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Beard balm vs oil, which do I use?
It’s the most common question that we get and that we see in the wild. Go browse /r/beards and look at the questions that get posed, this is at the pinnacle. It stems from the confusion on what constitutes a beard balm or oil and what they each do well.
What’s up with Beard Balm?
Beard balm is similar in function to a pomade in that it includes a thickener (natural though, unlike pomade), mostly being beeswax or cera bellina (refined beeswax). This allows you to style with it and hold loose hairs in place throughout the day without adding weight and bulk.
Where it splits from pomade is the other 85% of the ingredients list. Everything else in beard balm is there to provide your skin moisture and your hair conditioning properties for long-term beard health.
The main ingredients here are shea butter, mango butter and castor oil which provide intense moisture and also coat your hair to trap moisture. A byproduct of this action is the appearance of a thicker beard. The next lineup is avocado oil, sweet almond oil, grapeseed oil and cranberry seed oil. These are all fast to medium absorption oils that penetrate the skin and keep it healthy and hydrated. They also coat and provide nutrients to the hair itself.
If you want to read more about what’s in our beard balm and why it’s the best product for long-term skin and beard health, why it promotes beard growth and why 1 jar is all you need for over a month of use, check out At Ease – Beard Balm or Attention – Beard Balm.
The cool thing about beard balm is, since it’s a solid, you can include solid ingredients like Panthenol (Vitamin B-5) and silk peptides. Both of these can actually penetrate the hair follicle and hair shaft to help rejuvenate your beard over the long term. This helps your wiry mane become a little more tamed. It doesn’t work miracles but it keeps my beard feeling softer than its normal brillo pad coarseness.
So, Beard Oil then?
Beard oil can include many of these awesome ingredients listed above. Here’s the rub, though. Most beard oil companies on the market are there to turn a hyper-margin product into their next get-rich-quick scheme. They leave out the more expensive oils like argan oil or use them in such a small quantity that you get none of the benefits. Most of the oils on the market are a mixture of sweet almond oil and jojoba, both of which are good in their own right, but minimizing it to two ingredients keeps their margins high.
I’ve had a beard oil company owner tell me, to my face, “My cost is under $2 per bottle all in. I flip them for $20 a piece. How’s that for margin?!” At The Bearded Vets, sure we’d like this to help supplement our incomes, but this is a labor of love for the long-run. As a matter of fact, I have a pretty massive announcement coming up next month that will blow your socks off.
Our beard oil will be releasing soon. If you’re interested in trying some before it’s in the wild, fill out our ambassador form and we’ll contact you to set something up. Our beard oil includes a hefty mixture, similar to our beard balm of all the amazing ingredients we’ve come to love for beard and skincare. It also includes BTMS-50, an emulsifying wax that not only penetrates the hair to help repair it, but also makes it easy to wash everything off in your morning shower.
Check out our upcoming article information.
Check out Beard Oil: 7 Things You Need to Know where we talk about 7 interesting things about beard oil.