Sometime back I shared my recipe for a mustache wax. Also, I have shared recipes for various beard balms and oils.
All the products work for both beards and mustaches. Moreover, all 3 of them have the same use case – taming facial hair.
The wax and balm look similar. Also, they serve the purpose of styling and conditioning the facial hair.
It is the beard oil that looks different from the other 2. That is why a lot of men feel confused about using oils, balms, and waxes.
If you wish to know the differences between your facial grooming products. Then, read further.
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What to use: Beard Oil vs Beard Wax vs Beard Balm
Since the beard waxes and balms look similar. Thus, for the ease of their comparison with beard oil. I am clubbing them together. I will tackle the difference between wax and balm a little later in this post. But first the difference between oils and waxes/balms.
But if you wish to skim through the individual content topics. Then, please make use of the jump links below:
Reasons That Will Make You Compare Beard Oil Vs Beard Wax
If you are a beardy hunk. Then, I am sure you must be using beard oil or wax, or both.
Both the products enhance the beard. But both have a few differences.
Those differences are:
1. Beard Oil consists of a carrier oil base along with essential oils and herbs. While carrier and essential oils are common with waxes/balms too. But in addition, they also have heavy fats and/or esters from fatty acids.
2. Beard oil penetrates the skin cells and vitalizes hair growth. Although, waxes and balms do contain oils. But due to their heavy structure, it is difficult for the oils to penetrate the skin cells.
3. Beard oil is not efficient for styling the facial hair. Though the waxes and balms style and or protect the beards and mustaches.
4. Because of the presence of oils, beard oil remains in a state of liquid at all temperatures. An exception is in the case of few beard oils that turn solid at low temperatures due to the presence of coconut oil.
But the beard balms and waxes stay solid most of the times.
5. The usage of beard oil leaves a greasy feel that lingers on for a while. That oily feel is absent in the case of waxes and balms.
As you can make out, oils help in nourishing the hair follicles. While the waxes and balms help style, condition and tame the unruly facial hair.
Even though the basic ingredients are similar in all the 3 products. It is the beard oil that will help with itchiness and uneven beard issues.
That means a beard oil is mandatory for optimum facial hair grooming. While the waxes and balms are nice, but not essential for everyone.
Though, cavemen beards and full-blown mustaches do require beard/mustache waxes/balms.
That brings the next topic of discussion:
Beard/Mustache Wax or Beard/Mustache Balm
Before I get on to the differences. Let me tackle the common pointers between the balms and waxes.
Carrier oil acts as a base to form both the waxes and balms. Coconut and Jojoba oils are popular carrier oils to form these products.
Coconut oil turns solid above 76 degrees F (24 degrees C). Thus, the end product stays stable and convenient for usage.
Although Jojoba oil is popular as an oil. But its structure is that of a weak wax. That is why much like coconut oil, Jojoba is common in both waxes and balms.
If you give a close inspection of the other ingredients in waxes/balms. Then, you will understand the subtle differences between both the products.
Most of their differences are as below:
1. As their name suggests, Waxes contain the wax as a substantial ingredient. Beeswax is the most popular choice for a stronghold beard wax recipe. While Carnauba wax and Dink gum are popular in vegan beard balm recipe.
In balms, dense butter extracted from nuts is the star ingredient. Shea, cocoa and kokum butter are the popular choices for making balms for facial hair.
2. If you face dry facial hair issues. Then, a beard balm is your go-to product. The presence of heavy butter tackles dryness minus the sticky effect of beard oils.
But the waxes can further add to your dryness woes. The waxes contain a small amount of alcohol in them. That alcohol has a drying effect. Thus, after consistent use of heavy facial hair waxes. You can see issues of dry hair and facial skin popping up.
So, to keep the facial hair and skin supple and conditioned. You must use a beard balm instead of wax. For best results, you can use beard oil before using a balm.
3. If you are a mustache/beard styling aficionado. Then, you need to tame the hair in a particular way to maintain your style. For instance, the handlebar mustache loses its panache if the mustache ends droop. To maintain the facial hair styling solidarity waxes help. Waxes hold the facial hair with a grip, thereby maintaining the style. Also, waxes create a barrier that protects the hair from external moisture. Thus, if you live in humid environments, then mustache/ beard wax is a must.
For a superior hold. Waxes must come in direct contact with the hair. So, you should avoid using beard oil before using waxes.
Due to the absence of waxes, facial hair balms cannot provide a stronghold. Thus, they are not as useful as a core styling product.
In recent times, there is a surge in the popularity of sporting facial hair. Of course, that brings in an influx of male facial hair grooming products.
A wide range of products brings in a lot of options to choose from. But at the same time, they do bring in confusion regarding their usage.
This article digs deep into that problem and presents a solution.
If you have concerns putting beard oil or balm first. Or you want to know what product among oils/ waxes/ balms enhances the facial hair quality. Then, this article is for you.
Let me know if you have concerns about any other facial hair grooming products. I would love to analyze them as well.
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