Ask MR PORTER: What Should I Be Doing Differently With My Grooming Routine In Summer?

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Ask MR PORTER: What Should I Be Doing Differently With My Grooming Routine In Summer?

Words by Mr Ashley Clarke

28 May 2021

This might be the summer we’ve all been waiting for, but looking your best becomes a lot more of a challenge when you’ve got sunburn and sweat patches to deal with. Indeed, if you are going to thrive in the heat rather than wilt in it, the optimal summertime grooming routine is one that takes a little forethought. Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place, and a lovin’ spoonful of summer grooming advice is laid out below. For any other grooming- (or style-) related dilemmas you have, reach out to us on social media and we’ll see you right. If you have any other grooming or style questions, drop us a message at and we’ll do everything in our power to answer it.

Should I be changing anything about my grooming routine in the summer?

The short answer to this is yes, but not always in the ways you might expect. You’ll need some SPF and a good deodorant, but to really look your best in the heat there’s plenty more to be done, especially so because this summer follows a lockdown for most of us. Going back out into the world looking and feeling good is important, no matter where you are, so we roped in some of the most prominent names in the men’s grooming world to tell us how.


For Messrs Matthew Malin and Andrew Goetz, the men behind trusty grooming brand MALIN+GOETZ, switching up their routine when the weather changes is important. “Winter is really cold and really dry in New York. Summer is really hot and really humid; the air is also thick with grime and pollution. It’s pretty much imperative that you make the appropriate changes to your routine,” says Goetz. “It’s really important to have a thorough, but gentle facial cleanser to remove all the city grime without stripping your skin. Likewise, it’s important to use a moisturiser that is not heavy and absorbs quickly.” They recommend the brand’s grapefruit cleanser twice a day to gently but effectively clean skin, and their advanced renewal moisturiser, which is light but will still leave skin looking healthy.

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Tips and tricks

Mr Robin James, the grooming expert and YouTuber behind Man For Himself, has a specific trick to stop looking sweaty: mattifying powders. “Don’t be afraid of mattifying powders,” he says. “They don’t have to have colour, you can have a white [transluscent] powder than can just take off the shine, especially on the T-zone and that will be totally undetectable.”

Another trick James always has up his sleeve in the warmer months is a refreshing facial mist. “I keep one on my desk anyway but especially in summer, a hydrating mist will replenish the skin and make your skin look dewy rather than sweaty,” he says. Mists are easy and quick to apply and are becoming more prominent in skincare recently – look to Tata Harper, La Mer, Seed to Skin and Dr. Barbara Sturm for some of the best.

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Summer haircare

Then, of course, there’s the hair. “Summer should be relaxed and easy so allow your hair to be a little bit more casual,” says James. “When the sun’s out it’s nice to have more movement in our clothing choices and also in our hair choices, so use products which lend themselves to a natural look, like a sea salt spray or a tonic, or mix a sea salt spray or a hair powder with something you might be using anyway. It will give the hair a bit more movement, definition and texture, which I think is sort of an instant summer upgrade.”

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"You probably don’t need to wear more deodorant [in the heat], you just need to wear a deodorant that works,” says Malin. He uses MALIN+GOETZ’s eucalyptus deodorant, which “is strong enough to get me through most hot and sticky New York days. On rare occasions, I might be tempted to top it up, but somehow never have gotten around to that.” Also see deodorant sprays, such as this one from Aesop, which is refreshing in summer and also contains eucalyptus to protect against body odour.

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Thought you needed to start smelling of bergamot as soon as the sunshine hits? Scrap that, says James. “A lot of guys think fragrances in summer should always be citrus and light and bright, and I think that’s fine, but especially this year once the world is opening up a little more, it’s a time to have a statement fragrance to kind of say ‘I’m back!’” he says. “Think of the more mature alternatives to that citrus, so it might have a leather in it, actually citrus and a leather works really well together, or something with a smokier, oudier note. We might not be travelling much yet, but you can travel with your fragrance.”

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Illustration by Mr Slowboy