Men vs Women's Skin

June 9, 2016 - Posted by Mickey Tortorelli

June is most likely the month where Men's Skincare sales skyrockets, as Father's Day draws near! Although many products are suitable for both men and women of the same skin type, it is also important to recognize the differences between both genders' skin composition in order to make the most suitable suggestions. The major differences include skin thickness, collagen density, loss of collagen as we age, texture and hydration.


Skin Thickness

Thickness of the skin varies by location and age, but there is also a significant difference between genders. A man's skin is typically about 25% thicker than a woman's skin due to the androgens men produce (i.e. testosterones). A man's skin also gradually thins with age, where as a woman's skin stays a consistent thickness until around the age of fifty, and thins significantly after menopause.

Since their skin is much thicker, moisturizers that are suited to their skin type and readily absorbed into the skin would be a great recommendation.



One theory is that men tend to have more hydrated skin as they are more prone to sweating due to their higher body temperatures, and sweat more than twice as much as women do. Their sweat also contains more lactic acid, which is a natural humectant for the skin. With the excess sweating and production of Lactic Acid, this could be why men have a higher level of tissue hydration!


Collagen Density

Men generally have a higher collagen density than women, which is the ratio of collagen to thickness of the skin. This means that men's skin tend to age more slowly than women of the same age. To put a number on it, women are about 15 years older than men of the same age!

You might be thinking that the difference doesn't seem as obvious in real life, but this could be because most men don't use sunscreen as often as women. The sun damage to the skin adds years back to a man's skin, which balances the skin age between both genders. With that being said, it would be beneficial to suggest a water resistant sunscreen with an SPF 35 or higher.


Loss of Collagen

Both men and women lose about 1% of their collagen each year after reaching 30. However, in the first five years of menopause, the loss of collagen escalates significantly before slowing down to a loss of 2% per year. In other words, men's skin ages at a more consistent rate and would not require as powerful anti-aging products as women of the same age would (lucky them!)



On the surface, the texture of a man's skin looks rougher and thicker than a woman's because of the difference in composition of sebum and its production. Men produce more sebum than women after puberty, due to androgen secretions, which also explains why acne stays around longer for men. Rhynophyma (redness, proliferation of the sebaceous glands and swelling of the skin on the nose) is only seen in males.

A good exfoliating cleanser will help slough off the excess sebum and ensure that the razor has a clean shaving surface, which helps prevent ingrown hairs and razor burn.


What other differences have you noticed between men and women's skin? What are some of your favourite products to recommend for men? Let us know in the comments below!

Elizabeth Piercey
August 16th, 2016
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