Polish / Men's style

Thank You Mr. President: 4 Lifetime Grooming Tips We’ll Never Forget

If you’re like us, then you were shocked to know that President Obama’s reign of supremacy is sadly coming to a close. He spoke last night at his Farewell Address to the America people in a tone of tranquility and victory. He deserves the various accolades for his continued strides & passionate efforts on looking out for the overall, common good of the American people….which now seems highly questionable with our newly President-elect (no, I won’t bother saying his name).

In the midst of maintaining his duties as commander-in-chief, we couldn’t help but notice some outstanding grooming tips from President Obama. We have to recognized his staying power to age gracefully and pick up some really helpful tips on how to look like a worldwide “Boss” and certainly look the part. Here’s what we’ve scooped over the last eight years from the President Obama:

  1. Embracing the grey 

We can imagine being the leader of the free world is no easy task and can bring loads of stress. But if I’m under any stress like this, I’m definitely trying to age like this guy. We can never truly escape wrinkles, unless you’re Pharrell Williams, and President Obama has proven that the wrinkles & grey on his hair can makes it way in smoothly. There’s no JustForMen touching that scalp. The Prez has learned to fully embrace his grey’s and they’ve returned to him with a graceful presence that signifies prestige, wisdom, and a wealth of knowledge & experience. So don’t be that guy fighting the “day of the grey”.

2. “The Obama Cut”

The President may be one of the most powerful man in the world but he still needs his haircut too. We can’t assume that it magically looks like that during his White House Press speeches. There is a man hired to make sure he looks sharp named Zariff. The native Chicago barber has climbed to fame during President Obama’s term due to his ability to quietly keep the Prez polish’d and neat with his frequent barber trips. According to his interview with Essence:

The Obama cut is a custom cut. It came about in 2004 when Mr. Obama came into the shop and said he was speaking at the Democratic National Convention that evening. So I had to make him look sharp. Before that he was wearing his hair longer and a little curlier. I took it down to a short cut, tapered on the sides, back and neck. I wanted it to look more natural. – Zariff (President Obama’s Barber)

photo courtesy of Bevel Code

3. Radiant Skin 

Whether its First Lady Michelle making sure he doesn’t leave the house looking a hot, dry mess or someone in his cabinet, the Prez continues to shine in front of the camera. We can barely spot any type of pimple or skin blemish. We’re guessing someone must have put him onto the newest Scotch Porter’s face charcoal wash or Mallin & Goetz. Either way, there’s no vaseline hitting his face & the daily skincare shows. Now its your turn…

4. Pearly Whites

I’ve ran across my fair share of C-Span correspondents and televised politicians who love showing their grillz and I’m not talking their 14K gold. Unfortunately, these “gold fronts” weren’t the ones you bought from your local dealer but from their leftover dinners they refused to brush out properly. Nothing could be worse then smiling for millions of American people with unkept teeth. President Obama is was one of the happiest presidents I’ve seen photographed. I would too if my teeth graced to cover of t-shirts, posters, and TV screens across the globe. I’m sure his dental plan isn’t cheap but well worth it. He continues to model those shiners (100% real too) with pride. It should make us want to spend an extra two minutes brushing in morning (and at night).

 

 

Bodycare, Polish / Men's style

Fall / Winter Skin Regime Routine

Since the cold front has been in recent full force, its no surprise that my routine had to be kicked up a notch. I reviewed some problems and careful evaluations of my skin. I also developed some immediate solutions that can beef up my skin back to its shine & balanced moisture levels. I thought I’d share along with you some of the ongoing issues I go thru on a weekly / daily basis

Problems

  • Dry skin (especially around the nose and forehead)
  • Dry hands
  • Oily facial skin (at night)
  • Blackheads on my nose
  • Earwax buildup
  • Chapped lips

Solutions aka Regime

Polish / Men's style, Skincare

At-Home Facial Skincare

By: Kadia Blagrove

Smooth, clean, even-toned skin can be achieved in 6 easy steps. Find your new daily routine below!

Step 1: Open your pores

Open your pores for a deeper clean. This can be done in a hot shower, a hot washcloth or towel, or by steaming your face over a bowl of hot water with a towel over your head to trap the heat.

Step 2: Wash your face

Wet your face with warm water. Smooth a dime-sized squeeze of your facial cleanser between your palms and lather all over your face avoiding your eyes and lips.

Product recommendations: Garnier Shine Control Cleansing Gel, Cetaphil, Neutrogena Deep Clean Cream Cleanser

Step 3: Exfoliate

Scrub away dead skin and debri with a exfoliator towel, cleansing brush, or a gentle facial scrub.  Rinse with cold water.

Product recommendations: Prospector Co. Gleaner’s Facial Scrub

*OR go d.i.y. style and make your own: coconut oil + sugar mix,  honey + olive oil + sea salt mix

Step 4: Clean dry

You should always have a face towel, used only for, you guessed it, your face. It’s a great way to keep your face clean.  Pat dry your face.

