Beard oils and balms are essential to the upkeep of any half-decent beard, but there’s one product that’s often overlooked by bearded men – beard shampoo.
However, although it’s near-essential to health growth and maintenance of your beard, buying beard shampoo online can get expensive.
So, if you’re looking to save a little cash, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll share our DIY beard shampoo recipe to help you keep your beard clean and healthy on a budget. Once you’ve got all of your ingredients, this recipe will see you saving 3×4 times per bottle of beard shampoo you make. Read on to find out more.
How to make DIY beard shampoo at home
Looking to make beard shampoo and skirt the costs of buying professionally made products? After a quirky birthday gift for the bearded man in your life? We’ve got you covered. Let’s dive into the recipe, as well as the ingredients you’ll need.
First things first – let’s get your ingredients
As with any beard product recipe, it’s important to buy within your budget. While that means you can cut some corners if you’re a little tight on cash, if you can afford to splash out you absolutely should – because ultimately, you’ll end up with a better quality beard shampoo that’s kinder on your beard and the skin beneath.
To follow our DIY beard shampoo recipe, you’ll need the following ingredients and items:
This is the foundational building block of your homemade beard shampoo. Made from natural carrier oils like coconut oil, castile soap is what will take your shampoo from a runny, watery substance to one with a thick, lathering effect.
The regular head hair shampoo equivalent of castile soap is sodium laureth sulphate (SLS). However, SLS is harsh on your skin, which is why hair shampoo can sometimes result in dandruff. The skin on your face is much more gentle, making the soft, cleansing properties of castille soap an excellent alternative.
Carrier oil of your choice (we recommend jojoba oil or sweet almond oil)
We recommend sweet almond oil if you’re on a budget, or jojoba oil if you can afford to splash out a little.
Carrier oils are fruit, vegetable or plant-based oils. They’re commonly used in beard oils to dilute essential oils, but they also come packed with their own range of benefits.
By including jojoba oil in this recipe, you’ll help to:
- strengthen beard hairs so they grow thicker and stronger
- hydrate and condition hair to prevent breakage
- nourish and moisturise underlying skin to cure and prevent beard dandruff
Jojoba oil is incredibly similar to sebum oil – the natural oil secreted by your hair follicles to keep your beard hydrated. For this reason, we’d recommend opting for jojoba oil if you can. However, if budget is an issue, you can save a few $/£ by opting for sweet almond oil instead, which is more readily available and as a result sold at a cheaper price.
Depending on the castile soap you get, it can be quite thick. So, you can decrease the thickness of your DIY beard shampoo by adding a little distilled water.
Unlike regular water, distilled water cleanses your face of impurities and unblocks pores, leaving your skin feeling clean without the chemicals you’d typically find in a head shampoo.
Note: We’d recommend using distilled water, but if you don’t want to splash out, you can use bottled water as an alternative. Tap water can also be used if you plan to get through your beard shampoo within a month or two.
Essential oils (if you want your shampoo scented)
Essential oils are concentrated liquids that are extracted directly from plants.
Individual essential oils are packed full of benefits for your beard, but we’ll be including them in your beard shampoo recipe because they’ll make it smell nice. Simple as.
The essential oils you use are entirely up to you (but make sure they’re safe for cosmetic use – not all essential oils are).
For this recipe, we’ll go with this tried and true essential oil blend that we know and love:
- Morning Boost
- Lime (9 drops) – Buy on Amazon
- Black pepper (15 drops) Buy on Amazon
- Cedarwood (6 drops) Buy on Amazon
Note: this makes enough for ~100ml of beard shampoo.
For this beard shampoo recipe, you’ll also need:
A few extra essentials to make the production easier. We’re talking:
- A mixing bowl – which you can keep separate from your normal kitchen bowls to avoid cross-contamination (and any nasty flavours cropping up in your next kitchen recipe)
- A separate, smaller bowl – for creating your essential oil blend.
- A spatula – for stirring and mixing your shampoo ingredients together
- A pipette/s – in case your essential oils or carrier oils don’t come with them included. You can generally guess measurements for castile soap and your carrier oil, but with essential oils you’ll need to be much more precise.
- A suitable bottle – for storing your finished product – Buy on Amazon here.
So, grab what you don’t have from the above list before you get started.
Alright, handsome – let’s make beautiful beard shampoo together.
And here’s how we’re going to do it. This recipe will make 100ml/3.5oz beard shampoo, which will give you a chance to try your hand at making it and check that you like the fragrance before making it in bulk.
