Just like caring for your skin or hair on the head yields better results when you use the correct products (conditioner, treatment, balm, etc.), using proper beard care and grooming products is crucial to creating and maintaining a healthy beard or mustache.
If you have ever grown facial hair or perhaps you are considering grooming your beard or mustache, you will find this guide very helpful and informative. Facial hair requires care and attention for best appearance. There is an increasing number of tools, styling aids, and lotions being used today to improve the quality and appearance of beards and mustaches.
Beard wax is an essential beard grooming product that enhances the quality and appearance of your facial hair. Using this product correctly would yield satisfactory results especially for those with thick facial hair.
How is Beard Wax Different from Beard Balm?
As mentioned earlier, there are several beard grooming products, some of which are quite similar in appearance and in what they are used for. A lot of people often mistake the beard balm for wax for some reasons. Let’s take a look at how the beard wax differs from beard balm.
On appearance, beard wax has a thicker feel than the balm. Because of its consistency, beard wax provides a stronger hold for a more cohesive shape, which helps your beard look styled.
Beard Balm, on the other hand, has a rather soft consistency and used to soften facial hair, hydrate skin, get rid of irritations and ultimately promote a healthy hair growth. On this note, beard balm is more similar to beard oil even though it looks more like the beard wax.
Apart from styling, beard wax also helps to protect your beard from weather elements such as wind and rain. Unlike the balm, beard wax can sculpt and hold your beard in place.
The bottom line is that wax is mainly used for styling while the beard balm is used to condition and soften the facial hair and skin. Beard Balm is often seen as the hybrid between beard oil and wax. This is because it has the conditioning properties of beard oil and a little holding features of beard wax. It is important to note, however, that beard wax is designed ultimately for styling and as such would yield best results.
Both beard wax and balm can be used simultaneously. The procedure is to use the balm first to condition the hair and skin, then apply the wax for a well-groomed and styled beard. It is recommended, however, that you use beard oil before you apply balm and/or wax for best results.
Beard wax and balm are made from the same ingredients; the only difference is that beard wax contains lanolin (which is absent in balm) and a higher concentration of wax.
What is Beard Wax Made of?
Beard wax is primarily made of beeswax, which is not only a styling agent but also stands as a protectant for your beard follicles. Beard waxes that provide stronger hold usually contain more of beeswax. Apart from beeswax, there are other styling agents added to beard wax to help strengthen the hold and keep your facial hair in check throughout the day. Pine sap is a good example of styling agent used in most beeswax.
Apart from styling agents, beard wax also contains essential oils and carrier oils. Essential oils in the beard wax do not have styling benefits, neither do they improve the hold of your beards. Rather, the essential oil present adds scent or fragrance to the styling agent. You may be wondering why this is necessary, the answer is quite logical. This product will be literally under your nose the entire day, so you’re going to want it to smell nice.
There are several fragrances to choose from, however, you should pick the one in which you are tolerant. Some common beard wax fragrances include citrus, cinnamon, sandalwood, lavender, pine, etc. There’s really a wide range of options to choose from, so if you are not comfortable with one fragrance, you can always try out several others.
On the other hand, carrier oils are beneficial for both styling and conditioning. As a matter of fact, they are the base ingredients for most balms and oils. Longer beards will require more moisture from the skin and at a point, the moisture from the skin can no longer sustain the beard growth and your skin starts drying out. To relieve this discomfort, carrier oils were introduced to beard balms and oil, and also prevent the occurrence of beardruff. In addition, carrier oils can soften your beards, thereby reducing the chances of your follicles developing split ends. The good news is this highly beneficial ingredient is a constituent part of beard waxes.
You should note, however, that beard wax is not essentially a conditioner and is more of a styling agent. On this note, you should not use beard wax in place of your balm or oil. This is because the carrier oils in beard wax is sufficient enough to provide adequate moisture for your beards, and this is especially for dense beards. So if your facial hair is growing out really fast and feels a bit brittle, you should ensure to make oil and balm application a part of your daily routine.
Things to Consider before Selecting the Best Wax
This is the primary purpose people for a beard wax. There are three levels of hold for beard wax and your choice will depend on what you intend to achieve. They are:
l Light hold
l Medium hold
l Strong hold
The light hold is the wax known to give shape to the beard. It also tames any unruly hair on your beard. The downside of this wax is that it there’s no creativity involved in the act. It is more like a balm, but with a mix of more wax.
The medium hold on the other hand, is a type of wax that allows for creativity and experimentation. It also has the ability to tame beard styles – but this time around, shorter beard styles. It also helps with the shape of your beard. Although it is not strong enough to produce a feeling of stiff, but it gets to hold you a bit strong hold that can last for a long time.
The strong wax hold is usually preferred mustache rater than a beard wax. As the name suggests, this type of wax a very strong hold to your beard. This is one wax that allows for sculpting the shape of the beard. The effect produced by the strong hold is not the kind of one you want for your beard, rather it is for your mustache.
Caring for your Beard
When it comes to washing the beards, some men usually make the mistake of just using the normal shampoo. They fail to realize that the hair on the face is not like those of the head. The hairs on the face are quite fragile and as such need to be given special attention.
There are shampoos that are specially made for beards, referred to as beard shampoo. These are the type of shampoos that should be used on the beards. They were specially designed for the nature of your beards or mustache hairs.
Beard wax should be used regularly to keep them conditioned – this usually depends on the size and shape of your beard. The best way to apply is starting from the skin and then move upwards. This way, you will prevent frizzy and itchy hair.
