18th May 2011
Lee Kynaston is one of the UK’s best-known and most experienced male grooming experts, having spent eight years on Men’s Health as Grooming Editor before becoming their Online Grooming Editor. An award-winning journalist and former magazine Editor with over 20 years experience, his work has appeared in numerous newspapers and magazines and as an in-demand consultant he has worked with some of Britain’s biggest skincare companies, websites and PR agencies. As well as writing a weekly column for menshealth.co.uk he also regularly appears on radio and in the media, writes for HYPERLINK, MSN Him, has two blogs on Yell.com and takes a wry look at the grooming world on his own blog at groomingguru.co.uk
Do you use self-tan products? If so what brands do you use?
I’m very fair skinned, have a blond(ish) beard and actually quiet like my Celtic colouring but I have used self tanning products in the past. Fave brand is St Tropez.
What Make up brands do you swear by?
In terms of male cosmetics, Jean Paul Gaultier’s Monsieur Powder Bronzer or Guerlain’s Terracotta Men Bronzing Powder (see below). I also like the Givenchy Mister products and the Myego range.
Do you feel tanning has become more fashionable?
Self-tanning yes. And I think that’s in direct proportion (thankfully) to the unfashionability of sunbathing and sunburning! Given skin cancer rates that can only be good news. Nothing is more unattractive on a man or woman than sunburn!
Do you think the days of the over-dark tans are over?
Hope so. I’ve never been mad on mahogany.
Do you have anything exciting happening that you want to share with us?
Have just joined online grooming retailer Niven and Joshua ( HYPERLINK “http://www.nivenandjoshua.co.uk” www.nivenandjoshua.co.uk) as their Grooming Editor so am really looking forward to providing some useful and practical advice for their customers.
Do you use bronzers to enhance your look?
Occasionally yes (especially after a night on the tiles!) though due to the fact I have a beard, I have found I get better results with a powder bronzer like Jean Paul Gaultier’s Monsieur Powder Bronzer or Guerlain’s Terracotta Men Bronzing Powder. Because they’re more obviously like make-up a lot of men are really nervous about them but I find them much easier to use than liquid bronzers and the men I’ve encouraged to try them love them once they get over their fear!
Have you found a big rise in men using Self Tanning product? if so why do you think that is?
I think men’s interest is certainly rising and that’s great. That’s for a number of reasons but mainly because the products have improved and because mags, blogs and tanning experts like yourself have educated men about the benefits of their use and how to achieve great results. Men aren’t nearly as scared of self-tanning as they used to be!
Do you think more men are using grooming products?
Yes, more men are using them but I get the sense that the men that are also using less if that makes sense? A lot of men I’ve talked to are honing their grooming routines, cutting down on the number of products they use and demanding much more from the ones they do. It’s all about ‘performance grooming’ thesedays – products that deliver real results. Men are too time-poor to have a routine that takes an hour too.
Do you think the Man tan here to stay?
Oh I think it’s only in its infancy! Remember, years ago men considered moisturiser to be really outré now it’s de rigeur!
Name one fashion accessory you could not be without?
My glasses. I’m like Velma from Scooby Doo without them. Only better looking, obviously.
What do you think the new beauty trends will be next year?
In terms of male grooming expect to see self-tanning, hair dying, anti-aging and performance grooming in general continue their rise.
What do you think the Tanning look will be next year?
Have we already had the ‘barely there’ tan?
What Celebrities do you think get it right?
Danni Minogue always looks great as does Tom Ford (though there’s a fine line between well groomed and over-preened) and James Middleton was the best-groomed man at The Royal Wedding. I really like both Nichola Roberts and Guy Ritchie too, for showing that pale is interesting as much as tanned is fantastic.
What celebrities do you think get it wrong?
Tanwise, Jodie Marsh and Valentino! Any darker and they’d suffer from woodworm!
Who is the most inspirational person you have met?
My dad. He was a clever, funny and fantastically brave man.
What are you doing after this interview?
Eating that packet of giant sized chocolate buttons on my desk.
What’s your top face Moisturiser?
Now that I’m in my forties I need as much help as I can get skin-wise. My favourite moisturiser at the moment is Lab Series MX-LS Age Less Face Cream,which uses technology inspired by research into skin cell longevity to repair skin, hydrate it and minimise the ageing process.
If you had to pick one Aftershave what would it be?
Grey Flannel by Geoffrey Beene. Few people have ever heard of it but I’ve been wearing it since 1985. I pray that it won’t be discontinued before I am!
London or New York?
I like New York but I love London. Walking over Embankment bridge the other night made me realize I really do live in the most exciting city in the world.
Cab or Tube?
Tube. Sadly, I no longer have an expense account! Nor the patience for listening to tripe!