Saturday, June 22, 2024

LET’S GO TO THE DOCTOR | Care for Black men’s skin

May 27, 2024 by  
Filed under Health

BY CLIFFORD L. WILLIAMS

Black men have beautiful skin — whether it’s a dark chocolate complexion, a caramel delight, or a light cream color. It’s all pleasing to the eye. 

According to BlackDoctor.org, African-American skin has larger melanosomes (cells that determine skin color), and the melanosomes contain more of the pigment melanin than those found in white skin. Because of the protective effect of melanin, African-Americans are better protected against skin cancer and premature wrinkling due to sun exposure. 

One of the most common issues affecting Black men’s skin is pigmentation fluctuations —as well as the battle with ingrown hairs on their bearded area commonly known as “razor bumps.” African American men have curved hair shafts. 

Often, after a very close shave, the pointed hair may curl back into the skin and pierce the wall of the hair follicle — causing a reaction that results in bumps called pseudofolliculitis barbae. 

Acne 

BlackDoctor.org further notes that acne is a chronic disorder characterized by excess production of oil from sebaceous glands, causing the hair follicles generally on the face, chest and back to become clogged. Pimples, papules, pustules and comedones, (blackheads and whiteheads) cysts and infected abscesses can be treated in acne. 

The disease is not restricted to any age group; adults into their 40s can get acne. Acne seems to affect mostly adolescents. Regarding African-American skincare, acne may result in long-lasting discolorations of the skin. Therapy is the same for all skin types, but it is very important to use topical agents that minimize irritation.

Keloids 

When the scar from a cut or wound extends and spreads beyond the size of the original wound, it is known as a keloid. Keloids may vary in size, shape, and location. They occur more often in brown or black skin making this a very common African-American skincare issue. 

Keloids are a common skincare issue on the ear lobes, neck, chest, or back, and usually occur after an injury or surgery. Occasionally they occur spontaneously, especially in the mid-chest area. Keloids often follow inflammation caused by acne on the face, chest, and back. 

Keloids may be painful both physically and emotionally (from a cosmetic perspective), but it’s important to address keloids primarily as a medical condition rather than a cosmetic one.

Hyperpigmentation 

Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is quite common in dark-skinned individuals, even after minor trauma. An area of the skin may darken after an injury such as a cut or a scrape, or after certain skin disorders such as acne. To avoid or reduce post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, avoid picking, harsh scrubbing, and abrasive treatments. 

According to The Grooming Manual from the Brickell Products website for men’s skincare tips, your skin is the barometer of your health, and lifestyle choices literally make their mark on your face. No need to cover your face or panic. Skincare for Black men presents a unique set of concerns. Melanin-rich skin is more resistant to environmental changes and some types of damage, but that doesn’t mean that you can just forget about skincare all together. 

Unfortunately, there’s still a general lack of skincare knowledge amongst most men. The idea of focusing on personal beauty and making your skin look its best is often stigmatized as being not very masculine. 

Nowadays, you need the right skincare routine for Black men that enhances your natural appearance, helps prevent issues you are prone to experiencing, and builds your personal confidence.

Cleanse 

Start with the basics: knowing your skin type and using the best black men’s face wash that you can find. Identify whether your skin type is normal, oily, dry, sensitive, or combination skin. Once you know, you’ll understand how to address those concerns. 

To keep your skin looking and feeling its best, wash your face twice daily — in the morning and before you go to bed. You don’t need to use face wash for Black men any more often than this, since over-washing can lead to dryness and irritation. If you are still struggling with excess oil during the day, there are better ways to manage it than going overboard with the black men’s face wash.

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