Taking care of your beard isn’t exactly rocket science. Hell, it’s not even Earth science (don’t take it so personally geologists). But contrary to popular beard lore, not every man has embraced the fine art of beard care. Not to worry. That’s why I’m here. What makes me so damn qualified to be doling out beard care advice? 1. I’ve been the proud owner of a beard for most of my adult life.2. I own and operate The Beerded Beard Company and 3. I’ve made plenty of mistakes with my facial fuzz and I’d love to share my knowledge with the bearded world.
So, if you’re new to bearding, have decided to take your facial hair from corporate cubicle monkey short to Viking, badass biker long, or have a bearded loved one that you’d like to educate in the finer points of beard maintenance, you’ve got a friend in me. Here are some beard care dos and don’ts courtesy of me, the owner of The Beerded Beard Company.
Do Use Beard Care Products (Every Day)
That’s right. Your beard needs, no, deserves to be pampered and not just occasionally or when you’ve got nothing better to do. If you’ve got a beard, any beard, you should be using beard care products every day. Just think about all that your beard goes through on a daily basis. Harmful UV rays, pollution, food, bodily fluids, even beard care product build-up – it’s a wonder your beard likes you at all! I know what you’re thinking, a beard care company owner is telling me I need to use beard care products. Of course I am, it’s how I make a living. Unroll those eyes, sucker, and take heed. Of course I want you to use Lesher’s Beerd Oil® or Lesher’s Beerd Balm® in that manly mane of yours, but seriously, even if you don’t choose to use my products you should use something. There’s no shame in it. Your beard deserves to be treated properly and this means nourishing it with a quality beard oil or beard balm. Your beard loses moisture throughout the day and to keep it softened and conditioned you should look for beard care products with natural oils and butters known for their benefits to hair and hair health. What ingredients are those? Take a look at our labels, that should help.
Do Wash Your Beard
You probably don’t give washing the hair on the top of your head a second thought. Mindlessly splurting out shampoo into the palm of your hand and washing/rinsing every day with Orwellian routinized diligence. But what about your beard? Keeping your facial fuzz clean should be at the top of every bearded man’s list of grooming priorities. After all, beards are notorious for their ability to collect and hold on to all sorts of things – cookie crumbs, women, beer dribbles, bugs (I’m talkin’ to you, bikers), even whole pieces of popcorn – so keeping it debris-free is a must. I recommend washing, and by washing I mean using a quality, natural conditioning shampoo like Lesher’s Beerd Wash™, about twice a week. By all means, if you’ve already had your two washings for the week and you find yourself face-deep in a pudding eating contest, wash your damn beard. I’m just saying you should try to minimize the number of times you’re sudsing up your face ornaments. Why? I’m glad you asked.
Don’t Over-Wash Your Beard
Using a proper beard shampoo like Lesher’s Beerd Wash™ is a great way to get the job done, but like most good things, too much of it can be bad. Washing your beard more than twice a week is not recommended as it can seriously dry out the beard hair and your face. This can lead to brittle hair that’s prone to breakage and split ends as well as the dreaded beardruff (flaky beard), both of which won’t help your case. I wash my beard once or twice a week, depending upon how much use it has seen, and in between washings I simply comb through it under running water in the shower. By regularly applying beard oil or beard balm you can also help keep your beard clean giving crumbs and other nasties less gripping power.
“Your beard needs, no, deserves to be pampered and not just occasionally or when you’ve got nothing better to do. If you’ve got a beard, any beard, you should be using beard care products every day.”
Do Brush/Comb Your Beard
If there’s one thing I’ve learned from years of beard ownership it’s that beards love to tangle. I have no idea how the universe conspires to make this happen, this random conflagration of beard intertwining that enables tiny hairs to mingle in such a fashion, but it does. And it hurts. One way to minimize the impact of tangles in longer beards is to make use of a comb or brush on a regular basis. I personally recommend using a comb made out of plastic or metal because they can be tossed in the dishwasher once and awhile to remove beard care product build up. Wooden combs are great, but washing them (unless you treat them, somehow, of course) is not recommended. As for brushes, I’m on the fence with them. Brushes work great on beards that are about an inch or less in length, but once you’ve achieved any significant length, they’re just not all the effective. I’ve also seen the boar’s hair brush being extolled as the greatest brush a bearded man can use. I had one, used it for about a month, and haven’t touched it since. Why? Boar’s hair, well, any bristle brush really, holds onto beard care products like crazy, making them gum up and become sticky and gross. Combine this reason with the one I mention above and I just don’t recommend them. One final word of advice when it comes to combing your beard – slow and steady, man. Slow and steady. If you run a comb through your beard with the ferocity of a man on fire, your going to get two things in return, pain and a loss of beard hair.
Don’t Compare Your Beard to Anyone Else’s
Your beard is as individual as you are and you won’t gain a damn thing from comparing your beard to the beard of any other man. Sure, we can all aspire to reaching the heights of bearded awesomeness as achieved by the likes of Isaiah Webb aka Incredibeard and Jeff Langum aka the Langum Lion, but we’ve got to learn to love what we’ve got. Your beard is your beard, and there’s no one else on Earth with one just like it. Embrace it. Learn to celebrate its uniqueness – full, thin, short, long, fluffy, trimmed, wild, patchy – own your beard and wear it with confidence. One more thing to keep in mind, you might not think it’s true, but there’s some guy out there that’s jealous of your beard, too. If that doesn’t bring a smile to your face, I don’t know what will.
Do Stroke/Don’t Pull Your Beard
This is a bit of a combo do/don’t. Among the many great reasons for having a beard is being able to play with it any time you want. I’d imagine this falls somewhere in the same universe as having breasts. I know if I had a pair I’d give them their share of attention. Sorry, I digress. Stroking your beard has many benefits. It’s calming, sort of like petting a cat that lives on your face. I’m pretty sure it aids in idea generation and general thinking efficiency. When was the last time you needed to remember where you put something only to find that you remembered it only after you had adequately stroked your beard? And having your beard stroked by a loved one? Don’t get me started. On the flipside of this hairy coin, pulling or tugging at your beard is not something I recommend and it’s a bad habit that can leave you with a beard that’s not living up to its potential. So to recap – stroking good, pulling bad.
Don’t Fret Over Beard Hairs in Your Drain
Your beard is a constantly changing, evolving creature and part of its process involves the shedding of hairs. Just like the hair on your head, beard hair has a lifecycle with a beginning and an end and, unfortunately, this means that you will occasionally find beard hairs worming their way toward the shower drain. Don’t freak out about this natural occurrence. Your facial follicles have your back. Soon, there will be a fresh batch of beardy seedlings inching their way out of your face, eager to join the ranks of their elder statesmen. Sure, if you find large, drain-clogging clumps of beard hair in your shower drain, you should probably see a doctor or something, but anything short of that is normal bearding. BTW, I’m not a doctor, I’ve never played on on TV and I have no basis for providing any medical advice to anyone. I feel better now.