The Dewy Dudes With A Stockpile Of Mexican Tretinoin


The #ITGTopShelfie interview series focuses on the beauty routines of Into The Gloss' lovely, accomplished, and loyal community of readers. Submit your own on Instagram—post your Top Shelfie (tag us @intothegloss!) and include the hashtag #ITGTopShelfie for a chance to be featured on ITG.

Evan Shinn, one half of @dewydudes: Emilio and I are from Kansas, and we met on MySpace when we were in middle school. We were both weird scene kids. He went to school in Chicago and I stayed in Kansas, but eventually I moved to Chicago and we lived together for about three years. And while we were living together, we noticed that we were both really into skincare.

Emilio Quezada Ibañez, the other half: My dad was always harping on me to look the most presentable I could when leaving the house. But my mom is the one obsessed with skincare, and when I was in high school she would make sure that I washed my face, used moisturizer, and wore sunscreen. I did all of it because I was scared of my mother, but when I went off to college I started to appreciate skincare on my own. My mom and I have really similar skin types, so she lets me know if she tries something and really likes it, and I let her know what I’m trying too.

Evan: I also got into skincare because of my family. My sister and I both struggled with teenage hormonal acne, so her routine was a huge influence on me. When I was in college I learned about the whole K-beauty craze from the person I was dating—obviously the girlfriend-to-dewy-dude pipeline is real. But I hadn’t really met any other dudes who were equally into skincare.

Emilio: Most of the guys I had lived with up until then thought that I spent too much time in the bathroom. Living with Evan was the first time that I could have these kinds of conversations with a friend.

Evan: We wanted to start a podcast about skincare, but didn’t know if an audience for that would exist. So we started with a meme page to test out our tone. A lot of our information comes from Reddit—you’ve probably heard of r/skincareaddiction, but there’s also r/SCAcirclejerk which is more ironic. We’re shit-talkers, and enthusiasts rather than experts. I’m a freelance digital graphic designer alongside trying to make Dewy Dudes pop off.

Emilio: And I’m a music producer, writing and releasing music under my artist name. The podcast takes up almost as much time as my music career, even though it definitely doesn’t pay as well. I go to Glowbar for extractions because it’s cheap and quick, and I always have a great experience. I’ve been using the Is Clinical Cleansing Complex ever since—it does just enough without stripping too much.

Evan: I also use that cleanser because it was recommended to me at Glowbar. It keeps popping up with other skincare enthusiasts, along with the Is Clinical Hydra Serum.

Emilio: It’s quite expensive, but whenever they use it in our facials, it feels amazing. At night I’ve been using the Ole Henriksen Dewtopia 20% Acid Night Treatment and Tatcha’s Overnight Repair Treatment. It’s really hard to find a nighttime moisturizer that’s thick but also doesn’t make me feel like I like a ton of shit on my face. This one is really rich but absorbs immediately, and when I pair it with the Dewtopia serum, I notice a difference in my skin’s texture in the morning. If I’m feeling crazy at night, I’ll also put on Muri Lelu’s Indica Oil. A guest recommended that on the podcast.

Evan: The best skincare advice I’ve gotten is that you don’t have to do your nighttime routine at night. If you just got home from work and aren’t going out again, do it. That way, you don’t have to force yourself to do it when you’re about to pass out at 11PM. Like I said, I use that Is Clinical cleanser, then use Dr. Loretta’s Tightening Eye Gel and this Avani silicone scar gel above my eye where I recently had some skin cancer removed. Knowing I’m prone to skin cancer like that has definitely made me wear more sunscreen and go out in the sun less. I’m not a recluse, but it is a new priority for me. After that I use tretinoin—

Emilio: Oh shit, I forgot about that! We bought a ton of .025-percent tretinoin the last time we were in Mexico City. I use it at night, too.

Evan: I usually use a moisturizer to create a tretinoin sandwich, as they say. Right now I’ve been doing a layer of Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream, a little bit of tretinoin, and then more moisturizer. I do that two or three nights a week, and on the alternating nights I use the Environ Skin EssentiA AVST Moisturizer. So I’m basically always using a retinoid. I exfoliate about twice a week with the tried and true Dr. Dennis Gross Peel Pads. In the morning I just splash my face with water, put on a moisturizer, and use sunscreen. I’ll get DMs that are like, "Yo, what’s a good SPF that doesn’t get caught in your beard?" and I have to say, Dr. Loretta’s Urban Antioxidant Sunscreen is it. Or the Supergoop Unseen Sunscreen. If I’m going to the beach or I’m out all day, I’ll use the Elta MD UV Shield Broad Spectrum SPF 45 instead. I was watching this big wave surfing documentary recently, and it was nice to see all the guys out there with their faces covered in sunscreen looking really white. Sunscreen is about protecting yourself, and sometimes you want to know it’s there!

Emilio: In the morning I’ll put on Dr. Loretta’s Intense Replenishing Serum, which is the only thing I’ve found that truly hydrates. For moisturizer I’ll use Is Clinical’s Reparative Emulsion, and then I use Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Eye Crème and my Dieux masks. Most eye creams don’t do much, but this adds a bit of brightness. Then, I close off with Elta MD’s sunscreen. Lately, I’ve been sticking this Lesse antioxidant Regeneration Mist in the fridge, which is nice and cool on a hot day.

Evan: I’ve never had a guy come over and mask, but sometimes we want that immediate glow before a Zoom call!

Emilio: The Tatcha Violet-C Radiance Mask is great, and the Lesse Bioactive charcoal mask is really nice and purifying. I’ll do that at night if I’m feeling clogged up, and the Violet-C before a night out.

Evan: I had to buy some 3-in-1 a while ago to make a meme, so I’ve been using it—not on my face or hair, but on my body. I ran out of all my Nécessaire stuff and, fuck it, right? I have to get through this thing. I do also use the Panoxyl Wash on my back and chest, which are the only places I get acne now. Rio Viera-Newton swears by this. As far as my hair, Emilio turned me on to this Oribe Airstyle Cream I really like.

Emilio: I am trying to get more into haircare. My hair is really curly but it’s not quite as thin as white people’s hair—I’ve been having a hard time finding a shampoo hydrates and without making my curls look frizzy. This Briogeo lately shampoo and conditioner is the first that I actually see a difference from. For my body, I’m passionate about these nylon washcloths from Mexico. They cost about 10 cents and do such a better job than a loofah at cleaning and exfoliating. Even before I moisturize, my skin is always pretty soft. Whenever my mom visits my family there I ask her to bring back 20—I gave Evan one!

Evan: I use it! When strangers come over who don’t know about the podcast and meme page, there are mixed responses about how many products I have in my bathroom. Nobody’s gushing over all of it. Maybe they’d crack a joke, or think, "What’s this guy’s deal with all the skincare?" In general I don’t tend to date people who are into skincare.

Emilio: We’re dying to try Augustinus Bader’s The Rich Cream next. We both want it very badly. I want to start using Vintner Daughter’s Active Botanical Serum too—I tried a sample once and it was incredible. I’d love to get a lymphatic drainage massage…

Evan: I want to try a microcurrent device, or an LED mask. I’d love to try microneedling.

Emilio: Yeah, a vampire facial! I really just like the dewy look. This is kind of bad to say, but now that I’m so into skincare, I notice dull skin.

Evan: Eventually the dewy thing has to pass, right? I’m curious to see when everybody is going to want to look very matte again. Is that already happening? Maybe we’ll have to change the name of the pod to Matte Men.

—as told to ITG

Photos via the authors