What’s the saying? ‘A bad craftsman blames his tools’
But unfortunately when it comes to men’s grooming, the performance of the craftsman depends entirely on the tools he uses. It is therefore essential for you to get the correct hold, longevity and product that suits you and your lifestyle, in order for your beard balm to work best for you.
Beard balm is an essential piece to a man’s grooming set, well for those who are serious about their beard care anyway.
Our Top 6 Balm Buying Tricks
Consider its hold
Beard balms containing a higher ratio of beeswax, often rank higher in the hold- ability spectrum.
Better for you, the environment and your beard. A balm containing natural ingredients will be more soothing and less harsh on the skin, meaning your beard will flourish rather than flop.
This is easily determined by looking at the ingredients list on the back of the tin or bottle. If the ingredients list contains a whole load of names and chemicals you don’t recognise, then you should return it to exactly where you found it.
The best balms are all buttered up
Shea butter and cocoa butter and natural butters that are high in natural fats. They work by creating an oil, water-proof layer around the hair cuticle locked in moisture. Harsh chemicals can’t then enter the hair follicle and natural oils cannot leave. Try and find a balm with shea or cocoa butter.
Beat the dandruff
If the balm cannot beat the dandruff then that balm has got to go. Dandruff is produced as a result of dryness so if the balm cannot conquer the dandruff then it is not conditioning and moisturizing enough for your beard.
Look for a balm with natural sealants
By this we mean that you should keep petroleum jelly out of the ingredients list and make sure you focus your search on natural sealants such as beeswax.
These will keep your beard moisturized for longer unlike a petroleum jelly, that will just make the hair waterproof.
Look at the oil content
Natural oils work best in a good beard balm.
Look out for oils such as Jojoba, grapeseed and Argan oil, these have the most powerful moisturizing properties for hair follicles.
What is the difference between beard oil, wax and a balm?
Like you wouldn’t leave the hair on your head to wash, dry and style itself, you wouldn’t neglect the hair on your face. There are a range of different products on the market which are specifically tailored to maintain healthy hair on your face. These products, in turn are beard oil, wax and balm and here is how they work:
The longer you grow your beard hair, generally means there is more care it requires. This is because the moisture and nutrients that is provided by your skin increasingly struggles to reach the end of the hairs. Beard oil helps condition your hair. It mimics the oils, naturally produced by your upper epidermis and acts as a substitute so the ends feel a little less… neglected.
It is best applied straight out of the shower, on a clean and shampooed beard just a pee sized amount is plenty enough.
This is more of a pomade than an oil and to break this down further, the difference between an oil and a balm is it’s consistency. A beard balm contains a sealant and a moisturizer and less oil, although it still has a high oil content itself. It generally has the same benefits as a beard oil but differs in it’s thickness so it might be worth trying both an oil and a balm to see which best suits you and your skin type.
A balm contains beeswax, unlike a beard oil. This beeswax has staying power, allowing you to sculpt and shape your beard how you like, however if you are after that extra-firm hold, then a wax may be more suitable to you.
Out of all three of the products, beard wax has the highest staying power and contains the highest dosage of beeswax. Therefore if you’re looking for a crisp, pointed ended or styled to the side beard, the wax may be a slightly better option for you and the look you are wanting to achieve.
The Best Beard Balms of 2021, Tried and Tested
But, what else would you expect from a company that thrives off natural ingredients and is determined to bring you only the best product you will find on the market?
And better yet, when we say ‘a little goes a long way with this product’ we aren’t joking! In Fact the least amount of product, when applied with your finger tips or a beard brush, is the upmost effective creating a classic shine and sleek finish to any beard out there.
This product also comes in a durable and versatile steel tin that can be great as a travelling companion. The price of this product does reflect it’s price, of $30, however, highly with it due to its quality and impeccable and unbeatable longevity.
There’s simply no wonder why this beard balm is continuously labelled with a sold out sign. It really is one of the best beard balms on the market and it speaks for itself. As quoted on the official website it gives your beard ‘God-like health and stamina’.
