What should I expect when I grow my beard, mustache, or goatee?

I have had a beard for a long time. Suffice it to say, when I first started with bearding  Ask Jeeves was as en-vogue as Google. Now, many, many years later there is a glut of information. Just googling “beards” will yield tens of thousands of pages on the matter. However, most of these pages are either littered with incomplete information or focused more on selling you something than passing along the information you seek. Here, we aim to fix that. Below we explain the nuts and bolts of beard growth. We’ll focus on a) what is happening b) how the different beard growth phases vary from person to person, c) some challenges that are likely to arise, and d) how to handle these challenges.

At the highest level

Treat your beard with quality products, recognize that everyone and every beard is different, will grow differently and at different rates, as your beard surpasses 1″ invest in a quality non-plastic beard comb, and don’t be afraid to trim your beard, even if your goal is length.

Stage 1: beard whiskers

whats happening

If there is one stage that halts the beard neophyte in their tracks its this one. The last time you shave (and every time) your razor makes a diagonal cut across the hair follicle. Because your beard follicles are much thicker than your hair follicle this creates basically a semi-rigid spear. During the first few days to weeks these dagger-like beard hairs are doing a few things: Stabbing, stretching, and irritating. As you move your head and neck around the sharp edge of your follicle is literally poking your neck. The combination of the sharp hair and rigidity of the follicle is not only going to irritate you but that someone that trying to get close to you. 

Additionally, your pore is being stretched ever so slightly by the protruding follicle. this can lead to additional irritation and it also increases the surface area by which you can lose “moisture.” Moisture in this term is not strictly water but also naturally produced oils that keep our skin comfortable and not dry.

When all is said and done this is often the most uncomfortable stage and because it happens so early, it often leads folks to stop growing heir beard.  

everyone is different 

Depending on your rate of hair growth, this stage will last 1-3 weeks. The degree of irritation you feel will depend on how thick your beard follicles are, how much your skin drys out, and (most importantly) what you do to keep these issues from arising in the first place.

At this stage your beard will be at its thinnest, it doesn’t mean it will stay this way but everyone is different and the old adage, ‘you won’t know till you know’ holds true.  

what you should be doing

If you know you are going to grow a beard, plan ahead and prepare. Using any facial moisturizer ahead of time will help your skin be better prepared to handle the stretching, stabbing, and poking it is about to endure. Better yet, address the skin AND hair by applying a beard oil with something for your skin (eg jojoba) and something for your follicles (eg sweet almond oil). This will keep the skin pliable and the hair more flexible. If you’re growing your beard on a whim, start in with the beard oil once the irritation hits. A quality beard oil will provide both instant relief and with daily use, a long term solution.

If you are a 5 o’clock shadow bearder, after trimming your whiskers with a beard trimmer the follicle shouldn’t be quite as pointy (trimmers aren’t quite as preode and so the follicle isn’t as sharp). 

Stage 2: beard growing and Thickening

whats happening

This is the exciting phase. For the bearded neophyte this is when you get a glimpse of what is possible. For the experienced beardsmen making another go, this is when they’ve got “their beard back.” During the growing and thickening phase your beard or ‘stache is doing just that. This is also the phase where most people reach their preferred beard length, which based on my completely unscientific estimate is about 1”—long enough to be a legitimate beard, short enough to not disrupt your consumption of chips and queso.

everyone is different

The primary difference from person to person is going to be just how thick the beard is and how quickly it grows in. These are things you don’t have a whole lot of control over, you’ve just got to let things progress.

what you should be doing

Feed your beard & feed your skin. During this phase your skin will be more prone to drying out, so applying beard oil and/or balm daily is going to help keep your skin quite comfortable. This is also the phase where you will see the effects of daily beard oil and balm use (if you’ve been using it). If you and a buddy grew beards side by side and one of you used oil and balm and the other used nothing, the difference would be striking. The beard that’s been taken care of will have a natural shine that makes it pop, the natural color will shine through—this is especially evident for those with brown beards with a smattering of red—and the beard will feel different. The organic almond oil will have softened the beard substantially, this will be noticeable to both you and whomever you let get close to you.

Finally, this is where you should be looking out for a quality barber that knows how to handle a beard. More on that in the next stage.

