Plenty of good reasons to grow a beard, right? Grooming is fun, shaving is terrible (unless you read this post), ladies love it and, finally, beards can protect you! Yes, they reduce the chances of bacterial infection and add a layer of protection to your skin. Without getting too medical here, whatever your reason to grow a beard is, at some point you’ll be cursed with…THE BEARD ITCH.
Why does it start up in the first place? Well, supposing you’ve been shaving for years – all that scraping toughens up your bristles so when they do start to grow out they can irritate your skin. Plus, they’re dry since your skin has to produce a lot more natural oil to lubricate and cope with the new growth. Then, of course, your bristles can attract debris: fluff and dust and fine airborne stuff, not to mention food particles.
All of this new activity can easily spark the dreaded itch. But don’t give up just yet, help is at hand. There are ways to beat it. Think of yourself as a marathon runner breaking through the pain barrier…
At the risk of stating the bleeding’ obvious, beards need care. So if you’re growing one just to save time and avoid shaving, the game’s up. First, you need to keep it clean (but not too clean).
Washing your beard every day with soap and water is not a good idea as it removes the natural oils which will help keep your bristles supple. You can always rinse regularly with plain water and no soap if this feels wrong. Some swear by washing with soap and warm (not hot) water every other day.
Use a good quality soap designed for beards. Remember, beard hair isn’t like the hair on your head. It's actually called androgenic hair and its growth is driven mainly by your testosterone. That's why you need to take care of your beard differently than other hair on your body, and beard shampoo is a painless and enjoyable way to do it. Especially with these two beautiful soap scents coming from Men Rock: Oak moss or Sicilian lime.
Drying your beard thoroughly after washing is also important to avoid the itch. If you have a particularly fulsome thatch, a hair dryer might come in handy. Besides, heat can help with taming and training your beard. Yes, correct! It is possible to train the hair to grow in a certain way while you brush or comb. Last but not least, a hair dryer will speed up your grooming routine.
You need to ensure that your pride and joy is properly hydrated. Beard oil and beard balm are essential. Seriously, without oil or balm many beards would be dry and tough, creating ideal conditions for itching. And dandruff on your chest will not attract a partner. You can choose from Oak moss or Sicilian lime scented balms to match your Men Rock beard soap.
Nearly there. Remember, beards are like dogs – they’re not just for Christmas etc. Come to think of it, beards are probably better than dogs in that you don’t have to walk them every day.
Now, as with doggy care, consider trimming and brushing. Trim regularly to keep your beard looking good and if you’re getting a regular itch, consider a shorter style where your beard has less chance of drying out.
The itch can also be caused by ingrown hairs, so check for these. We did an advisory piece some months ago on this very topic – check it out here.
Sorted? We’re always happy to help.