Category: Beard Care

Which is the Best Beard Balm? Here’s Our Review of the Top 3 Choices

Hey there, fellow bearded bro. We know how hard it can be to pick out the right beard products for you, especially since the market has been flooded in the past 6 months by start-ups looking to capitalize on the male grooming boom.

I know I’ve had some disappointing experiences with beard balms from smaller companies that have been sticky, poor-functioning or just all-round funky smelling (in a bad way). That’s part of the reason why I wanted to write this review – to give you dudes a heads-up on some of my personal favorite beard balms.

In case you haven’t used them before, I’m also going to give you the lowdown on beard balms in general, so you’ll know what you need to know to get the maximum benefit from them.

What is Beard Balm?

Beard balms are the older brother of the beard oil. They’re a thicker substance that are designed to tackle three key problems that arise with beard-growers:

  • Coarse hair
  • Lack of vitality
  • The dreaded beardruff (it’s awful, isn’t it?)

On top of those, a half-decent beard balm will also give you the benefit of added control. This is especially useful if you’ve got a longer beard that goes absolutely wild without any grooming products in it.Beard Balm - Before and After

Before vs. After using Beard Balm

Beard balms are typically made up of the following ingredients, each of which provide a vital function to satisfy the ever-increasing standards of the modern male:

Carrier Oils

Carrier oils are one of the most important ingredients to any good beard balm and all of the best beard balms will have it in abundance. When your beard gets to a certain length, your hair follicles run out of something called sebum oil. Sebum oil is produced by the sebaceous glands in order to keep your hair hydrated. Although everyone has different sebum oil-producing capabilities, the gland’s abilities are finite. That means, sooner or later, beardruff is going to come a’knockin’.

When you reach this point in your beard-growing journey, a product with carrier oils in it are your best bet to retrieving beard health. They’re nature’s equivalent of sebum oil and will do a fantastic job at revitalising your beard and keeping beardruff at bay.Carrier Oils

Some Popular Carrier Oils

Some of the more popular carrier oils that you may have heard of include jojoba (actually pronounced ho-ho-ba, apparently) and argan oils. Both of these are derived from plants, so you don’t have to worry about what you’re putting on your face. If you’re undecided between the two, it’s probably best to stick to jojoba oil, though, as this is the closest to sebum oil and your face will give it a better reception.

Shea/Cocoa Butters

Shea and cocoa butters are included in many of the best beard balms to make them easier to handle. On top of that, they both boast beautiful scents that’ll further add to your beard balm experience.

Since a beard balm is typically closer in consistency to a pomade, shea and cocoa butters will make it easier to spread throughout your beard, so you can reap maximum benefit.

Essential Oils

Essential oils are more confusing than you’d think they’d be, so if you don’t know much about them, you’re going to be best off choosing them based on how they smell. Essential oils are basically the ingredient that adds the smell to your balm – it’ll give you that initial punchy aroma, then gradually subside.

If you’re a beard product veteran, it’s well worth looking into the added benefits that essential oils can provide. For example, a beard balm that includes tea tree oil can be a fantastic way of treating acne. I’m sure most of us know that getting a spot underneath your beard is far from the nicest of sensations.Essential Oils

Essential Oils and their Healing Properties (Source)

BeesWax

Having beeswax in a beard balm is going to help to tame your unruly beard, by adding just enough hold into the mix. By using a beard balm with beeswax in it, you can rest assured that your beard will stay in the same position as it was when you left the house in the morning.

I know that I find myself constantly touching my beard to make sure I don’t have any ridiculously out-of-place hairs. One of my biggest issues is the left side of my mustache, where the hairs point upwards, giving me a strangely curious facial expression. Needless to say, beard balms have seen an end to that.

How Do You Apply Beard Balm?

Applying beard balm is pretty much as you would think – warm it up, get a bit on your hands and run it through your facial hair. Even if you’ve done it before, though, it’s always a good idea to brush up on the process.

Firstly, you’re going to want to get your thumbnail and scrape out roughly that amount of it. If you’ve got a longer beard, you might need to take a bigger scoop, but you’ll get a feel for how much you need. As always, it’s better to take too little and add more, than take too much and end up with a super greasy face.

