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Beards are awesome. They give you that rugged and manly look and protect your face from the elements. For some of us, they help our faces look more presentable by hiding the ugly bits!
Keep reading to find out what to have to do to maintain your beard healthy by using a beard shampoo, and also which the best beard shampoo is.
A Quick Glance At The Top 3 Beard Shampoos
Professor Fuzzworthy’s Beard Shampoo is our top choice. It is made from 100% natural ingredients and it contains beeswax and essential oils that nourish your beard.
If you want a soft beard you should consider this beard shampoo. Billy Jealousy beard wash lasts long and has a really rich lather.
Polished Gentleman Beard Shampoo is a luxury product. It has effective cleaning power boosted by all-natural ingredients and several different essential oils.
What is a Beard Shampoo?
In short, beard shampoos aka beard washes are shampoos designed for your beard that contain natural oils and don’t contain the chemicals found in ordinary hair shampoos.
To successfully grow a long beard you need to ensure that it is healthy and clean. And you can’t properly clean a beard using just water with a normal shampoo/soap.
Beard hair is greasy and oily and requires frequent washing.
The combination of dead skin cells, dust, dirt, oil, and random detritus can result in foul odors and the risk of fungus and dandruff.
You need proper cleaning agents to remove all this, and a beard shampoo is designed specifically for that.
But if beard hair is like normal hair, why not use a regular shampoo right? Now, this brings us to the second question.
Best Beard Shampoo Reviews
With a nice period design and catchy name, this is one of the most popular products available online.
The actual product is a shampoo bar, quite rustic in appearance with a very blocky shape.
The best thing about the Professor’s beard shampoo bar is the complete absence of any of the chemicals we have mentioned above.
The ingredient list contains some exotic, natural ingredients, including stuff like Mount Wellington Spring Water, Tasmanian Seaweed Extract, Leatherwood Honey, and Beeswax.
- Contains no harsh chemicals, only all-natural ingredients.
- Beeswax helps retain sebum and maintain oil balance.
- Essential oils provide nourishment to your beard.
- The scent is mild and quite masculine.
- The solid bar can last for quite some time.
- Keeping the bar dry after use can be a hassle since it has a tendency to dissolve quickly when wet/humid.
- Takes some time to wash out the thick lather.
- Leaves a slight residue on the beard after washing.
With a grinning bearded skull on the front, this shampoo scores high on design and packaging.
Unlike the previous shampoo, this one is in liquid form.
Though it contains many chemical ingredients, Grave Before Shave does not include any of the harsher stuff like ALS, SLS, or parabens.
The chemicals it contains are generally of milder nature and it does contain artificial perfume fragrances.
It is enriched with natural argan oil and olive oil, as well as coconut oil extracts.
- Lathers up pretty well
- Can last up to 3 months if you use on alternate days.
- Pleasant fragrance is quite mild and reminiscent of old-school barbershops.
- Cleans dirt quite efficiently.
- Not great at keeping your beard hydrated, some people complain of excessive dryness after use.
- Contains chemicals and artificial scents can cause allergies for some people.
With a mild olive oil-based “Castile” soap as its base, this shampoo from Polished Gentleman emphasizes the importance of all-natural ingredients.
The ingredient profile is pretty long, but it doesn’t seem to contain any of the toxic stuff commonly found in cheap shampoos.
Some of the notable ingredients include aloe leaf juice, coconut extracts, rosemary and eucalyptus oils, argan oil, peppermint oil, and honey.
- Has an effective cleansing power.
- All natural ingredients without any harsh chemicals.
- Contains several different essential oils.
- Has a pleasant smell that is not too strong or overpowering.
- Doesn’t lather as much as other shampoos.
- Underwhelming impact despite a large number of ingredients.
Billy Jealousy is a very popular brand among bearded men with a range of grooming products, including this liquid beard wash.
The formula is free from harmful chemicals like sulfates and relies on the nourishing power of aloe vera.
It does contain some chemicals, like butylene glycol and fragrance, and might be unsuitable if you have sensitive skin.
Other natural ingredients it contains are soy protein, green tea extract, and honey extract.
The liquid shampoo is easier to apply and store than other products in bar soap form.
- Lathers well and doesn’t leave any residue.
- Leaves a healthy shine and soft, flake-free skin and beard.
- Can last long, since only a drop is needed for one-time use.
- The fragrance is kind of woody and sweet, and very faint.
- Contains artificial fragrance.
- Many customers find no positive impact on use.
The second bar soap in our list is both highly rated and a good value for money product.
As claimed by the manufacturer, the ingredient list does not contain any “names you can’t pronounce,” meaning no complicated chemicals are part of the equation here.
What it does contain is coconut oil, palm oil, hemp seed butter, shea butter, essential oils like avocado, jojoba, patchouli, lavender, and orange. The soaps are handcrafted and have a very rustic feel.
- Comes with a handy recycled paper container for storage.
- Contains no harsh chemicals, but has a very varied list of essential oils.
- Handcrafted product with no animal testing.
- The smell is quite sweet and natural.
- The lather is very rich.
- Leaves the beard feeling a little dry.
