5 Best Exfoliators for Men – 2021 Reviews And Top Picks

Studies have shown that a man’s skin is 30% thicker than that of a woman (1). In addition, it also produces more oils. Its thickness makes it resistant to lots of skincare products, and highly reactive to low-quality products.

This should be reason enough to convince you that you shouldn’t treat your skin face in the same manner as the rest of your body. For a healthy and acne-free facial skin, you’ll need to do more than just scrub your face with a bar of your favorite soap.

My “Best Exfoliators for Men in 2021” article will shed more insight on how to care for your facial skin.

Top 5 Best Exfoliators For Men Overview In 2021 (Top Picks & Reviews)



Liquid Volume

Key Ingredients

Editor's Rating


2 - 4 Fl Oz

Natural & Certified Organic ingredients, including aloe vera, avocado butter, vitamin E, pumice, and jojoba beads. 98% natural, 70% organic.



12 Fl Oz

Activated Charcoal, Dead Sea Salt, Collagen, Fruit Stem Cell, Coconut Oil , Aloe Vera, Jojoba Oil, Spinacia



5 Fl Oz

Argan Oil, Vitamin E, Sunflower seed oil, coconut oil, sweet almond oil



3 - 6 Fl Oz

Bamboo powder, Mint, Licorice Extract, Vitamin C



8 Fl Oz

Aloe Vera, Vitamin C, Jojoba Beads, Willow Bark/Salicylic Acid, Burdock Root, Borage Oil


The Advantages of Using an Exfoliator (Face Scrubs)

To begin with, exfoliation is the process of removing dead skin cells from your face using an exfoliation product.

Your skin will shed skin every 30 or so days to make room for new ones. These dead cells never shed off completely most of the time.

Instead, they pile up on your skin and combine with oils and other dirt. You can imagine the result – a clogged facial pore (2) that is unable to breathe properly while at the same time reproducing new cells. The result is catastrophic.

Scrubbing your face using an exfoliator a few times a week helps to get rid of all this crap off your skin.

The result is a healthier, brighter, and more glowing face. Some exfoliators also feature ingredients in them, which help remove wrinkles and aging lines. Look twice as young with the right exfoliator.

How to Choose the Best Facial Exfoliators For Men?

Before digging deeper into what the best products entail, let me first elaborate on some of the factors to consider when purchasing your exfoliator.

Having deep knowledge of these factors will assist you to avoid low-quality products.

1. Type of Exfoliator

We have two types of exfoliators, those that use physical compounds and those with chemical agents. Let’s have a look at both.

  • Chemical Exfoliators

Just as their name suggests, chemical exfoliators incorporate both natural and synthetic chemicals in their production.

These chemicals help improve the texture and appearance of the skin. They also remove debris and dead cells present in your skin.

Chemical exfoliators are a better choice for men with sensitive skin. Why, because there are no physical compounds that scrub off the dirt, harming the skin. Moreover, sensitive skin may resist physical exfoliators.

There are two categories of ingredients found in chemical exfoliators: exfoliating agents and extra natural ingredients.

A. Exfoliating Agents

These include glycolic acids, lactic acids, alpha hydroxy acids, and various fruit acids. All these compounds are effective in dissolving dead skin. However, you should ensure that you aren’t allergic to any of them before turning to their use.

Chemical exfoliators with beta hydroxyl acid make a great choice if you’re looking to treat acne. The acid penetrates deep into pores and is known to remove all impurities.

B. Extra Natural Ingredients

Chemical exfoliators also add natural ingredients to soften the compound and make it more comfortable. Such natural ingredients include volcanic ash, cocoa butter, shea butter, tea tree, aloe vera, and green tea, among others.

Such ingredients don’t participate in any chemical reaction, whatsoever. They are only present to make the overall experience comfortable and enjoyable.

  • Physical Exfoliators

Physical exfoliators use actual physical components as their ingredients. Compounds like crystals and microbeads assist in eliminating debris and dead skin.

