Men’s Date Night Grooming Guide

In all scenarios, chances are how you look is going to be front of mind. You don’t need a rogue spot or bad hair to let you down. Fortunately, you can out-groom every blemish that stands a chance of knocking your confidence well in advance. Here are the proactive steps you can take to ensure that, when it comes to personal grooming at least, you’re always at your best.

Freshen Your Breath

According to a survey conducted by Wakefield Research in America, 86 per cent of people said that bad breath on a first date was a deal breaker, while 58 per cent of women said they’d end a relationship if halitosis was a constant problem. These facts probably explain why nearly three quarters of us feel less confident on a date if we’re worried about our breath.

And while it’s easy to blame a love of spicy food and onions, one of the main causes of bad breath is not cleaning between the teeth properly – you only have to swiftly sniff a piece of dental floss after you’ve used it for proof of this. And yet, less than a quarter of us floss daily.

“Men, especially, seem to have problems flossing, possibly because they have bigger hands so find it fiddly,” says Sally Goss, lead hygienist at the Harley Street Dental Studio in London.

If you find it a chore, try using interdental sticks or an electric flosser, which uses rapid bursts of air and water to effectively remove plaque and trapped food particles. An easier way to remove the gunk between teeth than traditional dental floss, it’s much more fun to use to boot. You can also replace the water with mouthwash for super fresh breath.

Be Fastidious About Facial Hair

Attitudes towards beards have changed massively in the last few years as their popularity has – like the whisker themselves – grown. But while women have warmed to them as style statements (one survey, by the University of New South Wales, revealed they perceive men with facial hair to be more attractive and better ‘father material’ than clean shaven ones), many still have concerns about their itchiness and cleanliness.

Have Lips That Are Worth Kissing

Pucker up, because your lips lack oil-producing sebaceous glands, which means they’re especially prone to dehydration and chapping.

To keep yours looking – and feeling – approachable, lightly slough off any dry skin with a toothbrush (a mixture of olive oil and salt works too), then apply a flavour-free lip balm like Aesop’s Protective Lip Balm or Lab Series’ PRO LS Lip Tech Lip Balm.

Take The Shine Off Your Skin

Since men’s skin can be up to twice as oily as women’s, there’s always a chance that you’ll be sporting a less than ideal shiny patch somewhere on your face. What’s more, the stress of a date can actually trigger oil production – as can nervously touching your face with your fingers.

One way to deal with oil-slick skin is with the help of a product like Clinique’s Exfoliating Tonic or Baxter of California’s Herbal Mint Toner.

“If your skin is oily and you want to quickly cleanse and refresh it before going out in the evening, applying a toner will be very effective,” says dermatologist Nicholas Lowe.

Always Be Prepared

Heading for a date after a long day’s work? No time to pop home and freshen up? No worries – there are an increasing number of products available geared to the time-poor man for whom a bathroom and running water are sometimes a luxury.

If you’re heading straight from work, think about keeping a dry shampoo of texturising spray in your office drawer so you can freshen up your hair before you step out.

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