Combing a beard the wrong way can cause ingrown hairs or dry skin, leading to itchiness and dandruff. Not to mention that it makes you look unkempt and unprofessional.
You certainly won’t feel confident looking like a hobo with messy, unruly facial hair.
That’s not the way to showcase the masterpiece you’ve grown on your face either.
So, yes, believe it or not, there is a right and a wrong way to comb your beard.
There are more benefits to beard combing than you can count. In this article, we bring you all of them.
But, we also go the extra mile and give you all the secrets to combing your facial hair the right way, how to choose the right comb for your beard type and a few more tips along the way.
Brace yourself, this is your ultimate beard combing guide!
Table Of Contents
- What Is a Beard Comb
- Benefits of Beard Combs
- How Does Beard Comb Work
- Regular vs Specialized Beard Comb
- Materials of Beard Combs
- Types of Beard Combs
- How to Choose the Best Beard Comb
- How To Comb Your Beard
- How to Clean Beard Comb
- Beard Comb vs Similar Tools
- Does More Spending Mean More Quality
- Do’s and Don’ts With a Beard Comb
- FAQ About Beard Combs
What Is a Beard Comb
A beard comb is a grooming product that is used to comb, style, and moisturize facial hair. It is also used to train facial hair so that it can grow in the direction that you want. Beard combs are made of different materials that include wood, metal, horn, and cellulose plastic and they come in a variety of sizes.
Benefits of Beard Combs
If you have a beard, taking care of it is paramount if it is to look and feel healthy and it all starts with getting the right tools. With that in mind, here are a few benefits of using a beard comb that you can’t overlook.
Preventing Ingrown Hairs
Ingrown hairs are annoying and it’s the last thing you want, especially when you start growing a beard because they can cause painful blemishes overtime.
Those little bumps and red spots around your cheeks and neck are simply ingrown hairs that curled around and began growing under the skin.
A good quality beard comb helps your hair to grow in the right direction, which prevents ingrown hairs in the long run. Combing the hair each day will ensure all those facial hairs will grow in the right direction, so you avoid those unsightly and painful ingrown facial hairs.
Lining Up the Hairs
In order to give that appearance of a fuller beard, all those hairs need to align perfectly with your face. When you comb your beard each day, you are, in fact, training different hairs to grow in different directions.
Just like how combing the hair on your head will cause hairs to grow a certain way, in order to have a fuller and manly beard, combing is absolutely essential every day.
Keeping Your Mouth Clear
A clean beard is a healthy beard and it involves more than just washing your beard when you are taking a shower.
Combing your beard is a necessary step in maintaining a clean beard. This is because combing the beard ensures that your beard is free of dirt and food particles, which can leave it looking gross.
Combing the hair around your mouth each day not only trains the hairs to grow around the mouth, it will help to reduce all those food particles from getting trapped in the facial hairs.
Nothing can take away months of work, like looking at a beard that has little food particles trapped everywhere.
Moisturize the Beard
By now, you know how important it is to apply a beard balm or beard oil to the facial hair to help it stay healthy and strong while ensuring the skin below is adequately moisturized.
There is only so much that you can reach when you apply the product to your palms and rub it into the hair.
When you comb your beard each day after applying the beard moisturizer, the teeth of the comb will evenly distribute this product to the areas that need it the most.
Getting the Look You Desire
Whether you have good or bad hair genes, the only way that you can style your beard to get the desired look is by combing the facial hair. When you shape the hair with a comb, you can style that look any way you choose.
Stop combing for a while and you will realize how unmanageable and out of control that facial hair can become. If you want a certain style, combing the hair each day is the easiest way to achieve that desired look.
Now that you know about the benefits of combing your beard don’t just grab any cheap comb or use the one that you use for the hair on your head.
Find yourself a high-quality facial hair comb that is specifically designed for working through tangles effortlessly without pulling hairs out by the roots.
Work your combing routing in right after you apply your beard conditioners each day and you will have that manly beard that will command attention.
How Does Beard Comb Work
A beard comb works by ridding your beard of food particles as well as dust through regular combing. It also helps to keep your beard moisturized by distributing beard oil as well as butter throughout the beard.
By combing your beard, you also help to tame the unruly hairs, which improves the appearance of your beard. Additionally, combing your beard helps get rid of beard itch and dandruff as well as ingrown hairs, especially when you are just starting.
Regular vs Specialized Beard Comb
If your first instinct is to grab some ordinary, cheap comb from a supermarket and use it on your beard – just don’t do it. There is nothing worse you can do to your facial hair.
It is better not to comb your beard at all than to comb it with a cheap plastic comb. The best thing you can do is choose a reliable comb designed explicitly for beards.
Finding the right facial hair comb largely depends on the coarseness and the length of your beard.
There are three critical differences between standard combs and beard combs that you should understand – the production process, the material from which they are made and teeth width.
Cheap combs are made on a large press that stamps them out of a mold. Therefore, these combs have a lot of microscopic jagged edges along with each tooth.
What does this mean for your beard? Nothing good, that’s for sure. Once you run this comb through your facial hair, it will tear apart your hair follicles. This will further lead to breakage; beard split ends and static.
