In this SPY Editor’s Choice guide, we’re presenting the very best men’s skincare products for 2022. All of the products that earn our Editor’s Choice badge meet our strictest selection criteria. Our team has personally tested and reviewed all of the products featured in this shopping guide, and we regularly consult dermatologists and grooming experts to make sure we’re recommending only the best possible options for our readers.
Guys, have you nailed down your skincare regimen yet? Maybe you have, maybe you haven’t, but there’s always a new Korean face mask to try or beard oil to rub into your whiskers. So if your current routine is letting you down, then there are tons of excellent skincare products to try in 2022. Realistically, when it comes to heavy hitters like face washes, serums and moisturizers, most of us just want something that works. That’s where the best men’s skincare products come in.
From the very old (hello, Kiehl’s celebrating its 171st birthday) to relative newcomers like Disco (one of our favorite men’s skincare brands of the past few years), there are so many men’s skincare products to consider for your face.
So, what are the most important skincare products for men?
We recently spoke with dermatologist Dr. Muneeb Shah, aka TikTok’s hugely viral Derm Doctor, and he recommended that, at a minimum, guys use the following skincare products:
- Face cleanser
- Retinol cream
- Face moisturizer
- Face sunscreen
And depending on your skincare needs, you may also need shaving and beard care products, anti-aging products and under-eye cream. Once you’ve selected the products that work for your skin, we recommend coming up with a daily and weekly skincare routine that you can stick to. Some products, like retinol cream or face scrubs, should only be used occasionally, while face wash and sunscreen can be applied daily.
Lucky for you, we’re on a mission to identify the best skincare products for men, and we’ve tested a lot of products — Geologie, Kiehl’s, Lumin, Disco, Every Man Jack, Jack Black, Baxter of California, Cardon, Oars + Alps, just to name a few of our favorites. When picking the truly elite products, we went to our most beloved brands and picked their top skincare products for men so that your complexion will look and feel next level. All of these tubes, jars, bottles and masks boast the best of the best when it comes to skin-smoothing, wrinkle-fighting and blemish-targeting ingredients. You’re welcome.
From creams to serums to moisturizers to washes, check out our picks for the best men’s skincare products of 2022. You can also check out The 2021 Man, our end-of-year product awards, which features more of our favorite skincare, grooming and shaving products. Finally, keep scrolling to learn how we selected the products below and get some more insight into our testing process.
Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream
A cult favorite from a classic skincare brand means you simply can’t go wrong with Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream. Designed to keep skin nourished and hydrated in even the most extreme weather conditions, you’ll never have a thirsty complexion when you slather this onto your mug. It delivers 24-hour hydration, yet the formula feels light as a feather. Its secret power is that it reduces moisture loss while drawing and absorbing moisture from the air. This was our pick for the best men’s face moisturizer of the year, and it was an obvious choice when selecting the best men’s skincare products of 2022.
Disco Rejuvenating Face Mask
If you’re old enough, you might remember a time before charcoal was the go-to ingredient in men’s grooming products. Personally, we never want to go back to that time, and we love the way our favorite charcoal skincare products help remove impurities and smooth out our skin. At the moment, our favorite charcoal product comes from Disco, the brand that makes products designed specifically for the pH balance and toughness of men’s skin. Disco’s excellent face mask should cost three or four times as much as it does, and it’s a great way to reset your skin and wash away all the grime that’s accumulated since your last deep clean.
For removing excess oil from your skin, there’s soothing bentonite clay. For removing dirt and impurities, there’s charcoal, of course. And for inflammation, Disco added willow bark extract. We think you’re sure to love this rejuvenating face mask as much as we do.
Youth To The People Kale + Green Tea Superfood Face Cleanser
Superfoods work on the outside too. This gentle face cleanser from Youth To The People proves it. Vegan and cruelty-free, this face wash comes in a generous 8-ounce glass container and seems to last forever. Gentle enough for sensitive skin yet durable for oily skin, this cleanser gets rid of the daily grime without stripping skin of the healthy oil it needs to stay, well, healthy.
Bulldog Original Face Scrub
As a two-time winner in our annual men’s product awards, it goes without saying that this is the best face scrub you can buy right now. The price is right, you can get it everywhere and it just plain works. This gentle scrub gets rid of dead skin cells, cleans out pores and removes blackheads, revealing healthy skin underneath. Aloe vera soothes, camelina oil smooths and green tea defends in this cruelty-free combination skin-friendly exfoliator. Since the rub does some serious exfoliating, it’ll also help prevent ingrown hairs from shaving, and give you an even closer shave.
Caldera+Lab The Good Multi-Functional Face Serum
True to its name, this is a good multitasking serum, so it’s right up there with the very best men’s skincare products. Formulated with 27 wild-harvested active botanicals from the Teton Mountain Range in Wyoming, each drop of this powerful serum contains an estimated 3.4 million antioxidants. It puts that plant power to good use by safeguarding your complexion from free radical damage and pollution. Not only is the formula super lightweight and packed with natural oils, but it also has a pleasant aromatic fragrance. In our testing, this serum helped provide an even skin tone while smoothing out and moisturizing the skin.
Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay
It’s no secret: the world is obsessed with Aztec Secret, and so are SPY’s product testers. This is one of Amazon’s top-rated products of all time for the sheer fact that it actually works. It uses clay from bentonite, which is a volcanic ash that can help to clean and fix impurities in your skin. Use it on your face, body, in the tub, for a “me” night and whenever the mood strikes you. It’s not the “everyday” kind of grooming product, but it is great for using every so often when your face needs some TLC. Extremely affordable, this clay face mask will last for months and months before you need a refill.
Read More: Best Men’s Skincare Products on Amazon
King C. Gillette Men’s Beard and Face Wash
Everyone loves a twofer, like this cleanser that doubles as a face wash and beard wash. It’s gentle on skin and tough on dirt and oil and nourishes and hydrates skin and hair with ingredients like coconut water, argan oil and avocado oil. To keep your beard in top condition, it has patented hair conditioning technology that’s designed just for beards, leave skin and hair looking and feeling super soft and smooth. Menthol leaves a crisp, cooling sensation behind for extra freshness.
Geologie Retinol Repairing Night Cream
Looking for a retinol product you can apply at night before bed to help fight the signs of aging? Then we love this Repairing Night Cream from Geologie. The formula is packed full of ingredients we love, including 0.2% retinol, 3% Niacinamide and 2% Hyaluronic Acid. We also love the fact that this cream comes in a few different strengths, so you can upgrade the intensity as your skin adapts over the years. In addition to proven anti-aging ingredients, Geologie also designed this night cream for men to fight blemishes and breakouts.
Disco Mineral Sun Block
At SPY, we are big fans of sunscreen. And the best sunscreen out there is the sunscreen you’ll actually wear. Broad-spectrum SPF of 30 or more will not only help prevent age spots and wrinkles but prevent cancer at the same time. That’s a one-two punch right there. What makes this the best sunscreen of the moment is that is made up of the best mineral sun protector there is — zinc oxide — but blends into the skin like no mineral sunscreen you’ve ever seen before. No white cast here, even in melanated skin, just the fresh scent of eucalyptus and healthy, happy skin.
Cardon Daily SPF + Moisturizer
If you’re someone who is hesitant to use a mineral sunblock (even though we swear it’s the best) then we have another option for you — Cardon. This sunscreen is a burst of freshness upon application and still yields the broad spectrum SPF 30 dermatologists recommend to best prevent skin aging and cancer. Additional ingredients that set this apart from its zinc oxide brother up above is the cactus. The prickly succulent has major soothing properties and produces a firming effect on all sorts of skin types. The hydrating plant has been used for its healing properties as long ago as the Aztecs. Looks like healing clay isn’t the only Aztec secret.
Pacific Shaving Co. Caffeinated Aftershave
Just like caffeine can get you going in the morning, it can also give a boost to your skin. Caffeine is known to minimize redness and irritation after a shave, plus help your skin repair itself, which is why it takes the ingredient spotlight in this aftershave. Did you know caffeine is also an antioxidant? Now you have even more reason to love the stuff. Plus, the rest of the ingredients in this aftershave also work to boost skin health. Bonus: It’s made in the USA.
Oars + Alps Natural Face Moisturizer and Eye Cream
If your skin needs some extra help, use a facial moisturizer that really (and we mean really) gets the job done. Lock-in and boost your skin’s moisture for days and nights of hydration. The moisturizer never feels too heavy or too greasy when on to minimize shine and the potential for new blemishes. Also, this moisturizer diminishes the need for adding an eye cream to your regimen. Because, yeah, this is an eye cream, too.
SPY AWARD WINNER
When we first wrote about Frontman, a new men’s grooming brand, we said that their signature product, Fade, was unlike anything we’d ever tried before. Almost a year later, and that’s still the case. Frontman Fade is an acne concealer for men, but it doesn’t just cover up pimples. Fade also contains proven acne-fighting ingredients, so as the concealer covers up your zits, salicylic acid goes to work attacking your acne. Our testing found that this was a highly effective acne spot treatment, and we’re obsessed with Fade.
RoC Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Anti Aging Night Cream
An excellent anti-ager is another must-have in every guy’s skincare arsenal. This face cream by RoC — the bran that basically put retinol on the map — gets the job done by not only rescuing dry, rough skin overnight when your skin is its most active but also helps to prevent and actively reverse age-related issues including dark spots and wrinkles. Whereas retinol used to be an ingredient that was reserved for two or three nights per week, RoC has formulated this gentle cream for nightly use.
Jack Black Protein Booster Eye Rescue
The eyes are often the first place to show signs of aging since the skin there is extra thin, so keep your peepers looking young with the Jack Black Protein Booster Eye Rescue. Jack Black promises that this eye cream will turn back time by minimizing the appearance of crow’s feet, fine lines and wrinkles around the eye area. The formula uses peptides that can strengthen your skin’s response to stress. So does it live up to the hype? According to our testing, absolutely.
