Beard Oil, the #1 beard product in the World, and often the first one new beard growers choose to invest in.
But what does beard oil do and what are the advantages of using it, and most importantly, is it worth buying beard oil in the first place?
(If you’re simply looking for some good beard oil brands to try, we have ranked the best beard oils in our previous post).
Right of the bat, we can say that beard oil is not absolutely necessary and you can certainly survive without it…
After all, beards have been grown for hundreds of thousands of years (ever since the dawn of the Homo Sapiens as a species, some ~350,000 years ago).
Beard oil is a relatively new invention in comparison, with the earliest known mentions starting around the Victorian Era (1837-1901).
But even though beard oils are not mandatory in your beard growth journey, they are still very helpful, and today we will be explaining what makes them so beneficial.
What Goes into a Beard Oil Bottle?
Beard oil is usually sold in dark 1 oz dropper bottles.
And while the exact oils used can be vastly different, they still always follow similar groupings of ingredients.
Here’s what you typically find in a beard oil bottle…
- Carrier Oils – To nourish and hydrate (Jojoba Oil, Castor Oil, etc).
- Essential Oils – Mainly for scent (Peppermint Oil, Orange Oil, etc).
- Vitamin E Oil – Protects volatile oils from rancidity (lipid-peroxidation).
It’s crucial to understand that not all beard oil ingredients are created equal.
Oils that are mostly saturated or monounsaturated for example, are considered better since those don’t go rancid when exposed to heat, light, and oxygen (your face has all three).
Oils that are mostly polyunsaturated (such as cheap vegetable and nut oils like sunflower seed oil, safflower oil, soy oil, almond oil, etc) are much more volatile and easily go rancid when exposed to oxygen, heat, and light (again, your face has plenty of these).
Sure, a dark glass bottle and the addition of vitamin E can protect these fats from oxidation, but when you apply them out in the open and into your face, it’s only matter of time before they go rancid.
On the flip-side, the ingredients with the least amount of benefits would be the volatile polyunsaturated oils such as hemp oil, sesame seed oil, sunflower seed oil, almond oil, and so on.
And before you say it, yes we do know that some “premium beard oils” have those poor ingredients we just mentioned. Why is that though? It’s hard to say, but we think it’s probably to save on the production costs.
The Benefits of Using Beard Oils
1. Replaces Lost Sebum Oils
Every time that you take a shower or wash your face (even if it’s with a proper beard wash), you will be stripping away some of the natural oils from your beard.
Contrary to what the acne and face wash industry tries to say about sebum oil, it’s actually pretty damn important for skin and beard moisturization.
So then what can you do to mitigate this natural oil loss?
Use beard oil.
In fact, this is the original purpose of beard oils in the first place; to replace the oils you lose while showering or washing the face.
The best beard oil ingredient for this purpose has to be the jojoba oil, as it’s structurally closest to the natural sebum oil produced by the sebaceous glands.
2. Moisturizes the Beard Hairs from Within
On top of replenishing the natural oils, you lose, beard oil also helps add moisture to your face and hydrates the deep skin layers.
Some good ingredients like coconut oil, are also scientifically proven to be able to penetrate the beard hair fibers and nourish from deep within the facial hair strands themselves.
But not all oils have this benefit, sesame seed oil, almond oil, sunflower seed oil, and many other vegetable oils have too high of molecular weight to be able to enter the beard hairs, and therefore can only moisturize the skin.
Is it better moisturizer than beard balm?
Well, we kind of explored that topic in our beard oil vs. beard balm article, and it depends on what purpose you need it.
If you want to get the most hydrating blend possible, consider checking out our DIY beard oil recipes, which includes one specifically for moisturizing benefits.
3. Makes your Beard Softer Naturally
Nobody likes the feeling of a dry barbed-wire beard.
But luckily, many types of beard oils can be used to soften the beard and make it smooth like a pillow.
The second name for beard oil is often beard softener, and not for nothing.
The best way to make your mane softer is to first hop into the shower, wash the beard, gently towel-dampen it, and then immediately apply beard oil.
This helps to lock some of that moisture in and keeps your beard softer naturally for a full day.
4. Can Help Ward Off Beard Dandruff
Ask any women what they hate about beards and they will usually come up with three main things…
- Unkempt beards (those that lack the shaping and styling).
- Beards that look like pubes (long, thin, light, and curly).
- Beards that are full off dandruff (also known as beardruff).
Now I’ll have to admit that beard oil can’t shape your beard, and it definitely won’t help your beard grow so that it would look less like pubic hair…
But it does prevent beard dandruff, very effectively.
Which is one out of three main beard problems taken care off.
5. Reduces Beard Itch
Itchy beard is something people rarely take seriously – especially guys who haven’t grown beards.
But when the itch sets in, somewhere around the 2-4 week mark, you know it’s real, and it won’t stop for weeks unless you start caring for your beard.
One of the easiest ways to start is, of course, the good old beard oil.
We shared a great beard oil recipe just for this purpose earlier…
The Anti-itch Beard Oil Recipe
- 1/2 oz. Meadowfoam seed oil
- 1/2 oz. virgin coconut oil
- 5 drops wheatgerm oil (vitamin E oil)
- 5 drops orange essential oil
6. Makes your Beard Look Better
There are many ways on how beard oil can make your facial hair look better and healthier.
It adds a bit volume to the mane, which creates the illusion of a fuller beard (especially if the bottle has some thick castor oil in it).
Many of the oils also reflect light in various ways, which enhances the natural pigment of your beard, making it look more vibrant and healthier.
And last but not least, beard oil make your facial hair look less dry and brittle because well, it makes it less dry and less brittle.
Beard oil is easily the most sought after beard care product, with millions of guys using it daily, and more than 1,000 different types of beard oils sold on Amazon today.
It has many benefits, such as beardruff prevention, softening, and beard itch relief…
But most importantly, if you want to know the exact answer to the question of;
“What does beard oil do?”
We will have to finish by saying that the main purpose of beard oil is and will always be to simply replace the natural oils you lose after showering or washing the beard.