• 13 Ways to Look Younger as a Youthful Aging Man

    From moisturizing to strategic haircuts, there are multiple ways for men to age gracefully while maintaining a youthful glow. Terry Sharkie explores his own 13 tips to stay young on the inside and the outside.

    You’re single again after a lengthy marriage and now you want to mingle on the hookup apps.

    Or maybe you’ve finally made money and now you want to party.

    Trouble is, you’re not the spring chicken who last hit the clubs and cruised the city streets.

    Now it’s time to peel off the years and restore that youthful glow.

    As a guy in his 50s, here are my personal tips for men who want to look – and most importantly feel – young as they get older.

    1. Apply Skin Cream Daily

    One of the most tell-tale signs of aging is crow’s feet: those wrinkly lines that form under the eyes as people hit their forties.

    To avoid crow’s feet and keep your face smooth, youthful and wrinkle-free, apply cream (moisturizer)) moisturizer to your face each day after showing. 

    For the past 20 years, I’ve used cocoa butter on my face. I apply it each day after I shower and often reapply when I use the restroom. 

    Apply the cream under your eyes and around the dry parts of your face. I find that the areas around my nose and above my eyebrows (lower forehead) are always on the brink of chapness when I dry off after a shower.

    Start early (in your late twenties or early thirties) before the onset of crow’s feet. It’s much easier to keep the crows at bay than to scare them off once they nest.

    2. Avoid Squinting

    Another way to stave off wrinkle formation is to avoid making strange facial contortions as much as possible. Squinting is a chief culprit as this causes crow’s feet.

    You might squint constantly whenever you’re in the shower or out on a sunny day.

    In the shower, you can minimize squints by applying only light soap to your face (but not your eyelids) and rinsing fast. Keep your back turned to the faucet as much as possible and direct it below your neckline.

    Take sunglasses wherever you go out, whether it’s a sunny or an overcast yet bright day (people often squint under cloudy daylight). Always have several pairs of shades in case you lose one.

    3. Smile with Your Eyes, Not Your Mouth

    Some people think it’s courteous to smile wide and bright when greeting others. People with no camera mobility often form teethy “say cheese” grins when the cameras roll.

    Trouble is, grinning accentuates your nasolabial folds, those deep lines between your cheeks and nose. The aging face is often marked by deep, dark nasolabial folds.

    Don’t make wide smiles (or deep frowns) as a casual gesture. Instead, convey emotions through your eyes. You know the smiling-eye look (warm, positive, inviting). 

    Smiling eyes communicate enough without going overboard and seeming manic or cheesy.

    4. Stay True to the Fashions of Your Own Youth

    Your youthful spirit can keep you young. This can manifest in the way you dress. 

    No, you don’t need to dress exactly like you did as a teen or twentysomething, but you can retain key accouterments, regardless of today’s fashions.

    Chances are, you like a lot of the same things now that you did back then. 

    Whether you were a punk, goth, metalhead, hippie, rapper or mainstream kid, you probably still identify on some level, regardless of your changes in fortune.

    Me, I’ve not really changed since 1985. I might be pushing 50, but I still wear pin-rolled jeans, slouch socks, ankle boots, batwing jackets, handkerchiefs and berets. And I did this throughout that grunge era.

    Hey, I’m always in my best element when I’m simply me. I might shy away from some of the more outlandish articles of my younger wardrobe (polka dot pants, mesh neon tops), but I still use the same basic silhouette.

    What’s your favorite youthful look?

    5. Don’t Be Trendy for the Sake of It

    Just like you can dress youthful into old age and retain allegiance to your style tribe (if you have one), you can refuse today’s fashion styles and still be cool.

    Each new fashion reflects how chips have fallen during a particular period. The people who most identify are themselves products of the time and place.

    I ignored the fashion of the 1993–2006 era because it offended my sensibilities as a mid-’80s kid. 

    Whenever I walked into a room during those years, I felt I owned it with my avalanche bangs, jelly bracelets, shoulder pads and pegged highwaters. 

    Butt-cut hairdos and elephant bells be damned. But hey, if that’s your favorite era, more power to you. Rock it in your own way during these skinny-jeaned times.