Brickell Balancing Toner
Toner tends to be a step that lots of guys skip, but trust us when we say it’s worth a few seconds of your time, especially when you’re using Brickell’s Balancing Toner. The alcohol- and oil-free toner is made for normal to oily and acne-prone skin. It’s made to remove any excess oil and reduces inflammation with witch hazel, hydrates with aloe vera, unclogs and shrinks pores with cucumber distillate and gets rid of impurities with peppermint.
OSEA Malibu Blemish Balm
Oily skin sufferers, rejoice! This ultra-lightweight, non-drying moisturizer promises to gently hydrate while minimizing breakouts and pores. Thanks to tea tree oil, rosemary, juniper, cypress and thyme, the earthy blend balances acne-prone skin to create a wonderfully matted and clean-smelling surface that rivals any results you may have post-facial. If you prefer botanicals and essential oils to overly harsh chemicals, then this blemish-fighting balm is a great addition to any man’s skincare regimen.
Baxter of California Purify Clay Mask AHA
Time to (face) mask up! Like any good clay mask, it’ll deliver a deep clean and purify pores in just five to 10 minutes. But it takes the skincare staple up a notch with a combination of natural, bentonite and kaolin clays, along with a blend of botanicals to keep excess oily at bay, refine texture, soothe, hydrate and revitalize. That long list of perks qualifies this mask as one of the best men’s skincare products. We named this the best clay face mask back in 2020, and we love it every bit as much today as we did then.
Lancome Absolue Eye Cream
Baggy eyes? We don’t know them. Or at least they’ve started to fade after consistently using Lancome’s Absolue eye cream. Sure, the price tag is steep, but a little goes a long way and it’s a significantly cheaper alternative to Botox. Simply dab in a pea-sized amount each night before bed and watch as this miracle in a jar transforms your eye area from tired to rejuvenated. We can’t promise that you’ll see the impressive results that we did, but it’s a great tool for guys tired of under-eye bags.
Harry’s Post-Shave Mist
Shaving is one of the most irritating things you can do to your skin. While there are plenty of high-quality after-shaves on the market, never underestimate the power of a cooling post-shave mist. Harry’s iteration, which touts botanical extracts like aloe, seaweed and Thai basil, assists in reducing razor burn by refreshing and hydrating the sensitive skin after hair is removed. The smell is also lovely and the product is extremely affordable, making it a must-have on many men’s top skincare lists.
Wolf Project Hydrating Sheet Masks
We recently reviewed Wolf Project’s moisturizing sheet mask. In our testing, we found that it’s a great option for guys with skin that’s been dried out by winter or worn down by stress. These sheet masks contain natural ingredients that are proven to soothe and restore your skin such as bamboo charcoal, humectant glycerine, niacinamide and vitamin B3.
Kiehl’s Ultimate Razor Burn & Bump Relief
The burning aftershave your father and grandfather used has gone out of fashion, and we aren’t sorry. After all, why should a post-shave product burn when instead it could gently soothe your irritated skin? We love dabbing on this moisturizing balm after shaving, and Kiehl’s packed this aftershave cream full of products designed to prevent razor burn and bumps. This product smells great, feels great and is the extra step your shaving routine needs, especially if you’re prone to ingrown hairs. Sure, it’s a little pricey, but a little goes a long way, so a single bottle should last you for three to six months.
Geologie Trial Set
After all these great products, are you still just looking for a one-and-done routine built just for you? Enter Geologie — The 2021 Man award-winning brand for the Best Skincare Subscription. Customize everything from your face cleanser to your eye cream for your skin type for less than two or three of the products above (and they’re all still a great deal for the benefits they offer). If you run low or fall in love with something else, no worries. You can buy these personalized products à la carte, too.
How We Chose the Best Men’s Skincare Products
SPY editors, grooming writers and product testers receive new skincare products on a near-daily basis, and we’re always covering the latest product launches in this space. We know that most guys aren’t looking for a 12-step Korean skincare routine, and so we try to be very selective when choosing which products to recommend to our readers. We would never recommend a product that we wouldn’t use ourselves, and you’ll find the products featured in this skincare guide in the medicine cabinets and bathroom shelves of SPY’s grooming editors and writers.
For this guide, we focused on three simple criteria: quality of ingredients, effectiveness and price. There are many other criteria to consider, but at the end of the day, we want to know it contains skin-nourishing ingredients that really work — without totally blowing your budget.
How do we test men’s skincare products at SPY.com? When testing grooming products, we don’t just try them once. We ask our product reviewers to incorporate the product into their skincare routine for a minimum of two weeks, and often we’ll try a product for 2 months or more before deciding if it’s truly effective or not. We carefully check to see if the product makes a noticeable difference in the appearance or feel of our skin or hair. We also consider if the product is easy enough to apply that it’s a realistic purchase for the typical guy.
For this particular guide, we tapped three extremely experienced beauty and grooming writers to select the best of the best in men’s skincare — Barret Wertz, Celia Shatzman and Joey Skladany. All three of them have written extensively about grooming products, and they’ve written many, many product reviews. Because we’re always on the hunt for more effective cleansers, anti-aging products and moisturizers, we’ll continue to update this list as we find new amazing products.
Updates: This article was last updated on May 10, 2022, at which time we added additional information about building an effective skincare routine. Our overall product selection remained the same.