A beard can be a wonderful thing… it keeps you warm, it boosts your hotness factor and it brings out the man in you (delusion at its best). But do you know what isn’t wonderful? An unruly, untamed, unkempt, mess of a beard. ZZ Top is one thing, but unfortunately … the only place most of us are rock stars is in our own minds. We’ve unpacked everything you need to know about one facial grooming product, beard butter to tame your mane so you don’t have to.
WHAT IS BEARD BUTTER?
As a grooming product, beard butter falls somewhere between a beard oil and a balm – it manages to boast the benefits of both while still standing out on its own. Generally oil-based, beard butter has a consistency that is not quite a solid but not quite a liquid either. Beard butter generally comes stored in plastic or tin containers, like balm or wax, as the consistency is too thick for it to be pumped.
WHAT DOES BEARD BUTTER DO?
Beard butter not only keeps your facial hair well-behaved but also conditions and moisturizes at the same time. Beard butter’s malleable consistency, makes it is easy to spread ensuring full coverage, up to and including the follicles often leaving facial hair more deeply conditioned and soft than with oils as well balms. Because of its hydrating qualities, beard butter helps soothe any irritation that your beard may cause, including itchiness and sensitivity. In terms of hold, it provides a light to medium one that lasts all day.
WHAT SHOULD YOU LOOK FOR IN A GOOD BEARD BUTTER?
Beard butter is a relatively new grooming product and, as such, there aren’t very many out there to choose from. When looking for beard butter, there’s a few things you should keep in mind. Beard butter is generally formulated with both butters and oils: butters form the base (obviously), carrier oils provide hydration and essential oils are added for fragrance and other benefits.
Two of the best bases and ingredients you’ll want to look for are shea butter and/or cocoa butter. Shea and cocoa butter provide hold over wiry beard strands with their light and creamy texture while also providing nourishment and hydration. Another option for a base is beeswax, which provides a stronger hold but less of the hydrating benefits of shea or cocoa butter.
As far as carrier oils are concerned, look for a butter with one or all of the following: castor oil (which prevents dandruff), Vitamin E (which hydrates and nourishes your beard as well as your skin), tea tree oil (which prevents any fungal infections) and argan oil (a common carrier oil which is also fragrant).
In general, when looking for beard butter, keep in mind that less is more – if you have sensitive or breakout-prone skin, then fewer ingredients means less risk of an allergic reaction or a breakout. The same can be said for fragrances and perfumes. There are plenty of natural essential oils that offer a great smelling beard without the irritation.
HOW TO USE BEARD BUTTER
Beard butter may take some time to get used to, especially if you’re traditionally a balm or oil user. Follow these few simple steps below to make the most of your beard butter:
- Rinse your beard and pat it dry. If it’s a wash day, that’s fine too. (It’s recommended that you don’t wash your beard every day. Your beard only needs a deep wash 2-4 times per week).
- Take a fingertip-sized dollop of beard butter in the palm of one hand (left or right, whatever works for you).
- Rub your palms together, coating your hands with the butter.
- Rub and massage your beard (and your face underneath) with the butter. Make sure you are thoroughly massaging every part of your beard to ensure that you get the nourishing and conditioning benefits of the butter.
- While massaging the butter in, be sure to coat the roots of your hair follicles in order to prevent any itchiness or wiriness. This will also promote healthy and moisturized new-beard growth.
- Comb through the beard butter with a wide-tooth comb. This will help disperse the butter throughout the length of your beard. We recommend starting at the bottom of your beard and working your way upwards toward your ears (in both directions). You’ll have to comb it down again after, but this helps to distribute the butter evenly and fully.
- Comb your beard down and style it as you prefer.
- Wash the excess beard butter from your hands.
- Enjoy your tamed, kept, conditioned and hydrated beard!
BEARD BUTTER RECOMMENDATIONS
Maestro’s Classic Aromatic Beard Butter ($23.99)
This beard butter is unusual in that it is water based rather than oil based – meaning it’s lighter than most and is less likely to cause breakouts on acne-prone skin. This butter contains a combination of hydrating and softening ingredients that are also particularly great for preventing beardruff (AKA dandruff of the beard), inclusive of a mix of plant oils from the likes of Coconut, Castor Seed, Wheat Germ, Eucalyptus Leaf, Rosemary Leaf and Juniper Fruit as well as Mulberry Bark Extract.
Maestro’s Classic Unaromatic Beard Butter ($22)
As per our recommendation for sensitive or breakout-prone skin, this fragrance-free version of Maestro’s beard butter boasts all the same benefits of the classic blend, while minimizing the chance of irritation by being fragrance-free.
Wild Willies Beard Butter ($17)
One of our favorite parts of Wild Willies beard butter is that it’s a blend of 13 organic and locally-sourced ingredients – it’s sustainable, earth and skin friendly. Hand-blended to ensure consistent quality, this butter does not have any chemicals, preservatives, fragrances or colors. In terms of your beard, this product is formulated to promote hair growth, moisturize and tame both unruly beard hairs as well as help soothe itchiness your facial hair may cause you.
The Wingman Beard Butter ($18.99)
While most kinds of beard butter have an earthy, musky kind of smell, Wingman’s Beard Butter uses either Citrus, Clove, or vanilla for a lighter, fresher scent. This product is formulated with 100% natural ingredients that provide hydration, conditioning, and control flyaway hairs, including shea butter as well as plant oils extracted from the likes of Coconut, Jojoba, Avocado, Almond & Grape-seed oil. This beard butter’s formula not greasy and will not weigh down your beard.
Detroit Grooming Company Leland Beard Butter ($13.95)
As the most cost-effective option on our list Detroit Grooming Company’s beard butter combines coconut oil with Shea butter to soften and boost moisture. The formula comes scented in the unique Lime & Mango.
Make sure to check out our article, if you’re ever wondered about beard growth oil and was interested in finding out what the deal is.
ANY CONS OF USING BEARD BUTTER?
When it comes to beard butter, the first main issue it is easy to overuse if you are new to facial hair grooming products. Less is more with beard butter, so take less than you think you need – you can always top up if you don’t feel you’re getting the hold or conditioning you’re aiming for.
As beard butter generally comes in larger containers and tins, they aren’t great for traveling and it means you’ll have a lot of leftover, unused butter if you choose one that doesn’t work for you.
Finally, as essential and oils, in general, make a bulk of ingredients if you have sensitive or acne prone skin beard butter might not be the right grooming product for you. If you are still interested in trying it out make sure to focus on your beard away from your hair follicles and not your skin, however, tempting it may be.
Beard Butter is definitely ones of the better options to go for in terms of facial hair grooming and is definitely worth a try. The light and often non-greasy formulas leave facial hair looking natural while still managing to keep things in place.