A well-groomed beard is a bit of an artform. If you're going to grow a beard, or are growing one now, make sure you look after it and your beard will look after you. The best word of advice (for beginners and experts) would be to invest in a good quality beard oil. The only down fall with beard oils is that there are so many to pick from.
Here's a wee run down on beard oils. Essential oils are added to your beard oil to assist in conditioning your beard and preventing skin flaking. These are typically jojoba oil, argan oil and sweet almond oils, which complement your natural sebum oil, helping your skin feeling nourished and moisturised.
You can also associate your beard oil with a beard balm. Just like the oil, a balm shares the same compounds, including your typical essential oils but also two additional ingredients; butter (shea or coca) and beeswax. The butter commonly used in beard balms is an extra layer of moisture, which helps repair both your beard and your skin. Beeswax primarily acts as a protection for your skin, naturally helping to lock in moisture without needing to wear a facial mask. Balms don't contain a lot of bees wax, so the hold on your hair is typically light to medium. For a stronger hold, a moustache wax will work best.
Why not consider a beard shampoo to complement your oil or balm? Just like your head, it is important to keep your beard regularly washed. A beard shampoo will gently wash your skin while removing dirt, grime and general pollutants from your beard.
Don't worry, its just enough to remove dirt but not enough to strip away all your sebum oil. A high quality beard shampoo will contain many of the same ingredients found in balms and oils, along with sudsing agents and other surfactants.
Gently washing your beard will ensure that it gets completely cleaned without leaving it dry. This also helps to keep your face hydrated between applications of an oil or balm.
Before you put your blade or razor anywhere near your face it is important you prep your skin as much as you can. To prevent any skipping or nicks, invest in a high quality pre-shave oil. Once you have your beard as wet as you can, either by showering or using a wet towel, apply a couple of drops of pre-shave oil and massage your beard or stubble. This helps lubricate your skin for an easy glide and reduces skipping of the blade when passed along your skin. Beard oils and pre-shave oils are very similar, but I wouldn't recommend a beard oil to be used as a pre-shave oil.
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