Look Good and Feel Great with MASC

One thing that Beauty Buzz 411 is constantly on the look out for is fabulous men’s skin care. I have spoken to many men and skin care is not much of an importance on their list. Usually because they want to keep it simple, don’t have time and most don’t know what’s best to use. Beauty Buzz 411 is pleased to be working with MASC, a one stop shop in Vancouver for everything when it comes to skin care for the boys. Their online shop is amazing and I love how they are selective on which brands they carry. From The moment I stepped foot into the Vancouver store (in the heart of Yaletown) I felt right at home. It doesn’t hurt that Owners Patrick Levesque and Jamie Beuthin are incredibly knowledgeable and are such amazing guys. I still remember the moment I first met Patrick, it was an instant connection and I knew that we would work on something great together. As the months rolled on I have had the chance to get to know Patrick more and realize how down to earth he is and passionate he is about mens skin care needs.

Beauty Buzz 411 will be working with MASC and testing out the latest and greatest skin care for men. There will be on going monthly posts on what products and lines are a “MUST HAVE”! Recently I had the opportunity to indulge (along with my male panelists) in some amazing beauty products that were an instant hit. First was the Jack Black “Beard Lube” Conditioning Shave. I have to say this was a HUGE Winner for both myself and the boys. I used it on my legs and was blown away, I actually think it may be the best I’ve ever tried! As for the men they found it incredible, a 4 day hair growth shaved as easily as 1 day (without the razor catching the hair). With jojoba, eucalyptus and macadamia nut oil your skin will be left feeling clean and soft. Beard Lube is a pre-shave oil, shave cream and skin conditioner all in one. Not only does it go on clear making it easy for the men to see the hair, but it rinses easily and won’t leave a film or clog your blade.

Now you all know I am an advocate for exfoliation, well Menscience “Microfine” Face Scrub is a great addition to any skin type regime. I love how this product contains glycolic acid to remove dead cells, salicylic acid to clear pores and allantoin/aloe/glycerin to soften and soothe skin. It’s gentle for the face but still worked great on the chest and back! For the men it was great to prepare the skin for shaving. Also from the same line, another absolute MUST HAVE was Menscience “Advanced Face Lotion”. This lotion was ultra light-weight yet provided mega moisture, perfect for the men (especially those travelling on planes a lot). Not only is it formulated with advanced water-binding agents and skin-refining ingredients, It helps renew and restore your complexion. It really nurtures and protects your skin.

Last but not least I wanted to find a new cleanser that would be great for everyday use without stripping the skin of moisture. I discovered Kyoku “Daily Facial Cleanser” , it is inspired by Japanese herbal skin remedies and is designed especially with a mans skin in mind. I loved the way it felt on my skin and the scent of peppermint was uplifting. I was very pleased with these 4 beauty finds and look forward to searching out and bringing you all more. There was one more product that I tested out, Evolution Man Conceal and Treat and I feel it’s the perfect concealor for Men. It isn’t greasy and has a matte finish, making it great for providing coverage without looking like you’re wearing make up. I highly recommend picking one up as you never know when a late night or blemish will throw your complexion for a loop.

I recently had the chance to interview Patrick and find out the 411 on what’s to know when it comes to skin care for the boys!

BB411~ You and Jamie are the founders of MASC, how did the idea come to be?

PL~We graduated with Bachelor of Commerce degrees in Entrepreneurial Management, with no specific ideas of how we were going to apply that in the real world. We worked at several different jobs and gained some invaluable experience before it dawned on us about getting into men’s skin care & grooming. We both found ourselves having a hard time finding products  that were on the market, but were just not easily accessible. We also disliked having to go into a women’s shop or department store to find one shelf of product for men, which seemed more of an afterthought than anything else.

BB411~You carry select product lines, what do you look for in deciding which ones to carry?

PL~We consider the reputation of the brand, if it’s unique in comparison to other brands we carry, whether or not the product works well, the quality of the ingredients, whether it’s tested on animals, and of product packaging. We also really strive to offer our customers something unique and thus don’t see the point in offering a brand they can easily buy at the drug store.

BB411~ What do you want people to feel when shopping in the store or online with Masc? What makes you different from other stores?

PL~ We want people to feel comfortable and informed at masc. We are not about pressuring a guy to buy something, or the most expensive product, but rather finding the best products for their skin or to address their specific concerns. We take the time to ask questions, and are always happy to provide samples if he’s uncertain. Our store caters specifically to men, is run by men, we are knowledgeable about our products, and obviously have direct experience with skin care and grooming for men. We know what works. Online we try to provide as much information, including videos where we talk about the products so that they can feel like they’re in the store, even when they are not. We are renowned not only for our extremely high level of customer service but also for our unique assortment of quality products. Most of our brands will not be found anywhere else in Vancouver, and in some cases even in Canada.

BB411~How important is skin care for men?

PL~Men tend to underestimate the importance of a good skin care routine. If you consider the fact that men take blades to their face when shaving, I’d almost say it’s even more important for men. There are various skin complications that can arise from improper shaving techniques or poor quality products.

BB411~What are some key points for men in taking care of their skin?