This quantity should last you a few weeks if you use it 1-2 times a week, but if you’re making an unscented version, or are dead-set that the above essential oil blend is for you, you can make larger quantities by multiplying the quantities below.
First, grab your ingredients.
- Castille soap – 60ml/1/4 cup
- Jojoba/sweet almond oil – 1 tablespoon
- 20ml distilled water
- Your essential oil blend
Next, let’s blend them together into some badass, homemade beard shampoo.
- Measure out 60ml/1/4 cup castile soap into your mixing bowl.
- In your separate bowl, measure out your quantities of essential oils and mix them together.
- Add your jojoba or sweet almond oil to your essential oil blend and combine well.
- Pour your essential oil and carrier oil blend into the larger bowl containing your castile soap and combine.
- Add your distilled water and mix thoroughly, until all ingredients are combined well.
- Using a funnel or pipette, transfer your beard shampoo mix into your bottle or container.
And that’s it – you’re done!
Tips for making the most of your beard shampoo recipe
While you need to be mindful of the quantities of essential oils you include in your homemade beard shampoo, we’ve created this recipe to give you a lot of freedom to play around and experiment. Take a look at the following tips to make the most of your new homemade beard wash.
1. Trial different quantities of distilled water
Beard shampoo too thick, or perhaps too watery? Castile soap can be thick on its own, which is why we’ve suggested adding in distilled water to the mix. However, if you find your shampoo is still too thick, or maybe even ends up a little too runny, you’re free to add a little more/less distilled water until you get the consistency you’re after.
Bear in mind that if you’re adding more water, you’ll be diluting your essential oils too, which will result in a weaker overall fragrance. As a result, it’s worth scaling up your essential oil blend. For example, if you ended up adding another 30ml distilled water, just include 1.3x the quantity of your essential oil blend to make up the difference.
2. Test out other essential oil blends
The recipe we’ve included above is a quick, easy and affordable favourite of ours, and is by no means set in stone. If you’ve seen an essential oil blend in one of our homemade beard oil recipes – or have one of your own that you want to try out – go ahead.
If you’re trying a new blend from scratch, it’s important to know the potential side effects and allergens included in each essential oil you pick. Many are safe for use on the skin, and since shampoo is classed as a ‘wash off’ product, instead of a ‘leave-on’ product like beard oil, you can typically include higher concentrations of essential oils.
However, you should still look into the safety profiles of each of your ingredients to make sure you’re not bringing allergens and unwanted side effects into your homemade beard wash.
3. Add in new carrier oils
In this recipe, we’ve suggested using either sweet almond oil or jojoba oil. Both are great for beard hair and the skin underneath, with sweet almond oil being the cheaper of the two.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t test out using different carrier oils, or including a few extras.
On top of jojoba and sweet almond oils, take your beard shampoo to the next level by including a teaspoon or two of:
- Argan oil – packed full of essential nutrients, with anti-inflammatory properties
- Castor oil – leaves beard hairs conditioned without clogging pores
- Fractionated coconut oil – typically used in natural hair conditioners, fractionated coconut oil is great for hair and near-odourless.
How long will my beard shampoo last?
Depending on the length of your beard and how often you wash it, 100ml/3.5oz beard shampoo should last you anywhere from 3-8 weeks.
Based on your washing it twice a week, here’s how long you should expect it to last based on your own beard length:
|Beard Length||Lifespan of your shampoo|
|Short (under 1 inch)||7-8 weeks|
|Medium (~2 inches)||5-6 weeks|
|Long (~3-4 inches)||4 weeks|
|XL (5+ inches)||3 weeks|
Beard shampoo vs beard wash – what’s the difference?
Over the last few years, some beard care brands have opted to market their shampoos as ‘beard washes’ instead. However, unless listed on their websites as such, there typically isn’t any difference between the two. Beard shampoo and beard wash are both the same thing.
Can I use normal shampoo on my beard?
We definitely don’t recommend using normal shampoo on your beard.
Why? Because normal shampoo is made for your scalp, which is much tougher than your face as far as skin goes. While your scalp can take a bit of a beating from the harsh soaps and cleansers in normal shampoo, your face isn’t going to be so happy about it.
Using normal shampoo on your beard is a fast way to get beard itch and dandruff – or make existing beard itch and dandruff worse.
Interested in learning more? Check out our full guide here.
What are the benefits of beard shampoo?
Your homemade beard shampoo will be packed with a bunch of benefits:
- Softens beard hair
- Locks in moisture
- Soothes irritated skin
- Strengthens hair and reduces the chance of breakage
- Gently cleanses and relieves clogged pores