While physical exfoliators have quicker results than chemical exfoliators, they tend to be rougher on the skin.

Also, some physical exfoliators are crunchy and have drying effects on some skin. This, thus, eliminates men with sensitive skin from using them.

Two types of components are used in physical exfoliators: minerals and microbeads.

A. Minerals

I would pick mineral exfoliators over microbeads any day – and I’ll explain to you why.

Exfoliators made using minerals like jojoba beads exfoliate your skin perfectly but also in a comfortable manner.

These exfoliators don’t scratch your skin, but instead, act as ‘buffing agents’ to polish away dead cells.

Crystals may also be ground to a fine powder for those with tough skin that require strong exfoliation agents.

Pumice crystals are used in this case. They are perfect for buffing away all types of dirt and debris that are deep in the pores.

B. Microbeads

Microbeads are environmentally harmful and should be avoided at all costs.

They are made using plastic, which means that they can’t dissolve, no matter what. They’ll remain in the environment for decades to come.

Also, microbeads aren’t as effective as mineral beads in terms of exfoliation.

This type shouldn’t be an option to go for. They aren’t worthy of your money, time, and even the environment.

Pro Tip:

Avoid Physical exfoliators if you have sensitive skin.

2. Type of Skin

What type of skin do you have?

Your skin type will dictate how effective a face scrub will be.

Different exfoliators are active on particular skin types and dormant on others. It is, therefore, important to match the exfoliator product with your skin type for effective results.

The different skin types in terms of exfoliators are as discussed below.

Dry Skin

Men with dry skin should normalize exfoliating. Dry skin is known to be flaky and leads to dandruff on the facial hair.

Well, exfoliators help remove these dead cells and maintain the skin’s moisture throughout the day.

While exfoliators can be irritating to the skin, moisturizers help to prevent this menace.

Pro Tip:

To avoid rubbing your dry skin with an exfoliator, ensure that you go for products designed specifically for dry skin.

Alternatively, you can also use less cream of the exfoliator than the recommended.

Oily Skin

Men with oily skin will also benefit significantly from exfoliators. The primary cause of oily skin is blocked pores. This normally happens when dirt and dead skin piles up on a typical day.

When your skin blocks, it generates oil to remove this debris. If the process is unsuccessful, this layer doubles up, causing the skin to become oilier. Gradually, abundance in this oil causes acne breakouts.

How do you deal with this?

Using an exfoliator reduces this amount of oil significantly. It clears your pores or any debris and oil, allowing them to breathe properly. Exfoliation also reduces oil generation and leads to a balanced texture over time.

Some face exfoliators (face scrubs) are designed specifically for oily skin due to their incredible abilities to clear the skin of dead skin cells.

Sensitive Skin

Men with sensitive skin are always worried about what products to use, be it face masks or exfoliators.

Luckily, the market has something for you. The manufacturers are aware that your skin is choosy and won’t just react with any product perfectly.

That’s why they designed exfoliators specifically for sensitive skin. These products perform equally well in removing debris and dead skin from your pores. The only difference is that they do so more gently.

It makes exfoliation comfortable, and you don’t have to worry about inflammation and irritation at the slightest provocation.

Pro Tip:

If you have sensitive skin, avoid exfoliators that have alcohol. Alcohol is known to cause irritation easily.

3. Amount

I’m sure when you are out purchasing products, you always take time to read through the small scribbles of how much is contained in the bottle.

Yes, that should also be the case with exfoliators. The amount of exfoliator included in the bottle package impacts its monetary value.

What’s worrying is that most of the highly effective and premium quality products only come at small amounts. The opposite is also true. So, you’ll have to pick between quality and quantity.

The products in my list offer exfoliation amounts of between two and eight ounces.

4. Moisturizers

Why are moisturizers important in exfoliators?

Most exfoliators come with a “drying-out” side effect. They’ll dry out your skin out as they exfoliate it. Moisturizers help to negate this effect.

Moisturizers aren’t compulsory for exfoliators, but they make a difference. For instance, men with dry skin cannot use exfoliators without moisturizers.

