For those of us with acne, applying makeup is like preparing our face for the onslaught of mental battles we face every with our skin.

When I discovered War Paint I was immediately attracted to the packaging and thought; this is the perfect brand for any man wishing to cover up their insecurities.

It was created by Daniel Gray, who as a child grew up self conscious about the way he looked. Twelve years ago, Daniel would either borrow his sisters concealer or go into a shop and buy makeup ‘for someone else’.

      This is how War Paint was born; a men’s makeup brand, designed by men, for men.

Last week I had the pleasure of meeting Daniel in London’s Covent Garden to find out more about men using makeup.

War Paint was founded because of your experience with breakouts. Can you describe how this affected your confidence?

At a young age I had a lot of confidence issues, due to being bullied by my facial features, then I was more focused on my looks and breakouts were a big factor toward this. The breakouts made me feel like I was not able to go out the house, socialise with friends because I didn’t have the confidence to do so. The worse my skin condition was, the worse I felt within myself. Comments from other people left me feeling really insecure about my appearance. This grew into a serious issue with body confidence that has greatly affected me since.

My boyfriend is keen to see if his friends would notice if he was wearing makeup. Did your friends notice when you first started concealing your breakouts?

 I was very subtle when I first started wearing makeup, so no one noticed. I have many people now compliment my skin, then when I mention that I wear makeup it is always very well received as they are surprised because it looks so natural.



What is the best way to shave blemished skin without causing irritation and further infection?

 The two main things I concentrate on are always shaving after I shower as the heat helps loosen the pores for less friction. The second, is always shaving the same way, whether it is against the grain or with the grain, making sure you’re consistent with this is important as shaving the opposite will cause inflammation for a few days and can cause ingrown hairs.

If you have spot-prone skin I would say to steer clear of soap-based shaving foam or gel. Those with soap in can cause your skin to be more oily and increase irritation when shaving. I would recommend a soap-free shaving foam with emollients. For example glycerin, as the softening agents help the blade glide over your face, reducing any irritation or inflammation. To prevent further infection, I would recommend something as simple as an anti-bacterial gel or anti-bacterial face wash as this will not only purify your skin but get rid of the dead cells that block up your skin and create more blemishes, blackheads or ingrown hairs. An oil free sensitive moisturiser or post shave balm can also help if you have any dryness or tightness of your skin after shaving.

What are your essential products for concealing your breakouts?

 For concealing bad breakouts I would recommend our Men’s concealer stick and, it can also be used as a foundation all over the face. It is very high coverage to the point in which it can cover tattoos, however still leaves the skin with a natural look rather than caked in makeup. In the future we are also looking to release colour correcting concealers to help with imperfections. For all over cover I would recommend using our Men’s foundation as a base and then using concealer to cover the bigger blemishes on top.

Something to also note is the aftercare of your skin is just as important as the makeup you put on, always make sure that you take your makeup off properly otherwise this can worsen your skin. Also make sure to use an oil free toner or cleanser and a face wash to keep on top of day to day imperfections.

What advice would you give to a man who is thinking about trying makeup for the first time?

Do not be afraid! Start with something simple, a foundation, BB cream, concealer or a bronzer. Nowadays a lot of men compare themselves to other men they see on the TV and in the media however everyone on television; down to presenters and news readers all get their makeup done beforehand. If you’re not sure where to start watch some video tutorials online so you can get an understanding of how to use products and what products would suit you. Also making sure you get the right colour is important to ensure a natural look, as you don’t want your face to look a different colour to the rest of your body. Just remember not to be afraid, more men wear makeup than you would believe and you wouldn’t even be able to tell. You’re not the only one!



  • Men’s Bronzer: Use with our Men’s Powder Brush dipped generously in the Men’s Bronzer and blow or tap of the excess powder. Lightly sweep the brush along the outer sides of your upper forehead and along your hairline. Then underneath your cheekbones and across your jawline. You can also apply a light layer to the rest of your face and neck so your face doesn’t look to dark compared to your neck.
  •  Men’s Powder Brush: Our brush can be used with our Men’s Bronzer and other powder products. Clean regularly. Dip in the powder, tap or blow off the excess powder and apply to your face. The design of our brush allows a perfect application to follow the curves of your face.
  • Men’s Face Sponge: Our sponge can be used with our Men’s Foundation, Men’s Concealer and other cream or liquid products. Before using the sponge, run it under a tap so it expands and squeeze out the excess water to make it damp. Dab the sponge on to your face pushing the product into your face to create a blend.
  • Men’s Concealer: This is best applied with our Men’s Face Sponge or using your finger. Apply a small amount of concealer to the desired area, such as a spot you would like to conceal. Use the sponge or your finger to dab the concealer into the desired area and blending around. Use more product or a second layer if you require more coverage.

If you are using makeup for the first time, check out the War Paint website for video tutorials. Click here for some male inspiration. 


Written by Joanna at

October 03, 2018 — Jacob Macfarlane

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