After doing this, rub the beard balm into the palms of your hands until it’s evenly distributed. You don’t want to be left with any lumps, because these are going to look pretty weird if they find their way into your beard.

Start rubbing the beard balm into your beard, working from a top-to-bottom fashion. Once you’ve done this, switch it around and go from bottom to top. This will make sure that it’s spread out well.

The final step to applying beard balm is grabbing your beard brush and combing it through. After that, you’re done!

The Best Beard Balms

Take a look at the list below to see our favorite 3 beard balms. These have been selected based on online customer reviews, as well as personal testing over an extended period of time.

Honest Amish Beard Balm

Honest Amish have created a solid reputation for themselves over the past few years, and it’s no wonder. All of their products, including their raved-about beard balm, are created from scratch in their small workshop in Pennsylvania.

Honest Amish offers a beard balm at an incredibly affordable price and you get great value for money. As an entry-point into the beard-grooming world, I’d certainly recommend this beard balm.

One of the downfalls of the product is that they’re not overly open in disclosing the ingredients that go into their balm. Sure, they’re ticking a lot of boxes, but when you’re putting something on your face, you want to be sure that you’re not using filler chemicals that could cause more harm than good in the long-run.

Although it’s understandable that they’d want to protect their family recipe, I’m also in the camp of disclosing what people are getting for their money. Don’t get me wrong, though, Honest Amish does a fantastic job of keeping your beard hair soft and healthy and eradicating b eardruff. It’s also excellent value for money.

The scent that Honest Amish produces is hard to pin down, as they’re not overly keen on disclosing the exact essential oils that they use. Some people say it’s citrusy, with undertones of licorice. I personally get wood and cocoa butter from it.


Virtu beard balm by Liberty Premium Grooming Co.

With easy application, the Virtu beard balm by Liberty Grooming Co. makes an excellent addition to any beard-lover’s product shelf. The subtle aroma also means it’s a great choice for beginner balm buyers who don’t quite know what scent they like.

Once again, however, Virtu beard balm doesn’t disclose the essential oil ingredients. If you’re allergic to any facial products, it might be worth giving this one a miss. Despite the fact that it’s really rare, if you get an allergic reaction from this product, you’re going to have a tough time narrowing down which oils to avoid in the future.

This balm has worked wonders for me as far as keeping my skin hydrated is concerned, but if you have a longer beard that’s typically unruly, Virtu beard balm might not be the one for you.


Smooth Viking Beard Balm

Many men pass this beard balm by, put off by the basic looking tin container. I’ve tried this product though and let me say, that’s a mistake. If you look past the tin, you’ll discover an incredibly high quality and affordable beard balm that’ll satisfy all of your grooming needs.

Designed for both shaping and controlling your beard, the extra beeswax content might be too much for some men, but if you’ve got a longer beard, Smooth Viking beard balm is definitely the one for you.

Boasting all-natural ingredients such as argan oil, avocado oil and mango butter, this balm is as good for your beard as it is for the environment. Despite being thick and somewhat harder to apply than the balms above, Smooth Viking beard balm does a fantastic job of both softening and conditioning beard hair, ensuring that it stays in top condition.

Categories: Beard Care, Beard Products

Fixing that Patchy Beard – Here are a Few Things You Should Try

It’s a fashion statement. It’s a lifestyle. It’s the final milestone for many a’males quest for manhood. It’s growing a beard.

Unfortunately, however, growing a beard isn’t always as easy for some as it is for others. Some are cursed with genes that produce patchy beard.

When you’ve got your heart set on growing an impressive bushy beard, regardless of your motivation behind it it’s heartbreaking to look at yourself in the mirror a couple of weeks on and see massive gaps where hair should be.

It isn’t the end of the road, however. Although not all beards are born equal. For every Chuck Norris beard out there, there are also hundreds of sad-looking Keanu Reeves stubble patches. If you find yourself on the patchier end of the facial hair scale, don’t give up hope. As your hormones advance, growing a beard will actually get easier the older you get. That doesn’t mean you’re going to get a badass beard overnight, but it does mean that you should definitely persevere. For the meantime, work with what you’ve got and show a bit of determination.

