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Best Beard Shampoo: The Complete Guide to Finding the Best Wash for Your Beard

Beard Shampoo

Beards have become very popular in recent years, and if you’re lucky enough to be able to grow a good one, you will need to put some effort into keeping it clean. Beard hair is thicker than regular hair, so you’ll get better results with a special beard shampoo than you would with a regular shampoo.

Luckily for you, several different beard shampoo brands on the market will protect, freshen, and cleanse your facial hair.  Read on to learn more.

Difference Between Hair Shampoo and Beard Shampoo

Note that beard shampoo is often called beard wash.  Now, what is the difference between beard shampoo (or wash) and hair shampoo? This question gets asked a lot. There is actually a considerable difference between the two.

In addition to your beard hair being thicker than the hair on the top of your head, your beard hair is much more exposed to food and liquids.  Quite simply, it can get really dirty — fast.

Another big difference is that your hair shampoo tends to dry skin out.  This isn’t such a problem on your scalp, but dry facial skin is much more of an issue.

Beard wash, however, is designed to work with the natural oils produced by your hair and skin while some brands also add anti-inflammatory and hydrating ingredients.

Hair shampoo often has detergents, like salt, sodium Laureth sulfate, and ammonium lauryl sulfate (in the form of synthetic fragrances). All of these chemicals can strip your facial skin and beard hair from natural moisture, leading to itchy skin and a rough beard.

Most beard shampoos are made mostly from natural ingredients, such as glycerin and essential oils, that help nurture the hair and protect and moisturize the skin.

Beard Shampoo and Beard Dandruff

Beard wash can help with getting rid of beard dandruff. The ingredients in beard wash are blended without any harsh detergents, and if you massage the beard shampoo deep into your beard, you’ll extend the benefits to your skin beneath your beard.

Ultimately, if you deal with beard dandruff, you’ll want to look into purchasing a beard moisturizer to help with the problem.

What Makes a Great Beard Shampoo?

There are several factors that determine the quality of a beard wash.  Factors include the scent of the beard wash, the quality of the ingredients and whether they are natural or not, the container, and the shampoo’s performance.

Review the Back Label

Natural ingredients can make a huge difference between a dry, dandruff-y, itchy beard, and the majestic beard that you’re aiming for. Because of this, you should do some research to find a great beard shampoo.

If a beard wash contains any of the following ingredients, you might want to pass it over for a more natural one:

  • Propylene Glycol (this is antifreeze, like the stuff you put in your car!)
  • Ammonium lauryl sulfate
  • Parfum or synthetic fragrance
  • Sodium Laureth Sulfate
  • Formaldehyde
  • Sodium lauryl sulfate
  • Triethanolamine (TEA) and Diethanolamine (DEA)
  • Sodium chloride

Instead, try to find something that has more natural ingredients, such as essential oils for the scent.


Once you’ve settled on some promising beard wash, try buying a couple of them and testing them out to understand how they perform.  By perform, we mean the results to your skin and beard, the foaming, and the texture of the shampoo.

Good beard wash is thick, forms a thick foam even when using a small quantity, and it should make your beard feel soft and your skin moisturized. You’ll be able to tell if it’s a good beard wash after you shower and go to comb your beard because it should be easy to run the comb through it, and it should be soft to the touch.

Small Bottles

We generally don’t give much thought to the container of the product that we’re purchasing. But the container can have a big impact on the shelf life and quality of the product that’s inside.

The best type of container for beard shampoos that contain natural ingredients is an amber bottle. The amber bottle protects the beard shampoo from deterioration caused by light, as it filters ultraviolet or blue light.

The Scent

Finally, consider the scent of your beard shampoo. Pay close attention to the scent strength of the product you’re putting under your nose.

A beard shampoo should have a subtle scent, so you aren’t overwhelmed by it. Remember, this product will go right under your nose, so a subtle scent that you like is better than an overpowering scent.


Beard wash is an essential part of beard grooming. It’s different than regular hair shampoo because it has a subtler scent and is made with more natural ingredients. It has the power to make your beard not only cleaner but softer and healthier. The packaging is also important.

As you conduct your search, remember these points:

  • Natural ingredients are better than harmful chemicals
  • A beard shampoo in an amber bottle will keep the product safe and increase the shelf life
  • The scent shouldn’t be strong because it’s going right under your nose

If you follow our guide, you’ll be sure to find the best beard shampoo for your needs.

Some Beard Shampoo Recommendations

Here are our recommendations for the best beard shampoos you can purchase online.

Gentlemen’s Beard Beard Wash Shampoo with Argan Oil

Beard Wash

This large bottle of beard shampoo with argan oil can help soothe irritation and eliminate flaking. All you need is just two squirts a day to see a noticeable improvement in the health and appearance of your beard. It also has a fresh and light scent that is not overwhelming.

Viking Revolution Beard Wash Shampoo

Viking Revolution

This beard wash contains both argan and jojoba oils. It can clean and nourish your beard without any irritation or itchiness. It can clean and soften your beard while hydrating the beard and giving it some shine, while it also contains beard oil for deep moisturization and beard growth.

Zeus Beard Wash

This beard wash contains natural ingredients and a sandalwood scent. It is a gentle formula that has been specifically designed for your beard and mustache. It softens the hair with Dragon’s Blood and Green Tea, and it cleanses your beard without stripping it of any of its natural hair oils.

See our beard wash guide for some other beard shampoo recommendations.

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