Why Use Beard Oil?

By Steve Watson
October 31, 2020

A dull, coarse beard is one of the immediate tell tale signs that oil or balm is being omitted from your beard maintenance routine.

For most men, growing a beard requires patience and endeavor. They soldier on through the initial few days of barely tolerable itching, endure weeks of criticism from family, friends and work colleagues, fret about patchiness, unevenness, and a host of other hurdles in the hope of eventually being able to have a beard they can call a beard. Then, of course, if truly committed to their beard, they make an appointment with us and begin a financial investment in a monthly upkeep. Yet, despite all the toil, it's surprising how many men neglect one of the simplest and most effective steps of beard maintenance by not using beard oil or balm.

In most cases, when a customer sits in my chair for some beard work I can tell immediately whether or not their beard maintenance routine includes the use of oil or a balm. Those with a regular, daily prescription of a few drops of oil tend to boast softer, healthier and shinier looking beards in contrast to those that simply wash and go.

Beard Oil Softens the Skin and Beard

A dull, coarse beard is one of the immediate tell tale signs that oil or balm is being omitted from the beard maintenance routine. Oil or balm acts as an emollient, soothing and softening the skin and beard. A stiff, lifeless beard tends to clump together and take on a more irregular shape. With little movement in the beard it will feel more like it's stuck to the face than part of it, leading to an unsightly habit of frequently touching or scratching it.

Beard Oil Locks in Moisture

Contrary to what some manufacturers tout, oil does not moisturise. It contains no water so has no ability to as moisture. Instead, what it does is act as a humectant by sealing the moisture in the skin and beard. Sealing moisture into the skin reduces the onset of dry flaking skin - a look to which no beardsman aspires. As we move into the colder seasons it even more important to lock in moisture.

Beard Oil Can Reduce Skin Problems

A good beard oil will consist of a combination of oils chosen for their therapeutic properties. Jojoba oil, for example, can help control eczema, psoriasis, acne, dandruff and cold sores. Other therapeutic oils include argan oil, grapeseed oil and sweet almond oil.

Smells Great

In addition to softening the beard and skin and locking in moisture beard oils smell great. There's a smell out there for everyone, from light and floral, zesty and fresh to heavier woodsy notes. The essential oils used in most beard oils not only smell good but add an additional therapeutic benefit to the base oils. Applying beard oil to a warm beard straight from the shower fills the nose with a satisfying burst of complex smells.

How to Apply Beard Oil

Much depends on the size of your beard, but a few drops is all that's needed in most cases. Rub a few drops of oil between the palms and massage into the beard, working it into the skin.

When to Apply Beard Oil

Apply to a warm, towel dried beard immediately after a shower. This will ensure the oil distributes more evenly, is absorbed into the beard and skin more effectively and seals in the moisture.

Which is Better - Oil or Balm?

Whether you use oil or balm is personal preference. Balms have the added advantage of providing some control to bushy beards.

If you're in the process or thinking about growing a beard and want more info check out https://watsonsbarbers.co.uk/post/how-to-grow-a-beard

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Steve Watson
Author and founder of Watson's barber's
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