Step 5: Toner

Close your pores with a toner. Dab a few drops of toner on a cotton ball and wipe all over face in one single swipe.

Product recommendations: Apple cider vinegar (can dilute with water if it’s too harsh for your skin), Witch Hazel, Origins United State Balancing Tonic

Step 6: Moisturize

Hydrate your skin with a non-greasy moisturizer. Apply a dime size amount of your moisturizer of choice and smooth all over that handsome, clean face of yours.

Product recommendations: Aveeno Moisturizing Lotion, Cetaphil, cocoa butter + coconut oil.

Kadia Blagrove is an NYC writer on all things life and culture. Catch her tweets at @KazzleDazz and her work on KadiaB.com.
Lifestyle, Polish / Men's style

5 Things Every Man Should Carry With Him on the Daily

By: Kadia Blagrove

As a member of the female human species, I must admit, I am a bit jealous of men’s ability to travel light. Sure, some guys carry handbags and backpacks but menswear gives ample storage space (see: pockets) to put all of your belongings. You dudes have options! But enough with my rant; let’s talk about the things you should be stuffing in your pockets/handbags/backpacks. A huge part of a groomed lifestyle is maintenance. In order to sustain peak flyosity all day, be sure to have the below essentials on your person.

Hand Cream:  Everyone loves a smooth handshake. Keep your hands moisturized throughout the day with the help of a travel-sized hand cream. You don’t have to get anything fancy, any kind of hand lotion or butter will do.

Breath Refresher: Never leave the house without a breath mint, a pack of gum, or a tiny bottle of listerine. Everyone’s breath can get a bit tart throughout the day and it can get really bad after eating certain foods. So load up on your mints and feel free to have that delicious, stinky, garlicky lunch before your meeting.

Comb: We can all use a little midday touch-up, especially on those long, busy days. A small comb or brush will keep your hair/beard looking sharp from AM to PM.

Small Cologne: So many folks overlook the importance of carrying a little bottle of smell-good with them on the go. Some fragrances wear off and sometimes outside elements, like smoke, stick to your clothes. Carrying a small container of cologne or perfume oil will save you every time.

Lip Balm: Harsh weather climates, whether hot or cold, can discolor and irritate your lips. Keep your lips healthy and hydrated year-round by applying a little balm throughout the day. Extra point for you if your lip protectant contains SPF.

All of these items come in travel sizes and you can find them at your local drugstore or online. You’ll be amazed at how a little bit can go a long way.

Kadia Blagrove is an NYC writer on all things life and culture. Catch her tweets at @KazzleDazz and her work on KadiaB.com.

Polish / Men's style, Skincare

Stay Polish’d: Essential Grooming Habits & Products for Fall

The Fall season definitely just smacked us across face reminding us to pull out our fall, and even winter, coats. We may get a little teaser of sunlight here & there but the wind & cold front is asserting its dominance for the next couple months.

You already know the obvious of grabbing that coat before you leave for work, but lets make that effort to make sure our basic grooming needs are seeking the attention they deserve. Gone are the days of fighting the Fall season with dry skin, neglecting those critical parts that can enhance your overall style. Trust me, she’ll notice…

Here’s some quick grooming tips to start paying attention to this season:

#1 Chapped lips

No need to have your lips feeling like stone. So before you leave for the day get acquainted with a lip balm that keeps your lips protect & moisturized. Newly released lip balm aim to restore moisture and provide immediate relief from dryness and sun protection. Goodbye cheap Blistex & Carmax…

 

 

#2 Dry hands

You’ll get no play having hands scaling like a crocodile. To with frame from those stone hand encounters, keep those hands softly equipped with a hand lotion. Personally, I catch myself moisturizing in colder climates at least twice a day.

#3 Dry Scalp

One of the most ongoing battles I face is dry scalp. Its when the Fall hits where it seems to be my most trouble some area. I’ve realized my shampoo regime has to become a bit more intensified in order to get a hold of the scalp maintenance and dryness prevention. If you’re like me, battling eczema, you may need that medicated shampoo like Selsum Blue which targets the source of dandruff with a maximum strength ingredient for relief of even the toughest dandruff symptoms. Added menthol provides a cool, soothing sensation.

In any case, before you cop out throwing on last year’s beanie on, treat your hair / scalp to some treatment with some recommended shampoos that’ll have it cleaned and smelling refreshed.

Be sure to check your local pharmacy, Walgreens, Duane Reade etc for the carrying of these recommended shampoos. They get the job done without doing any permanent damage to your wallet. I’ll be sure to go into specifics on what to look for when purchasing shampoos soon. Stay tuned!

#4 Facial maintenance 

The moment you jump out of the that shower and onto those streets, you’re immediately exposing your face to all types of bacteria. Various bacterial exposure and lack of facial cleansing lead to breakout and ingrown hairs. You can tackle those pimples and much more by applying that facial cleanser in the morning & nightly to ensure maximized effect.

