We used to have a hard time just convincing New Zealand men to wear sunblock, now it’s second nature to not only apply sunscreen before going out to enjoy a spot of fishing, surfing or just relaxing in the sun, but to keep applying regularly.
This small change of habit has seen almost a ripple effect. Not only are men being more proactive when it comes to preventing skin cancer, we have seen an increase in men seeking mole checks, they are more aware in general of their skin health and their overall health.
It’s not unusual either for our patients to buy an extra moisturiser for their partner who may ask to borrow theirs when they find a rough patch of skin or when their skin is feeling tight and dry, perhaps from too much air conditioning or running the heater on a long car trip.
Our husbands no longer look like their fathers who had premature photoaging caused by too much time spent unprotected in the sun. Now the outside reflects more of the vibrancy still felt on the inside.
They are still baby steps for most New Zealand men but enquiries about treatments continue to rise with botulinum toxin being by far the most popular.
The male patients we see daily mainly fall into two categories.
Those who feel pressure in their careers to manage the ageing process and remain looking vital and therefore competitive. Some of these patients have seen what botulinum toxin treatments have done for their female coworkers and discretely seek us out on their own.
But the main category would have to be men whose partners have persuaded them to try a treatment. This might seem like a delicate subject to broach, but sometimes it comes about quite naturally.
Children and especially grandchildren can be very blunt with comments like, “Why does Dad/Grandad always look so grumpy?” Even when they are relaxed and happy deeply etched frown lines, horizontal ‘worry’ or ‘stress’ lines on the forehead, and ‘crow’s feet’ give the appearance of stress, worry and anger.
After a while these comments start to hit home, no one wants to be perceived as a grumpy old man especially when the outside doesn’t reflect the inside.
Men’s features are very different from women which makes it crucial to choose a practitioner who has experience in treating men. Inexperienced practitioners run the risk of feminising the face. An understanding of the difference in male anatomy, identifying the larger facial muscles and stronger bone structure is key. It’s important that men still retain some ‘ruggedness’ to the face, while reducing the effects of ageing that make them look tired, angry or stressed.
Our goal is simply to ensure our patients look as good on the outside as they feel on the inside.
With botulinum toxin working by blocking signals from the nerves to the muscles men typically require larger doses than women due to the strength of their muscles and the thickness of their skin.
Often men will dip their toe in the water being treated with botulinum toxin for hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), migraine or teeth grinding before they become open to trying it for age management.
At Clinic 42 we offer our male patients the same discretion, empathy and expertise that we offer our female patients. Our goal is simply to ensure our patients look as good on the outside as they feel on the inside.