Grow it Out

If you’re already upset about the lack of hair on your face, the chances are that you’ve never given your beard the chance to show its true colours. More often than not, first-time growers will see those patches pop up and completely give up hope, when in fact, very few men can grow equally-dispersed facial hair straight away. Growing a beard is about dedication and commitment, so give it time.

Patchy Beard Styles

Give this a go – next time you look in the mirror and feel the urge to dive for the razor, don’t do it. Instead, step away and give it another week before checking back in. One useful motivational device I’ve found is a day tracker app for my phone. By downloading this and setting the day you stopped shaving or the day you’re next going to trim, you have a reminder of your progress that slaps you in the face every time you unlock your phone. Trust me, it’s super useful.

First things first – when growing a beard, you need to give yourself at least a month before touching that razor. It’ll be tough. It’ll take commitment. And by God, it’ll be really damn itchy. Regardless of these points though, you need to stick with it. After you’ve given your beard a month to flex its hairy muscles, take a look in that mirror and see if you need to tidy up. If it’s looking scruffy, now’s the time to tidy up that jaw and cheek line. Just make sure you don’t do it before.

Keep it Brushed

This might sound strange for a patchy beard, but stick with me and hear me out here. I’m not saying that you should spend 20 minutes running a brush through your beard before bed, but you should definitely keep it under control. Regardless of whether you’ve got an unruly beard or not, brushing will keep your beard in check and even influence the direction of growth.

brushing a beard

If you’re looking to cover up those patches, brush against the grain to develop a fuller, bushier effect overall. If you’re brushing your beard regularly, make sure you invest in some conditioner or beard oil. This will make sure that you don’t damage the underlying skin by going too hard. If you’re looking to buy a beard brush, make sure you avoid plastic and metal as core materials. Although they can look pretty cool, they can also scratch away at your skin and cause beardruff.

Since that’s one of the main things that you’re trying to avoid, you should definitely invest in a wooden beard comb with 100% boar bristle. This will be firm enough to fight its way through stubborn hairs, but also gentle enough to not upset your skin.

Beard Supplements – Worth it or Not?

Beard supplements have become really popular over the past few years, so I’ve written quite a lot about them. There are mixed opinions on whether they’re worth it or not, and my overall opinion is this:

If you can already grow a fairly decent beard, supplements such as Beard Grow XL and Biotin will make it grow fuller and faster. If you’ve been running the same no-shave pencil mustache for 6 months, however, they’re not going to help you out too much. The controversy from these supplements stems from the fact that they claim to guarantee beard growth. Sadly, this simply isn’t true. Beard supplements like Beard XL definitely help to promote growth, but they aren’t a magical cure for a baby-smooth face.

Vitabeard
Beard Czar

When using a beard supplement, you should also manage your expectations. No supplement, no matter how well marketed or highly-priced, is going to give you a beard overnight. If you’ve got your heart set on using a supplement, I say go for it. Just make sure that you leave it a good 3 weeks before judging its effects.

As well as that, on top of potentially helping your beard growth, these supplements are basically a nuclear bomb of vitamins. Even if they don’t help your hair growth too much (which they should, even if only slightly), you’re going to reap some fantastic health benefits overall. You’ll feel more awake, more alert, and your skin will probably look brighter as well.

Facial Hair Transplants

Probably worth avoiding this one, dude. Unless Keanu Reeves is reading – you’ve got the money for it man, go for it. P.S., well done for beating Will Smith to the Neo role in The Matrix.Keanu Reeves

Keanu Reeves

Embrace the Patchiness

Whilst you’re on your quest for developing a full-on beard, you might as well embrace the patchiness. Depending on what style you settle for, a patchy beard can actually end up looking quite good. Many men struggle with growing facial hair around the neck and cheek areas. If you’re one of those dudes, a goatee + neckline beard might actually work quite well for you. If in doubt, pop into your local barbers/beard stylists and ask them for their opinion.

In the meantime, be sure to follow us on social media! That way, when new articles drop about the latest beard styles, you’ll be the first to know.

We also run exclusive competitions and giveaways over on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages, so be friendly and come say hi!