Bodycare, Polish / Men's style

Helpful tips we learn from series ‘Luke Cage’

I’m sure we’ve all had our fair share of bing weekends catching up fully on the new TV series that hit Netflix a month or so ago Luke Cage. Mike Colter dives well into the superhero role seeming to open a can of whoop ass throughout the entire season. But besides being an enormous super sized muscle head, Luke Cage allows us to draw up some helpful grooming tips that may assist you along your journey. Super hero or not, we’re all trying to gain climb that ladder of style immortality. Here’s what we were able to configure:

#1 BALD GOD

Throughout the entire season, I was able to spot a single spot of stubble on that man’s head. After being shot at I’m sure those bullets burn those hair particles right off but it seems like every episode he keeps baldness maintained and polished. The real question, when does he have to time shave at all. He hasn’t been home all 12 episodes….

#2 HOLE-Y SMOKE

Now I’ve taken noticed to the recent hole-in-shirts trend that seems to emerge in the rock star fan base but Luke Cage clearly draws the line. It seems he may be pushing the boundary here on grunge style and we can label it just plain ol’ dirty. The continued bullet holes in his shirt should not be mistaken for a Yeezy concert tee! So if you can count half as many holes in your shirt as Cage does in a single episode, treat your to a fresh one in your closet.

#3 FREQUEST BARBER VISITS 

We can agree that Luke Cage had no excuse for looking dusty especially in those first couples episodes. He literally works in a barbershop so he gets shown no grace here. He once again reminds us that if you’re going to wear muscle tees and flirt with chocolate women periodically, you can at least make sure that facial hair and head is polish’d which he maintains effortlessly. Like Pops, some barbers anticipate your next visit for a clean up and good conversation.

#4 MR. STRAIGHT RAZOR 

At first glace, spending the money on a straight razor shave can be looked at as a luxury but for some that service is timely. A barber’s hand is sometimes just the finisher we need to professionally present for that next job opportunity, camera appearance or to just have a light night score. Be sure to keep that barber visit on  your radar every 2-3 weeks for that polish’d style like fictional character below: Cottonmouth.

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#5 ALWAYS “PREPARED”

Between his cameo appearance on Netlix’s Jessica Jones to the female characters on his own sitcom we can draw the conclusion that Luke Cage keeps a dime or two “buddies” in his back pocket. Thanks to him, this is a constant reminder to always be prepared for those unpredictable nights as well as making sure the “boys” downstairs are cleaned and ready to work for what can be a festive evening. He reminds us to make sure we don’t leave the house without those Trojans….

 

Grooming 101, Polish / Men's style

Grooming 101: [Barber] Tools Every Man Should Carry at Home

We GRIEVE when we discover our barber is out of town for weeks, all booked up, or simply in barber Heaven with the man upstairs. I mean, who the hell said he / she could take a vacation anyway?! Bastards. Well fortunately there are some basic tools you can equip at home that’ll give you the proper maintenance until your next barber visit. It definitely won’t be anything close to the barbershop experience but it’ll keep you polish’d enough for that next date, meeting, or just hangout with the homies.

1. Andis Trimmer T-Outliner

Moses had his rod to fight against Pharaoh. And now you can have yours. The Andis trimmer maintains its reputation as a staple instrument in the barber industry. For that easy front touch or a quick morning takedown of stubble, the Andis trimmer is the barber-approved must have in your bathroom dopp kit. The best $50 you’ll spend if your serious about your polish.

2. Nick Relief 

Unless your Superman, better yet Luke Cage, none of us are immune to a nick or cut every once in awhile when  the shave experience comes our way. Nick powder is a long lasting solution that immediately stops the bleeding of any minor nick or cut. Clubman Powder is irritation free and gets the job done for just $5.

clubman-pinaud-dab-on-nick-relief-025-oz

3. Shears

I’m not talking about your household scissors so you can get that out of your head. Your hair still deserves respect which means its imperative to properly utilize cutting scissors aka Shears. The cutting shears have specially-made blades that are designed to cut with precision. From basic beard maintenance to hair trimmings, shears can complete the task at hand after you’re dressed up. These can also be found in your local pharmacy or hair supply shop.

Note: Let your barber do his / her job with a full haircut applying all the techniques & consult you on your hair growth, patterns etc.

4. Shaver Machine

A lot of master barbers tell me and their clients time & time again that this tool is a must. The recent release of the shaver machines have left many barbers happy. Not only does it save an enormous amount of time in the mirror but its guaranteed to give you that closet shave with a simple upward or downward motion. So if you’re like me and always five degrees away from razor bumps, this machine is an absolute necessity. Two major companies that currently supply the best shaver machines on the market:

(Click on both to watch video demonstrations) 

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Andis Shaver

 

Wahl Shaver