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July 15, 2015

 

The Definitive Beard Oil Guide

The History of Beard Oil

It might seem like the latest trend, or the property of Brooklyn alone but Beard oil is nothing new. In fact, it was used by Native Americans to keep their beards in good condition and has been available commercially since at least the 1930s

What is beard oil, and why does it work?

A great beard is a wonderful thing, and while they do grow naturally, it takes a little time and knowledge to get it right. Otherwise, it can be an itchy, untamed and scratchy ride to having a beard. Beard Oil essentially, is a cosmetic preparation that not only moisturises the beard itself but also the skin underneath it. Beard Oil does this by supplementing the skin and hair oils that the body naturally produces.

There are a lot of factors that damage and irritate a beard. - Cold weather, air conditioning, arid environments, friction from your pillow at night, the rugby scrum, the kids pulling on it, even your face wash and shampoo. Proper beard care can protect and repair your facial hair from all these and much more.

What’s in my Beard Oil

Beard oilscan appear very simple as they consist of two main groups of ingredients, namely carrier (or base) oils and essential oils.

Carrier Oils the first Ingredient

Carrier oils are relatively close to those that the skin produces, with oils such as argan, grapeseed, jojoba and coconut just a few of the options that are commonly used. They have their own benefits but they are also there to “carry” the essential oils. Most people don’t realise that essential oils are very powerful and should often only be used in a diluted form. A good carrier oil allows the strength of the essential oil to be safely and effectively used. Here are some of the most common carrier oils and a pinch of info on each, just in case anyone asks.

Jojoba Oil

The Jojoba plant that can be found in the deserts of South West America and North West Mexico produces Jojoba Oil. This oil mimics the body’s natural body oils and is used in everyday products such as conditioners and shampoos. This powerhouse of an oil contains vitamins and minerals that are really good for your hair and skin!

Argan Oil

All the way from Morocco Aragan Oil from the Aragan Tree is becoming extremely popular in the world of cosmetics. Rich in antioxidants as well as vitamin E and vitamin A, Aragan Oil is a great choice of carrier oil.

Grape Seed Oil

The by-product of your other half’s wine habit is where grapeseed oil is from; that’s right grape seed oil is pressed from the seeds of grapes. It is also used for controlling the moisture of the skin; jam packed with antioxidants and a little vitamin E.

Almond Oil

Back to the Geography lesson, Throughout South Asia and The Middle East you will find the Almond tree. Almond Oil is acquired by cold pressing dried almonds. Filled with nutrients and fatty acids as well as vitamins E, A, D, B1, B2, and B6 means that Almond Oil helps maintain healthy and strong hair, Perfect!

Castor Oil

Castor Oil comes straight from the seeds of the castor oil plant, found in East Africa. The oil contains fatty acids and vitamin E much like every other carrier oil. However, Castor oil has a deep dark secret it is also used as a laxative.

Essential Oils for the perfect blend

So why do beard oils use essential oils too? Because they are the ‘active’ ingredient. Each essential oil has a different purpose and benefit. Getting the delicate balance of oils is where the dermatologists work really is. Well, there are many reasons. Different oils have different - positive - effects: lavender, for example, is known to soothe and heal the skin, by relaxing the area and promoting blood flow. While tea tree oil is naturally antibacterial and anti fungal - thus reducing irritations and beard dandruff. There are many different oils that can be used though - all with different properties such as patchouli, rosemary, bergamot and cedarwood.

It’s worth noting that not all oils on the market are properly safety tested. These oils need to be handled carefully, by professionals before they are certified safe for use. At the Brotique, all our suppliers have to ensure the safety of their goods.

Manly Benefits of Beard Conditioning Oils

If you're bearded and not using beard oil, it's probably time to start! Not only will it make your beard smell amazing, but it will keep both your skin and beard well hydrated, preventing beard dandruff and ensure your facial hair is in great condition. You'll also find that it can be used to style your beard too - perfect for those who like a well-groomed look and want to keep their beard neat and free from any knots and tangles.

How to Apply Beard Oil

Ideally, it should be applied straight after a good shower or washing your face. At this time, your hair and skin have already soaked up moisture from the water and now with the heat your pores and hair follicles will be open. Making it easier for both skin and beard alike to absorb the oil and reap its benefits. All you need to do is shake a few drops onto your fingers, rub it in your hands to warm it up. Ensure an even distribution across our beard, and then rub it deep into your beard. Don’t use - not too much, mind, or the hair won’t be able to absorb all the oil and it’ll sit on top which will leave you looking greasy. Combing or brushing the beard oil through your beard is always recommended to work the oil all the way along the length of the hairs and ensure there are no knots.

