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I tried to get my boyfriend into skincare. Here’s what happened

I tried to get my boyfriend into skincare. Here’s what happened

skincare boyfriend

There are many variations to the legend of St. Valentine, but all of them have one thing in common: Valentine used love as revolt. In honor of that, presents a series on untraditional narratives on love, from the romantic to the heartsick.


I think it was the great (albeit problematic) RuPaul who said “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else? (Can I get an amen up in here?!)” Coincidentally, their show RuPaul’s Drag Race is what my boyfriend and I are currently binging while slathering our faces with moisturizer before bedtime.


Ah, yes! Skincare. Coming into 2019, I have vowed to stick to a somehow strict skincare regimen. So on the first month of the year, I splurged a chunk of my Christmas bonus on skin products. I upgraded my basic moisturizer to a mid-tier one which costs P800 for 50 mL, bought sunscreen recommended by a co-worker, as well as a P1,200 100 mL toner. And oh, a small bottle of vitamin C serum that cost me my allowance for two weeks.

By the time I caught myself extravagantly spending, I was on my second order from an online shop that’s just one jeepney ride away: a buy-2-get-1 mild cleanser worth P800 with free shipping and P100 off.

skincare boyfriend
Finishing each other’s sentences but not beauty bottles.

To save on the cost of maintenance, I tried to split my stash with my boyfriend, who has not an ounce of care when it comes to caring for his face. Smart, right? Getting him to pitch in was easy, getting him to commit to religiously using these products was another thing.

In an effort to sneak in the skincare habit into his daily routine, I have done unthinkably subtle things like 1) put the bottle of cleanser in the shower right next to the shampoo instead of in the medicine cabinet; 2) inconspicuously put the sunscreen on the table where he usually puts his keys and wallet to remind him to apply it before going out; and, 3) intentionally placed everything from the toner down to the night moisturizer on the nightstand on his side of the bed so he wouldn’t have an excuse.

When all of these didn’t work, I had no other choice but to talk him into it. Every. Damn. Night. Right when we were already prepared to sleep, I’d casually tell him to apply moisturizer (at least). It worked for some time, alright—along with scaring him off that if he didn’t his skin would sag.

skincare boyfriend
For some reason, he’s very into these peel-off masks.

But it’s getting harder to get him to do it lately. So what I do now, on rare occasions that I don’t go home spent from work or from the commute, is slather the creams myself onto his face. Brutal, I know, but that’s the only way to get him to do it, believe me.

Now, before we all jump to conclusions. My boyfriend isn’t as stubborn as I make it sound. (Although he is a little hard-headed, now that I think about it.)

The problem really is that he doesn’t see skincare as a necessity because, as my colleague who has the same problem pointed out, for some guys having no skincare routine at all works out just fine for them.

Apart from having someone to split the bill with, what I want as a takeaway from this really is for him to have the same appreciation for self-care. After all, we’re not getting any younger. For crying out loud, he’s turning 30 next year!

So, if he’s reading this: Will you please just put on sunscreen before heading out, for god’s sake? Just that at least. I can sneak the rest in at night while you sleep.




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ART TRICIA GUEVARA © 2020. Hinge Inquirer Publications, Inc.