Newfangled gadgets and beautifying balms aren’t going to register with a dad who still abides by an antiquated grooming regime of soap and water. Best opt for a classic, no-frills brand, many of which are enjoying a renaissance in today’s highly disposable market.
Collezione Barbiere Shaving Cream by Acqua di Parma
£37 for 125g, www.selfridges.com
If he’s a straight razor and badger brush sort of gentleman, top up his supply of cream soap with this rich, cushioning cream from the artisans at Italian powerhouse, Acqua Di Parma.
Aramis Classic by Aramis
£42 for 60ml, www.harrods.com
Don’t try to tempt him with that fruity ‘unisex’ concoction sourced from a really-very-cutting-edge Parisian Atelier. Give him authentic man smells – wood, leather, gasoline, brute force – as bottled in this elegant classic from 1964.
Deluxe Wet Shave and Hot Towel Face Massage at Pankhurst
London’s barbershop resurgence is less Sweeney Todd and more Frank Sinatra. Book him in for a proper wet shave at an upmarket men-only establishment such as Gentlemen’s Tonic, Geo F Trumper or the brand new Pankhurst Barber Shop tucked away behind Carnaby Street (and fitted with some rather slick Bentley Motors barber chairs, no less).
It’s hard being ‘right on’ – especially when the most visible men’s brands out there involve suspicious chemicals and a carbon footprint that would make Al Gore blush. Go for effective and clean formulas from these ethical brands.
Anti-Ageing Fluid for Men by Melvita
£25 for 50ml, uk.melvita.com
This organic offering from French eco-purveyors Melvita, will work a treat on dehydrated skin and fine lines. Expect nature’s best: Siberian pine nut, argan, shea butter and olive oils. If he’s comfortable enough with his sexuality to think beyond ‘men’s’ products, then consider Melvita’s exhaustive range of oils and waters too.
Cade Shower Gel for Body and Hair by L'Occitane
£13 for 250ml, uk.loccitane.com
A two-in-one shower time companion scented with L’Occitane’s signature men’s fragrance. ‘Cade’ refers to a type of wild juniper that grows in the Provencal hillsides, renowned for its antiseptic and strengthening properties.
Tamanu High Glide Shaving Oil by REN
£16 for 50ml, www.renskincare.com
A super slick shaving oil that reduces razor drag by way of tamanu oil which, rather cunningly, moonlights as a wound healer for random nicks and cuts. No parabens, synthetic fragrances, petrochemicals etc.
Trendies are tricky to gift, not least because they are extraordinarily fickle. Avoid the commercial stuff and go for too-cool-for-school grooming goodies from these ‘selectively distributed’ brands.
Jet Set Kit by Aesop
Design-conscious packaging as slick as Aesop’s often means the bottles tend to go unopened. Which is a shame, because their formulas are really rather good too. Induct him into the cult with this hand-luggage friendly selection from the Australian brand.
Neroli Portofino Body Splash by Tom Ford
£85 for 236ml, www.harrods.com
If your budget doesn’t stretch to a Tom Ford’s fragrance – Grey Vetiver, For Men or even a Private Blend – then invest in this all-over body product featuring Mr Ford’s signature summer scent.
Eucalyptus Shower Gel & Eucalyptus Deodorant by Malin+Goetz
£15.50 & £16, uk.spacenk.com
Cutting edge design and cutting edge formulas appear to be mutually exclusive concepts for everyone except Manhattan’s own Malin+Goetz. Indulge father with nicher-than-niche offerings including a Mojito lip balm, Rum hand wash or Tobacco candle. If you’re trying to wean him off the booze, perhaps the Eucalyptus Shower Gel and Deodorant is a more appropriate gift.
A life spent sweating in Spandex can come with its own grooming conundrums. Upgrade his gym kit with the following high-tech essentials.
Sport for Men Grooming Set by Molton Brown
A trio of sports-friendly products including an industrial strength deodorant, a 4-in-1 shower gel and, best of all, a muscle rub. The latter is a ‘Deep Heat’ style product (but deeper and hotter… and without the nasty smell) that’s ideal for post-workout pangs.
The Six Pack Treatment by Nubo
Encourage his newfound workout routine with this clever ab sculpting product. Formulated with thermogenic ingredients designed to speed up his metabolism and trigger lipolysis (the body’s innate ability to release fat stored in cells), his conspicuous beer gut should deflate considerably.
Cross Terrain Collection by Kiehl’s
from £8.50, www.kiehls.co.uk
Having been adventure-tested on cliff climbs and ocean dives by National Geographic’s team of young explorers, this capsule collection of industrial strength formulas should suffice for a 10-minute jog around the block. Select from a funk-fighting ‘dry run’ foot cream, impenetrable UV face protector, anti-perspirant or a multipurpose body wash. Or just get the whole lot.