updated 6 Oct 2012, 10:08
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Fri, Jul 06, 2012
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SK-II launches men's line here
by Verena Lim

Acclaimed actor and model Godfrey Gao is undeniably one of Asia's most good-looking men, with flawless skin that looks almost poreless.

But the 28-year-old Taiwanese- Canadian revealed that he had bad skin as a teenager.

He told my paper in an interview at The Fullerton Bay Hotel last week: "I used to get breakouts when I played sports."

He added candidly: "When you're playing sports, you don't care about your face that much - being a guy, you have to look tough."

But Gao - who was unveiled as the new celebrity ambassador for SK-II Men product range - now knows that a good skincare routine is essential. He first started experimenting with facial products at age 11, thanks to his mother.

"When I got home from school, I'd see her looking freakish - in a green face mask," he recalled.

"But I was pretty interested in what she was doing, so I first used a moisturiser. A few days later, I tried a mask and, from then on, I've always wanted to keep my face clean," he said.

These days, Gao's skincare regime involves only two simple steps - cleansing and moisturising. "The toughest part when it comes to skincare is making the time for it. Guys have no patience," he said. "But it takes only 10 to 15 minutes for a simple routine."

The SK-II Men range comprises three products, and Gao's fave is the Age Revitalize Moisturizer, which contains SK-II's signature ingredient, Pitera - a blend of vitamins, amino acids, minerals and organic acids derived from a yeast-fermentation process that helps with skin renewal.

"It helps make my skin more radiant, firm, and healthy," he said.

The product range also targets the problems that plague men's skin, which tends to have higher sebum-secretion levels, lower skin hydration, duller skin tone, and a rougher skin texture than women's.

The debut of SK-II Men in Singapore comes at a perfect time as men begin to splash out on luxe beauty products, just like their better halves.

Men's grooming products are one of the fastest-growing segments in the beauty industry, said market-research firm Kline & Company. And, according to Chicago-based research firm Mintel, sales of men's toiletries in the United States are set to hit US$3.2 billion (S$4 billion) by 2016, up from an estimated US$2.6 billion this year.

From ageing baby boomers eager to stay stylish, to the young and trendy executive, more men are putting effort into looking good - and their skin is of utmost importance.

Mr Markus Kvaerneng, 26, a shipbroker who has been working in Singapore for three years, believes that skincare is important, regardless of gender.

"Considering all the beating your skin takes from the elements daily, I think it is important to take care of it. Regular skincare is a long-term investment in yourself," he said.

Besides Gao, three male SK-II ambassadors have been chosen for Singapore - Uttsada Panichkul, the host and actor better known as Utt; Mr Suraj Melwani, boutique owner of KIN and founder of Singapore fashion label Sifr; and film-maker Boo Junfeng.

"Having good skin is key as it is what most people look at first, and helps create that good first impression," said Utt.

"It is always important for me to maintain a well-groomed appearance as the way I look is not only a representation of myself, but also my attitude towards my profession and career," he added.

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