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Male grooming myths debunked

By Steve Cook
Male grooming myths debunked
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There are a lot of untruths out there when it comes to men's grooming. So which pieces of advice should you follow and which should you avoid like a blunt razor? We investigate some of the most common grooming myths and separates fact from fiction.

Myth: If you shave your hair it'll grow back thicker
Truth: The bad news for those of us frantically shaving our thinning locks in the hope that they'll grow back thicker is that shaving your head isn't going to make any difference. If it did, there'd be a cure for male pattern baldness. Once your stubble grows back, it'll look identical to the hair that was shaved away.

Myth: Preparation H gets rid of eye bags
Truth: For years, people have been rubbing pile cream under their eyes in the belief that it gets rid of puffiness. The bad news for those of us who like a late night is that this is nonsense.

It turns out there's no scientific data to prove Preparation H works anywhere other than where it's intended for and will just irritate sensitive eyes.

Myth: Men inherit baldness from their mother's side
Truth: It's time to stop blaming your mum for your receding hairline - hair loss is inherited from both your mother's and father's sides of your family.

If you want to blame something, blame your androgen hormones. These increase your beard and underarm hair follicles during puberty, but actually shrink them in later life.

Myth: Putting toothpaste on spots helps them go down
Truth: This is a myth. Applying toothpaste to your face could be doing you more harm than good. The menthol in toothpaste can result in itching and inflammation, while the fluoride in it can cause further acne flare-ups. Ditch the toothpaste and use an over-the-counter spot treatment with benzoyl peroxide in it instead.

Myth: You should shave in the opposite direction to your hair's growth
Truth: If you want the closest shave, this one is true. Though if your skin is particularly sensitive you might end up with bumps, so if you notice a rash switch back to going with the direction of the hair.

Myth: The higher the SPF rating, the better
Truth: Surprising though it may seem, this one is a myth. Of course, the higher number SPF you wear the more protected you are against the sun's rays but experts reckon the difference between SPF 30 and SPF 50 is minimal.

You're far better off to apply a lower number (anything above SPF 15) every two hours than to use a high factor once or twice a day.

Myth: Soap is bad for the skin
Truth: While it probably was 30 years ago, these days this is a myth.

Modern soaps are as advanced as most face washes and don't contain any animal fat, meaning they won't dry the skin. Some soap products even hydrate and soothe the skin.

Myth: Chewing gum will give you a stronger jaw
Truth: Codswallop. You'd have to chew gum every day for the rest of your life to make even the slightest bit of difference to your jaw. A better trick is to wear permanent stubble to draw attention away from your weak chin. If indeed you have one.

So refrain from putting toothpaste on your face, stick to putting the pile cream where it belongs and you should notice some improvement in your visage.

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User comments
the real truth about Preparation H is that you can't actually buy it anymore - the standard 'pile creams' nowadays contain a completely different set of ingredients which might be why people are forgetting about its use around the crows-feet area. I myself have directly consulted a pharmacist about this in the past and he agreed on its ability to tighten skin and referenced it's use by bodybuilders to accentuate their muscle-definition.