By now we hope that any self-respecting beard wearer is aware of the many products on the market which can help you keep your beard healthy and in great shape. But you might still be confused as to what exactly the difference is between beard oil and beard balm. By using these properly, you can maintain healthy facial hair and skin, which will help you to keep your beard looking great. Below is everything you need to know about beard balm and beard oil.
What Is Beard Oil?
The basic function of beard oil is to act as a moisturizer for your face and beard. It comes in liquid form and is generally made up of combinations of base and essential oils. Quality beard oil should be made from 100% natural ingredients and stop beardruff by keeping the skin underneath moisturized and help to nourish and soften down the beard hairs, making them easier to manage.
What Is Beard Balm?
Beard balm is essentially a pomade/styling product for your beard to help keep stray beard hairs down, keeping the beard neat and tidy. Its secondary function is to act as a stay in conditioner. In this way it is similar to beard oil, but the difference between beard balm and oil is primarily that it can be used for styling. A traditional beard balm again is made from 100% natural ingredients, usually containing ingredients such as beeswax and Shea butter. The solid ingredients combined with base and essential oils provide a unique product that is in solid form in its container, but when you remove a lick of balm from the container and rub into your hands, it should melt very quickly into a oily paste. In order to apply beard balm properly, you need to get it nice and warm. You can use a beard brush to work the balm further through your beard if required.
As the beard balm cools back to room temperature, it will achieve a semi solid state, which is what provides you with the light/medium hold keeping those stray beard hairs at bay and giving you a lush and dense look to your beard.
Which Is Better, Beard Balm Or Oil?
If it's a case of beard oil vs beard balm, it's difficult to pick a winner. Both have their own plusses and depending on the length of your facial hair, the nature of your beard hair, and to an extent, your lifestyle.
Beard oil can be used on guys with heavy stubble, short beard, full beard and all the way through to a bush beard. Beard oil has very little hold so it won’t keep those strays down but it will add vitality and sometimes a slight sheen. Frequency of use of beard oil depends on your environment.
Guys who are in and out of the surf, in the outdoors, harsh dry environments or even in air-conditioned environments can use beard oil every day to replenish the moisture and nourishment stripped from the beard throughout the day. In humid environments or gents who have more naturally oily skin, we tend to recommend using beard oil 2-3 times a week.
Watch out for beard oils that have synthetics in them. The easy way to tell is an almost sticky consistency when you rub it into your hands.
Beard balm is designed for your beard hairs and it shouldn’t be rubbed into the skin like beard oil. A good beard balm should absorb into your beard throughout the day and shouldn’t leave you with a greasy beard. There are synthetic balms on the market that dry and become crunchy, and these should be avoided.
Can You Use Beard Oil And Balm Together?
Yes, you can definitely use it together as they take care of the two different elements. Beard oil stops beardruff and softens your beard. Beard balm styles your beard keeping those strays down while acting as a stay in conditioner.
Should I Use Beard Oil And Balm?
Although they are similar there is a difference between beard oil and balm, and there are a few good reasons for using both. And that can be either together, or separately, depending on what type of beard the occasion calls for. Used together, you can get all of the benefits of using balm for beard maintenance and all the plusses of beard oil. Oil will hydrate and soften both your beard and your skin, but they can both still dry out during the course of a long day. Beard balm can make a real difference as it locks in the moisture and provides an additional layer of protection from both sun damage and pollution.
If your beard is long or unruly by nature, use beard balm for calming and shaping the beard. The same is true if you're trying to achieve a style which your beard doesn't naturally fall into, but for more extreme looks you might need to utilise some beard wax. It also adds volume if your beard is looking a little flat.
Should I Use Beard Balm Everyday?
We recommend that you use beard balm everyday if possible, and ideally complimented by a beard oil. Apply the beard oil first and allow to soak into the beard hair and skin, and then apply beard balm to just the facial hair to lock in the moisture and conditioning, and protect your beard from the elements and UV.
Of course, we understand that you're busy, so it isn't essential to apply both everyday. However, it's not a huge amount of effort and you should try to at least oil your beard daily if balming is a step too far. By being disciplined with your beard you can keep it looking and feeling great for as long as you need, without ever neglecting the skin underneath.