October 26, 2022

Wait, what…? Did that say beard washing mistakes? Like, you can wash your beard wrong somehow? 

Absolutely, my man. There’s a little more to beard washing than just rinse, rub, rinse, repeat.

In fact, the way you wash your beard may be preventing it from reaching its full glory. It could also be the root of your problems with dry whiskers, split ends, itchy and flaking skin… shall we go on?

But relax. The Rugged Bros have the answers. We’ll outline common beard washing mistakes and show you how easy it is to fix them so you can have a less hair-raising experience and enjoy the epic beard you’ve always wanted.

Mistake 1: Not Washing Your Beard Enough - Or At All

Let’s start with the most basic of the basics. No beard washing at all spells trouble. The same goes for not washing frequently enough. And you guessed it, cutting corners and just splashing your beard with water is not enough.

The problems that can arise are many: greasy beard, filthy beard, stinky beard, split ends, broken whiskers, beard acne, beardruff, frizz, knots, you name it.

Solution: Twice a week, use a premium beard wash.

Mistake 2: Washing Too Much

On the opposite end of the spectrum, it’s possible to overdo the beard washing. When that happens, your beard can become dry and brittle because its natural protective and conditioning moisture has been stripped away. Another thing that can happen is your skin panics and sends its oil production into overdrive to compensate, resulting in blocked pores and follicles that get infected and acne-ridden.

If you live in a harsh climate, like Florida’s heavy humidity, you may think a full wash once a day is essential. Uh, nope. You’ll still strip and weaken your whiskers.


  • Every beard - rinse daily with warm water.
  • If you have oily skin or live in a humid climate - wash 2 or 3 times a week with dedicated beard wash.
  • If you live in a dry and/or super-cold climate - twice a week with dedicated beard wash.
  • If you have a very dry beard - once a week with a dedicated beard wash, because there isn’t much to wash away.

Mistake 3: Using Soap

This is one of the big and common beard washing mistakes. Many guys, bearded or not, think that washing the face is the same as washing the body, so they use regular soap or a body wash.

Soap is simply too harsh and aggressive for the face and beard. It’s gonna dry out everything - follicles, skin and hairs - and cause a dude to go through mass amounts of beard oil like it’s going out of style.

Soap strips away vital sebum oil and stimulates overproduction. The results are either beard dandruff everywhere or beard acne - plus weakened, straggly, coarse whiskers. 

Some cleansing products even have isopropyl alcohol in them (immensely drying) or polyethylene glycol (makes hair stiff).

Solution: Use only an all-natural, nourishing beard wash.

Mistake 4: Using Shampoo Instead of Beard Wash

“Shampoo is good for the head hair, so it must be good for beard hair, right?”

Wrong! Shampoo and beards do not agree with each other - at all.

Shampoo is for your scalp, which produces a lot more sebum oil. That’s why your head hair can get greasy quickly and needs a little more aggression to clean it.

But facial hair and skin need a gentler product. There’s nowhere as much sebum to contend with. Facial hairs don’t need to be stripped raw to be cleaned - they need gentle cleansing and conditioning.

The sulfates and parabens in shampoo should never ever get on your face. Facial skin reacts badly to shampoo, becoming dry and causing whiskers to become brittle and scratchy. 

Solution: Use only an all-natural beard wash, free of sulfates and parabens.

Mistake 5:  Washing With Hot Water

While a steamy hot shower feels like heaven on a stick, it’s the worst thing for washing your beard. Hot water strips everything - dirt, excess oil, and also essential sebum oil. The result will be dry hairs that split and break, plus dry and flaky skin that itches and leaves gross beardruff on full display.

Solution: Lukewarm or mildly warm water is ideal for beard washing. 

By the way… never dry your beard with a blowdryer on hot. Cool setting only.

Mistake 6: Washing the Hairs Only

While the term is beard washing, it’s really about skin washing.

A good beard wash is really designed for cleansing skin first, along with beard hairs. If you work it gently into your skin (don’t scrub), its lather will automatically take care of any build up in your whiskers. 

If you only focus on the hairs, your facial skin won’t get its full benefits. Healthy hairs sprout from healthy skin and healthy follicles.

Solution: Gently massage beard wash at the base of your facial hairs and skin.

Mistake 7: Using Too Much Cleanser

More is better, right? Not necessarily, beard meister.

Too much of  a good thing like beard wash can end up stripping your beard and face raw. Sure, we all love a good foaming lather, but remember that you’re not cleaning an area the size of your torso. The bearded part of your face is not a big area to cleanse, so go easy with how much beard wash you use. It’s about caressing things clean, not blasting.

Solution: A dime-size amount of a good, moisturizing beard wash is plenty.

Mistake 8: Not Moisturizing After Washing

If your beard and face still feel kinda dry after washing and applying some beard oil, there’s a step you need to add. After washing, you don’t need hair conditioner. You do need a light coat of beard moisturizer. Your face’s pores will be open after washing and will be receptive to gentle, non-greasy hydrating nutrients from a top-quality beard moisturizer

Solution: A light coat of beard moisturizer after washing and before applying beard oil.

Mistake 9: Washing With a Dirty Washcloth

That washcloth or loofah that you use in the shower and then leave to dry all day allows millions of gross bacteria to grow and thrive while it’s still damp. Then during your next shower, you rub those bacteria into your beard and face. Just don’t.

Solution: Wash your beard with your hands only.

Mistake 10: Rubbing Your Face Raw

A big beard washing mistake commonly occurs after the washing part is done. Too many guys vigorously rub their beards with a towel, causing chaos. That towel rubs away important nutrients from the beard wash, it tugs on hairs and irritates follicles. Not to mention, it creates terrible knots and tangles.

Solution: When you reach for the towel, pat your beard. There’s no need to dry it completely with the towel. Pat it until it’s damp and then let it air dry or use a blow dryer on cool setting only. Also, while your beard is still slightly damp, apply beard oil and brush it through with a wild boar bristle beard brush.

Now that you know the top beard washing mistakes, you should feel better equipped to keep your face’s prized asset clean, pristine and loaded with sheen. Mastering the wash can mean mastering your beard.

If you still have challenges or questions, let us know here so we can help you be the supremely Rugged Bro you’ve always wanted to be.

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