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What is Beard Oil Used For?  

Updated On:

By: Adam Williams

Beard oil is a multi-use men’s grooming product primarily applied for its skin conditioning benefits.  Additionally, beard oil may help with mild skin ailments, including beard dandruff.  Finally, most beard oils also provide an enjoyable fragrance that can replace or complement your favorite cologne.

Below we’ll take a deeper look into the primary uses of beard oil and why you may want to consider working this relatively new beard care product into your grooming routine.

Let’s begin.

Related: Best Beard Oils for Men

Conditioning

First and foremost, beard oil is a conditioning agent for the skin that supplements sebum oil, an oil that the sebaceous glands naturally excrete to moisturize and protect the skin.  Beard oil is often made from natural ingredients, including carrier oils, essential oils, and vitamin E oil.

When applied regularly, beard oil effectively relieves dry, itchy skin – sometimes referred to simply as beard itch.   

The ingredients in beard oil vary from one brand to the next.  However, common ingredients found in most beard oils include jojoba oil, argan oil, coconut oil, tea tree oil, and several others. In addition, these oils often contain fatty acids, nutrients, and vitamins that are effective for nourishing and hydrating your skin.

Skin Type

Men with oily or sensitive skin types should pay close attention when selecting a beard oil.  Consider the following:

  • Oily Skin:  Some oils found within beard oil are comedogenic – meaning they’ll clog your pores.  Therefore, you will want to find a beard oil with non-comedogenic oils, including argan oil, grape seed oil, castor seed oil, and more.  
  • Dry Skin: Nourishing oils that’ll help reverse dry skin, including jojoba oil, almond oil, and coconut oil, effectively fight against dryness and itchiness.
  • Sensitive Skin: Many essential oils, including tea tree oil, orange peel oil, amla oil, and more, may cause irritation in some men with sensitive skin.  Consider only using a beard oil that contains carrier oils or vitamin oils as they tend to be much gentler on the skin.

Claims

The cosmetic industry is largely unregulated, which results in many claims. For example, when searching for beard oils, you’ll often see brands that claim their oil can provide faster beard growth.  You also see claims that beard oils are natural antioxidants and carry antibacterial properties.  You should disregard these claims as most have not been scientifically proven.

Fragrance

The most enjoyable part of selecting and applying beard oil is the fragrance.  While most are made with a masculine woody fragrance, there are plenty of exotic fragrances to choose from, including vanilla, pepper, citrus, eucalyptus, and more.   If you currently wear a cologne, we recommend selecting a beard oil with a fragrance-free or complementary scent.

When to Apply

The best time to apply beard oil is shortly after cleaning and drying your beard. Using beard oil without showering first may lead to oil-buildup on the skin and hair follicle, which can cause flaking or irritation, particularly for those men with longer beards.

Common Questions

Here are some common questions men have about beard oil:

Should I use beard oil every day?

Beard oil should be applied once daily especially if you are experiencing dry or itchy skin beneath your beard.  

How will beard oil make my beard look?

Beard oil will give your beard a light sheen that’ll make it appear healthier and feel softer.  

When should you start using beard oil?

It’s OK to apply beard oil as early as stubble facial hair develops.  Beard oil is a conditioner that’ll help to keep your skin adequately nourished and moisturized.  However, most men typically don’t begin to see a noticeable advantage of applying beard oil till about one month in growth.

How do I use beard oil?

Applying beard oil is simple.  Pour a few drops of beard oil into the palm of your hand and apply the oil directly to the skin underneath your facial hair.  You can also apply it to facial hair to give it a shiny and healthy appearance.  We also share some tips about the application process in this guide.  Be sure to use a beard comb or beard brush to style after applying.

Will beard oil prevent split ends or breakage?

When regularly applying beard oil, individual follicles are less likely to break or develop a split end.   

Will beard oil make my beard grow faster?

In short, no.  Your genetics primarily determines beard growth. Therefore, applying natural oils or taking hair growth vitamins will likely have little to no impact on how quickly your beard grows.  With that being said, the best solution to spur on beard growth in areas where no obvious growth is present would require the regular application of minoxidil (the active ingredient found in Rogaine).  Minoxidil, however, was designed as a hair loss product and not for facial hair use.  Consult with your family doctor if you have more questions. 

What is an alternative to beard oil?

Beard balm is a suitable alternative to beard oil.  Like beard oil, beard balm contains carrier and essential oils.  However, beard balm also contains two additional ingredients: butter and wax.   Butter provides additional hydrating and nourishing benefits to the skin – which works particularly well in cold and dry climates.  Wax is helpful in adding structure to your beard hair and will easily tame flyaway whiskers.

Adam Williams

As the lead editor of Tools of Men, Adam loves men's grooming products. Particularly of interest is managing facial hair and perfecting the art of the modern man's skincare routine. His work has been featured or quoted in several publications, including New York Magazine, Vice, Sharpologist, MIC, Elite Daily, and more.

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