PL~Cleanse & moisturize daily, both morning and night. Use a good shaving cream and exfoliate a few times a week right before you shave. Not only with this improve the appearance of your skin, but it will also allow for a smoother and less irritating shave. Just remember, your shave can make or break the appearance of your skin so it’s important to really figure this part out. Also, your under eye area can be the first area of your face that will show signs of aging. Using a good under eye product daily, morning and night will go a long way. The key is consistency with all of this. Get into a good routine and stick to it. The more you take care of your skin now, the more benefits you’ll reap in the future. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, as the saying goes.

BB411~Does nutrition and fitness play an importance in healthy skin?

PL~It’s all connected. If you don’t take care of your body by eating healthy, keeping hydrated, and exercising, it will reflect on the health of your skin as well. Just like if you work out like crazy, but eat takeout every night, you’re not achieving the optimal results that you could be.

BB411~#1 mistake men make when it comes to taking care of their skin?

PL~Not moisturizing. Guys have either never been told they should moisturize, and never experienced the benefits, or have had a bad experience with a poor quality moisturizer that made them feel greasy. There are some great moisturizers available that will make your skin look and feel great, and it is so important to moisturize daily.

BB411~ 3 beauty products you carry with you always?

PL~I don’t necessarily carry any beauty products with me on a day-to-day basis besides a Jack Black Lip Balm. If I had to choose another, I’d select a hand cream. More often than not I don’t have a bag with me so I have to keep it simple. Oh, one product that is good to keep at work though is a jar of toner pads. Sometimes if you’re going somewhere straight after work and want to freshen up without having to wash your face, toner pads are great for that.

BB411~ #1 beauty product you could not live without?

PL~ The Vitamin E Moisturizer from (Malin+Goetz). I’ve been using it for years and it works so well. It’s oil-free and they use fatty acids as the primary moisturizing ingredient, so it absorbs into the skin very well.

BB411~ Favorite cleanser and exfoliant?

PL~ My favorite cleanser right now is the Menscience Daily Face Wash and my favorite scrub is the Urth Face Scrub.

BB411~ Favorite Cologne?

PL~ Duro by Nasomatto

BB411~ What does beauty mean to you?

PL~ Good question. I’d have to say that beauty comes from the inside out. I know that’s cliché, but I know that for me, if someone is an awful person, it changes the way I see them. The same goes for someone with a big heart. I think someone who respects others and themselves is also the same person that will take care of themselves and try to reflect on the outside how they are on the inside. It doesn’t always go hand in hand though.

BB411~ What does it mean to give back?

PL~ It means helping those that are less fortunate or that need a helping hand of some sort. There are so many organizations out there that need support and we feel really good about being able to help whenever we can.

BB411~ What charities or causes are you involved in or that are dear to your heart?

PL~ I’m definitely a supporter of anti-bullying and different causes that go along with that. We have and continue to support many Out In School events put on by Friends & Company. Also, we support the Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation as well as they are such a fantastic organization. Another one that is important to me is Autism Speaks. My niece has autism and it’s becoming more and more common and requires a lot of support and awareness within the community because there’s still so much unknown about it. Families with kids that have autism need all the help they can get. We support other causes, including different sports teams etc, but those two are ones that stand out in my mind.

BB411~ What inspires you?

Wow, that’s a good one. I think I’m inspired by the fact that all limitations are self-imposed. When someone says I can’t, I want to prove them wrong. Being an entrepreneur, there are no limits and it’s all up to us how big we want to dream. The other day I was at the gym after having not made it a priority for a while, and I saw a blind man working out, with his guide dog helping him navigate through a busy gym. People like THAT inspire me.

BB411~ That is truly inspiring, WOW!

BB411~ Favorite quote?

PL~ “The best way to predict your future is to create it.”

BB411~ You are also one of the founders of Homorazzi, can you tell me a bit about that?

PL~ Homorazzi started about two years into Masc being open. I started it with my friend Donovan and a bunch of our friends were eager to join in as well. It’s  an entertainment site where we write about the latest in TV, movies, music, celebrities, gay issues, and of course, intermixed with some eye candy. It’s been an exciting ride and we’ve had the pleasure of meeting so many cool people along the way. We also have a show on OUTtv now where a panel of four of us talk about the same sorts of topics that we cover on our site.

BB411~ You are openly gay, has that been a struggle for you in your life?

PL~ Every since I’ve come out of the closet, being gay has never been a struggle. The struggle was when I was still in the closet and having to constantly lie to myself and others. When I was true to who I was, the world opened up many doors and I am a much happier person for it.

BB411~ What advice would you give to the younger generation that may be struggling with coming out?

PL~ We grow up hearing the phrase “be yourself” and it couldn’t be more true in this scenario. There is no rule for when you should come out, so do it when you feel ready, but know that your life will get better in the long run once you do.

BB411~ If you could tell your younger self something you know now what would it be? (a lesson learned or wisdom gained?)

PL~ I would tell my younger self that my family and friends will love me for who I am, regardless of my sexuality. I would also say to myself, “Follow your dreams and do what makes you happy in life.”

BB411~ Fun fact that people may not know about you?

PL~ I just found out last year that I was adopted! The news brought my family closer together so it was a positive experience.

To find out more about MASC and all the faboulous products check out their website, visit the store , follow on  facebook and  Twitter

Remember  to say that you heard it first from BeautyBuzz411!

I look forward to hearing from all of you, email at beautybuzz411@gmail.com or simply leave a comment here

Much Love, Beauty Buzz 411

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