7 Grooming Mistakes Men Make (And How to Avoid Them)

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by  Dean Stephens | Last Updated:  Sep 23, 2020
Grooming Tips for Men

Simplicity, good taste and grooming are the three fundamentals of good dressing and these do not cost money.
Christian Dior

The importance of grooming is far too often underappreciated by men.

Your clothing may speak for your style. But grooming speaks for how much you value your image.

And a positive self-image does wonders for your confidence and self-esteem.

Most guys could do with making a few changes to their grooming routine.

Simply avoid the following eight grooming mistakes and you’ll be a cut above the average Derek.

Using Too Much Product

If you’re ‘lathering’ styling gel in your hair, ‘covering’ your body in cologne, or ‘plastering’ your beard in oil, you’re probably applying too much.

When the smell of cologne overpowers the people around you or leaves a lasting impression in the room, you’ll want to tone it down a little.

Apply the cologne after getting out of the shower and before you put on your clothes.

Typically, you only need a single spray on your chest and possibly a dab behind the ears.

If you have trouble deciding how much is too much, remember that most things are better in moderation.

Use a single spray of cologne, a small dab of styling gel, or a few drops of beard oil.

Cutting Your Hair with Cheap Clippers

If you’re on the buzz cut wagon, or even maintaining your own taper or fade between barber cuts, don’t skimp on clippers.

You’ll go through 10 sets of cheapo versions and spend a whole lot more money than if you just invested in one quality pair.

You’re also way less likely to get an even cut, and the cheap blades can give you nasty cuts and zaps.

Trust us. Your hair (and your wallet) will thank you for it.

Shaving Against the Grain

Some guys are born lucky.

They have tough skin and can shave against the grain without issue. For a lot of us, this is likely to produce negative results.

Shaving against the grain provides a closer shave. However, it also increases the risk of irritation, ingrown hairs, and razor bumps.

If you do experience such effects from shaving, you always want to shave with the grain.

But if you feel that shaving with the grain isn’t giving you close enough of a shave, consider switching up your razor.

A quality single-blade safety razor can leave your face baby smooth without the damaging aftermath. Something like the Merkur is a good bet:

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You’ll also want to pay attention to the direction your hair grows. Your hair may not grow evenly in the same direction across your face and neck.

If this is the case, you’ll want to shave at a different angle depending on the direction your hair is growing.

This way you’re always shaving with the grain.

Not Dealing with Dandruff

When little flecks of dandruff start appearing on the shoulders, it’s too easy to brush it off and assume the problem will go away on its own.

Trust us guys, it won’t.

Dandruff won’t go away without you making a few changes to your regular routine.

Start by cutting back on the amount of product that you use in your hair. Too much gel or pomade can dry your scalp.

Switching to anti-dandruff shampoo is also recommended. You may not need to use the anti-dandruff shampoo permanently.

However, you may want to use it until you get the dandruff problem under control.

Not Washing Your Face Before Bed

Throughout the day, your face is exposed to a lot of different stuff.

Even if you work in an office. You’ll probably touch your face occasionally, or Janet in accounts will, or you’ll rub it against something. It happens.

The dirt, grime, and bacteria that reach your skin won’t go anywhere else without a thorough washing. Allowing it to stay on your skin and seep into your pores overnight may lead to bad skin.

No, you don’t need to use a lot of skincare products (although some can work really well if you battle with skin issues).

But at minimum remember to wash your face each night with a damp cloth.

Allowing Your Toenails to Grow Too Long

We see our hands all day, which makes it easier to remember to trim the fingernails (although even this is still something some guys need to be reminded about). Gents, women notice fingernails.

Yes, your toenails are usually hidden behind your shoes and socks, but your feet are exposed more often than you probably realize.

And when they are, you don’t want them looking like Samwise Gamgee’s probably did by the time he reached Mordor. There’s a good reason why a grooming kit got the nod in our list of 50 things every man should own.

When you’re on the beach, at a pool party, or in the bedroom, you really don’t want your toenails to become a distraction. Or worse, a safety hazard.

Trim them at least every other week and keep the talons to your documentaries.

Forgetting to Groom Nose and Ear Hair

We can all agree that long nose and ear hairs are pretty unattractive.

But you see it a lot. In general, men neglect to keep these hairs trimmed.

As you age, the hairs in your nostrils and around the ears tend to grow quickly and require occasional trimming.

Do yourself a favor and pickup a manicure set.

Here’s a kit we like:

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It’s good quality, well priced, and has everything you need. For a higher end option, we’re also fans of The Shears by Manscaped.

Whichever kit you go for, give your nose and ears a quick pass with your trimmer or tweezers every few days to get rid of unsightly hairs.

There you have it.

As you can see, a little goes a long way when it comes to maintaining a good grooming routine.

But grooming aside, there are other things we can do to put our best self forward.

Check out these posts to continue your mission for self-improvement across style, mind, and body: