Guys: Did you put on makeup this morning? Sales of skin care products for men have quadrupled in the past three years.
What kind of “skin care” are we talking about? The biggest sellers include concealers for men, designed to hide dark circles and acne, foundations, to help make you look tan and healthy, and special eye gels, made to smooth out wrinkles. Men are also buying products to apply to the hairline, which help hide signs of balding.
Just one thing: Don’t call it makeup! That’s the word from Michele Probst, spokeswoman for a male grooming products company called Menaji. She says “the M word is like cancer” in her line of work. Instead, her ‘manly man’ clients prefer to call what they buy: “skin care.”
To help maintain the illusion that it’s definitely not makeup, Menaji ships products in discreet packaging made to look like old cigar boxes. And the company’s most popular concealer comes in a tube labeled “camo,” short for camouflage.
That may explain why some of Menaji’s biggest clients are U-S soldiers, serving overseas.
Experts say men who buy makeup are buying it for the same reason women do, because they want to look their best, and feel more confident. In fact, makeup sales skyrocketed after the recession. And the theory goes that with millions of men struggling to find work these days, some believe that wearing makeup – or whatever you want to call it – helps give them an edge.