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Dream creams: the best men’s skincare creams and lotions for a softer face

Hello, sweet cheeks

Masks might protect you from floating nasties, but it takes more than a fabric wrap to keep your skin sweet and soft.

Want a face smoother than a baby’s bum? A soapy scrub is the right place to start. Follow it up with one of these protective creams for peachy cheeks worth pinching.

From sun-proof serums to post-shave potions, every serum in this list will keep your mug moisturised, vitamin-enriched and fit for public viewing. Need a new grooming tool? Check out our separate round-up of the best wet-shave razors.

Bristle-busting balms

The hippy healer: Doers of London Shave Cream (£14)

The hippy healer: Doers of London Shave Cream (£14)

All-natural, vegan-friendly and shipped in suitably trendy packaging, this non-foaming shave cream contains organic birch extract to relieve redness.

It’s also packed with organic grapeseed oil which is rich in antioxidants, nourishing shea butter for a moist mug, plus vetiver and myrrh oil to heal your skin after you’ve dragged an eco-friendly razor across it.

The nutty nick-stopper: Kiehl’s Smooth Glider Shave Lotion (£17)

The nutty nick-stopper: Kiehl’s Smooth Glider Shave Lotion (£17)

This long-lasting yet lightweight gel contains some pretty wacky essential oils – plus the juice of crushed kukui nuts.

A distant cousin of the conker, kukui nut not only gives off a lovely woody aroma, but it also conditions your chin for shaving – softening facial fur in readiness for the razor’s edge. The result? A frictionless shave and skin so smooth you’ll put toddlers to shame.

The eco-friendly frother: Gruum når Aloe Vera Shave Bar (£8)

The eco-friendly frother: Gruum når Aloe Vera Shave Bar (£8)

Keen to cut down on shaving waste? Earn yourself an eco-warrior badge with this plastic-free alternative to a tube of gel.

Handmade in England using zero palm oil, the 100% natural bar is best applied directly to the face like a classic block of soap. Simply lather up and grab your blade for greener grooming.

Post-shave potions

The seaweed soother: Harry’s Post-Shave Mist (£11)

The seaweed soother: Harry

The equivalent of having a personal anti-bacterial air-conditioning system, Harry’s Mist is a post-shave summer skin cooler that’s jam-packed with natural ingredients like seaweed, aloe and Thai basil, plus mint, eucalyptus and tea-tree essential oils.

The soothing spray is part of a wider skincare range which includes a face wash, toner, night lotion (sung in the style of Night Fever), day lotion, eye cream and blemish treatment for spotty oiks.

The witch hazel healer: Origins Firefighter Post-Shave Balm (£16)

The witch hazel healer: Origins Firefighter Post-Shave Balm (£16)

If shaving leaves you feeling like you’ve had your head wedged inside a wasps’ nest, check out this soothing balm.

Its loaded with healing winterbloom, a type of witch-hazel – the same stuff you put on nasty nettle stings. The magic salve helps to calm razor-scraped skin and reduce irritation. Plus there’s eucalyptus and peppermint to give your chin added zing.

The botanical benefactor: AESOP Moroccan Neroli Post-Shave Lotion (£37)

The botanical benefactor: AESOP Moroccan Neroli Post-Shave Lotion (£37)

It’s not only snakes you’ll be charming with this Moroccan-inspired hydrator from Aesop. A scented fable for the nostrils, it contains a cocktail of botanical oils, including sandalwood and neroli blossom.

The fragrant lotion lightly hydrates your face while pacifying post-shave irritation. What’s more, it’s great for all skin types.

Sun-stopping serums

The hybrid hydrator: Jaxon Lane Rain or Shine (£26)

The hybrid hydrator: Jaxon Lane Rain or Shine (£26)

Unlike a hybrid laptop, Jaxon Lane’s SPF50+ sunscreen won’t convert into a tablet. But like a hybrid laptop, it is a two-in-one.

The Wash & Go of skin lotions, it delivers that all-important UVA and UVB protection, while doubling up as a super-light daily moisturiser with vitamin E. And it doesn’t leave you feeling like you’ve coated yourself with lard.

The sea life shield: Clinique for Men Super Energizer SPF40 Anti-Fatigue Hydrating Concentrate (£42)

The sea life shield: Clinique for Men Super Energizer SPF40 Anti-Fatigue Hydrating Concentrate (£42)

Clinique’s sweat-resistant moisturising gel has a very lengthy name. Luckily, it does more than enough to justify the word count: there’s caffeine and sea whip coral extract inside to wake up tired skin – ideal after a big night out.

It also has an SPF40 rating to fend off the merciless sun, should you wish to brave a trip to the shops for coffee and paracetamol.

The papaya protector: Lumin UV Defense Moisturizing Balm (£23)

The papaya protector: LUMIN UV Defense Moisturizing Balm (£23)

Lumin’s all-in-one formula shields your skin from sun damage with its SPF30 protection, while anti-ageing ingredients work to give your grill that fresh-from-the-botox-clinic feeling – without any of the needles.

Papaya extract does the hard work, fighting early signs of wrinkles and creases by tightening the skin’s appearance. For a cheaper alternative, try rubbing a papaya slice on your face: sticky, sure, but the fruity solution is still less unpleasant than being jabbed by a dermatologist.