While there are a few ways to deal with split ends, the most effective one is cutting off the tip of your beard. You’re now probably thinking that trimming facial hair is a normal process.
And you are right, but when you develop split ends, you will be forced to cut your beard more frequently than necessary. Static and friction are also things you will experience if you decide to comb your beard with an ordinary comb.
The cheap comb will electrify your beard, which will create a lot of stray hairs in it. Last but not least, plastic combs are cheap for a good reason – their teeth usually break very easily.
This is more prone to happen when you are storing the comb in your pants pockets. Specialized combs for beards are designed to allow you to carry them around in your pockets easily.
When one or more teeth of cheap combs break, the damage to your beard will be even worse as the comb will pull and tug the hairs more than before.
Before you realize it, you will have to revisit your local store to buy another comb, which means that you are actually not saving any money, as you thought you would.
Specialized Beard Combs
Combs made specifically for your beard are usually made of wood or horn. These materials are sturdier than plastic, which makes them stronger and more durable.
Also, each tooth on it is individually saw cut and then polished. This process eliminates the jagged edges, and the result is a smooth combing experience.
The teeth of a beard comb cannot be moved easily with a finger, while with a cheap plastic comb, this will happen consistently.
Beard and head hairs are different, in a sense that beard hairs are much coarser and that’s why you need a comb whose teeth won’t bend.
Just one of the reasons why hair comb is not a good choice for facial hair combing is the space between its teeth. Teeth on hair combs are not spaced enough to glide through the coarse beard hairs.
This being said, beard combs have various spacing, and this allows them to glide effortlessly even through the thickest and coarsest beards. However, have in mind that you should choose a comb while taking into consideration the density and the length of your beard.
For example, if your beard is curly and coarse, a comb with wider spacing between teeth is the best choice. For softer beards, combs with teeth that are more close will work better.
For a short beard that is also soft, you need a comb with closer teeth, while long and dense beard requests wider space between its teeth.
Materials of Beard Combs
All facial hair combs are made by hand, but the materials they are made from vary. Materials from which combs are made are wood, metal, and cellulose acetate.
Wood is the most common material, and it’s the best choice for a beard comb. This is the type of material that every serious bearded man would recommend because there are more benefits of wooden combs than it meets the eye.
The pros of wooden combs are numerous. The first thing you will notice is their appearance, and they all look great simply because they are carefully hand-crafted.
The width between their teeth varies depending on the type of a beard you want to comb with it. They are also cut by hand, and the goal is to avoid the rough edges.
If the edges of a comb are not smooth, it will pull and tug your beard leading to breakage. Fortunately, this almost never happens with wooden facial hair combs.
The only downside of these combs is that they’re not waterproof. However, there are wooden combs of different qualities, which you should consider before buying one.
You know how you should avoid plastic combs by all means? Well, you should do the same with metal beard combs.
Their edges are very rough, and they will damage your facial hair follicles, but also cause beard friction and static—enough reasons not to use them on your precious facial hair.
Cellulose acetate is similar to rubber, and some beard experts consider that it’s one of the best materials for facial hair combs. These beard combs are very easy to clean, and they don’t cause beard static and friction.
Plastic combs are the cheapest mainly because the material is not expensive, which leads to poor quality beard combs.
The combs are not only flimsy, but they create static within your facial hair and they don’t smooth out your beard as well as other combs and not to mention they are not durable.
Unlike plastic combs, beard combs that are made with ox horn or bone materials are of the highest quality and they are also very durable. The high quality makes it easy to train your facial hair achieving that look that turns heads.
Types of Beard Combs
Beard combs vary in terms of materials, size as well as type. Here are a few types of beard combs that are worth mentioning.
The manufacturing process of beard combs affects the quality in the end. A poorly manufactured comb will scratch, snag and pull facial hair harming your beard in the process.
Hand-cut combs are usually made of horn and wood and they are of high quality. The teeth are cut individually with saws and then smoothed and polished to remove the jagged edges.
As such, the teeth of such combs don’t move when you run your fingers over them like plastic combs do, which makes styling very easy.
Stamp press combs are the cheaper option and they are mostly made of plastic. The common flow when it comes to such combs is that they end up with jagged edges during the manufacturing process that can damage your hair follicles.
Stamp-pressed combs are also not as durable and tend to break apart easily. While they are cheap to buy, the chances are that you will be buying another comb in a few months.
How to Choose the Best Beard Comb
When you are buying a beard comb, you might feel overwhelmed, not knowing the best comb for you. Here are a few things that you need to consider to get a comb that meets all your grooming needs.
The material of the beard comb affects its quality, which is why this is an important consideration. The three materials that are used to make beard combs include metal, plastic and wood.
Beard combs made of wood cost more than those made of plastic, but they are of high quality and highly durable. Plastic combs, on the other hand, can wreak havoc to your beard in the long run, so you need to be careful about such.
Cellulose acetate combs are made of a rubber-like material that doesn’t produce static when it comes into contact with the hair, which is one of the issues with plastic combs.
Size and Width of the Teeth
There are so many combs that are available in the market today and they come in different sizes, including the size and width of the teeth.