5 Best Exfoliators & Face Scrubs for Men Reviews & Top Picks (2021)

Here are exfoliation products that are at the forefront of the competition. The review team took the time to test hundreds of products.

Believe me, when I tell you most products out there are crappy and unworthy of your time. 

Consider my list for the top 5 best exfoliators for men. I’ll save you the time, hassle, and resources of going back and forth through different products. You are welcome!

1. Brickell Men’s Renewing Face Scrub for Men

Brickell Men's Renewing Face Scrub for Men Review

Brickell is a popular name in the men’s grooming niche. The company enjoys a reputation for high-quality and effective products. Its face scrub reflects similar results, excelling in the exfoliator sector.

The manufacturers of Brickell Men’s Renewing Face Scrub combined aloe vera and physical components to come up with a versatile product that works on all skin types. Yes, that’s right! You are welcome to use this face scrub regardless of your skin type.

Its ingredients also favor men with sensitive skin.

What are these ingredients?

The exfoliator incorporates pumice and jojoba beads to scrub off dead skin. It also has aloe vera, which acts as a powerful antioxidant with hydrating and restorative effects on the skin.

This face scrub isn’t too thick like most products, but relatively smooth. People who used the product said that they felt refreshed and energized after applying it.

You’ll be disappointed to learn that the product’s bottle comes with only 2 Oz (56g) worth of cream. I highly doubt that this is enough to last you a month!

I feel that the price of the face scrub and the amount provided isn’t proportionate.

Overall, the Brickell Men’s Face Scrub is an excellent choice for those who prefer physical components to chemicals in an exfoliator.


  • Great for sensitive skin
  • Exfoliates as well as hydrates
  • Quick results
  • Has a refreshing and energizing effect


  • Its bottle packs small amounts.
  • Moderately high price

2. M3 Naturals Activated Charcoal Scrub For Men

M3 Naturals Activated Charcoal Scrub For Men Review

Just as its name suggests, the M3 Natural Activated Charcoal Scrub combines charcoal together with aloe vera, dead sea salts, and coconut oil in its production. The result is a deep cleansing experience with nourishing effects.

If you’re an oily-faced man who’s looking for premium quality in a face exfoliator, only a few options will beat this product. However, its lack of moisturizer disqualifies men with dry skin from using it.

What are its key features?

This face exfoliator uses activated charcoal as its main component. Charcoal is known to be an excellent facial cleanser and detox component. Also, it can heal and nourish your skin when combined with other exfoliating agents.

Secondly, the product’s real value is seen in its collagen. Collagen eliminates any wrinkles or aging lines. If you are entering the middle age, and signs are showing, here is your product.

The product also includes aloe vera, though its effect is quickly swallowed by the dead sea-salts, which absorb moisture very quickly. This is a product for men with oily skin. If you have a dry one, keep off!

I found its texture to be a little strange, considering that I’m used to smooth-textured exfoliators. However, with time, you’ll get used to it. Unlike the Brickell Face Scrub, you get decent amounts with this product.


  • Fights wrinkles and aging lines
  • Its activated charcoal nourishes and cleanses the skin.
  • Absorbs tons of oil


  • Unsuitable for dry skin
  • Feels rough at first

3. Viking Revolution Microdermabrasion Face Scrub for Men

Viking Revolution Microdermabrasion Face Scrub for Men Review

The Viking Revolution Face Scrub is your everyday face exfoliator to scrub off acne and blackheads. It is designed for men who shave frequently and hate when hair grows afterward.

This is a chemical-based exfoliator that uses natural oils as its primary agents. Despite this, it isn’t too oily to prevent men with oily skin from using it.

The oils included in this scrub’s ingredients include coconut oil, sweet almond oil, and sunflower seed oil. These oils aren’t thick to clog your pores to develop an oily sheen. On the contrary, they are reinvigorating to cleanse your skin and improve its general health.

