Growing a beard has seen a remarkable resurgence in popularity over the past decade and I for one decided to grow out my beard. As it grew I knew I needed something to help keep it in good condition and came across beard balm which helped, but what exactly is beard balm used for?
Beard balm is used to improve the overall appearance of your beard, provide nourishment to the hair & skin and provide control, shape and style to your facial hair. You can also use beard balm on your head hair, moustache and sideburns as well as occasional use as a facial moisturiser or lip balm.
The simple fact was at the time I didn’t know anything about beard balm but I had one distinct advantage.
I had a good friend who was (and still is) a barber, his name is John.
John taught me a lot about beard products including creams, oils, wax and conditioner but most of all we talked about beard balm.
In this article I share what I found out from John, I also go through what you can use beard balm for (which is not only for beards!) as well as the benefits and some personal stories about my beard journey.
But before we get on to what beard balm is used for we need to understand what is.
What Is Beard Balm?
Beard balm has gained widespread recognition for its effectiveness in taming, conditioning, and styling facial hair.
From our conversation, John defines what beard balm is.
Beard balm is a specialized grooming product designed for the care and maintenance of facial hair. It’s typically a semi-solid substance that comes in a small container, and its reason for existing is to provide nourishment, hydration, and styling control for your beard.
He is also keen to point out that beard balm is often confused with beard oil, but they serve different functions, as we’ll discuss in a moment.
Key Ingredients and Their Benefits
From all the research I’ve done it’s clear that beard balm formulations can vary, but they generally contain a combination of key ingredients, such as beeswax, shea butter, and various carrier oils.
These ingredients work together to offer multiple benefits, including:
The natural oils in beard balm help moisturize both the beard hair and the skin underneath, preventing dryness and itchiness.
Shea butter and other ingredients soften the beard hair, making it more manageable and reducing frizz.
Beeswax provides a light hold, helping you shape and style your beard as desired.
Variations in Beard Balm Formulations
I find that one of the most exciting aspects of beard balm is the range of available formulations.
Different brands use distinct ingredients making them as unique as you.
Some beard balms are scented with natural essential oils while others are fragrance-free for those with sensitivity to scents.
“These days there are so many different options on the market there really is a beard balm for everyone” – John explains.
What Is Beard Balm Use For?
This is the question I quizzed John on the most because when I started on my beard journey I wondered whether using beard balm was worth the investment.
For me it certainly was and John has 4 key uses for beard balm which I’ve shared below.
1. Maintaining a Healthy Looking Beard
John is clear on the first point.
Beard balm plays a crucial role in maintaining the health and appearance of your beard.
By applying a small amount to your beard daily, you can keep unruly hair in check, reducing the need for constant trimming and grooming.
The wax such as beeswax in beard balm helps you shape your beard, and over time, it can help train the hair to grow in the desired direction.
2. Nourishing Your Beard
Beard balm isn’t just about the way it looks, it’s also about the health of your facial hair.
The natural oils and shea butter in beard balm provide essential nutrients to your beard, preventing dryness, split ends, and breakage.
This nourishment keeps your beard looking lustrous and feeling soft to the touch.
3. Styling and Shaping
For those who enjoy experimenting with different beard styles, beard balm is a must-have.
It allows you to sculpt your beard into a variety of shapes, from a classic full beard to a perfectly groomed goatee.
The light hold provided by the wax helps maintain your chosen style throughout the day.
John’s Tips & Tricks
For extra hold buy a beard balm that has a higher wax content.
4. Versatility and Multiple Uses
I agree 100% with John on this one.
I think one of the fantastic things about beard balm is its versatility.
It’s not limited to beard care, you can also use it for your moustache or sideburns.
Additionally, it can serve as a replacement for hair styling products or even function as a substitute for lip balm in a pinch.
This multifunctionality makes it a valuable addition to your grooming routine.
What Else Can Beard Balm Be Used For?
While beard balm is primarily designed for facial hair, its uses don’t stop there. In a pinch, it can work as a substitute for other grooming products.
Here are John’s top 3 uses for beard balm, other than to use it on your beard!
- Styling Your Hair
If you’re out of hair wax or pomade, a small amount of beard balm can help you style your head hair.
- Maintaining Sideburns & Moustache
Yes that’s right, beard balm can be used to tame and style your sideburns or moustache.
