This is the first in a series of profiles of men that are advocates of taking better care of yourself. This is what I like to call “total self-care”. “Total self-care” includes what you put IN your body, ON your body and how you move your body. Overall, front-to-back health is really important, no matter who you are. For this profile I’m going to focus on what you put ON your body, namely skincare.
Matt Woodcox is a Rep at Glossier and a writer for MASS EDEN (and runs his own blog DirtyBoysGetClean on Instagram). I ran across Matt’s profile on Instagram and was struck by his handle: dirtyboysgetclean. I immediately was interested because I’ve been scouring the grassy plains of Instagram and reams of blogs to find guys that are already taking good care of themselves and can be good role models for other guys to be inspired by. What makes Matt interesting is his unequivocal passion for skincare. The openness of his posts and sharing with many other passionate followers is an inspiration for anyone who enjoys posting about their experiences with skincare products. It’s actually hard to find guys that regularly post about their love of skincare like Matt does – and also is so knowledgeable about it! Also being in the skincare industry I thought he would have a really interesting perspective. I reached out to Matt and he was totally into this interview. We virtually sat down over the course of several emails and dove into some really good topics. Its so nice to find great people on the internets!
Age: 29 (I am turning 30 this year)
City you are based in: I moved from Dallas to a small city called Kerrville (TX) awhile back
Skin type: Dry, Sensitive, Redness Prone
You currently work for a hugely successful skincare line, write for a blog of a successful green skincare line and write your own successful blog. Tell me a little about how you got into the industry.
I actually was in the medical field up until the fall of 2017. I was very unhappy with my career path and I wanted to follow my passion with skincare. I left to pursue writing and blogging full-time. I applied for a job with MASS EDEN writing for their blog and I got it! I’ve been a Rep for Glossier since last summer. They approached me after seeing my posts on Instagram. It has been so amazing to work for companies that I believe in. Sometimes you have to take big risks and leaps of faith. It might not always work out the way you want it to, but I believe it works out the way its supposed to.
Tell me more about MASS EDEN.
MASS EDEN was founded by TL Robinson. She has an amazing story as she started MASS EDEN after having a very scary health scare. She wanted to create a green, unisex, line that was free of harmful chemicals. The product selection is minimal and focuses on the basics of a routine for now. But, there are some new products in the works!
Tell me a little about yourself before you were such a big deal.
I was working in a hospital in the rehab unit. Before that I was working for a neurosurgeon at his private practice. I grew up in Texas but moved around quite a bit as a kid. I would say that I am pretty shy and I prefer to be behind the scenes as you can probably tell from my Instagram. I would admire bloggers like @uppiesbeads59 @Lizalaskabeauty @omgbart @tophcam and @thespotbeauty but never had the courage to start my own account. I was literally like a creep just looking at other bloggers and thinking “I could never do that”.
When did you start using skin care products and why?
I remember using skincare in High School but I didn’t get into it seriously until 2011 when I had a horrible peel that went very wrong. My skin was left damaged and raw. I tried everything that was top-rated at Sephora and nothing worked until I discovered Josie Maran. Her line saved my skin and still does to this day!
And why? I think that it was all so accidental. I didn’t realize the importance of skincare until I actually needed it. Ever since then I have a deep respect and love for it.
Really sorry to hear about the peel incident. Was that something you did on your own at home or at a professional’s office? Is there anything you want to share for others to help them from avoiding a similar incident?
It was something that I had done at a local spa. I think that my skin was just not ready for a serious treatment like that. It was also probably a mix of the person who did it not being super experienced as well. The particular spa did not stay open long, so I think that probably tells a lot of about the importance of selecting a reputable treatment center. We can never prepare for how our skin will react to something, I think. But, I would just say to make sure you know your skin as well as you can. I did not need a serious peel or treatment at that age, and especially for my first time.
You obviously have great taste in products but a lot of the products out there are marketed towards women. What do you think about skin care products marketing towards men?
I think that unfortunately there are many horrible products when it comes to skincare for men. I see a lot of harsh ingredients when looking at products marketed for men. There is a weird misconception that all men have oily skin that can handle anything. Guys have sensitive skin too!
Your Instagram account is filled with beautiful photos of “shelfies”. They are so creative. What inspires your aesthetic?
