06/18/2012 10:00 EDT | Updated 08/18/2012 05:12 EDT

Boys Need Skin-Care Tips Too

Last night, I was helping my 11-year-old son pack for sleep away camp. As we were packing toiletries, he asked me what to do about a mild breakout on his chest. I asked him if he had showered after playing basketball with his friends for five hours. He looked at me like I was crazy and told me he had showered that morning.

I realized I had prided myself in spending so much time educating my daughter about great skin care habits (because you associate beauty rituals with girls) and had neglected to do the same for my son. But, of course, boys need to be instructed in hygiene as much or sometimes even more than our daughters. So here are some tips for you to share with your son to help him keep his skin looking and feeling great.

1. Always shower after sports and use soap all over.

2. When you come out of the shower, dry the area between the toes to avoid athletes foot and smelly feet.

3. Wash your face every morning and night with a soap-free cleanser.

4. After any physical activity, rinse your face with water.

5. Boys need to remove excess dirt and oil just as much as girls do. Make him a mild astringent using equal parts green tea, witch hazel, and grapefruit juice. He can pour this on some cotton and wipe his face clean.

Caring for skin is no different than brushing teeth. Pubescent boys go through just as much trauma as girls do and they don't want a face full of pimples. Bond with your son by taking him shopping for products to care for his skin and then teach him what to do at home.

It's a great way to spend time with him and it will make him feel like you are thinking of him more as a young adult. My son loved it!