Stage 3: Achieving your desired beard length

whats happening

This is where your patience pays off. Your beard, ‘stache, or goatee continues on its’ methodical mission to make you ruggedly handsome. 

everyone is different

Again, the variation from person to person comes down to thickness and growth rate. For the thinner/slower beard growers, this is where patience is a necessity. For the thicker/quicker guys this is where improper care will start to be problematic as the presence of wiry, damaged, dry beard hair and skin will be given a megaphone. Of course, if you’ve followed our advice, your facial hair is looking pretty damn good about now.

what you should be doing

Get a quality beard comb. Stay away from plastic—the sharp edges created by the molding process can strip, strain, and tear your beard hair. Never comb it when it is real wet as it is more prone to breaking. 

NEVER underestimate the effect of a quality beard trim. Not only does beard growth rate vary from person to person, but it can vary across your face. To this day, the whiskers just below my nose are still 0.5″ long. The tendency here is to forgo trimming out of the vision of achieving the beard of your dreams. But take our advice, a quality barber and a pair of quality shears will shape your facial hair to accentuate the shape of your face and really make your beard pop. This is especially wise for those with thinner or ‘straggly’ beards. A good trim will give the appearance of a fuller beard. A good rule of thumb is, if at the bottom of your beard you can see through the lower 0.5-1.0″, trim it. 

And as always, keep up your daily oil and balm use to keep your skin and beard healthy. You’ll find that at this stage its harder to apply your products to the base of your beard hair but keep at it, your beard will thank you and everyone will notice!

Organic

Since day one, care for our customers has been a pillar at The Bearded Savant. Suffice it to say, it’s been a journey. We have worked tirelessly to develop a collection that will meet the needs of every man. We do this by sourcing quality ingredients and developing quality scents. So it brings me great joy to announce that we have made one giant leap forward to provide our customers with the best of the best. Starting the first of the year we have moved to USDA Organic carrier oils, butters, and waxes. 

Organic Ingredients

Sourcing quality organic ingredients is no small task but you are worth every effort! After numerous suppliers, countless sample products, even more suppliers, we think we’ve finally hit pay dirt. Your beard oil is now made with organic jojoba and sweet almond oil. Your balm, wax, and cologne is now made with a combination of organic Shea butter, cocoa butter, beeswax, and/or jojoba.  

Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils

As always, we will continue to use only top of the line essential oils. Prior to receiving them, every batch of essential oil is run through a battery of tests ranging from microbial testing and mass spectroscopy to isotopic analysis and heavy metal testing. Our supplier CERTIFIES every dram of oil has no added fillers, synthetic ingredients, or harmful contaminants.  

Rest assured, when your skin absorbs our product—and it will—there is nothing but natural goodness making its way into your bloodstream.  

 

Year of beard oil and balm and free solid cologne, oh my!

Over at the brain trust of The Bearded Savant, thinking hard, meditating with a few fingers of single, malt, crunching numbers, and the result are some pretty awesome deals for this Holiday Season.

One Year of Beard Oil, Beard Balm, or Beard Oil & Balm

If you look at our average return customer, we’re filling orders for them just about every other month. Can we make it easier on you? How about a year’s supply of beard oil and balm? 

For $17/month, subscribe to our Year of Oil and Balm and we will send you 1 oz of beard oil and beard balm every other month for a year. Its that simple. And to make it even sweeter, your first shipment will include our exceedingly popular Bearded Savant T-shirt. Forget about reordering, forget about shipping, forget about all that; we’ll deal with it. 

We’ll sweeten the deal even more to kick off the holiday season. Purchase a year of oil and balm by 27 November and we’ll add a tin of Solid Cologne. When all is said and done you’re looking at $119 in total savings. You’re practically making money (or making someone’s year)!

We are daily users of both beard oil and balm, but if you’re not, we have a Year of Beard Oil (for $11/month) and a Year of Beard Balm ($9/month) for you.

 

Gift Packages

Looking more for a one-off gift rather than a year-long commitment? We have phenomenal options whether the man in your life (husband, boyfriend, dad, brother, friend, cool beard-guy) has a beard, mustache, or goatee. Order now through the end of the day 27 November 2017 and you’ll get 10% off. Use code ‘GIFT2017’ at checkout.