This is particular to the individuals. Whatever scent or smell appeals to you is what you want to get. Do not take this factor for granted. If you do, you may not be able to keep up with what comes afterward. You don’t want to struggle to endure something and ends up making you uncomfortable.
You don’t want to spend all your money on just your beard. Even though taking care of your beard is very important. Take your time and find the products that fit your budget and start from there. When you are more buoyant, you can now afford to go for more expensive ones. Remember that it is never wise to go for something pricey when you have a quality cheaper alternative.
How to Make Your Own DIY Beard Wax
If you do not want to purchase already made beard wax, perhaps you haven’t found the right fragrance on the market, and want to personalize your beard care product, or maybe just cannot keep up with the price, and you want a more budget-friendly option. You can prepare your own beard wax at home from start to finish using the right products and equipment.
The DIY process is broken down into simple steps that are easy to follow for the best outcome.
DIY Beard Wax ingredients
Essential oil: There are several essential oils so you would need to select the one that you like. You should closely consider and examine the fragrance because it will be very close to your nose, else you would hate applying the wax. Some examples of essential oils that you can use include pine, peppermint, eucalyptus, etc. Essential oils are an important ingredient for wax because they have healing properties that will leave the skin feeling soft while strengthening the beard from the roots. You will only need a few drops of essential oil in beard wax to be effective.
Petroleum jelly: Petroleum jelly is the primary ingredient that will provide superior hold to the beard wax. For this DIY, you will require one ounce of unscented petroleum jelly.
Resin: To achieve the ideal wax consistency, an adhesive is required. You have the liberty to pick either the powdered or raw form; both will do just fine.
Beeswax: Finally, you will need an ounce of beeswax.
In addition to the ingredients listed above, you will also need a scale for measurements, a candle-making pitcher, cooking vat and storage tins for your DIY beard wax.
TIP: For a beard wax with strong hold, you should use resin and more wax. On the other hand, to achieve medium hold, you should use less beeswax and more of petroleum jelly and essential oils. Below are six (6) easy steps to prepare your DIY beard wax.
- 1. Measure out all ingredients (2 tsp beeswax, 1 tsp powdered gum arabic, one tsp shea butter, 2 tsp water, two drops of essential oil). This recipe makes about 1 oz of beard wax. You should also make sure that you set out the storage tins and get everything ready before heating.
- Place the candle making pitcher on medium heat and put in the beeswax, reduce the heat and wait until the wax is fully melted.
- 3. Place the petroleum jelly and essential oil in the cooking vat. Heat them up to the same heat as the beeswax so that they can mix properly. Once both ingredients reach the same consistency, add the resin (powdered gum arabic) to the mix.
- When the ingredients in the cooking vat are melted and in the same texture, reduce the heat and pour in the already melted beeswax. Stir the mixture properly and ensure that nothing burns. If you notice any boiling, reduce the heat to the lowest point possible.
- When the ingredients have thoroughly blended, begin pouring the mixture into the storage tins and cover them immediately.
- Allow the wax to set overnight, and you would have a nicely scented and lubricating beard wax that will provide comfort, control, and style for your beard.
When and How to Apply Beard Wax
Application of beard wax is not as simple as that of beard oil. Most beard waxes need to be warmed up a bit to assume the right consistency. You can make the wax pliable with your fingers by swirling them in the container until the wax softens. You can also use a hair dryer or hot water to heat up the wax and make it more pliable. Just like your beard oil, you should apply waxes after you shower, and probably after beard oil application.
Beard waxes vary in content, so it is important to conduct trial test just to make sure the wax doesn’t create an allergic reaction to any of the ingredients. For proper application of beard wax, you will need the following items;
l Beard brush
l Beard comb
l Clean cloth
l Beard wax
Below are a few steps to guide your application
l First and foremost, using water and shampoo, wash and dry your beard.
l Brush your beard with the brush to remove stray hairs.
l Take a small amount of beard wax and put in your hands.
l Using your hands, work a moderate amount of wax into your beard.
l Use the beard comb to distribute the wax evenly. You can also use the comb to style your beard in your preferred direction.
l You can also dry your facial hair using heat (optional). The heat will help to blend the wax in so that it looks more natural.
l Lock in the shape of the beard with a blast of cold air from the hair dryer.
Waxing your beard requires patience, so you shouldn’t be in a hurry to get a good hold. If you do not like the look with one wax, you can experiment with other products because not all waxes are the same. After the application, you will need to get the product out of your fingers. Since it is not a regular cream, you may need to scrape off the wax from your fingers.
- Honest Amish Slick Beard Wax – All Natural and Organic: Top rated beard wax with light consistency for proper styling.
- Hair & Beard Wax by Percy Nobleman, A Hair Wax & Clay For Men: Affordable, well scented and versatile wax. Can be used for hair and beard.
- Badass Beard Care Beard Wax for Men – The Ladies Man Scent: Medium hold wax softens beard and creates a fuller appearance. 2 oz citrus scented.
A lot of people make the mistake of purchasing a clear or white wax for the first time. When, buying beard wax, ensure that you purchase the one that is the same color as your beard. For instance, you should go for a brown wax if your beard is brown. Clear white wax is meant for gray beards, and so if you put it on a brown beard, it will give it a whitish look. Since you are using beard wax to style your beard, you also have the option of a color.
You can also use beard wax in combination with other beard grooming products like oils and conditioners for best results. If you are keen on making your beards stylish and stand out, then using a beard wax would be a useful step to achieve your goal. However, you should consider the products recommended above as they are some of the finest on the market, with satisfactory reviews on quality and efficiency.