Can Men Use YesAge, Too?

Can Men Use YesAge, Too?

I’m Matthew, one of the founders of YesAge, and a man in my mid-40s. My wife Julie dreamed up the idea for this project.

One of the most common questions I get when telling people about YesAge is: “Can men use these products, too?” The unequivocal answer is “YES”! But the longer story is that, honestly, when it came to skincare products, at first, I was a tough sell, like many other men. 

Between my reluctance to put anything on my face plus lame and outdated gender norms, it took months until I started using YesAge’s products. 

To explain why, I have to rewind a few decades. As a teenager, I suffered severe acne. I had a hard time making eye contact, only able to think about how damaged my face felt, and not wanting people to look at it. 

I tried everything to treat it – cremes, medications, washing more, washing less, getting more sun, wearing sunblock constantly. Nothing worked, and the acne persisted for years, into my mid-20s, and left bad scars on my face. 

Once it finally faded, I was left with a fear of doing anything to make it come back. I never put anything on my face, fearful of what could happen. I especially avoided skincare products on my face, convinced they would only exacerbate my skin issues. 

So when my wife Julie and our co-founder Sarah started experimenting with making and trying products, I didn’t volunteer to use them. When they asked me to test them, I agreed reluctantly…then hid the bottles at the back of a dark drawer. I was scared to put anything on my face, and risk a return to the skin issues I’d had as a young person. 

And, while I hate to admit it, there was something else going on, too. In a world where skincare has long been associated with traditional and outdated concepts of femininity, I found myself reluctant to care for my skin. It felt, I’m ashamed to say, not “my thing”. 

There is undeniably a societal stigma surrounding skincare for men. Shaving creams are fine, but somehow gel toners aren’t “supposed” to be in my toiletry kit. It’s lame, I know. But I think it’s a common misconception that men and their partners shouldn’t, or can’t, share skin care products. With YesAge, the products are formulated for all people, with all kinds of skin. 

What finally brought me to those bottles I’d been hiding, unsurprisingly, was aging. As a surfer and nature lover, I get too much sun. I know this, and yet, for reasons mentioned above, I hate putting things on my face, including sunscreen. 

As a younger person, I didn’t notice the effects of this overexposure to the sun. But, as an aging person, I started to see that my skin was drying out and feeling and looking dehydrated. 

I pulled the bottles of YesAge from my drawer for the first time, unsure even how to use them. The oil cleanser especially made me nervous, given my teenage-based fears. As I used the cleanser, though, I was taken aback. It felt so good! The oil felt hydrating and comforting. It smelled great. And my skin seemed immediately happier. 

By the time I’d finished the steps and applied my face serum, I was convinced. These beautiful products were celebrating and supporting my aging skin, and they’d always have a spot in my toiletry kit. 

In an attempt to prevent further sun damage, I started using mineral sunblock, which is great for sun protection while I surf but nearly impossible to get off my skin. Using the cleansing oil, I was shocked how easily the zinc came off my skin. 

Between supporting my skin and helping easily clean off mineral sunscreen, I’m a major fan of YesAge products. I’m incredibly proud of what we have made and of the message that we are spreading - age positivity. 

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