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The Nitty Gritty: 5 Best Face Scrubs For Men

One of the easiest ways to achieve clearer, cleaner, flake-free skin is to regularly rid your face of all the crap that builds up on and in it, but that’s no easy feat. The best way to defeat face gunk is to scrub it out.

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Have you ever gotten a close look at what’s inside a pore after even one day of being exposed to the elements? Hint: everything. Dead skin, dirt, grime, oil, sweat, smog, lunch, whatever — there’s a lot of junk being collected. And regarding that face of yours, have you seen it up close? Seen how dry and flaky it can get? One of the easiest ways to achieve clearer, cleaner, flake-free skin is to regularly rid your face of all that crap, but even special face washes can’t touch all that stuff because it’s mashed into the natural divots and pits in your epidermis. The best way to get it out is to scrub it out. With a face scrub.

Think of it like waxing your car — it’s almost exactly the same thing. You’re rubbing a coarse (but not, like, dangerously coarse) material onto your skin in a gentle circular motion in order to remove fine grime and to essentially polish the outermost layer of skin. As an extra bonus, these gritty goos, depending on the brand, are formulated with vitamins, supplements and other goodies to enrich your skin as it clears it out. What’s more, if you use a scrub right before shaving, you’ll reduce the occurrence of ingrown hairs and subtly raise your stubble for easier slicing.

When you’re shopping for a scrub you’ll want to keep in mind whether or not you mind additives and fragrance, or if you prefer botanical ingredients over more science-y stuff like light acids. Price ranges vary too, but since scrubs aren’t meant to be used every day (think 2-3 times per week), what you’re spending will stretch that much further. So add one of these five face scrubs for men to your arsenal — we think they’re the best on the market right now. Just make sure to keep your skin well moisturized; scrubs are essential, but they’re a gentle form of abuse, so your skin will love you for keeping it well nourished also.

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MenScience Microfine Face Scrub

Face Scrub for the Scientist: “Microfine” is the perfect description: the grit in this smooth paste is so soft it feels like angel’s stubble. But there’s nothing supernatural about how it works. Minuscule particles and glycolic acid buff away dead cells as salicylic acid cleans out pores; allantoin, aloe and glycerin work to take the edge off and satin-ify the fresh skin that’s left. It’s fragrance- and dye-free — the natural way to prep your skin for a shave.

Buy Now: $31

Jack Black Face Buff

Face Scrub for Rough Mornings: Going out during the middle of the work week was not a good idea; ordering a “whiskey sour, hold the sour” was not a good idea, either. Regardless, you still have to get up and face the next morning, preferably without that mangy five o’clock (a.m.) shadow. The menthol in this scrub provides a solid pick-me-up, and the rougher particles do their hair-raising duty with diligence. Its Vitamin C won’t take the place of your morning OJ, though, so pop a couple aspirin and get to work fresh-faced. (And drink plenty of liquids, tiger.)

Buy Now: $18+

Lucky Tiger Face Scrub

Face Scrub for the Old-School Look: The packaging on this scrub makes it look like it belongs on a 1920s apothecary’s shelf. But the hydrating honey, skin-protecting green tea, jojoba beads and green bamboo will polish away even the most modern of built-up face junk, handily prepping your face for shearing.

Buy Now: $15

Urth Scrub

Face Scrub for the Planeteer: Yes, friend, that’s superfine rice you’re spreading on your cheeks, but it feels super excellent because it’s got a mud-like texture — and we all know how awesome mud feels. There’s green tea and ginseng in here too, and when you combine them with other herbal extracts, well, you’ve got yourself one crunchy scrub.

Buy Now: $38

4VOO Deep Exfoliation Scrub

Face Scrub for the Big Spender: “21 botanical extracts, essential oils, vitamins, minerals, and substances derived from natural sources”: this is the Dr. Pepper of face scrubs. The stuff is strong, so it’s recommended you use a small amount at first and keep the scrubbing light until you know what to expect from your skin afterward.

Buy Now: $52

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