If you're here for the short and sweet answer then here you have it - Beard Oil is a special type of conditioner formulated for the hair on your face. It is used to soften and nourish the beard follicles as well as moisturise the skin beneath the beard. Using Beard Oil on a daily basis promotes healthy beard growth by combating unwanted side effects such as itchy or flaky skin and preventing the beard hairs from becoming dry and brittle. If you want to know more about this wonderful beard conditioner then please do read on as we take a look at what ingredients make up a good Beard Oil and recommend some of our favourites!
1. WHAT IS BEARD OIL USED FOR?
The number one purpose of Beard Oil is to simulate the skin's natural source of moisture - Sebum Oil. At the root of each beard follicle we have tiny Sebaceous Glands which secrete Sebum Oil. The issue is that our Sebaceous Glands can only ever produce a set amount of Sebum Oil. Therefore, when your beard reaches a certain length, usually after approximately a week of growth, you will not naturally be able to produce enough Sebum Oil to nourish both your skin and your beard follicles resulting in these common side effects:
Dry, Itchy Skin - When there is not enough Sebum Oil being produced to nourish both your beard and your skin, your skin will start to become dry. When your skin is dry it will become irritated and itchy and ultimately, if left untreated, it can start to flake and cause beardruff.
Wiry, Brittle Hair - When your beard follicles become too dry they will start to become brittle. This makes managing your beard a pain as it will feel wiry and look unkempt. It will also result in split ends, which will travel up the entire beard follicle and drastically limit growth.
Using Beard Oil will ensure that both your skin and beard receive the correct nourishment they need to stay soft and healthy, resulting in a pleasant and successful beard growth experience.
2. WHAT IS BEARD OIL MADE OF?
To understand why Beard Oil is so effective we must pay attention to the ingredients inside the bottle. We figured the easiest way to do this would be to take one of our favourite examples and run through its list of ingredients and what each ones purpose is. So before we start, it would help to mention that there are two main ingredients in most Beard Oils - carrier oils, also known as base oils, and essential oils. Carrier oils make up 95+% of your favourite bottle of Beard Oil and are the main ingredient used for moisturising and nourishing the hair and skin. Essential oils are primarily used for fragrance, but some also have other benefits such as Tea Tree oil being a natural antisceptic, great for acne prone skin. So let's take a look at O'Douds All Natural Beard Oil as our example and see what we've got inside the bottle...
Jojoba Oil (carrier oil) - Jojoba oil is extracted from the seeds of the Simmondsia Chinensis shrub. It is a natural, vitamin rich oil which perfect for healthy skin and hair. It is also the closest natural replica to the skin's Sebum Oil.
Grapeseed Oil (carrier oil) - Pressed from the seeds of grapes, Grapeseed oil is light, moisturising, and great for skin types that don’t normally absorb oils very well.
Sweet Almond Oil (carrier oil) - Extracted from the dried kernel of the almond tree, Sweet Almond oil is vitamin rich and great for the skin.
Vitamin E Oil - Vitamin E Oil is obtained from soy beans and is a natural preservative which prevents other oils from going rancid.
Essential Oils - A belnd of Cedarwood, Juniper Berry, Cypress, Clary Sage and Sage Oils give the oil a complex, woody aroma described by O'Douds simply as 'Forest'.
Each brewer will select their list of carrier oils based on the desired qualities they want their Beard Oil to have and experiment with differing proportions until they find the formula they find to be perfect. In the example above, O'Douds use Grapeseed Oil to create a light, non-greasy oil combined with Sweet Almond and Jojoba Oil, two oils which are notorious for their great nourishing properties for the skin and hair. Essential oil blends may often be kept secret for fear of other brewers attempting to recreate their unique fragrances, but the choices are vast and can be combined to create fragrances from woody to citrus or floral. The thing that is so great about Beard Oil and the reason it is one of our favourite male grooming products is that the ingredients are more often than not 100% natural.
3. WHEN SHOULD YOU START USING BEARD OIL?
Sebum Oil production varies from person to person, but a general rule is that after about a week of beard growth your skin will not be producing enough oil to nourish the skin and beard. Therefore, if you are serious about growing a thick and luscious beard, we would suggest starting to apply it after a week of growth. There would be absolutely no harm in applying Beard Oil sooner but it just isn't completely necessary. Likewise, if you have been growing your beard longer than a week and decided to start using Beard Oil, you should not feel like your beard is damaged, the great thing about your hair is that if properly treated, it can be completely rejuvenated. We would just say the sooner you get your hands on some the better.
4. HOW TO APPLY BEARD OIL
Applying Beard Oil is a super simple addition to your daily beard grooming routine. Simply wash your beard with your favourite Beard Shampoo, towel dry it and then apply a few drops of oil into the palm and begin working it through the beard from root to tip, ensuring it reaches the skin beneath the beard. We would recommend brushing the Beard Oil through with a hog bristle Beard Brush as the oil will naturally distribute through the bristles and help for an even and thorough spread.
5. WHICH IS THE BEST BEARD OIL?
Choice of Beard Oil is largely a personal preference and falls down to a number of factors including consistency, fragrance and price. We cannot speak for everybody but we have listed our three favourite Beard Oils below with reasons why we love them so much.
1) O'Douds All Natural Beard Oil (30ml) - £15.95
O'Douds in particular pay great attention to their ingredients, ensuring that all oils are well sourced and carefully extracted in order to retain all their fantastic natural qualities. They also offer a great combination of oils for a fantastic price.
2) OAK Beard Care Beard Oil (30ml) - £34.00
OAK Beard Oil is definitely for those who prefer the finer things in life. This Beard Oil contains complex and expensive base oils such as organic Sea Buckthorn and Brocolli Seed Oil. The scent is also a gorgeous, subtle citrus blend which makes you feel equally as gorgeous.
3) Oil Can Grooming Iron Horse Beard Oil (50ml) - £24.00
Oil Can Grooming blow all other Beard Oils out the water with their whopping 50ml oil can. Their Beard Oil also contains Argan and Coconut Oils, two oils notorious for their amazing benefits for the hair. At £24.00 per 50ml this is also a very reasonably priced oil considering the expensive contents.
6. WHERE TO BUY BEARD OIL IN THE UK?
At Slickboys we stock one of the largest ranges of Beard Oil in the UK. Our brands include the likes of Captain Fawcett, Dr K Soap Company and Mr Bear Family. Click here to shop all of our Beard Oils.