It’s citrus tonic flavour is a kick of fresh air and it is the start to your day you need to be ready for what it may bring. It softens and tames your beard without it getting clogged up with a back-log of wax and debris. You will feel like a new man after just a few days of using this product, we can assure you of that.
Don’t let the ‘sold out’ put you off waiting around for this product as it is really worth it. Its fresh smell, long lasting product and sleek finish is the perfect equation for a perfect beard balm, it has it all. A great price too and it is worth every penny, on the market for £16.97! A steal if you ask us!
Cheap but very cheerful, this product has it all and is suitable for a lower budget, or someone who doesn’t want all the fuss, just a good, solid, reliable product with minimal faff. £7.50 for a 60g tin, the reviews on this balm speak for themselves.
Naturally derived, this product oozes masculinity from the outside, as well as the inside. A great staple in your grooming kit, this balm is soft on the skin yet firm on the hair keeping it in place all day long. You can wear this balm with confidence, knowing it will not let you down.
It contains a relatively high percentage of beeswax meaning it is more holding than the other balms in this list. This is all down to your own personal preferences and what you like in a balm. Some people who like to style their beard in a certain way, will like a more holding balm without having to up-the-ante to a wax. However some people may find this is slightly too stiff and that’s okay too, it is all about trial and error.
The scent of this balm is not overpowering yet masculine. It is Cedarwood and Eucalyptus scented, but lightly so you don’t smell out a room, or small village. Don’t be that guy.
It is very well priced, at £8.99 on Amazon, a good all round balm, however just be aware it has more staying power than the usual balm so it 100% depends on what consistency works best for you and your style.
Another great priced product on the market and highly available in the UK, drugstores such as Boots and Superdrug are sure to stock this, you may even find it at your local supermarket.
But, just because it is not rare, it certainly is good for quality. It is a non-greasy and fast absorbing formula that hydrates without over oiling the hair and the skin underneath your beard (because that is just as important).
It’s ingredients include vital hydrants from Aloe Vera, Camelina oil and green tea to combat dryness whilst not making the area overly oily. This product works best for oilier skin types as it is moisturizing enough to hydrate but don’t lather the skin in excess oils, like a balm made for a dry skin would (usually contain a higher amount of oil/s).
You can pick it up for less than £8, a great all round product which we highly recommend.
Just as easy to wash out as it is easy to apply. No product will out stay their welcome here as no unwanted product will linger. This non-greasy, vegan, SLS free formula is great for all skin and hair types.
It is soft and gentle with a light vanilla and sandalwood scent that will leave your skin feeling soft and hydrated. There really is nothing negative to say about this product. It is durable and comes in a nice versatile tin that you can pop in your bag and take anywhere with you.
Not to mention this product is hand-crafted so you can be sure every detail is perfectly thought of. It is $16 for a pot, so slightly more on the pricey side but it’s masculine scent and smooth and highly refined textures is all worth it!
The Application Process
This might be quite a straight forward question for some, but nevertheless, it is still key to the application of your beard balm. Most men will only apply their beard balm once daily and this is best applied after your morning shower. Even if you don’t wash your hair in your morning shower, the hot steam will be absorbed by your beard leaving it slightly damp to the touch. This is when the key ingredients, such as the butters and the natural oils, that are present in the balm will work best on your beard.
You should be using no more than a thumb nail amount of the balm for the entirety of your beard.
If your beard is more than 3 inches long then add slightly more, if you have a particularly thick beard, you will also need slightly more product to cover the area.
You should then place the thumb nail amount (roughly) of balm into the palm of your hand and rub together, using the other hand to warm the product up. This will soften the product and make it much easier to apply.
We suggest you rub your balm into your skin area first (e.g. your chin) and then use the remainder of the product to bring it down your hair follicles. There is a good reason for applying it this way and that is because if you apply the product straight onto your beard, it could get overly greasy through the day. It is also because if the balm is applied to the skin, your skin will absorb the product and slowly release it into the hair follicles naturally through the day so the product will be more effective and durable.
Like any products on the market you get your good and bad share! However we have wicked it down to our highly rated and favourite ones so you can cut out the middleman and go straight for the best on the market. We hope you enjoy, you are now ready to face the world with your perfectly groomed, perfectly ‘balmed’, beard.