Once beard hairs become hard and wiry, the beard not only feels unpleasant but also makes a very unkempt and scruffy impression. Sooner or later almost every beardsman encounters this problem. With our tips, you can get to the bottom of the problem, make your beard softer and more supple right away and also take measures to eliminate the problem completely in the future. All you have to do is to incorporate some simple steps into your daily morning routine.
Causes for hard and brittle beard hair
To effectively combat a rugged beard, you must first understand what the underlying causes are. Only then will it be easy for you to keep your beard soft in the future and how you can respond appropriately to certain circumstances. So let’s start with the main reason:
The main reason for coarse and unruly beard hairs is often quite obvious – they simply lack moisture and therefore dry out. The drier the beard hairs are, the more unkempt and difficult they are to tame. As soon as the beard is properly hydrated again, it turns soft again.
But why does the beard dry out at all? During the cold months, low temperatures can be a major factor, as the beard is completely exposed to them. Heat can also have the same effect and it doesn’t matter whether it is caused by blow-drying too hot or by the sun. In some cases, the use of too many or the wrong care products can also cause problems. For example, washing the beard with conventional hair shampoo can act too harshly on the facial skin and remove all oils and moisture from it.
However, not only external factors can play a part in this. If you don’t drink enough, it can also have a negative effect on the smoothness of your hair. Another sign that your skin lacks moisture is when your beard itches or even has dandruff in it.
Especially in the world of women, split ends in the hair are a regular occurrence, as there are more long hairstyles to be found. If your beard has already grown far beyond a stubble, you will probably also have some experience with them. In contrast to a fresh whisker, the longer ones are constantly under stress from many external factors such as heat, cold, and wind. Sooner or later this will cause the inner structures of the hair to loosen and then eventually the beard hair will break open at the tip. As soon as this happens, the separation of the beard hair will gradually extend to the root of the hair.
Further causes of split ends can be silicones and other chemical ingredients in care products such as shampoo. Too frequent trimming of the beard or too dry skin can also contribute to split ends. Also not to be neglected are factors such as unsharp razor blades when trimming the beard or an unhealthy lifestyle. But don’t worry, you can counteract the split ends by following our tips and paying special attention to keeping the beard moisturized.
What we mean with this term is water with a high mineral concentration. This water often leaves behind white residues, which are generally called lime. If you wash your beard with it, remains of it will also deposit in your beard. This hardens your beard hairs and makes cleaning it much more difficult.
When you try to wash away this lime, you leave even more behind. So what can you do about it? The best thing, of course, would be to improve the quality of your water, since hard water can affect your health in ways other than your beard. However, this is often not an option and in this situation, a shower head filter in combination with sufficient beard oil can help.
How to soften your beard
Wash your beard regularly
Before we can start to soften the beard, it must first be freed from all dirt. A lot of dirt and grime accumulate over a day – for example from leftover food or liquids. Also, the body itself produces dead skin cells during the natural cell renewal process, which must be removed. If this is not done, bacteria in the beard feel particularly comfortable and can multiply undisturbed. The result is that the beard will look very unkempt and its health will suffer greatly. It will furthermore dry out, which leaves the beard hairs wiry and brittle.
To prevent this from happening, regular washing with a beard shampoo is essential. It is not by chance that we are talking about beard shampoo and not about conventional hair shampoo. The skin under the beard is much more sensitive than the scalp and a beard shampoo with its mild ingredients is therefore much more suitable.
If you have a look at the available products, you will often read that they make the beard softer and more supple. In fact, this is usually either not the case or very counterproductive. This effect is often achieved by the use of strong chemicals, which dry out the beard even more in the long run and weaken the skin’s barrier function. When making your choice, make sure to purchase one with natural ingredients or use our extensive test comparison.
Wash your beard with beard shampoo about twice a week. More frequent use is not advisable because it dries out the skin and deprives the beard hairs of too many natural fats. On the remaining days of the week, washing with lukewarm water is sufficient to get rid of most dirt.
Put beard oil on your beard
The next step is to restore moisture to the clean beard. If you are interested in beard care, you have probably already heard of beard oil. It is not without a reason widely known, as it benefits your beard in countless ways. So let us refresh your memory and tell you how it makes your beard softer.
A beard oil is essentially a simple mixture of various natural oils. The main component is made up of different carrier oils, which form the basis for the beard oil. These are supplemented by essential oils, which give your beard a pleasant scent and can offer other benefits.
As already mentioned, the main cause of a frizzy beard is dry skin. To keep the beard hairs soft and healthy, the skin must be supplied with moisture and valuable nutrients. The beard oil does just that with its natural oils and also gives the beard some shine. If you have an itchy beard, beard oil will also relieve the itching.
