My MMUK MAN Journey

Alex Dalley

Some say that your school years are the greatest years of your life. However in my case, I’d give everything for that to be just 50% true. From two weeks old, I’d suffered with an incurable eye condition called nystagmus, which resulted in approximately 90% sight loss and at the age of 12, I was registered blind. If life at school wasn’t difficult enough trying to ‘fit in’, it became near enough impossible when I began suffering from acne just after my 13th birthday. At this time of my life, to say that things were tough would be an understatement and I spent the following four years of my life barely leaving my family home and some days, I was too embarrassed to even leave my bedroom. I’d hit rock bottom. With my mum caring for me and trying everything in her power to get me on feet, every faint hope was dashed by another wave of acne spots and redness.

In 2006, it was time for my sixth form prom and having spent most of my first year in A-levels away from college because of the embarrassment I felt about my skin, there was no way on earth that I was going to attend.

Then came my breakthrough moment. On the evening of my prom and with my mum still trying to convince me to go, she suggested applying some of her foundation and concealer to try and help disguise the appearance of my acne, which at that time was probably at its most aggressive stage. I had no idea what products were what and even cringed at the thought of having it applied to my face. After all, makeup is for girls right?

After a few awkward minutes of her applying some face products she told me to have a look in the bathroom mirror. I couldn’t believe it, my skin looked pretty much flawless. I’ll never forget that moment for as long as I live and the first real smile in years swept across my face. Needless to say, I did end up going that night and it was the first night of my life as I know it.

Over the next 12 months, I got really into makeup. With my skin not really improving, I was determined to be able to apply all the products myself, before I went off to Uni and get the most natural look possible. With countless close up practices in the mirror, I began to get to grips with the products and my confidence was growing by the week.

Fast-forward a few months and I’m now at Uni with the confidence to meet and talk to new people, without the worry in the back of my mind that they might be staring at huge pimples on my face or the acne scars I’d been unable to avoid after my years of skin trauma.

Then came another breakthrough moment. Two of my friends came into my room and asked if they could borrow a bit of my concealer ahead of a big night out. This was the one single moment in my life when I realised that instead of spending so many years worrying about fitting in so much, all along I should have realised that I wasn’t alone in my fight. There were other guys out there who needed to use makeup to cover up their imperfections and my god, I was going to create the brand just for them.

I’ve dedicated the last nine years of my life to MMUK MAN and I’m very humbled by its popularity right across the world. From product development, testing and research, right through to the finished articles and brand’s global growth, I’m very proud to say that I have been there every step of the way. I’m not saying for one second that makeup for men is the answer to every one of man’s problems, but if it can help just a little my work is done. Gentlemen, this is My MMUK MAN Journey - care to join me?