By Julie Taylor for Style + Tech For Men
The average man wouldn’t know how to distinguish eye shadow from mascara … and if he did, we’d hope he’s auditioning for Priscilla, Queen of the Dessert or in a death metal band. But listen up, men! Cosmetics are going coed. And we’re not limiting the conversation to annoying metrosexual models, actors or reality show stars.
Everyone — from corporate executives to Jersey Joes — is looking for a little man-hancement. In fact, many department stores are now devoting entire sections to masculine cosmetics, which have grown to include concealer, foundation, bronzer, eyebrow gel, and even “guyliner” pencils for the poor man’s Pete Wentz in all of us.
JeanPaulGaultier.com and 4VOO.com offer entire makeup lines that are designed specifically for les homes. (That’s French for “guys.”) Here are some basic guidelines to building a makeup starter kit for men:
Concealer: This tinted cream camouflages dark circles under your eyes and hides skin imperfections — not including those that are permanent, such as moles. It usually comes in shades that match your skin tone: fair, light, medium, tan or dark. There are also more custom options, such as The Men Pen ($17.95), a concealer stick that comes in 17 different shades. Just dab some under your eyes and gently blend with your fingertips.
Foundation and Bronzer: 4VOO sells a silk-enriched face bronzer for $48 that gives the illusion of an immediate faux tan on all skin types and keeps your skin smooth and more natural-looking than a canned Kardashian-style tan. Ingredients include chamomile and grape seed extracts, which protect dry skin and diminish the sun’s damaging effects.
If you don’t like the idea of liquid bronzers, Montreal-based cosmetics line KenMen sells DUO-Man Powders ($44), foundation made from pressed bamboo and rice-powder tints. You can combine both colors or blend just one onto your punim to even out skin tone or enhance your skin’s natural complexion. Apply with a natural-hair brush all over your cheeks, forehead and nose in circular motions for the best effect.
Eyebrow Gel: French fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier’s Monsieur makeup line for men offers a transparent gel called Brow Groomer, which invisibly tames your bushy Brezhnev brows when it’s applied and offers the added benefit of holding stray hairs in place all day! All products in Gaultier’s Monsieur line are available at leading department stores and cost between $10 and $60.
Lip Balm: This is a classic grooming aid — and we’re not talking about ChapStick here. Jack Black’s “It’s the Balm” trio ($19.50) comes in three flavors: natural mint and shea butter; black tea and blackberry; grapefruit and ginger. All varieties contain SPF 25 sun protection and moisturizers to keep your lips soft and smooth.
Julie Taylor is a New York-based public relations professional that specializes in TV, entertainment, magazine publishing and general media. She has written about pop culture for RepMan Blog and her work has appeared in online literary magazines WordSmitten and Insolent Rudder.