Shine Control 101

From sunglasses to sports cars, the matte finish look is everywhere these days. It was only a matter of time before grooming products caught on as well. After all, no one should ever describe your face or hair as “high-gloss.” Here’s an easy guide to keeping oil and shine in check with the best mattifying gear on the market.

Much to the chagrin of grooming geeks everywhere, “mattifying” isn’t in the dictionary, but trust us—it’s definitely a word you should know. Countless brands are releasing products that fall into this category, and that assist with reducing shine and oil on both skin and hair.

If you’re a guy, there’s a good chance you can use some help combating shine. Mother Nature has ensured that guys will always have issues keeping their foreheads from looking like mirrors. The reason? Sebum, a pesky oil produced by the sebaceous glands to lubricate skin and hair. Because men’s skin is thicker than women’s, there are more glands to produce sebum, and overproduction is what causes that less-than-attractive luster. Other factors also play a part, including hormones, bacteria, medications, and heredity.

This scientific interlude leads us to the point: there is a solution. No matter how active your sebaceous glands may be, there are products to help keep things in check. Some moisturizers use clay to help absorb excess oil, but that can also clog pores and leave skin feeling chalky. Instead, look for minerals that help reduce oil production from the start, like those found in Kiehl’s No-Shine Hydrator. This welcome addition to the popular Facial Fuel series uses a powerful blend of zinc, sodium, and magnesium to stop oil at the source while also providing all-day hydration. For those seeking shine control with some additional safeguarding, try ERNEST SUPPLIES Protective Matte Moisturizer. Loaded with antioxidants and all-natural extracts, the quick-absorbing formula deflects any harmful elements the environment lobs at your skin.

But what’s the point in taming your t-zone if your hair still looks freshly shellacked? Sure, there are some occasions that call for the slicked-back look, but most of the time the goal is more Paul Newman than Pauly D. For a pliable hold without any patina, we like TOWELDRY’s Mid-Styler. The versatile formula helps you cap off a totally shine-free façade.

All you need now is sheen-free soundtrack to accompany your all-matte routine. May we suggest Big Boi’s “Shine Blockas?”

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