You don’t have to be metrosexual to own a decent grooming kit. Most of the brands we’ve selected here target specific needs – shaving, exposure to the elements (think of all the spas attached to golf courses on blustery coastlines!) and ‘maturing’ in a suitably macho fashion. Products for men tend to be results-driven and no-nonsense, with minimalist packaging and a more subtle fragrance.
Here are some that often find their way into spa treatments for chaps and make a classy alternative to the usual Boots specials.
The Refinery, “London’s one-stop grooming emporium for men” in Mayfair, Harrods and Knightsbridge, has developed its own range of products with Aromatherapy Associates .
Twelve luxurious products include their Revitalising Moisturiser (50ml, £43), Post Shave Balm (100ml, £33) and Face Mask (75ml, £30). Packaging is elegantly minimalist and the products contain rather manly natural essential oils such as bergamont, aloe, cedarwood and spearmint.
The story of Voya began with a man and post-sports recovery, and how he found seaweed bathing helped. Hence Voya’s organic and natural products have unisex appeal – both in their scent and packaging – even if they don’t advertise directly to men or women. Unusually, men’s products tend to ignore the hands, which seems bizarre when you consider the term ‘manual labour’. Voya recognise this and suggest men use their reparative hand cream Handy To Have (75ml, £16).
Other Voya classics for chaps would include Cast Away (125ml, £26), an organic face wash, which can be used as a shaving gel, and Lazy Days Dried Seaweed and Dead Sea Salt bath (500g, £16).
Since Linda Meredith’s male client list includes Colin Firth, Dennis Hopper, Alexander McQueen and Jude Law it makes sense that she has launched The Linda Meredith Gentleman’s Collection (£69), which includes Hydrating Mist (40ml), Gel Cleanser (35ml) and Q3 moisturiser (35ml).
Thalgo’s marine based products are packaged in dark blue for boys and named ThalgoMen. Try the Intensive Hydrating Cream (50ml, £26) Shaving Gel (100ml, £12) and Wake-Up Shower Gel (£13)
The products have a very light fragrance and the active ingredients – such as Algue Bleue Vitale® – produce visible results, whether you need rehydrating after all your manly outdoor stuff, protection or anti-aging.
Decléor Men should appeal to chaps who respect the science of skincare but also care about green credentials. The Aromessence Triple Action Shave Protector (15ml, £41.50) is the male addition to their award winning super serum range, and contains clove essential oil, which they say slows hair re-growth.
Also popular is the Face Skin Energiser Fluid (50ml, £39) and Clean Skin Scrub Gel (125ml £21.50).
Elemis Men is designed to “combat the harsh effects of frequent shaving, stresses of life and daily environmental pollution.” The products are results driven, and aimed at four skincare categories – cleansers and face washes for younger, acne-prone skin; anti-aging range The Defence; S.O.S Survival Cream for sensitive types; and a shaving range.
Their hero products are Ice Cool Foaming Shave Gel (200ml, £22), Daily Moisture Boost (50ml, £30) and the Deep Cleanse Facial Wash (150ml, £20).
ESPA Men has sleek black packaging and the products are at a reasonable price point. Product categories include Wash and Shave, Hydrate, Body and Age Rebel, catering for most skin types and ages (there’s Youthful, First Signs of Aging, Maturing, and Mature – all suggesting a healthy attitude to aging that’s somewhat lacking in the marketing of female products).
Hero products are Dual Action Shavemud (200ml, £22) a shaving cream which doubles as a cleansing mask, Age Rebel Eye Hydrator (25ml, £36) and Postshave Rescue (70ml, £26).
ClarinsMenrange is relatively extensive and classically reliable, with creams and balms that claim to do everything from (alleged) ab firming to simple face cleansing. Hero products are ClarinsMen Super Moisture Balm (50ml, £29), Active Face Wash (125ml, £19.50) and Line- Control Cream (50ml, £41).