It really is that simple to start keeping your beard in tip-top condition. Once you’re into the swing of things you can expand to a beard wash, balm, beard brushes or wax.

However, it’s important to note that to take care of something properly you need to look at the whole system. Your car doesn’t survive on oil changes alone, a baby can’t just be burped, and a proper workout isn’t just bicep curls. Like your hair, you need to wash it however shampoos are too hard on the skin and face wash is too stripping for the hair, so you need a wash that’s balanced for both. Then to really nail the job, have an epic beard and banish all issues you’ll want to use a moisturising balm once a week.

Well Groomed Bros

Sometimes we need a good lead to follow. Great beards have always been around from the timeless Harrison Ford in The Fugitive to today’s lifestyle models like Ricki Hall, Chris John Millington and Billy Huxley and not to forget Levi Stocke that rather well groomed and tattooed chap featured in our Definitive Beard Oil Guide picture at the start of the post.  

Chris Millington Billy Huxley Ricki Hall

And it's not just celebrities and models who are rocking full-on bearded looks. Some guys take it to another level. The British Beard Club full of ordinary guys and is a cool hangout for bearded men. Those who have put some serious effort in can enter the British Beard & Moustache Championships. Or the World Beard & Moustache Championships (which this year take place in Austria).

Beard Trends for 2017

Beard oil can help you take care of your facial hair, no matter what your style. One prominent trend in 2017 seems to be the " beardstache". A hybrid facial hair style that teams a full and luxuriously thick moustache teamed with shorter chin stubble that is more comfortable during the summer months. With this look you need a beard oil focused on skin care, so look for a coconut or jojoba carrier oil, then use it lightly. You may want to look at a moustache wax to shape that handlebar.

Beardstache worn by Jason Statham

Jason Statham Beardtache

There are diverging trends for the well-groomed and naturalist beards. Some guys want to have a perfectly groomed, straight and tapered beard that’s ready for the office or bar. This needs a heavy oil for help controls the hair; anything with a castor or sweet almond base would work well here. For this, they need a proper system of beard shampoo, beard oil as well as a beard balm. Often this chap has his beard professionally cut at his barber

Well Maintained Beard worn by Ben Afleck

Ban Affleck neat beard

There is another type of guy who is letting his beard be natural and untamed. It’ll have flyaway hairs, and it won’t be over manicured - that’s how he wants it. Simple and honest. Still it’s important to keep the hair and skin healthy to prevent irritation and dandruff - a simple daily oil will ensure there are no issues. A good electric trimmer or scissors will take care of all his trimming needs.

Untamed Beard worn by Tom Hardy accompanied with a manly cigar

Tom hardy with Beard

If you’re wondering which way to go, it’s worth remembering one thing - what works for you naturally? If you have straight hair, it’s easier to have a neat, straight beard. If you have coarse or curly hair, then a fuller beard may be more natural on you.

Really though the great thing about beards is that they allow you to express your style as a man, and there are no rules. In fact, that’s really what the Beardstache is saying - whatever works for you, go for it!

What is the best Beard Oil?

So now you know more about beard oil, how do you go about acquiring some? Well, it depends on how much effort you want to go to. Some guys keep loyal to a particular brand whereas some gentleman prefer to give a new beard oil brand a try when it comes to replenishing their beard oil stash! It is difficult to determine which beard oil is the best on the market, but we thought we would share our favorites at The Brotique.

4 of our Favorite Beard Oils

Bearded Bastard – Simply Vanilla £30

Our man Jeremiah blends this oil with two different vanilla essences to ensure that this beard oil has a rich but not particularly sweet scent. The wooden label is non-slip, even when oily and the thick nature of this oil tames even the coarsest beard.

Braw Beard Oil – Grafter £22

Using the finest national ingredients to maintain the health, length and strength of your facial hair. Hand-made in Scotland this particular oil evokes the scent of freshly cut timber, and is ideal for the working man with a full on beard.

Hudson & Armitage - Mariner £25

Keep it tamed and citrus fresh for summer. Packed with vitamins and antioxidants which protect your beard and face and also moisturise and soften without making the skin greasy.Sweet Almond Oil, Castor Oil, Cedarwood and Lime essential oils.

 

 

 

Captain Fawcett – Ricki Hall Booze & Baccy Beard Oil £34 

Captain Fawcett Beard OilMr Ricki Hall and Captain Fawcett are a bearded match in heaven; they teamed up and as you might have guessed delivered a bearded masterpiece. A rich and complex blend of essential oils, tobacco leaves, frankincense, vanilla, fresh hops, bay rum tree and zesty orange. Each bottle hand made by the Captain himself.

 

 

 


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