- Helping with Dry Skin
The moisturizing properties of beard balm make it suitable for helping with dry skin on your face or lips.
In his day-to-day work as a barber, John often hears of people using innovative ways to use beard balm.
I’ve heard of people mixing beard balm with other products to create unique grooming concoctions. For example, blending beard balm with a few drops of beard oil can provide enhanced moisturizing properties and a customized scent.
So let’s expand on a couple of these uses.
Can I Put Beard Balm on Hair?
“It’s a question I get asked a lot” says John
If you’re running low on your usual hair styling product, you might wonder if you can use beard balm on your head hair.
The simple answer is yes, you can, however just keep a couple of things in mind:
- Less Is More
Beard balm is thicker and stickier than regular hair products. Start with a small amount, and add more as needed.
- Hair Type Matters
Beard balm works better for shorter or medium-length hair. If you have long hair, you may find it less effective for holding elaborate styles.
The main advantage of using beard balm on head hair is to style it but only if you have short to medium length hair.
Although it will help with moisturising and nourishing your hair you’re unlikely to use it for long enough to allow these qualities time to work.
As well as hair styling and control, beard balm can also provide a natural, matte finish for a more relaxed, textured look.
In my view using beard balm on your head hair is really only a temporary solution.
Can Beard Balm Be Used on the Face?
The natural oils and shea butter in beard balm can hydrate and nourish the skin underneath your beard, helping to prevent dryness and irritation.
But using beard balm directly on the face is a topic that often sparks concerns, primarily because of the potential for clogged pores or skin irritation.
In my view beard balm is not a replacement for a dedicated facial moisturizer so just like using beard balm on your hair, it’s great as a one-off.
Just remember to apply it sparingly to avoid overloading your skin with the product.
When Should You Use Beard Balm?
So now you know what you can use beard balm for, the next question is when exactly should you apply it.
To be honest for me this differs throughout the week.
My daily work means I like to have a well groomed beard in the day and so I tend to apply beard balm in the morning.
But John has an alternative view.
“Many people with beards choose to apply beard balm in the evening as part of their bedtime routine.” John tells me.
Applying beard balm at night gives the product ample time to work its magic, leaving your beard soft and manageable in the morning.
Really, the answer is for you to decide.
For special occasions or events, like weddings or important meetings, I think beard balm is a must.
It ensures that my beard looks its best and stays in place throughout the day which is exactly what I need for special occasions.
Whether I’m going for a suave, well-groomed look or a more rugged appearance, beard balm helps me to achieve the look I want.
Is It OK to Use Beard Balm Every Day?
So should you be using beard balm every day?
The answer, John tells me, “largely depends on your personal preferences and your beard’s specific needs.”
For those with longer, fuller beards, daily use is often necessary to keep your beard in good order.
If you have a shorter beard, you might find that applying beard balm every other day or a few times a week is sufficient.
There are clear benefits to using beard balm every day such as applying consistent moisture and conditioning for your beard, as well as having a well groomed beard.
However, using it too frequently can lead to a buildup of product, making your beard feel greasy or heavy.
It’s essential to strike the right balance and adjust your usage based on your beard’s requirements.
I wrote a whole article on this topic – How Often to Use Beard Balm – My Routine
Today’s Best Selling Beard Balms
So where does this leave us?
In conclusion, beard balm is a remarkable grooming product with numerous uses and benefits.
From taming and styling your beard to nourishing your facial hair and skin, it’s a versatile addition to any grooming routine.
If you’ve been contemplating whether to add beard balm to your grooming arsenal, I encourage you to give it a try.
If you do, here are a couple of my other articles where I review the best beard balms on the market.
- Best Beard Balm for Short Beards – Top 5 Reviewed
- Best Smelling Beard Balm – Choose From Our Top 5
- Best Beard Balm for Hold – Our Top 5 Reviewed
The ability to maintain a healthy, stylish beard is at your fingertips, and beard balm can make the journey enjoyable and rewarding.
I’ll let John have the final word.
Remember, your beard is more than just facial hair – it’s an expression of your identity and self-confidence.
He continues…. “By taking the time to care for it with products like beard balm, you’re not just enhancing your appearance; you’re boosting your self-esteem and leaving a lasting impression on those you encounter. So, take pride in your beard and make it a reflection of your best self.”
I couldn’t have said it better myself.