Categories: Beard Care

Minoxidil Beard Treatment – How Well Does Minoxidil Work?

For many men, a beard is a rite of passage to masculinity. Unfortunately, it’s also not always easy for everyone to grow one. As a result of the rise in beard popularity and the demand for dudes to have bushy beards on their faces, a whole host of products have hit the market.

The majority of these fall under the category of beard care products, but there’s also a section of the market dedicated to those males who have a harder time growing fuller, thicker facial hair.

If you’re part of that group who have a tough time growing your beard out, it could be well worth your time checking out some of the options there. The most popular ones on the market are Vitabeard and Beard Czar, but a more traditional contender by the name of Minoxidil has also entered the arena.

When concerning head hair, Minoxidil is often referred to as Rogaine, as it’s the primary ingredient within that product. It has, however, also shown incredibly promising results for those looking to grow out their beards. From a variety of online reviews, men are claiming to actually be seeing the results. That’s a really promising start.

So it’s pretty clear that Minoxidil gets the job done. In fact, it’s been scientifically proven that Minoxidil can help to influence growth spurts of hair in males, which is great news for all of you dudes who suffer from patchy beards.

minoxidil

That’s not all you need to know, though. In this article, we’re going to cover all of the information surrounding Minoxidil, including potential side effects, how you can maintain a healthy beard during treatment, as well as some other plausible alternatives.

How Well Does Minoxidil Work?

I’ve never tried Minoxidil, mostly because I’ve never needed to. Despite my shortcomings, I’ve always been able to grow a strong beard very quickly. From what I’ve heard from friends and researched online though, it’s pretty damn clear that Minoxidil beard treatment works.

What I will say, however, is that you need to patient with the amount of time that it takes to work. A lot of online reviews are from customers who’ve purchased the product, taken it, and expected to wake up the following morning looking like some kind of bearded Rapunzel. If you can find any product in the world that does that, let me know, because we’ll make some serious money together.

When taking Minoxidil beard treatment, you shouldn’t prepare yourself to wait 5 days. In fact, you shouldn’t even expect to see explosive results within 5 weeks. Studies have shown that men experience the biggest growth spurts after 6 months of continuous Minoxidil usage. Sure, it’s a long-term commitment and you’ve got to be prepared to take regular applications, but you’ll most likely see results that you’re happy with.

Eric Bandholz of BeardBrand has made a short but sweet video about using Minoxidil for beard growth. You can check it out below

Can You Get Minoxidil to Work Faster?

If you’re not too happy with the idea of sitting around for the best part of a year waiting for a beard to appear on your face, you’re not alone. Fortunately, there are a few tricks you can have up your sleeve to boost the speed at which Minoxidil works.

Firstly, the easiest is going to be to buy a higher-concentrate of Minoxidil. The product typically comes in two versions – 2% and 5%. If you want dramatic effects quicker, it might be worth you picking up the stronger version of Minoxidil.

How to Apply Minoxidil

Once you’ve picked up your Minoxidil, you’re going to want to start the application process as quickly as possible. To do this, you’ll need to get the pipette included with the bottle and apply it to your face twice a day – in the morning and in the evening.How to Apply Minoxidil

Start rubbing the product into the base of your hair follicles, and work your way out to the outer hairs.

To apply Minoxidil, you’ll need to start rubbing the product into the base of your hair follicles, gradually working your way out to hit the outer hairs. Getting it into the roots of your hair is a key part of the process, as it’s what’s required to get Minoxidil absorbed and start working on a thicker, fuller beard.

Does Minoxidil Have Any Side-Effects?

As with the vast majority of available drugs on the free market, Minoxidil does come with a few side-effects. Although they’re not prominent, we strongly advise that you read up on them to see if they could have an adverse effect on you.

Some of the more common side-effects of Minoxidil include increased or irregular heartbeat, itching and irritation (due to hair follicles becoming dry), redness, and the occasional bout of weight gain. I’m by no means a doctor so make sure you read the labels carefully, but in my opinion, those side-effects seem pretty manageable considering the end prize.

