Throughout history, men have grown beards for various uses. The early man kept beards for warmth and intimidation while in ancient Greece it was regarded as a sign of honor.
Today, however, it has become a red-carpet statement. Men are now wearing beards in different lengths and forms as a fashion piece. More men are paying attention to how their beard looks and feels and this has motivated the creation of various beard care products. So, if you are looking to join the ‘gram-ready beard gang, you will need to invest in a couple of products to tame your facial hair.
With so many products to choose from, you may be confused about what to pick. There is beard oil, beard combs, beard trimmers, beard shampoo, beard pomade, and beard wax. The uses of combs and trimmers are obvious but most men are often confused about using pomade on their beards.
So, can you use pomade on your beard?
Beard pomade has several potential benefits. It is okay to use pomade on your facial hair, especially if you have medium to long beard. Provided you identify what your beard needs, a pomade will nourish your hair and the skin beneath and make the beard easy to manage thus you get a healthy- and good-looking beard.
What Is Beard Pomade?
The simplest way to describe a beard pomade is that it is a conditioning product with a cream- like consistency. It makes it easier for you to style your beard hair so that you can achieve a certain look.
Pomades can either be petroleum/oil-based or water-based. Most products you will come across are petroleum-based, so they will have grease-like characteristics. Such pomades last longer on your beard since even after washing some traces are left behind. You also do not need to use a lot of the product since it does not dissolve in water or dry out fast. This and the fact that they provide a good hold makes it easy for you to maintain a certain do.
Water-based pomades on the other hand are soluble in water and much lighter. Their shine, texture, and hold may be comparable to that of oil/petroleum-based pomades but they only last on the beard for a shorter period which means you have to regularly apply the product. their advantage though is that there is less likelihood of developing breakout or acne on the skin beneath the facial hair.
Basically, whatever type of beard pomade you use, the end objective is to give you more control of the beard so that you can easily style it, as you desire.
Ingredients in Beard Pomade
You must have heard beard pomade being described as the love-child of beard oil and beard wax. This is simply because it combines the conditioning abilities of oil and the holding power that can only be achieved with wax. Most beard pomades consist of four key ingredients that include: beeswax, butter, essential oil, and carrier oil. Understanding the role of each of the ingredients will help you better understand the benefits of using a pomade on your facial hair.
Beeswax: This is primarily used to provide hold for your beard and keep the pomade in a solid- state. The hold offered by a pomade is not as strong as that provided by beard wax but it still tames unruly facial hair and makes it easily pliable. Your beard style will still stay in place after you brush or comb it. Another reason why beeswax is used is that it helps lock in moisture provided by other ingredients in the pomade.
Butters: These provided the much-needed moisture to your beard while making the pomade easy to spread. Commonly used kinds of butter are shea and cocoa butter which have potent benefits. Shea butter is known to fight off wrinkles while softening the skin while cocoa butter is rich in moisture and has healing abilities. Solid fats like coconut oil can also be used. When the skin beneath your facial hair is flourishing, then your beard will also thrive.
Carrier Oils: They complement the butter by ensuring your beard stays soft and good-looking. Carrier oils are obtained from different types of plants with the common ones being argan, olive, sweet almond, and jojoba. Their purpose is to nourish the beard by complimenting efforts of the natural oil, sebum, produced by your skin.
Essential Oils: These give the pomade its scent. They range from woody scents to peppermint to citrus and flowery scents. However, that’s not all they do, essential oils have some useful and beneficial properties too. For instance, tea tree oil smells great but also has natural antiseptic properties which can be great for those that suffer from breakout and acne. Lavender oil is also another common addition to beard pomade which has a sweet scent and is also great for the skin.
Although essential oils influence the ultimate scent of a pomade, this does not mean the scent of other ingredients will be completely suppressed. Your pomade scent will still have an undertone of the butter and carrier oils used. You therefore will have to consider the ingredients contained in your pomade to ensure that you get one with a scent that suits your preference.
Benefits of Using Pomade on Your Beard?
For most people that are yet to try beard pomade, the big question is, why use beard pomade? The quick answer to this is that it helps you achieve a great-looking beard with little effort. As discussed above, it contains a range of ingredients with healthy properties necessary for your beard. In summary, a beard pomade will ensure that your beard is nourished and remains tamed. It does so, in the following ways:
1. Treats and Prevents Beardruff
Just the same way the hair on your head experiences dandruff, the white flaky skin underneath your beard is what is called beardruff. The skin naturally produces sebum, an oil that nourishes the skin and hair follicles. However, as your beard grows longer and depending on how much sebum you produce, this natural oil may not be sufficient to nourish the beard hair. This causes the skin to dry out, become irritable, and start to flake.
In a beard pomade, two of the four ingredients used, i.e. the butter and a carrier oil, provide great moisturizing benefits. These ingredients do not contain sebum but they do have natural properties that closely match the oil production by the skin. Jojoba for instance naturally resembles sebum oil. The moisturizing and lock-in abilities of pomade then ensure your beard and the skin underneath stay hydrated and healthy which in turn prevents flaking and irritation.
2. Protects Beard from Elements
Your facial hair is vulnerable to elements like cold, extended sun exposure, and humidity. All these can impact the health of your beard by causing protein loss damage to the facial hair fibers. But thanks to the beeswax used in pomade, your beard will have a thin protective layer against cold, wind, and UV rays. The hold offered will also ensure your style stays intact and presents frizz and stray hair even in a humid climate. The skin underneath is also nourished and holds in moisture in all elements.
