The Dreaded Beardruff – How to Stop Beard Dandruff


I know we’re getting towards the heart of winter, but let’s keep the snow outside, dudes. You know what I mean - beard dandruff, or beardruff, is one of the many banes of the bearded man’s life.

Especially in colder months, it can come on very quickly and it’s not always easy to get rid of. When you’re rocking a glorious patch of facial hair and run your hand through it, the last thing anyone wants to see is snowy flakes falling to the floor.

So, what is beardruff and how can you combat it? As always, Beardicure has your back. Read on to learn everything you need to know about how to stop beard dandruff and the best beard dandruff treatments.


What Exactly is Beardruff?

The name kind of speaks for itself. Beardruff is beard dandruff, or flaky patches of dry skin that become detached from your face due to dryness and itching.

If you’ve got a sensitive beard and find yourself scratching a lot of the time, you can bet that beardruff is the cause. If you don’t have it yet and are still itching, it’s almost certainly on the way.

beard dandruff

What Causes Beardruff?

Your beards are kept in check by a section of your hair follicles called the sebaceous glands. These glands produce sebum oil, which is essentially what keeps your beard nourished and healthy during the early stages. The amount of oil these glands can produce, however, is finite for most people. That means that as your beard gets bigger, you’re going to need some help from the outside.

Think of your beard as a prized house plant. You buy it, water it a few times a week, and it’s looking great. As it gets bigger, however, if you don’t move it to a bigger pot, it’s probably gonna die. At the very least, it’s going to be looking seriously unhealthy. Your options are to move it to a bigger pot and to water it more frequently. This’ll probably save it from certain death. The pot will be able to retain more water, meaning more water gets to the plant, meaning the plant gets what it needs to remain in good shape.

Sebaceous Gland Diagram

Each beard hair follicle has its own sebaceous gland...

This is exactly the same deal for beards. Each beard hair follicle has its own sebaceous gland, but when it gets to a certain length, there’s no longer enough sebum oil to keep it in good shape. You’ve probably noticed that, after a few weeks, the skin under your beard hair starts to get dry. It’s at this point that you need to look at other options to keep your beard healthy and help out those overworked sebaceous glands.

How to Stop Beard Dandruff

It’s as simple as that - when your skin starts to look and feel unhealthy, or you start to notice white flakes appearing on your shirt, it’s time to explore other options.

The first port of call for many men looking to rid their faces of dandruff seems like a logical one. When you get dandruff from your head hair, you load up on anti-dandruff shampoos such as Head & Shoulders. Sadly - and I’ve fallen foul of this too - it’s probably one of the worst things you can do.

When I grew my first beard, I started to get beardruff after a few weeks. I went to the store, bought some anti-dandruff shampoo and started washing with it daily. After a week, it had gotten worse. Not knowing much about beards at the time, I thought I had some inherent disposition for beard growth and shaved clean. Skin went back to normal, everything was fine. What I didn’t realise, in fact, was that anti-dandruff shampoo is jam-packed with chemicals that your face is going to completely rebel against. Beard dandruff anarchy.

After reading into it more, I learnt about beard shampoos, beard oils, and beard balms, all of which are specifically designed to treat your facial hair and keep it nourished and healthy. A lot of them also smell great, so they’re pretty addictive.

Using Beard Shampoo

When starting out, you shouldn’t have to spend loads on a beard shampoo for it to work. The purpose of beard shampoo is to deep cleanse your beard, without all of the harsh chemicals working their way into your pores and damaging your skin.

Start yourself off with a product like Spartan’s Den - it’s a large bottle, so you’ll get a lot for your money and it’ll eliminate any impurities you have in your skin and beard. Like any beard shampoos that are worth their weight, Spartan’s Den is packed with premium ingredients such as aloe vera and shea, so you’ll be at a great point before even applying any other post-shower products. Trust me, it makes a difference and you’ll be laying the foundations for a beautifully healthy beard.

Using Beard Balm

Both beard balms and beard oils are specifically designed to penetrate your skin, leaving your beard feeling and looking healthier. The good ones are also 100% natural with full ingredients labels, meaning you’ll know that you’re not putting anything dangerous into your skin.

The key ingredients that any decent beard balms include are:

  • Beeswax

Beeswax in itself doesn’t offer a whole load of skin benefits. What it does to, however, is grip like nothing you’ve seen before. For those of you with unruly beards, trust me - you’re going to be grateful for this featuring in the beard balm you’ve purchased.

  • Shea/Cocoa Butter

The next ingredients you’re looking at are shea and cocoa butters. These are usually derived from nuts, but are usually fine to put on your skin. The key benefit of both of these ingredients is that they’re absolutely ideal for adding additional moisture to your skin.

  • Essential Oil

Essential oils are the fun part of the beard balm, as they’re going to make you smell fantastic. Whether you want to smell like a woodsy lumberjack or a basket of tropical fruit, there will be beard balms with essential oils included to make this dream a reality.

  • Carrier Oil

Essential oils are the fun part of the beard balm, as they’re going to make you smell fantastic. Whether you want to smell like a woodsy lumberjack or a basket of tropical fruit, there will be beard balms with essential oils included to make this dream a reality.

If you suffer from sensitive skin, we highly recommend you check out jojoba oil. It’s nature’s cousin to our skin’s naturally-produced sebum oil and is made from trees. This means that your skin is much more likely to take kindly to it.

Beard Oils or Beard Balms?

When it comes to choosing between the two, beard balm is essentially beard’s oil’s big brother. Beard oils commonly share the two key ingredients with it, they’re just a little bit less full-on.

If you’re looking for something lighter in your beard that’s easier to apply, a beard oil is a great idea. They’re often made up of carrier and essential oils too, so if you don’t want the control that comes with the beeswax-based balm, you should check them out.

They’ll get right to the cause of your beardruff dilemma and moisturize your skin to cure it and prevent it from reoccurring. They’re also packed with essential oils so, once again, you can choose your scent. If you fancy becoming a beard oil aficionado, take a look at our article. It’ll give you everything you need to know about them, as well as our top suggestions.

Bearded Man - You Can Do It!

So there you have it - the full lowdown on how you can cure yourself of the dreaded beardruff. Growing a beard is a real challenge and beardruff might make you want to quit and pick up that razor, but stick with it. Now you know how to help yourself, you can pick up some beard shampoo, balm and oil and sit back and relax as your beard grows into its full glory.

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