Retailers angling to attract men have come up with a variety of skin-care products with creatively masculine names, packaged in cigar boxes and containers mimicking liquor bottles.

Like most guys, Eric Lugo wants to look handsome. But he doesn’t want to be caught applying makeup.

So the 26-year-old uses skin-care products with names like Kiehl’s Facial Fuel and Lab Series’ Power Brightening Serum.

“I want to keep myself up and maintain my looks, but I’d never use anything that looks like it’s made for my girlfriend,” the Los Angeles banker said. “This stuff looks like it’s for guys, not girlie at all, so I feel OK using it.”

Retailers are seeing a booming market in cosmetics and skin care for men. But they face one big challenge — most guys are squeamish about products that seem too feminine.

So skin-care firms have come up with a variety of products with creatively masculine names, packaged in cigar boxes and containers mimicking liquor bottles.

The terminology and instructions are also suitably manly. The colors pink and gold — staples of women’s cosmetics — are out. And the word “makeup” is verboten.

“We don’t say the ‘M’ word. It’s taboo,” said Michele Probst, founder of Menaji, a high-end men’s line carried at Nordstrom.com and department stores.

One popular men’s brand, Jack Black, is sold at places such as Sephora and Bloomingdale’s, and it has a $60 anti-wrinkle lotion called Protein Booster Skin Serum. Estee Lauder‘s Lab Series for men sells a $28 eye cream called Eye Balm. And Menaji puts out a $26 concealer called Urban Camouflage and a $35 face powder simply named Anti-Shine.

That smart packaging seems to be doing the trick.

Men’s grooming is one of the fastest growing segments in the beauty business. Chicago-based research firm Mintel forecasts that sales of men’s toiletries will hit $3.2 billion by 2016, up from an estimated $2.6 billion this year and $2.2 billion in 2006.

Companies are eagerly staking territory in this burgeoning market. According to research firm NPD Group, only 1 in 4 guys uses some kind of facial skin-care product, and male shoppers tend to be more brand loyal than women.

Retailers such as