Holiday Shopping Guide

Over the last year, we have been working tirelessly to not only produce incredible products for you but to put together great packages that are easy to customize and order. We have enhanced our gift packages, added new shirts, hats, and hoodies, and for the first time, we are incorporating our most popular new product, solid cologne

Gift Packages

We have a gift for everyone. Whether he has a beard, ‘stache, or something in between, we have him covered. Pair our beard oil with a balm, a wax, or both. Every package includes your choice of a men’s or women’s shirt (get them both something), or one of our two hats. New this year, we are allowing you to tack on solid cologne for $5 off the retail price (gasp!). 

Apparel

Let’s cut right to the chase. Our shirts are possibly the most comfortable shirt you’re ever going to wear. The tri-blend material is like being wrapped in sunshine and happiness, not to mention that if you walk around wearing The Bearded Savant logo, people are going to compliment you–it happens to us all the time. We’ve expanded our line to include a new men’s design (and it comes in Children’s sizes!), women’s V-neck and racerback tank top, and the incredibly soft and comfortable hoodie. Did we mention we have great new trucker and dad hats as well?

Print

Our newest product is the fruit of our collaboration with Telos Design, a beautiful print encapsulating The Bearded Savant ethos. Beauty. Nature. Joy.

Don’t see what you want or want to develop a combination we don’t carry? Let us know, we’ll see if we can make it happen, support@thebeardedsavant.com.

How my wife uses it—Using our product the wrong way for the right reason

I’ve been looking forward to writing this post for a long time. At this point in time, we produce four different types of men’s grooming products: Beard oil, beard balm, mustache wax, and solid cologne. At first glance, it seems as though we’re trying to corner ourselves into a pretty narrow market: men with beards. Not so.

Every bearded savant product was designed with one idea in mind: Creating the best damn product for your skin and beard. This is why the ingredients in our products are primarily moisturizers. People with experience in the skin care industry are always nodding their head in agreement as I list off our carrier oils and butters—jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, Shea butter, cocoa butter, and beeswax. These ingredients not only make amazing men’s grooming products (which they do) but more generically, they are the base of premium skin products! 

Today, I want to share some non-traditional uses for our products. These are safe ways to apply our products to your body for reasons that have nothing to do with facial hair. Spoiler-alert: most of these suggestions have come from the wives of men who use our products.

DISCLAIMER: we have tried all these methods with varying degrees of success but everyone’s body is different and will react differently. Test on a small area before diving in head first!

Beard Oil

Face oil

Two drops in the palm of your hand and apply to your face. The jojoba is a rapidly absorbed carrier oil that will get the essential oils into your skin pronto. WARNING: Never get beard oil in your eyes as certain essential oils don’t mix well with eyeballs.

Acne

Use Alpinist beard oil for point treatment of pimples. The melaleuca oil will unblock the sebaceous glands and disinfect pores all-naturally.

Dry skin

Apply directly to dry patches of skin and massage. Jojoba is the most similar carrier oil to your naturally-produced skin oil. Arborist, Naturalist, and Alchemist are great for this.

Beard Balm

Deodorant

True story: my good friend’s wife used Alchemist beard balm for her deodorant until he ran out and tried a different scent.

Pomade

Obviously, beard balm is not gel but the beeswax in our beard balm does apply a bit of hold. In a pinch, I’ve used it in place of pomade with great success.

Severely dry and pealing skin

If your skin has dried out to the point of cracking, deep redness, and/or intense flakiness, apply beard balm. The butters in beard balm will do two things: First, it will act as a cap halting the flux of moisture out of your skin (halting the drying). Second, it will reverse the flow of moisturizers into your skin, helping to heal it. For a sunburn, beard balm is great when you’ve reached the peeling stage, stick with Aloe Vera for the burn itself.

Mustache Wax

Mohawk/Liberty spikes

Sure, you could use hairspray, but why not spend a bit longer, get to know your blow dryer, and give yourself an all-natural mohawk? WARNING: I’ve never tried this

Solid Cologne

Perfume

This one is a no-brainer. If you like the smell, to hell with convention! Who cares if it’s a man’s product? Smell how you want and #LiveBeautiful.