Grooming tips and tricks are a dime a dozen, but the best words to the wise are nothing short of priceless. After all, a poor hand at grooming can compromise the best laid sartorial plans — a sharply tailored suit means nothing on an unkempt canvas.
So, we turned to a range of experts who know a little something about putting their best face (and skin and hair!) forward and asked them just what has been the most significant piece of advice they have received when it comes to curating their appearance. From creating a one-stop-grooming-shop in your shower to how to play master mixologist with a hair “cocktail,” take a tip from these pros who know all about charting a well-groomed path.
1. “Hair-cocktailing” is happy hour for your head
The best grooming advice I received was in reference to “hair cocktailing.” I grew up with the impression that you couldn’t use more than one hair product when styling, however, when I started working at Birchbox my perception on it changed. “Hair cocktailing” takes two different types of hair styling products to (a) shape your hair the way you want it and (b) finish it off with either a nice matte or polished shine look. Cocktailing has seriously taken my hair to another level and I personally love mixing Hanz de Fuko’s Claymation with a bit of Sponge Wax for a matte, high hold finish.
Carlos Alvarado, lead merchant of grooming, Birchbox Man
2. A good skin care routine is essential
The best grooming advice I could give would be this: Great-looking, healthy skin is easy to achieve with a simple, daily routine. I recommend that my clients follow these four easy steps:
1. Exfoliate to cleanse and unclog pores. Exfoliating also prepares your face and beard for a smoother, non-irritating shave by preventing in-grown hairs.
2. Shave with a product that doesn’t contain silicone or oil that will clog your pores and razor blade.
3. Cleanse from head to toe to purify and revitalize skin and hair.
4. Hydrate with a one-step moisturizer that provides anti-aging benefits for face, neck, and under the eyes. Finish with an all-over rich, nourishing body cream.
To achieve this regimen, use multifunctional products that contain natural, gentle ingredients including the healing properties of peppermint, shea butter, soy, and aloe. Try to avoid harsh chemicals such as parabens and formaldehyde by taking a few extra minutes to read the product labels.
Dana Kale, co-founder and owner of Kale Naturals
3. That beard needs a professional trim, too
Beards are so popular right now. If you’re following the facial-hair trend, the most important thing to remember — next to using a great beard product regimen — is to get your beard trimmed regularly. When growing and/or maintaining a beard, it is vital to trim the sides and underneath to maintain proper shape and keep a cleaner look.
Pat Parsi, president and founder of Billy Jealousy
4. Multitask in the shower
I think the best grooming advice I have had was if you do not have time to shave in the sink, run hot water for a few seconds in the shower and shave while you shower. You should always have a close-up mirror in the shower anyway! While bathing, also use a product that is multipurpose and functions as a body wash, shampoo, and face cleanser. Living a well-groomed life is the key to a successful one and will give you enough confidence to conquer the world.
Christopher Butler, co-founder of Montez Renault
5. Back to the basics goes a long way
Grooming is of premier importance, and I always have abided by the advice that keeping it simple and straightforward is the best solution. Never shirk the basics — a good haircut, a clean shave or tidily trimmed beard, and white teeth go a long way. But, a well-groomed, closely fitted ensemble is also mandatory to really tie everything together and avoid a sloppy impression. Remember: bags under your eyes and baggy clothes are both out!
Donovan England, CEO of Donovan England
6. Stay true to yourself
Similar to the best sartorial advice I’ve been given or ever could give, stay true to yourself when it comes to your personal grooming style. If you don’t like beards, then don’t rock one just because it’s trendy right now. If you have long hair and love it, don’t cut it — just make sure it’s well styled and maintained. Be who are you and no one else!
Patrick Ware, General Manager, Traffic Los Angeles at The Joule