The mod­ern dad is so much eas­ier to buy for than his fore­fa­thers, says Sarah Caden, so there’s no ex­cuse for socks

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Life - - THE PANEL -

Mar­i­lyn Mon­roe, who would have turned 90 this month, once sang that her heart be­longed to daddy. The lyrics spoke of the ten­der­ness with which dad­dies are re­garded, in par­tic­u­lar by their lit­tle girls. Dad­dies never go off, ba­si­cally, un­like boyfriends. We aren’t as good at show­ing dad­dies we care, or at show­er­ing them with gifts, as we are with the mam­mies, though. Maybe it’s be­cause mam­mies are much, much eas­ier to buy for. Bunches of flow­ers, bits of make-up and skin­care, or fla­cons of fra­grance are eas­ily picked up come Mother’s Day, but Fa­ther’s Day is trick­ier to fix.

To­day’s gen­er­a­tion of kids has it easy com­pared to those in years gone by, of course. The Ir­ish mammy mar­tyr is much lam­pooned, but Ir­ish dad­dies of the past were nearly as bad. “Don’t mind me, I can never have enough socks/soap/Old Spice I’ll never use,” he said, while fum­ing that the mammy did so much bet­ter on her day of cel­e­bra­tion.

The mod­ern dad, how­ever, is much eas­ier for his kids (aka their mother) to buy for. He doesn’t just fancy a bit of pam­per­ing, he knows his stuff — so no rub­bish if you want to keep him sweet. And def­i­nitely no socks.

BEST OVER­ALL Kiehl’s Age De­fender Power Serum for Men, €60, Kiehl’s shops, 35 Wick­low St, D2, and Dun­drum Town Cen­tre, D16; Arnotts

ManVsFace: that’s the hash­tag. It sounds a bit daft, but then, women’s skin­care cam­paigns are no less so. And it has that whizz-bang qual­ity that makes men feel like their skin­care is non-wimpy and ut­terly ef­fec­tive. It con­tains in­gre­di­ents that claim to boost col­la­gen pro­duc­tion and re­duce sag­ging. “It tin­gles when it first goes on, which I’m told is a sign it’s work­ing,” said one pan­el­list. “And it’s a bit heavy at first, but it sinks in fast and leaves no sweati­ness. I think, for men, serums are so much bet­ter than mois­turis­ers.”

BEST MAN MASK Lab Se­ries Skin­care for Men Ur­ban Blue Detox Clay Mask, €33, se­lected depart­ment stores

This mask is a Smurf-like blue that will scare the kids, but to­day is not about them. Four kinds of clay make this a pu­ri­fy­ing, pore-clear­ing mask that’s in­dus­trial strength but not skin-strip­ping, thanks to the hy­drat­ing ac­tion of hyaluronic acid, glyc­erin and blue agave ex­tract. “Be­cause it’s blue, you can see where you put it and it’s not too thick or muddy-feel­ing,” said a pan­el­list. “My skin felt fresh and clear af­ter­wards, and it’s a good, quick mask to use as a prep be­fore shav­ing.”

BEST DAY WEAR Nuxe Men Nux­el­lence Youth and En­ergy Re­veal­ing Anti-Ag­ing Fluid, €38, avail­able na­tion­wide

All sorts of plant ex­tracts and good old hyaluronic acid make up this mois­turiser for slightly dryer skin. Think your dad in his 40s, who has started to no­tice lines and wrin­kles and a creased face, come morn­ing. It’s creamy, but not too cloy­ing, and the pump-up dispenser is clean and handy. “I could re­ally see a dif­fer­ence in my skin af­ter a few weeks, and I wouldn’t have ex­pected it,” a pan­el­list said. “My skin looked more even and much clearer.”

BEST HAIR TO­DAY L’Oc­c­i­tane Pu­ri­fy­ing Sham­poo Ce­drat for Men, €17.50, L’Oc­c­i­tane shops na­tion­wide; se­lected phar­ma­cies

Men worry about their hair, too, maybe more than they care to ad­mit. For the man in your life who still has his, check out a new sham­poo from this French brand. There is a whole range in the Ce­drat fra­grance, which has clean, fresh hints of pine and cit­rus, but this sham­poo is a lovely gym-bag item. It’s nicely hy­drat­ing, too. “I love the clean, sharp scent,” said a pan­el­list. “It smells like hol­i­days in Greece and go­ing for swims in the sea.”

BEST PRIZE PACK Vichy Homme Fa­ther’s Day Gift, €29.95, avail­able na­tion­wide

In some ways, this is a clas­sic Fa­ther’s Day of­fer­ing be­cause it has mul­ti­ple prod­ucts and a handy wash­bag. Ah, value never goes out of fash­ion with the dads. The hand­some and prac­ti­cal bag con­tains full-size bot­tles of Hy­dra Mag C serum, Anti-Ir­ri­ta­tion Shav­ing Gel and Sensi Baume, an af­ter­shave balm. There is no dud or daft prod­uct, just good-qual­ity prac­ti­cal­ity. “A great kit for the gym and com­ing in to sum­mer,” one pan­el­list said. “It’s no-non­sense; a wel­come gift. I’d use all the items, which is rare.”

Pic­tured, from left, Kiehl’s Age De­fender Power Serum for Men; Lab Se­ries Skin­care for Men Ur­ban Blue Detox Clay Mask; Nuxe Men Nux­el­lence Youth and En­ergy Re­veal­ing Anti-Ag­ing Fluid; L’Oc­c­i­tane Pu­ri­fy­ing Sham­poo Ce­drat for Men; Vichy Homme Fa­ther’s Day Gift, with wash­bag con­tain­ing Hy­dra Mag C; Anti-ir­ri­ta­tion Shav­ing Gel and Sensi Baume

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