Gone are the days when soap & water, shaving warm & razor were the beginning & end of a mans grooming regime.
Dermatolist Dr. Parul Kohle has her say…
With picture perfect models & film stars being the icons of the day, every man is striving to emulate the look, whether it is Salman’s buff bod. Milinds Soman’s chiseled looks or Vivek Oberoi’s shaggy floppy “boy next door” hairstyle. Men are no longer ashamed to admit to admit visiting male beauty parlours getting facials and manicures, waxing their chest or threading their eyebrows.
While I’m not preaching to you to put on a green face pack & paint your toenails red (!), I’d at least like to make all the men out there aware of a few skin problems faced by men alone – yes it’s about that 4 inch span of skin below your cheekbone ---- your beard area.
1. The most common malady (if you leave aside acne) to hit this area would be a bacterial infection known as Sycosis Barbae or in its milder form just a folliculities. It is caused by infection with a bacteria called staphylococcus that is often normally present on skin but due to poor hygiene, use of unclean shaving implements cuts & nicks etc, get driven into the skin & cause infection around the hair follicles appearing as small yellow pus filled lesions each surrounding a hair. This can spread & become quite a nasty infection. To avoid this use clean sharing implements preferably easy your own razor to a barbers never allow him to use a common razor on your skin, wash your face frequently with a mild soap & keep it dry as possible, avoid frequently touching your face.
2. Another common ailment esp in this weather is “mycosis Barber or Tinea” also called Barber’s itch. Again spread the same way it got its name (obviously) is it was spread by barber’s common razors. It looks like a small red patch that grows and clears in the middle to form my shaped lesions on your face small boils or tine bumps along the border the typical ringworm pattern. By itself it’s easily treatable but say warned against self medications. People empirically use “Ring guard & B-tex” & other such preparations which give temporarily some relief but actually make this disease flare up & become worse. Ultimately a big boggy swelling or Kerion may even develop & leave the area permanently scarred.
3. Pseudofolliculitis is another very common affliction caused by improper shaving technique. Shaving against hair growth direction or using the newer 3 blade razors etc is responsible. The hair gets pulled out, stretched & cut at an angle which may give a smoother shave, but the hair than retracts into its follicle & its cut end irritates the inky rash on the face & ignoring hair that appear as raised black dots. To avoid this, hair should be shaved in the direction of growth & cut at the skin surface only.
• For infections whether bacterial or fungal please consult a dermatologist timely who can prescribe an appropriate oral as well as topical antibiotic to antifungal as per the case for a speedy recovery.
• Also to avoid post shave roughness & chronic kin damage, sue an aloe based gel & a good pork shave moisturizer.
• Don’t keep changing your face products frequently. Stick to a brand that looks for you to avoid the risk of allergic or irritant contact dermatitis.
Follow these simple tips and it won’t be hard achieving that perfect suave look that every man worth his Y chromosome craves for & every woman goes ga-ga over!!!
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