Beards look awesome. They feel awesome. But they also take maintenance, care and attention to keep in tip top condition.
If your beard is kept well, it’ll reward you. But if it isn’t, it’s going to let you know.
So, when beards get sensitive, itchy and uncomfortable, many men fear the worst – bacterial infection. They jump onto Amazon and begin the hunt for antibacterial beard wash to put their discomfort to an end.
However, do you really need antibacterial beard wash, or is your discomfort caused by other underlying issues? In this article, we’re going to explore the topic, giving you the information you need to make the decision yourself.
Is beard wash necessary?
If you have a beard, then you absolutely need a good beard wash. Why? Because while regular shampoo is good for your head hair, it simply won’t cut it for beard hair.
Regular shampoo is packed full of deep-cleaning ingredients which many scalps can tolerate in moderation. However, the skin on your face is a different issue entirely. As it’s much more sensitive, regular shampoo is likely to dry out the skin underneath your beard, causing beard itch.
This can become an awkward catch-22, where men think their beard is itching because it’s unclean, resulting in more shampoo use, which in turn causing even worse itching.
Beard shampoo is formulated specifically to avoid this. Packed with nourishing ingredients, a good beard shampoo will cleanse the skin beneath your beard without drying it out and causing unnecessary damage.
So, yes, if you’re serious about growing your beard and want to avoid unnecessary discomfort, you need to wash your beard with a quality beard shampoo at least twice a week.
But the real question is – do you need an antibacterial beard wash?
From an evolutionary perspective, beards are designed to stop dirt from reaching the mouth – just like eyelashes do for eyes.
So, it’s uncomfortable but true – beards get dirty. And when you leave a dirty beard unchecked, problems start to arise.
But does that mean you need an antibacterial beard wash? While bacterial infection is always an unpleasant possibility, in our experience (we’re not doctors), it’s unlikely.
If you’re suspecting a bacterial infection to be running rampant in your beard, it could also be a simple case of beard itch.
If you’ve got beard itch, we feel your pain. Beard itch ranges from slightly annoying to absolutely unbearable, and it’s natural for men to think the worst. However, in most cases, switching to a beard wash made with natural oils can help to eradicate itchiness.
Ok, so how do I relieve my beard itch?
There are a number of causes of beard itch. Let’s jump in, drill down to the root cause, and show you how to fix it.
The most common cause of beard itch and flaking is dry skin beneath your beard, which if left unchecked can result in beard dandruff.
Dry skin is a sign of general neglect. It can come down to using a low-quality straightener on your beard – or using it too much. It can also happen as a result of using cheap beard products or a regular hair shampoo instead of bespoke beard shampoo. Beard dandruff can be a shock for many people the first time they see it, and can even be enough to make some men shave their beards entirely.
However, there’s a simple solution to dry skin under your beard – beard oil.
A high-quality beard oil is packed with natural oils designed to soothe beard itch and moisturise and hydrate underlying skin.
Beard oils give your hair follicles everything they need to support healthy beard growth and when combined with essential oils found in many natural scented beard oils can smell incredible.
2. Clogged pores
Your beard and skin can only absorb so much beard oil. Use too much beard oil, or don’t wash your beard frequently enough, and your pores will start to get clogged with excess oil and dead skin cells.
This is characterised by itching, irritation and sometimes inflammation, where your beard will become uncomfortable to touch.
Nobody wants this, and there’s a simple solution. On top of your beard oil and beard wash routine, brush through your beard gently once a day with a boar bristle beard brush. These are relatively inexpensive and well worth the $20/£15 investment.
If you want to take your beard care one step further, beard conditioners provide intense hydration and moisturisation without sitting heavily on the skin, reducing the chance of product build-up.
3. Ingrown hairs
The thicker and coarser your beard, the more likely you are to fall foul of ingrown beard hair. When beard hairs are freshly cut, they grow back sharp and can sometimes curl back into the skin.
The advice for avoiding ingrown hairs is something we stand by – Let it Grow, Bro.® The longer your beard grows, the less likely it is to curl back towards your skin. By using a beard wash alongside beard care products like beard oil, you’ll help soften your beard hairs, reducing the chance of ingrown hairs.