If you shed a bit of hair, don’t worry…

This might sound a bit alarming at first, but it shouldn’t be a cause for concern. As previously discussed, this isn’t an overnight treatment – it’s something that’s going to take several months to achieve and your body’s going to need to prepare for this. For that reason, you might notice a couple of instances of shedding, where hair falls out of your beard. This is completely natural and is just your body’s way of preparing for continuous future hair growth. Rogaine even address it on their website:“Rogaine products stimulate hair follicles to shift from the resting phase to the growth phase. Thus, it is not uncommon to see a temporary increase in shedding during the first 2 weeks using Rogaine products. This occurs in some people as the new hair pushes out the older hairs, when the hair follicle shifts into the growth phase.”

Keeping a Strong Beard Whilst Using Minoxidil

When growing a beard, it’s essential that you take care of it properly. This is no different when using Minoxidil – in fact, it’s even more important.

Beard oil is one of the best ways that you can prevent and treat beardruff. Beardruff is caused by your hair follicles running out of the naturally produced sebum oil that keeps your beard in top condition. When using Minoxidil, your hair is going to grow faster than normal, meaning your hair follicles will run out of sebum oil more

One of the most prominent ingredients in beard oils are carrier oils, which are very chemically close to sebum oil. By washing your beard and applying beard oil daily, you’ll be able to keep it in top condition. Trust me, it’ll be incredibly effective at treating your beardruff and it’ll even give your beard a lovely, healthy sheen to it.

What Else Can You do to Accentuate Minoxidil’s Effects?

There are a couple of other things you can do to help give your Minoxidil beard treatment that added boost. If you’re looking to get your beard thicker, consider the following:

Up Your Protein Game

As well as being a key building-block for muscle mass, protein also helps hair follicles to grow. If you work out, you might have noticed an upturn in your beard growth. Some people think that this is down to testosterone, when studies have actually shown that testosterone doesn’t have as much influence as previously thought.

protein powder

Your hair follicles are some of the fastest growing cells in your body, so by eating protein, you’re going to speed up their growth time.

Do Your Best to Remove Stress

Stress is your body’s non-specific response to basically any demand made upon it (thank you, college Psychology class). For some, it kicks you into gear when you’ve got a deadline looming over your shoulders, for others, it just keeps them awake at night.

Either way, stress isn’t great for you if you’re trying to grow a beard. It’s going to hamper your facial hair growth, so you won’t see the results that you want to. One great way to destress is to work out, so if you’re not doing that already, give it a go. I also tried out yoga for a little bit, but I’ve got a hardwood floor in my apartment and it made my knees hurt (I did it once then quit).

Get Some Rest

Sleeping

To get the most out of Minoxidil beard results and your general beard-growing escapades, you need to ensure that you’re getting your 8 hours of sleep every night. With all of life’s trials, tribulations and constant commitments, this is a tall order for most people. Getting a full 8 hours every night will make you feel good all-round though, so give it your best shot.


I hope you’ve found this article useful. We’ll be covering more and more beard growth products over the coming months, so stay tuned for the latest installments!

Also, a word of caution – although the plethora of positive online reviews have led me to believe that Minoxidil is worth your time, always consult with your doctor before trying out any new medicines. After that, stay strong, live well and as always, happy growing dudes!

Have you had an experience with Minoxidil that you want to share with us? Let us know how you got on in the comments box below!

Categories: Beard Care, Beard Products

The Beardicure Guide on How to Shape a Beard

As supporters of charitable donations and fundraising, we at Beardicure are proud to be taking part in No-Shave November. If you’re doing the same – or maybe participating in Movember instead, good on you.

For some, No-Shave November involves a period of continuous growing. During this time, some people decide to shave and others don’t. If there’s one thing for certain, though, it’s that the end of November is going to leave you with a serious need for a good trim. That isn’t always as easy as it may seem, however.

Although the safe bet is to book in an appointment at your local barbers and have them carve a glorious style into your face, why not try doing it yourself? With a little bit of effort, you’ll be boasting an impressively bushy, beautiful beard style in no time. You’ll also save yourself $20+ dollars on a professional appointment, which is always a good thing. Read on to find out what you need to know about how to shape a beard.

What Will You Need?