3. Tames the Beard and Makes Styling Easy
The oils and butter in the pomade will moisturize the facial hair, making it soft and shiny. A soft beard is easy to manipulate and style while the beeswax in the pomade provides hold to keep your style in place. Since the current beard trends focus on appearance and grooming, adding pomade to your routine will ensure that your beard is always sleek but with little effort. A good pomade will add a little bit of weight to your beard to help lay down the stray hair and for a naturally clean look. Therefore, if you want your beard to grow in a particular direction, adding pomade to your grooming routine will come in handy.
4. Promotes Healthy Beard Growth
The soap you use on your beard or even the temperature of your showers does have an impact on the health of your beards. To ensure you grow a healthy beard, you need to pay attention to what goes onto your beard. Pomade can help replenish the oils stripped away from your beard after a shower. It can also solve problems like split ends and reduce breakage too. In the end, you get to grow a longer and healthy beard that is soft and without knots and tangles.
How to Use Beard Pomade?
If you are just starting your beard journey or are looking to improve the feel and appearance of your beard, you need to know how to use pomade properly to enjoy all its benefits. A beard pomade will solve most of your bead problems such as dryness, thinning, tangling, breakage, and brittleness.
For best results, you should always use pomade on clean and dry facial hair. Applying the product with water might dilute it or even change its properties. So, the first thing even before applying the pomade is to wash and then dry your beard. It is best to use a natural soap or a beard shampoo that will not completely strip you of the natural oil, sebum.
To apply the pomade, take a coin-sized amount and massage it between your palms before gently running your fingers through the beard to transfer the pomade. Always apply the pomade starting from your neck towards the chin. This will ensure that the pomade also reaches the skin underneath the beard and nourishes it as well as the hair roots. Continue to gently massage the pomade into your beard for a few seconds to ensure even distribution on all areas that include the jawline, cheeks, and mustache too.
Be careful not to apply a lot of pressure when massaging the pomade into the beard, as this can cause the beard to flatten, which may interfere with your styling preference. If you have long or thick beards, using a beard comb will help get the pomade to all areas of your facial hair.
When using pomade, you need to understand that a little amount goes a long way. Do not use too much product or else the beard will feel and even look greasy. Just apply a sufficient amount that makes your beard hair feel soft with leaving any excess product on your fingers. Beard pomade can stay on until you are ready for your next wash. However, if the product you are using is petroleum-based, it is best to wash it out before bed to allow the pores to breathe and prevent breakouts.
The frequency in which you use pomade will depend on the state of your beard. Those with a dry beard may need to use it up to three-time every day for full moisturizing benefits while others may only need to apply it once a day. The length and thickness of your beard will also determine how much product you use, and the frequency of application.
How to Get the Best Results from Beard Pomade
To get the most from beard pomade, it is recommended that you use it together with a beard comb and beard oil. The comb helps to distribute the pomade throughout the beard and at the same time straightens it. At this time the beard will also have become soft so it is easy to smooth out any knots for a good-looking beard.
If using a beard oil together with pomade, the oil will have to go in first. The oil acts as a moisturizer too but with added healing and nourishing effects. Take a few drops of oil and rub it onto your palm before massaging it into your beard and the skin beneath. Follow up with a pomade that has locking properties to ensure that the moisturizing effects of the oil are locked in.
Besides investing in beard care products, you will also have to invest in grooming your beard. Oils, pomades, and combs are not always enough if you are chasing a sleek model-like beard. Occasional trims are necessary to get rid of split ends and even out the beard. You will need a good pair of scissors for this or you can visit your barbershop to keep your beard looking nice and neat.
Washing your beard before using the pomade is also necessary so that the skin and beard hair absorb all nutrients. Consider using a natural soap or products that are tailored for washing the beard. This prevents damage to your facial hair which is often as a result of drying out the skin underneath the beard.
The best time to use a beard pomade is after a shower, since then your pores are open and will absorb the product better. It is also advisable to get a pomade with all-natural ingredients, especially if you have sensitive skin, to avoid any negative side effects.
Difference Between Beard Pomade, Beard Oil and Beard Wax
The terms beard pomade, beard oil, and beard wax sometimes cause confusion among people. Here are the key differences between the three:
• It provides consistency to beard hair giving it a good hold
• Softens and conditions the beard
• Best for medium to long facial hair
• Its mildly thick, with a butter-like consistency
• Remains solid at room temperature
• Moisturizes and nourishes the skin and beard
• It is always in a liquid state
• Different formulations target different beard needs
• Best for beards but is mostly recommended for the initial stages of beard growth.
• Makes the beard look shiny and smooth without a gunky texture
• Mostly used on long beards
• Best for styling as it securely holds the hair in place
• Protects the beard from elements like rain and humidity
• Mostly lacks moisturizing or conditioning properties but still provides other good benefits to your beard
• It has a thicker consistency than pomade
Having understood the key features of each of the products, you can now make an informed decision on what will work for and what will not. While some products can be used alongside each other, it is best to try one product at a time so as to observe its effect on your beard. After getting to know what is good and what is not, you can now start to combine two or all three products in your beard care and grooming routine.
It is generally very easy to use pomade on your beard. Just make sure that you take your time to research and figure out the best pomade to use. First, identify the goals you have for your beard and then search for a pomade with the right formulation to facilitate that goal. Every ingredient in your pomade matters so always be careful to note what it is that eventually goes into your beard and skin. If you get the right pomade and use it correctly, you will be able to grow full and long healthy beards that are easy to manage and care for.
About the author:
My name is Robert Moffet, Author, and editor at looks guides blog (looksguide.com). I live in Nairobi, Kenya. Apart from writing I also
operate a pet store where I provide pet care services to my local community.