Choosing the right beard oil is not easy for many people, as there are countless products in a wide variety of formulations. Depending on the formula, certain beard oils can be more suitable for sensitive skin or more effective against dandruff. However, for virtually all of them, it is true that they make the beard softer and more supple. Just make sure that there are no chemical ingredients contained in the product, although this is only rarely the case with beard oils anyway. Due to its simple formulation, you can also easily make your own beard oil and save some money.
Applying the beard oil proves to be very easy. Once you get out of the shower, dry your beard until it is only slightly damp. Then rub some beard oil into your palms and massage it into your beard. It is important that you also reach the skin under the beard and spread the oil thoroughly. The massage also stimulates the production of sebum, which in turn benefits the softness of your beard hair.
Beard balm for extra suppleness
Regarding its formulation and nourishing effect, Beard Balm is very similar to Beard Oil, although it can help the beard to stay soft for a longer time. It achieves this by surrounding the beard hairs with wax and grease which has a moisture-preserving and protective effect. And as you already know, moisture keeps the beard soft.
Beard balm is also often used for styling purposes. It straightens the beard and helps to keep it in place. To apply beard balm, rub a small amount into the palms of your hands and massage it into your beard. Start at the roots and work your way through the beard until there are no more visible lumps of beard balm.
So do you need beard balm for a soft beard? For most men, beard oil alone is enough and as long as you don’t have any problems with the styling of your beard, you can probably do without it. But if you want to do your beard a favor and make it even more supple, there is no reason why you shouldn’t get a high-quality beard balm.
Comb and brush your beard
If you don’t comb and brush your beard yet, you should start immediately. On the one hand, it stimulates the production of the sebum and on the other hand, it distributes the body’s sebum in the beard. When combing, the natural oils from the beard oil are absorbed by the skin surface and then transferred to the tips of the beard hairs. The result is soft beard hairs.
Aside from that, an uncombed beard grows in all directions and looks unkempt. By using a beard comb and brush, you can bring these sticking out hairs back into the proper shape. We have found that it can be very handy to have a small beard comb in your pocket. This allows you to give the beard some suppleness during everyday life or for example before important meetings.
Whether you use a beard brush or a beard comb should depend on the length of your beard. Usually, a beard brush is better suited for short beards, whereas the beard comb or a combination of both is preferable for long full beards. Overall, however, the choice depends much on your preference and doesn’t make too much of a difference as long as you use a high-quality product. Therefore, go for brushes made of fine wild boar bristles and avoid combs made of cheap plastic, which become statically charged. We have reviewed a wide range of beard combs to find the best among them.
It should also be mentioned that combing a beard also has a certain feel-good factor and after a while, you will actually look forward to it.
Trimming the beard with the right tools
This tip is particularly for those who suffer from split ends. In this case, it is necessary to say farewell to a part of your beard. Because once the tip of a hair is broken, the split will continue all the way to the root of the hair. Therefore, it is advisable to cut off the split part of the beard hair, to prevent the damage from spreading. High-quality beard scissors are best suited for this purpose. For one thing, they make it easier to cut individual hairs and for another, they are often sharper than an electrical beard trimmer and leave a clean cut.
In general, you should not trim your beard too often, leave it at once or twice a week. Beard trimmers literally shred the hair and can stress the ends of the hair. Under normal circumstances, this is not a big problem, but we still recommend taking a break from frequent trimming as long as the problem with split ends remains.
After you have freed the beard from the split ends, it is now important to prevent them in the future. By following the above tips, however, this should prove to be easy and lead to a softer beard.
Home remedies for a soft beard
Olive oil as beard oil
Olive oil has its place not only in the kitchen but also in beard care. In fact, it is excellent for counteracting dry skin by moisturizing it. Besides, it also gives the beard hair a shiny and soft feel. But since olive oil is very viscous and rich in fatty acids, the skin has difficulty absorbing it. The best way is to combine olive oil with other lighter oils. If you then add some essential oils, you basically made your very own beard oil.
Coconut oil as beard balm and beard oil
Coconut oil has very similar care properties to olive oil, but its consistency is more like butter. That is why it can be used as a potent beard balm in combination with shea butter and beeswax or mixed with some lighter carrier oils to form a beard oil. If you wish to make your beard smoother and softer, but at the same time give it a little more hold and protection, coconut oil is the perfect choice for you.
With the mentioned beard care products you can combat the symptoms of a hard beard and turn it soft again. However, it is also advisable to get to the bottom of the actual causes and to prevent this problem from recurring. Against the climate and many other external factors you can often not do anything directly, so it is all the more important that you deal with the internal factors. The most important is a balanced and healthy diet because a lack of certain nutrients can result in dry skin.
To soften the beard from the inside, eat food rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These include salmon or various nuts such as walnuts. Also, foods with a lot of vitamin A can be beneficial and give the beard hair a little more shine as well. Sweet potatoes, carrots, and asparagus are particularly good for this. Furthermore, make sure you drink enough water.