Odors have a power of persuasion stronger than that of words, appearances, emotions, or will.
The persuasive power of an odor cannot be fended off,
it enters into us like breath into our lungs, it fills us up, imbues us totally.
There is no remedy for it.
Beauty may be only skin deep, but chemicals in your beauty products can penetrate even deeper. Think about it: this is stuff you wear on your skin, your largest organ, day in, day out. And many beauty products been found to harbor carcinogens, pesticides, hormone disruptors, plasticizers, degreasers, surfactants. There are no studies that really evaluate the long-term safety of these chemicals in your body (your “body burden”), or how they will interact with each other, or with the who-knows-how-many other chemicals we come into contact with every day.
Food for thought.
So, I try to stick to non-toxic options. (Quick aside: I was in Sephora and asked for a “green” face powder and the woman was recommending options with green undertones. I didn’t even know such a thing existed and I’m still not clear on why; in any case, we cleared that all up before I got to the register.)
As has been well-documented on this blog, I’m very particular about scents, and I tend to lean toward cleansers and lotions that smell like foods: vanilla, citrus, chocolate. Perhaps not shockingly, the men in this house are less than thrilled when they borrow my stuff and walk away smelling like a dessert or a fruit basket.
Shield for Men is one of the few truly non-toxic lines for men that I’ve come across. Made in the US of A and cruelty-free, these products do NOT contain:
- Synthetic Fragrances
- Synthetic Dyes
What does Shield for Men include? Good stuff like
- organic virgin coconut oil
- vitamin E, pro-vitamin B-5, vitamin A
- tea tree oil
- organic aloe vera
- green tea extract
- essential oils: ylang ylang, patchouli, rosewood, cedarwood
It smells like man: earthy, a bit musky, but not at all obnoxious.
We were sent the “Full Man Package” to try— Wash + Protect cleanser and Moisturize + Shield moisturizer— and it arrived in a brown paper package all wrapped up with string (10 points to whoever can cite that quote). I didn’t get to photograph it, though, Jake tore into the package as soon as he heard there was something in there he’d get to try.
I did try it myself before handing it off to Jake (who, at 14, is at that age where he’s all into smelling manly).
The Full Man Package is the ultimate grooming kit for men who want to look their best without losing their man card.
The cleanser degreased my face after a day running in the humid 90 degree weather without making my skin feel stripped, which is a tricky balance I don’t often find in cleansers. The moisturizer soaked in nicely and my hands didn’t have that weird “squeaky” feeling afterwards (I don’t know how else to describe it, but it’s a sensation I get sometimes with moisturizers specifically formulated for the face; it makes me want to wash my hands after applying).
My skin didn’t look like an oil slick a few hours later, either, which is my normal beef with moisturizers. There is a definite scent that lingers for quite a while, and I like it. It’s subtle but… outdoorsy. *I* wouldn’t wear it every day, but that’s because I like smelling like lemons and cookies (or lemon cookies). I’m cool with the men in my life wearing it around me daily, though, and I’m very opinionated about what men should not smell like (Drakkar Noir and Axe come to mind; I will readily admit Drakkar Noir was a dealbreaker in one of my past relationships).
Another quick anecdote: most of the shaving creams, aftershaves, cleansers Jeff normally uses make me break out in hives just by contact: a kiss on the cheek or a bit of a nuzzle to the face. Men’s products seem like they must be harsher than women’s, for some reason. While the joke “I’m allergic to your love” never gets old for me, it’s nice to know he can use this without causing me actual physical discomfort by his proximity 🙂
Our solution is a 3-in-1 complete product: after-shave lotion, acne/blemish treatment, and anti-wrinkle solution all in one!
It’s too soon to tell if Shield for Men will help out Jake’s horribly sensitive skin (eczema coupled with puberty is rough) but I’ll keep you updated. For now, I can say that it definitely hasn’t made his skin any worse (sadly, this is an extremely positive statement) and he’s happy to not smell like cucumbers any more!
Pricewise, it’s in line with I’m used to paying for quality organic skincare (I use Kiehl’s or Juice Organics). A little goes a looong way, FYI.
If you’re looking for a present for Father’s Day or graduation, I’d say two thumbs up on Shield for Men. Their product is 100% guaranteed, shipping is free, and their website is funny.
Bottom line, skincare is important— not taking care of it ages you prematurely and leaves you open to further damage. Also important? A bit of gentle education about minimizing toxic exposure, especially on your body. For an eye-opening experience, check out the products you already own in the Good Guide (they have a mobile app so you can just scan UPC codes to make it easy).
Disclosure: I was sent Shield for Men products for review purposes. All opinions and non-oil-slickitude are my own.