Beard Wash vs. Hair Shampoo | JC Grooming
Jack Scrimshire

Jack Scrimshire

Beard Wash vs. Hair Shampoo: Which is Better?

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A man’s beard demands a lot on personal care. Exposure to the sun, sweat from hard work, or a good work out, dirt, and debris can all take its toll on the quality and health of your beard. Maintaining a clean beard is critical for attaining those coveted beard goals you set for yourself early on in your beard journey. The path to achieving and sustaining a healthy, thick beard is not always without its faults.

If you have been settling for regular hair shampoo as a component of your beard care regimen, you may be stopping your beard from reaching its full potential.

Fortunately, there are beard washes in the marketplace that can help keep you on the right path. These products not only cleanse your beard and the skin beneath, but that serve to rejuvenate your facial hair.

What is the Difference Between a Beard Wash and Hair Shampoo?

You might be wondering what the big deal is about using a beard wash instead of a hair shampoo. Hair shampoo is specifically formulated to cleanse our scalp and the hair on our heads. It is a more concentrated solution designed to lift dirt, excess oils, and product build-up from our scalp and hair.

These products can be harsh and are known to be excessively drying. Applying these products to your face can leave your beard looking and feeling dry. These products can strip your beard, disrupting your facial hair’s overall structure, making them more susceptible to split ends and shedding. The skin beneath your beard can also become irritated and even inflamed. Inflammation at the follicular level can be extremely disruptive to your beard’s growth and may even cause hair to fall out.

Beard washes, on the other hand, are gentle on your face and beard. Beard washes are able to leverage your natural sebum oils to aid in the hydration and anti-inflammatory process.

Benefits of Using Beard Washes

So far, we have highlighted that hair shampoos are too harsh for your face and beard and hint at the benefits of using beard washes. It is time to go all-in now and examine the unique benefits of using a beard wash.

Softens Beards

Beard washes not only cleanse your skin and facial hair, but they help to soften your beard. Beard washes often contain ingredients such as shea butter, essential oils, and vitamins that help hydrate the beard and leave it feeling smooth.
It is worth mentioning more than once that proper use of beard washes will not strip away your natural sebum oils, which are vital for keeping your skin and beard moisturized. Not only does this help to keep your beard feeling soft, but it also helps to reduce the amount of beard oil and other beard products necessary for beard care.

Beard Washes Can Help to Treat Beard Dandruff

Beardruff occurs because of the build-up of dead skin cells. Those dead skin cells leave little white flakes everywhere, including your beard, shirt, pillow, and places where you least expect it.

Beardruff is particularly prominent during the winter months. Winter months are overly drying for your skin and beard and often requires you to adopt a beard care regimen for colder months. Wind, indoor central heating, and colder temps all contribute to dry skin and hair. This event, coupled with using the wrong products to cleanse and moisturize your beard, can contribute to an accelerated flaking process.

Consistent use of beard washes and beard oils can prevent and treat beard dandruff or beardruff. Beard washes a gentle way to cleanse the skin beneath your beard, but it functions as an equally gentle exfoliant that helps remove excess skin cells.

Beard Wash for Itchy Beards

Beard wash contains natural ingredients that help to treat beard itch. Beard itch tends to emerge during the early stages of growth. Fungal and bacterial infections, ingrown hairs, beard acne, and poor hygiene habits also contribute to beard itch.

Beard washes provide relief for itchy beards. Many contain a unique blend of ingredients that enable beard washes to reduce skin irritation, function as an antibacterial agent and prevent various acne forms.

How to Use a Beard Wash

Using a beard wash is a relatively easy process. However, too much of a good thing can dry your beard out. Too infrequent of an application can lead to product build-up and accumulation of dirt and debris.

Let’s take a moment to examine the best approach for using a beard wash.

How Often Should I Use a Beard Wash

You should aim to wash your beard twice a week. Based on how your beard responds to the frequency you are using a beard wash, you may find that you need to use a beard wash more or less frequently. For example, if you are an active guy who spends a lot of time working in the sun or actively engaged in sports, you may have to wash your beard daily. If you are a guy who mainly works from home or finds himself behind a desk most days of the week, you may only need to use a beard wash twice a week.

Application of Your Beard Wash

There are two schools of thought when it comes to using your beard wash. If you decide to apply it in the shower, you should wash the hair on your head first. This step ensures that you not only remove dirt, debris, and oil build-up from your beard but that you also wash away any hair shampoo remnants from your beard that may have run down your face while washing your beard.

Another benefit of using your beard wash in the shower is that the steam serves a dual role. It helps to open your pores, and the moisture from the steam helps to naturally hydrate your beard.

The second school of thought is that you wash your beard over the sink. This process ensures that, again, there are no influencing factors in the shower that might affect your beard.

Step 1: Wet the Beard with Water

Dampen your beard with water. Place a dime to nickel size amount of beard wash into the palm of your hand. Rub your hands together to create a lather over your hands and fingers.

Step 2: Massage the Lather into Your Beard

Once you have a lather, massage this lather into your beard. Take action to ensure that you are massaging the beard wash into your facial hair and applying this product on the skin beneath the beard. Remember, your goal is to remove those dead skin cells, dirt, debris, and oil build-up. Massaging the skin beneath the beard is essential for cleansing and beard growth. Massaging those beard follicles helps to stimulate blood flow to the region. Blood flow is critical for beard growth. Your beard follicles heavily rely on vital nutrients like iron, zinc, magnesium, and antioxidants that are transported by the blood to your follicles to sustain healthy beard growth.

Without adequate blood flow, a thinning beard or patchy beard can emerge.

Step 3: Allow the Beard Wash to Sit

You might be ready to immediately rinse that beard once the lather gets going –but not so fast. Allow your beard wash to sit for a couple of minutes. Allow your beard to soak in these powerful ingredients.

Step 4: Rinse Your Beard Thoroughly

Rinse your beard thoroughly, then pat dry.

Step 5: Apply Your Beard Oil

You want to apply moisturizing beard oil to your beard while it is still damp. Doing so will help to seal in moisture and provide a protective layer.

Apply 3-5 drops of oil or a dime to a nickel-size amount of beard oil into the palm of your hand. Rub the palms of your hands and fingers together to spread the oil. Next, apply the beard oil by massaging the beard through the bottom of your beard, stroking forward towards the front. Apply oil to the sides and front of your beard. Don’t forget your mustache!

Use a beard comb to help distribute your beard oil evenly.

Optional Step 5 (Alternative): Apply Your Beard Balm or Beard Butter

If using a beard balm, scoop your beard balm out with a finger to gather a nickel-size amount of beard balm. Place the finger-size amount of beard balm into the palm of your hand. Rub your hands together with the beard oil and beard balm mixture, spreading it evenly over your palms and fingers. Massage this blend into your beard, stroking forward towards the front. Apply oil to the sides and front of your beard. Take care of your mustache, guys!

Finally, another alternative beard care regimen is to use a beard butter after applying your beard oil. Beard butter offers another path to moisturizing, conditioning, and styling your beard.

In Closing

In closing, beard washes are a necessary component for your beard care regimen. The frequency in which you use a beard wash may differ from the routine of another guy. At a minimum, set a target to wash your beard twice a week. Do not substitute a good beard wash with a hair shampoo. Those facial hairs deserve better than a product that will strip them and create a rough beard situation for you or a beard rash for your significant other.

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“Man’s life is independent. He is born not for the development of the society alone, but for the development of his self.”

-B.R. Ambedkar