evidence of product – or a healthy scalp, should your hair have waved goodbye to your hard by this point in life!
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Hero products from the men-u range
• Men-ü SLIC (smooth leave-in conditioner) 100ml, £12.95 - A unique, desert island product based on versatility and performance. Leaves hair smooth, de-frizzed, with a silky texture and shine – instant conditioning. Great for coarse hair and the more you need, the more you use and because it is ultra-concentrate, a little goes a long way.
• men-ü Liquifflex 100ml, £16.95 - Liquefies easily and disperses evenly through so can’t be seen on the hair. Hands are left dry to the touch. Great flexi-hold, suitable for all hair types and styles. Practically weightless and thickens the hair, which is great for extra body and volume.
• Men-ü Shave Crème 100ml, £11.95 (ultra-concentrate up to 165 shaves) - Packed with lubricants including silicone and moisturisers that help to provide optimum slip without drying the skin. Many foams and gels generate too much lather, but the shave creme does not clog the pores and includes tea tree oil (a natural antiseptic and antibacterial) which is ideal to prevent shaving rash.
This article was written with Lloyd Hughes, Creative Director and Lead Educator of men-ü.