    6. Limit Eating to Certain Hours

    If you’re looking to lose weight or try a new diet, always consult your doctor first.

    That said, most doctors recommend intermittent fasting, where you limit eating to an eight-hour window each day.

    Since I started intermittent fasting, I’ve woken up each morning with none of the bloating I had from the holiday sweets and lengthy lockdown.

    My doctor says I’m entering “male menopause,” where it’s harder to trim that mid-section. With intermittent fasting, I’m seeing my abs for the first time in two years.

    7. Avoid Alcohol and Cigarettes

    Everyone knows that liquor and tobacco are bad for the organs. Did you know that they can also age you?

    Cigarette smoke causes facial lines. Alcohol dehydrates the body, hence wrinkles.

    If you’re an avid smoker or drinker, get help. To minimize withdrawal, cut down gradually. 

    Drop from three nightly drinks to two this week, then drop to one the following week. Same with cigarettes: one daily pack to a half pack, then a quarter.

    Your face and body will thank you.

    8. Chew Gum

    If you need something to occupy your mouth, don’t smoke or snack; try gum instead.

    Gum chewing exercises the mouth and jaw. It’s an easy way to keep your face muscles tone.

    Minty gums also help remedy bad breath. This can help in social settings, especially after you leave a restaurant.

    If you currently smoke, gum can help wean you off cigarettes.

    Oh, gum chewing can make you look youthful.  

    9. Trim Hair Around your Baldness

    Balding isn’t the end of your hair. And no, you don’t have to settle for crown baldness.

    If you’re going bald in the back, shave the undersides and keep the frontal strip. This can also work if you’re thinning on top. 

    If you have a receding widow’s peak, shave the undersides to accentuate the vulcanized aspect. 

    For years I had long hair in the back that I flipped forward under a beret to create the illusion of thick, long bangs. 

    After endless shedding, I shaved off everything except the frontal strip, which mostly hides the fact that I’m 1) balding 2) thinning and 3) graying.

    10. Dye Your Graying Hair

    Gray hair can be beautiful and many of today’s older influencers are making it sexy and stylish.

    However, gray hair does make people look older.

    If you’re going for the younger look, dye out the gray whenever it appears. To make things easier, shave off the undersides and dye the top strip (it’s easier to reach).

    Oh, gray hair takes naturally to colored dyes (pink, blue, red). Brunettes have to take the pigment out first before they can get those colors.

    11. Wear Hats

    If you don’t want to shave around baldness or wear awkward hair pieces, cover up your hair in a hat.

    Up until the 1960s, older men wore hats to cover up baldness. It was considered courteous. Maybe it’s time we get back to that.

    Don’t wear anything too sporty or casual, like baseball caps, unless it suits your personality. 

    Personally, I’ve worn French berets for more than 30 years. Black and red are my go-to colors. 

    12. Wear Concealer and Foundation

    How do you wear makeup as a cishet man? Avoid sexual stuff like lipstick, blush, smoky eyeshadow and long eyelashes.

    There’s nothing sexual or remotely drag about foundation, which simply evens out skin tone and hides blemishes, nerves and veins.

    Before I go out clubbing or take photos, I always run a concealer stick under my eyes and buff it out with a powder pad. 

    You don’t have to do your whole face. Just find a tone that matches your skin and apply it to the blemished areas.

    13. Trim Your Nose Hair

    Sylvester Stallone once sighted nose hair as the one tell-tale sign of aging that even the most youth-obsessed men overlook.

    As men age, nose hairs get long and gray.

    To avoid the pain of nose-tweezing, cut them first. This makes them come out easier.

    Do be careful about sticking scissors or razors near your nostrils. Always use a mirror.

    Stay Young

    They say youth is a state of mind but the way you look is part of the picture. 

    Find the youthful style that’s right for you and experiment until you get it perfected. 

    Don’t let anyone tell you that you’re too old to dress a certain way. 

    If the look expresses how you feel inside, it was made for you. You do you.

      • Portland-based writer Fashion, music, art lover Zolo/NuRo/Wavo INTJ 5w6 sigma

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