On top of all the cleanliness and health benefits, this exfoliator’s lovely masculine aroma is also one to commend. If you’re a man who values his scent, this facial scrub will prove worthy.

The numerous natural oils contained in this face scrub make it ideal for men with dry skin. They moisturize and nourish your skin. In addition, vitamin E is also included in the mix to repair your damaged skin cells.

Pro Tip:

I strongly recommend that you shave before using this face scrub. The scrub revitalizes your skin and makes it less sensitive to razor burns and small cuts.


  • Repairs damaged skin cells.
  • Effective and moisturizing and exfoliating
  • Ideal for men who shave frequently
  • Has a sweet masculine scent


  • Not ideal for sensitive skin

4. Jack Black Face Buff Energizing Scrub For Men

Jack Black Face Buff Energizing Scrub For Men Review

Jack Black, the brand, has a line of impressive shaving creams, conditioners, and shampoos. It adds its face scrub, Jack Black Face Buff Energizing Scrub, to this list.

This face scrub is among the elite of high-end grooming products for men. Its formula includes natural, colorant-free ingredients that have been tested and proven by dermatologists. You can’t go wrong with purchasing it.

But what makes this product unique?

Well, it is designed to open your skin pores and get dead skin cells out of them effectively. If you’re the type to shave numerously in one week, then you know how painful ingrown hair can be.

Jack Black Face Scrub opens your pores to prep your skin for this. In the real sense, it should be part of your pre-shaving ritual.

This product included menthol as its energizing property. Menthol contains leaf oil which is used to nourish your skin and give it a soothing feel. What’s even better is that it is ideal for all skin types.


  • Helps get rid of painful ingrown hair
  • Has an energizing property
  • Ideal for all skin types


  • The scrub is rough on the skin

5. Rugged & Dapper Daily Face Wash and Scrub For Men

Rugged & Dapper Daily Face Wash and Scrub For Men Review

Rugged & Dapper is yet another popular brand on our list. Similar to other products in the men’s grooming niche, the brand also excels when it comes to face exfoliators. Its product, Rugged and Dapper Face Wash and Scrub, is a reflection of the company’s expertise.

What you’re settling for with this product is a premium quality face scrub that cleanses, nourishes, and hydrates your skin deeply and effectively.

For men with pale and unhealthy skin, this here is your product. It contains chemical elements that attack oils and grimes built up in your skin pores and dissolve them. Moreover, the face scrub also prevents acne breakout and improves the overall health of your skin.

The best thing about this face scrub is that it does all these without stripping your skin of moisture – making it an excellent choice for men with dry skin.

The ingredients used in this face scrub include burdock root, willow bark, and vitamin C. They possess a toning capability to help your skin maintain its natural and youthful tone. Men with pasty skin and bland tones will find this feature most useful.

Finally, its purchase comes with an eight-ounce bottle, more than what you require!


  • Its bottle packs huge amounts
  • Improves the appearance of your skin tone
  • Exfoliates without losing moisture


  • Not ideal for men with sensitive skin

Final Thoughts

Unfortunately, most of us do a poor job of taking care of our skin. That’s why we acquire dark spots and form wrinkles way sooner than we should. Sparing five minutes a day for your facial skincare routine won’t hurt.

That’s all you need, five minutes to remove your wrinkles, dark spots, acne, and all other crap from your face. The products in my list will assist in this quest.

The Brickell Men’s Renewing Face Scrub scoops our award for the best product overall. The reason is quite simple – it is ideal for all skin types, even the sensitive ones. Moreover, it is quite effective and quick too. Although you get little cream with its bottle, it is totally worth it.

I recommend Rugged and Dapper Face Wash and Scrub for men with pale and unhealthy skin.

All in all, there is no wrong purchase with the products on my list. They’re all incredible and effective. The final decision narrows down to your budget and personal preference.

Which one are you going for?

About MGU Team

The Men Glow Up editorial team consists of a group of enthusiastic writers with a keen interest in men's grooming, style icons of yesteryear. Connect us via Pinterest or Facebook or Twitter.

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