Although it can be done with scissors, leaving yourself with that as your only piece of beard-trimming kit is going to put a lot of pressure on you. One slip and, well, you’re going to be left in a pretty sticky situation.

For this reason, we recommend that you invest in a decent beard trimmer. It’ll come with a length guard, meaning you don’t have to worry about shaving too short. With this, you’ll be able to set a longer length and gradually work down until your beard is the size you want it to be. They don’t have to break the bank, either. A model such as the Philips Norelco is a great choice – just look how reasonably priced it is.Philips Beard Trimmer

Philips Norelco Beard Trimmer

Shaping A Beard

After weeks – or maybe even months – of painstaking growing, the time has come to shape your beard into your dream style. This is a great point to be at, because it’s probably the most satisfying part of the growing process. Here’s what you need to know about shaping a beard:

1. Find Your Face Shape

Before you start trimming away, work out what kind of shape your face is. Why? Because it has a direct impact on which styles you’ll nail, and which styles you’ll fail. This is really worth doing, because there’s nothing worse than finishing beard grooming and realising you’ve totally made the wrong call.

If you’ve got a wider face, you won’t go wrong with a thicker, wider beard. If you’ve got a narrower face, however, a full beard might look a little overpowering.

Male Face Shape

2. Compare Your Beard and Head Hair

Depending on what beard style you’re looking to nail, you should bear your head hair in mind. If you’re aiming for a longer beard but have much shorter head hair, you could run the risk of looking a bit weird – kinda like a lego man with a facial hair strapon.

This is the same case vice-versa, however. Although some men can pull it off, longer hair and a shorter beard don’t always work well together. If you’re unsure of where to start, symmetry is always a good base point. Try to leave your beard hair at an equivalent length to your head hair and you won’t go too far wrong. If you’re concerned of messing the style up completely, start at a longer length and work yourself down.

3. Trimming

There are a couple of base rules when it comes to trimming your beard, but overall it’s a pretty easy process. The main aim of trimming is to remove any excess hair that makes your beard look bulky and unstyled, so find the length you want the longest part of your beard to be and set your trimmer to that.

How to Use a Beard Trimmer

After trimming the whole of your beard at the longer length, set your trimmer to a slightly shorter size to add in a gradient. Whether you want to do this or not is dependent on your particular chosen beard style, but it’s the way I like to do it. Trim around the upper cheek line and lower neckline of your beard at this shorter length and you’ll make it look less chunky and far better styled.

As mentioned above, if you haven’t got a beard trimmer to hand and are running low on time, you can always try the comb and scissors approach. You can achieve this by running a comb through your hair to the length you want trimmed, and slowly and gently working the scissors through it. Remember to be thorough and maintain the length throughout, however, or you could end up with a patchy style that’ll take weeks to even out.

4. Styling Your Sideburns

The part where your beard joins your head hair can be difficult to get right. The key to this is figuring out where the hair on your hair and your beard both begin and styling around this. The easiest way to make your sideburns look neat and tidy is by adding a taper. Gradually increase the length of your beard as you work down your sideburns and you’ll be left with a much smoother style.

Side Burn Styles

5. Styling Your Neck

When you look in the mirror, the neckline of your beard isn’t your main focus. It is, however, really important that you get it right. Although some men like to go for the rugged, natural look, there’s nothing good about the neckbeard style. Over styling your neckline, however, can also be a mistake, so it’s important that you find the right middle ground.

Typically, your beard’s neckline should extend about 1-1.5 inches down from your ear and curve at the same distance around your jawline

6. Working Around the Lips

When it comes to beard styling, the lips are dangerous territory. Cut them too short and you’re going to be left with the beard equivalent of a bad bowl-cut. Leave them too long and you’ll never hear the end of it from the women in your life.

For most styles, the length of your mustache should be around the same as the length of your beard, if not a little longer and the hairs shouldn’t curl around your lip. You can tackle these with an affordable pair of rounded scissors – the same that you might use for trimming nasal hair. Comb your mustache down and pick off any stray, overhanging hairs. Be sure to maintain a relaxed facial expression, however, as if you don’t you could end up taking off much more hair than you planned on.

Categories: Beard Care, Beard Styles