Thank you! I think that my aesthetic is obviously inspired by my love for pink, neutral tones, and a romantic vibe. I think that its important to have your own stamp and signature vibe. I am endlessly inspired by others in the beauty community. I think that it’s perfectly normal to feel inspired by others, but there are so many people that like to copy others work. I think that there are people who don’t understand how much work and creativity goes into posts, so when you copy someone it can sting a bit.
Being in insider in the skincare industry, what is your perspective on how to get more men into the game?
Stop marketing everything for women. That is something I say to so many brands that ask me for my opinion. Incorporate men into your ads and marketing. I feel like men would be more inclined to buy products if the ads featured more men. I understand that women are the biggest consumers when it comes to beauty, but I feel like its a missed marketing opportunity to exclude men.
What is your skin regimen?
Since I test products all the time my routine changes often. But, in the morning I don’t cleanse, I use a micellar water, oil, serum, eye cream, and spf. For my PM routine I do an oil/balm cleanse, second cleanse, toner, serum, oil, eye cream, and moisturizer. I also try to do a mask a few times a week. I have really been loving First Aid Beauty (which I feel has unisex appeal). Some of my most reached for products are by brands like; Kate Sommerville, Glossier, Pink Light Botanicals, Summer Fridays has a great new mask that is all the rage right now, Drunk Elephant, Herbivore Botanicals, Origins, Fresh, and Josie Maran (obviously). I incorporate new products but I do have a core set of brands/products that I reach for often.
Tell me about how your regimen makes you happy.
It is all about self-care to me. It’s that 15-20 minutes every day and night that I can take for myself. I like to light a candle (I really love Sunday Forever, Boy Smells, and a new brand I discovered called GYV), turn on some music, and do my routine. I call it my ritual, actually! I think we can get so caught up in the hustle of life that we forget to take time to care for ourselves.
Sometimes I just want to go to bed and am too tired wash my face – or running out the door to get to work. What do you do when you are short on time?
I reach for products that serve more than one purpose. I always reach for Jordan Samuel Skin After Show Treatment Cleanser because it works as a cleanser, exfoliator, and mask. Put it on and leave it on while I am brushing my teeth and rinse, apply a mist, and SPF and I’m good to go in the morning. At night I would do the same thing with the Jordan Samuel cleanser and then go in with Josie Maran Argan oil and I could be perfectly fine. The nice thing about the Josie Maran oil is it can be used under the eyes, across the lips, all over! It’s like a serum and moisturizer, not just an oil!
How do you fit shaving into your regimen?
I usually shave once a week. I will do it the day after I do my weekly Drunk Elephant BabyFacial mask. I really hate shaving, to be honest. I am glad that I can pull of the scruffy look! I actually look like I am 12 if I shave it all off. Badger has an amazing shave oil that I am never without. I also really recommend investing in a quality shave cream like Art of Shaving or Philosophy has a great one as well!
We all know that there are things you can do to keep your skin healthy from the inside-out. What else are you doing in this regard?
I think that water and sleep are important. Also, yoga, diet, and exercise. I think that it all ties in together. You have to treat your body well. I think that staying away from direct sunlight is also important.
What would you tell a guy that doesn’t think he needs a skin regimen?
I read somewhere that we do 85% of the damage to our skin in our childhood and teen years. So, you may not think you need to take care of your skin now but you will regret it when you get older. At the very least invest in a good SPF. I love the Josie Maran SPF and Farmacy has a great one as well. They are fuss-free.
Are there specific products that you have come across to a guy who had never used skin products for a good starter set?
I think that when it comes to building a starter routine for a guy who is new to skincare, it’s important to start with a simple routine but also one that will show results. I think we are more inclined to stick with something if we can see some immediate results. A few products that I would recommend are;
* Jordan Samuel Skin After Show Treatment Cleanser; it is a multi-tasker to cleanse, exfoliate, and also makes a lovely mask.
* Glossier Solution; it is a mild chemical exfoliant that will make the skin more smooth, bright, and clear.
* Farmacy Green Screen SPF; a great SPF that works for really any skin type. It is not greasy or heavy at all.
* Origins GinZing Refreshing Eye Cream; This will make you instantly look like you had a full night of sleep.
* Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum; The best vitamin C serum ever. Your skin will look so bright and radiant.