If you have a beard, chances are it’s been itchy before. While it’s normal for your beard to itch now and then, with proper hygiene and beard care there’s no reason in most cases why your beard should itch enough for you to be reading this article 😉– but don’t worry. Below we break down why your beard is itchy and what you can do about it. Even better, it’s easy to do at home as part of your every day routine for some quick itchy beard relief. So read on for a quick hack for an itchy beard and what to do to fix it long-term.
Why is my beard itchy?
Skin cells constantly need to be replaced. When you shave these skin cells get removed daily. However when growing a beard they tend to get trapped beneath your beard. The dead skin cells trapped beneath your beard need to be exfoliated to help your skin stay healthy and promote stronger beard growth. When brushing your beard the bristles penetrate through facial hair to remove these cells and help your beard grow, reducing the risk of skin irritations beneath your beard. This assists greatly in reducing beard itch.
There are two kinds of beard itch: new beard itch, and full beard itch. They have different reasons for being itchy– continue reading to find out what they are.
New Beard Itch
When you’re first growing out a new beard and it’s at a shorter length, your beard hair will normally have a sharp edge from trimming that can irritate the skin around it (or more precisely, the follicle itself).
Similarly, if you’re just growing out a beard, you may encounter ingrown hairs. If your skin is sensitive and red in specific places this could be the culprit.
Full Beard Itch
When you have a fully grown beard, beard itch has a different cause, most commonly it’s dry skin underneath the beard. Your facial hair will actually pull moisture away from the skin (not an issue for our clean-shaven friends), so keeping it properly moisturized is crucial for having a healthy beard. What’s more, your beard can trap dead skin cells that would otherwise fall off, making brushing important.
How to stop beard itch
The best way to stop your beard from itching is to get a regular routine going. It’s all about hygiene: Keeping it clean and moisturized. Follow these steps for an itch-free beard.
The Quick Beard Itch Relief
The quickest solution is bruising your beard with a stiff boar bristle brush [LINK]. The stiff brushes will scratch the itch on your skin and provide immediate relief. This process is a lot more satisfying than scratching and a lot less harmful for your beard growth. In fact it helps promote growth and activate sebum and lots of great stuff.
As you brush your beard with a stiff brush it activates the sebaceous glands to produce oils that help hydrate your skin. The sebum (natural oil produced by sebaceous gland) is secreted at the base of the hair and is essential to beard growth and keeping your skin hydrated.
Stimulating your skin with a stiff brush is an important grooming routine that is essential to promoting healthy beard growth and reducing the beard itch that happens as you grow your beard.
Clean your beard
The first step in a complete routine is to keep your beard clean. Give it a good scrub with gentle shampoo – some say daily, some say weekly – it really depends on your skin and hair types, so test the frequency and get to know what works for you.
Many also like to apply conditioner to their beard after washing it to add softness.
When out of the shower, make sure to fully dry your beard. This will help it regenerate the necessary oils more easily.
Oil in your beard: Part of the solution
Once your beard is dry, use a little oil and massage it into your beard. The goal is to help it reach the skin underneath, ensuring both the full length of the hairs and the skin get a bit of oil.
Many people think just applying oil is enough to stop an itchy beard and that it can even change the structure of the hair to be more soft, but in reality, once hair is grown it will more or less stay the same. This is a quick and medium level itch fix solution. The longer term solution is regular brushing– read on.
Brushing your beard: The best solution
Immediately follow oiling your beard by brushing it to evenly distribute the oil throughout, style your beard, and stimulate the skin to do its healthy thing.
The brushing actually stimulates your sebum glands to generate oil that protects your skin and beard. In fact most commercial oils are essentially trying to re-produce the qualities of the sebum oil. So instead of putting some replacement on top of your skin, make the body create its own!
The essential part of a healthy beard is ensuring the hair grows right in the first place. Once hair is grown it doesn’t change much no matter the oils one adds. Hence the most important part of beard care is at the base, where the hair grows. As you brush your beard frequently your face is kept clean and your beard can grow comfortably with the added benefit of healthy natural oils being distributed properly.
So if your beard is itchy follow the three steps above: keep it clean, keep it moisturized, and brush regularly!
If you’re looking for products to help you with this, check out our award-winning beard brushes and oils here.