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Beard oil is a product that people use to moisturize their beard hair and the skin underneath. Some people also think that it stimulates beard growth. Does beard oil work? Read on to find out, but we will say up-front that if you’re trying to grow out your beard, then you may want to consider using beard oil.
Does Beard Oil Work?
While there have been no formal scientific studies to support the theory that beard oil helps with hair growth, there is some anecdotal evidence. In truth, beard oil probably works most effectively as a moisturizer. That said, having moisturized skin may help to promote hair growth by providing a healthy growth environment.
Beard oil contains several ingredients and nutrients known to promote a healthy hair growth environment, including vitamin E. Beard oil consists of two types of oil – carrier oil and essential oil. Carrier oil makes up 90% of most beard oils.
Manufacturers usually produce carrier oil from seeds and nuts. Typical examples of carrier oils include jojoba oil, argan oil, sweet almond oil, and grapeseed oil. These oils are used in many health and beauty products besides beard oil (shampoos, moisturizers, etc.) because they are hydrating for skin and hair follicles.
The other 10% of beard oil is usually a blend of different essential oils. These oils provide fragrance, and some may promote hair growth. For example, ylang-ylang, bay leaf, and others high in antioxidants.
Promotes Healthy Beard Growth
So, beard oil is made up of ingredients that may promote hair growth by providing a healthy growth environment, but how does this work? It’s thought that healthy, moisturized skin optimizes the growth rate of hair. The science behind this is related to the sebaceous glands. Every one of your beard hair follicles has a sebaceous gland, and these glands produce an oil called sebum. As your beard hair grows, it requires increasingly more sebum oil to coat the follicle and keep the skin underneath nourished.
Once your beard reaches a certain length, the sebaceous glands are unable to produce enough sebum for the hair. Supplementing the sebum with beard oil provides the extra moisturization needed for a healthy hair growth environment. Massaging the oil into your skin also may help to stimulate the hair follicles and promote growth.
Moisurizing Your Facial Skin
If the skin underneath your beard doesn’t receive enough moisture, then it will become dry and flaky (these flakes are also known as “beard-druff”). As well as meaning that your skin isn’t a healthy growth environment for the hair, this also makes your skin itchy and irritable. With beard oil, your beard will feel more comfortable; you won’t be so tempted to shave it off.
The first few weeks of growing a beard can be particularly uncomfortable. This is because shaving slices the hair into a sharp point, meaning that the ends of your new growth will be spiky. As your beard grows, the hair curls around, and the sharp ends poke into your skin, which is prickly and painful.
Beard grooming is important. Moisturizing your beard with beard oil can help reduce this by softening the hair so that it’s not so spiky. Longer-term, beard oil will also make having a beard more comfortable by helping to prevent beard itch and itchy beard dandruff.
Other Benefits of Beard Oil
There are other benefits to applying beard oil besides promoting hair growth and preventing discomfort. For example, it can also improve the appearance of your beard. Without beard oil, your beard may look scraggly or tangled. Beard oil not only softens and adds shine to the facial hair, but it also helps to reduce breakage and split ends that will make your beard look scragglier and may even impede hair growth. You can also use beard oil to style your hair; however, you wish.
Another reason to use beard oil is simply that it’s fun and results in good beard care. You have so many options to choose from in terms of the blend of essential oils used. Oils like cedarwood and sandalwood will act as a natural cologne. Tea tree oil and cinnamon have natural anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. You can try from hundreds of options in terms of fragrance to find your favorites.
Choosing Beard Oil That Works
A word of warning when choosing beard oil – avoid cheaper oils. Manufacturers of such oils often use chemicals designed to simulate the slippery feeling of oil (e.g., silicone), but the products actually provide no benefits to your skin or beard. Check the ingredients when purchasing your oil to make sure that it’s made from natural ingredients such as jojoba.
You may have an allergic reaction to an ingredient in the oil, including hives, itching, burning, or redness. If this happens, wash your face immediately and take some allergy medication. Another good reason to check the ingredients when buying beard oil is to ensure that it doesn’t contain anything that you’re allergic to.
Also, bear in mind that beard oil takes some time to work. Be patient and wait for at least 6-8 weeks to see the expected results. To use beard oil correctly, put a dime-sized amount into the palm of your hand and massage it through your facial hair starting from the base and working your way to the ends. Do this twice a day – once in the morning and once in the evening. A pro-tip is to take a shower in the evening and apply more beard oil than you would in the morning so that it can work wonders overnight.
To the question of whether you need to use beard oil to help grow your beard, the answer is that it’s not necessary, but it may help. You won’t see a drastic change in hair growth, but massaging the oil into your skin may stimulate growth, as well as create a healthy growth environment for the hair.
Beard oil also comes with several other benefits, such as providing fragrance, anti-bacterial/anti-inflammatory properties, and preventing discomfort while growing/beard-druff. It also helps you to keep your beard looking stylish, and it’s fun to try out all the different options. If this all sounds good, then why not give it a try?