March 03, 2021

Fact: If you have a beard, people are going to offer you all kinds of advice. It’s kinda like taking your baby out in public – some strangers can’t help offering unsolicited advice. They mean well, but do you get your child rearing knowledge from them, or from experts?

It’s the same with your beard. As soon as some see your manly grass grin, they’ll spout off their so-called knowledge. Some of that beard care advice might be helpful, but most of it is, well, crap. If you want your facial foliage to flourish, listen to bros who are pros.

So, without further ado, here are our top bogus beard grooming myths that need to be trimmed away permanently...

MYTH #1: You don't need to groom your beard at all

Hey, it’s your beard, bro. You do what you want with it. But even if you want to go au naturel for a truly wild and woolly look, some kind of grooming is still pretty much essential. If you don’t groom and care for it, expect a few issues, like:

  • beard itch
  • beardruff – that facial dandruff that makes your beard look like you’ve been out in the snow
  • dry and scratchy hair that drives you – and others – nuts 
  • split ends
  • hairs poking out at ridiculous angles, frequently causing annoyance
  • a beard shape that’s light years away from your expectations
  • beard acne – those large and painful zits that grow under unkempt, uncared for facial hair
  • a stinky “beard buffet” filled with food bits, dirt, and dust

So, just how should you groom? And how shouldn’t you? Read on…

MYTH #2: Shaving makes beard hairs grow back faster

This myth simply refuses to disappear quietly. There are a few reasons we can think of that make people believe this myth. One is that new hair growing out after shaving can appear darker and easier to see, creating the illusion that it’s growing faster. Another is that new hair growth feels rougher or sharper and therefore “thicker”. Yet another is that shaving against the grain of your hair growth makes it grow faster. And then there’s the belief that shaving stimulates blood circulation.

We give all of these reasons two thumbs down. Shaving does not change your hair follicles or hair growth.

MYTH #3: Wash your beard the same as you wash your head hair

OK, the first important fact here is that your head hair and beard hair are not the same. (Beard hair is stimulated by hormones, just like body hair. Scalp hair is not.) They have different needs and should have different hygiene routines. Check out our blog Can You Use Regular Shampoo on Your Beard? for some great info on this.

Wash your beard no more than two to three times a week using only a quality beard wash. Despite any claims in commercials, you can wash your scalp hair daily and it won’t lose all its natural oils. But if you wash your beard too frequently, it can dry your face out making it flaky and itchy. That’s because your facial skin and beard rely on the sebum oil produced in the facial hair follicles. So do not use regular shampoo on your face.

Washing with a dedicated beard wash will clean your bristles and condition them to keep them soft. This is vital for eliminating beard itch, because a dry and scratchy beard can make a guy want to reach for the razor and hack it off. You want to be comfortable with your beard, not mowing it away. A bonus benefit from a dedicated beard wash is that it can make your beard easier to brush and shape.

Now, you may think two or three times a week isn’t enough because you’ve read some clickbait story about beards containing more bacteria than a toilet seat. Here’s the real scoop: it’s not true. Incomplete facts got taken out of context. Bacteria live almost everywhere and not all of them are bad. In fact, there are millions inside your body right now. Proper studies found that there are just as many bacteria on a clean-shaven face as in a beard.

After washing, apply a beard oil rich in essential oils and antioxidants. Which brings us to myth number 4…

MYTH #4: Beard oil isn’t necessary

Let’s be blunt: beard itch sucks. It’s also preventable. Regularly applying a nourishing beard oil and/or beard moisturizer will keep hairs from becoming brittle, dry, and irritatingly itchy. The oil also hydrates the skin beneath the beard to ward off flaky, unsightly beardruff.

On top of that, a beard oil will civilize any unsightly frizz in your beard hairs.

By the way, don’t let the words “beard oil” deceive you. If you apply the oil only to hairs, you’re getting only part of the benefit. Be sure to rub it into the skin beneath your beard as well.

As a bonus, applying a beard oil gives your manly mane a glorious shine so it doesn't look dry and dusty.

MYTH #5: Brushing serves no purpose

Using a wild boar bristle beard brush does more than just feel great. It helps tame your beard hairs into place and keeps them soft by distributing oil evenly.

But it doesn't stop there! There are many other benefits of brushing your beard, including:

  • brushing cleans your beard
  • brushing stimulates skin
  • brushing exfoliates skin and helps control beard dandruff
  • brushing detangles and trains beard hairs
  • brushing makes styling easier
  • brushing reduces snags and breakage

MYTH #6: Trimming is bad and will slow your beard’s growth

Trimming a beard can never slow its growth. Think about it – the need to trim means it actually IS growing. And it will continue even if you prune and shape it.

Trimming is just good garden maintenance. It will help your beard look neater while preventing split ends and dealing with those unruly stray hairs called flyaways. Furthermore, many guys find it helpful to snip any mustache hairs that curl down over the top lip.

Myth #7: Magic products will make your beard grow faster and thicker

Dude, leave the “beard boosting” pills, vitamins, lotions, sprays, and serums alone. Most are a scam designed to prey on guys that are insecure about their beard growth. Remember one of life’s simple rules: if it seems too good to be true, it is.

Maybe you’ll hear about biotin and how it’s essential for producing keratin and helping beard growth. Biotin is indeed awesome, but you should get plenty of it through the food you eat. Taking more of it as a supplement will not make your beard grow quicker or thicker. Because biotin is a water soluble vitamin, you’ll simply eliminate any excess biotin though your urine.

Myth #8: Hair straighteners are safe for beards

As beard hairs lengthen, they can tend to curl. Some bros want to straighten them out to show off their full length. But applying direct thermal heat can cause structural damage to the hairs.

First, a regular hair straightener was not designed for beards (and really isn’t that great for scalp hair either). Using one has the potential to make beard hairs weak and brittle, while overuse can cause severe heat damage that has to be trimmed away.

Second, yes, there are beard straighteners out there. Again, remember that thermal heat is not your beard’s friend. Maybe some bearded brothers will swear by them, but in our experience, the cons massively outweigh the pros.

If you really want it styled and straighter looking, apply some beard balm and then brush it.

MYTH #9: Trimming a wet beard is easier

Uh, no. Always trim your beard when it’s dry. Why? Because your dry beard is what everyone sees. Wet beard hairs appear longer, but then shorten slightly as they dry. If you trim them when they’re wet, they’ll look weird and uneven after drying.

MYTH #10: You must always shave your neckline

Says who? It’s your choice, but make an informed choice.

For a short beard, a little shaving along the neckline can neaten it up and define its shape. But if you want a long beard, leave your neckline for a few months. Those neck hairs provide bulk to a beard.

Just beware of the jawline. Shaving on or near your jawline could make your beard look smaller, thinner, and “weaker”. For proper fullness, best to let it thicken up down to at least the level of your Adam’s apple.

There you have it, friend. Consider these beard grooming myths busted. Good grooming is absolutely essential for the health, condition, and overall appearance of your beloved beard, as well as for how comfortable it feels. Rugged doesn’t mean gross. So never skimp on caring for your face’s best asset. Treat your face with the deluxe beard grooming it deserves so you can always look and feel your best.

Stay rugged, bro!

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