- The fragrance though nice is on the stronger side.
The Top Beard Wash
There are a lot of brands trying to cash in on the beard craze these days. Based on our tests, most beard shampoos do a decent job when it comes to removing dirt and dandruff.
But when it comes to enriching the beard hair and maintaining the natural oil and moisture balance, the performances tend to get patchy.
Even when it comes to some of the best beard shampoo brands on the market, the moisturizing impact is on the low side.
In our opinion, if you have a short beard (under half an inch), you don’t need beard shampoo in the first place. And if you are planning to grow your beard really long, don’t expect the shampoo to do all the work.
You will need a good quality beard oil/balm to get the best out of your beard.
When you look for the best beard shampoo, you expect a product that doesn’t harm your skin and strips away too much of your natural oils. In this regard, we feel that Professor Fuzzworthy’s Beard Shampoo is a top choice.
It contains no harsh chemicals and comes in a durable bar soap form.
The inclusion of beeswax and essential oils helps improve the nourishing powers of this shampoo bar, and it provides some level of moisturization as well. Use in conjunction with high-quality homemade beard oil for best results.
Beard Shampoo FAQ & Buying Guide
Beards need a fair amount of attention and care. They are dirt magnets, sponging up all kinds of bacteria throughout the day. According to a study beards actually carry more germs than a dog.
From the dust and pollen in the air to fragments of what you eat, to your dead skin cells, a lot can get into that thick growth of hair under your chin within a day.
Beards are big business these days and when you have a craze, there are always companies looking to cash in. So make sure to do your research before you buy any beard product.
There are hundreds and hundreds of products on the market, ranging from beard brushes to combs, beard oils, balms, shampoos, and conditioners.
You can read more about how to choose the aforementioned products below:
Best Beard Comb to Avoid Damaging your Beard
Best Beard Conditioner for a Stunning Beard
Beard Conditioner Vs Oil: All The Differences!
Best Beard Balm for a Soft Beard
Best Beard Oil For a Healthy Beard
But let’s focus on beard shampoos for now.
We said that beard hair is similar to the hair on your head, not identical. There are several significant differences.
The location is critical.
Since your beard is located in the front of your face, beard hair is more prone to getting dirty, especially thanks to the food you eat.
And the nature of the hair is also quite different. Your regular hair tends to be thinner and smoother than your beard hair which is thicker and more prone to split ends.
The skin on your face is also quite fragile and sensitive when compared to your scalp.
Regular hair shampoos are equipped to deal with dirt effectively, but they often contain harsh chemicals.
Chemicals can affect your beard in two ways:
They can cause irritation to your face skin.
They strip away the natural oil (sebum) that provides a protective coating to your skin and beard hair. The ingredients they contain can damage the essential oil balance in your beard.
And it gets worse as your beard gets longer.
The sebaceous glands in your skin are unable to protect your entire beard hair once it starts getting long.
And when you use harsh chemical shampoos with ingredients like Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and parabens, they strip away the little sebum protection your beard has, leaving it dry and vulnerable to dandruff and flaking.
When you take a look at some of the most common ingredients used in cheap hair shampoos, you will realize that many of these products are not good enough for use on your head, let alone your face!
The way they handle sebum is what distinguishes good beard shampoos from ordinary shampoos.
Sebum in moderate amounts is vital for healthy skin and beard.
And as we already mentioned, longer beards lack adequate sebum to help maintain healthy moisture.
Beard shampoos are formulated with natural ingredients and gentle soaps that preserve sebum.
They also contain higher quantities of essential oils to make up for any deficiencies that longer beards have.
Essential oils serve a dual purpose: They protect beard hair and skin, and they contain natural fragrances, which are much safer than harsh chemical fragrances.
Common essential oils include sandalwood, patchouli, and tea tree, among many others.
How To Identify A Good Beard Shampoo?
There are three things you need to factor in while trying to determine a safe and efficient beard shampoo:
- Natural Ingredients: This is the main factor that can make the difference between a dry, itchy, flaky beard and a shiny, clean, majestic beard.
- Lather and performance: While it should contain safe ingredients, a beard shampoo also need to have adequate lather and foaming capacity to help remove all the stubborn dirt that gets stuck in your beard.
- Scent: You will be smelling the scent of your beard shampoo all day long, so, you need something that smells nice, and more importantly subtle. Strong smells are rather undesirable for obvious reasons. Also, if you use a beard oil with a strong overpowering scent it can actually cause you a headache.
As for things to avoid when buying a beard shampoo, just take a look at the ingredient list on the packaging. If the product contains any of the following chemicals, you want to put that shampoo down and look for something else.
- Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, and Sodium Laureth Sulfate: They remove all the sebum, can cause dandruff, irritation and may be carcinogenic.
- Polyethylene Glycol/Propylene Glycol: Petroleum based products that may contain dioxanes, known carcinogens.
- Diethanolamine (DEA) and Triethanolamine (TEA): They are used to provide lather in shampoos but they are also used in brake fluids and antifreeze! They are associated with cancer, miscarriages, and inhibition of fetal development in the womb.