The type of comb that you buy will depend on your beard. For instance, combs that have wide teeth are ideal for thick beards.
Hand-Crafted vs Machine Manufactured
Ideally, hand created beard combs are of higher quality than machine manufactured ones. This is because every detail is considered carefully and the teeth are cut individually and smoothed out to remove the jagged edges.
Machine manufactured beard combs, on the other hand, have jagged edges between the teeth that can tear out the hair follicles in the long run.
The last thing you want is to buy a comb that will break after a few weeks. As such, consider the material of the comb because this affects its durability.
It goes without saying that plastic combs, while they are cheap, are less durable than their wood and bone counterparts.
When you are buying a beard comb, you want a comb that feels good in your hand, doesn’t slip and is not too heavy such that it becomes uncomfortable to use.
Works Well With Other Beard Care Products
The last thing you want is a beard comb that doesn’t work well with beard products that you may use.
Beard combs are used primarily to help distribute beard oil as well as butter into the beard and the skin underneath. If a comb can’t handle that, then there is no use wasting your money on it.
Easy to Clean
When all is said and done, you can’t use a dirty comb and you need to clean yours frequently. Get a comb that is easy to clean, depending on the beard products that you intend to use.
How To Comb Your Beard
Step 1 – Choose the right comb
It can’t be repeated enough, but choosing a comb with the right teeth is essential. Wider teeth comb will glide through your beard easier.
However, it also has to have smaller teeth for mustache combing. Take into consideration the material from which a comb is made. Plastic is the wrong choice, for example, because it causes static, snags and it damages your beard.
Step 2 – Start from the bottom
Start by combing the beard from the bottom and coming upwards and outward. This process should begin at the neck and work towards the cheeks and chin. By combing this way, you will separate all the facial hair, so the beard appears fuller.
Step 3 – Don’t pull and tug the snags
There is a possibility you will run into some snags in your beard while combing it. Don’t try to tug and pull at them.
Instead, slowly and gently come through the snag. Usually, those snags are just a few hairs crossed one over the other.
Beard oil is a great way to deal with snags, and when used in combination with a comb, it can help easier comb sliding through your beard.
Step 4 – Comb the beard down
Once the entire beard has been brushed upwards, now begin combing the beard down so that you can style it in the manner you like.
Step 5 – Comb the mustache as well
Don’t forget to comb that mustache off to the sides and away from your mouth.
Step 6 – Work slowly and gently
Never comb your beard to aggressively and also avoid passing the comb very fast through your facial hair.
The proper technique is to comb the beard gently and slowly. Now that you understand how to comb the beard let’s talk about the benefits of combing your beard.
How to Clean Beard Comb
Cleaning a beard comb is vital because dirty combs will make your beard greasy and transport food parts and dust back into your facial hair. This will create more problems with your beard.
On the other hand, a clean comb will make your facial hair smooth and neat, and force it to grow in the desired direction.
Now you know the importance of cleaning facial hair combs, so it’s only fair to explain the process itself now.
Step 1 – Put the soap on the base of your comb
The only cleaning tools you need are a liquid soap and a toothbrush. The first thing you should do is to put the soap on each side of the base of your comb.
Step 2 – Spread the soap between comb’s teeth
By using your fingers, spread the soap between comb’s teeth and rinse it immediately with warm water. You will notice that there are still some soap leftovers, but nevertheless, you should add more soap.
Step 3 – Use a toothbrush to clean it from the base
After that, using the toothbrush start cleaning it from its base and move toward the end of comb’s teeth. This should be done under the running water.
Step 4 – Rinse soap with the toothbrush
Rinse all the soap with the toothbrush until you notice that all the dirt build-up is removed. To finish, pat dry your comb. This process is almost the same when cleaning any beard comb, with slight adjustments for fine tooth and wooden combs.
In case of fine tooth combs, you should spend more time in rinsing the comb with a toothbrush. The goal is to really get between each tooth so that you are sure there isn’t any dirt left.
Wood shouldn’t be submerged in water for too long, or it will splinter and swell. You should also make sure that you have removed all the water from it.
The good news is that you don’t have to clean beard combs too often. If there is not visible debris build upon it, don’t clean it just yet.
Optimally, beard combs should be cleaned about bi-annually. Don’t skip this process if you want to double its lifetime.
Beard Comb vs Similar Tools
Beard combs are ideal in keeping a beard in shape and taming unruly hairs to grow in the direction that you want them to, but how do they compare to other grooming tools?
A mustache comb is a grooming tool that is made specifically for the mustache. It is much smaller than a beard comb and a normal comb to accommodate the length and thickness of the mustache.
It is used to moisturize the mustache hair, train the hair to grow in the direction you want and to keep your mustache in shape.
A beard pick is a type of comb that is made specifically for curly beards. It has longer and wider teeth that allow for less pulling of the hairs and for the beard curls to be worked through all the way.
It is a good option for that time when your normal beard comb will not work because the hair is tangled up.
Such combs are made from hard rubber materials that are anti-static, heat resistant, and unbreakable.
Electric Beard Comb
If you struggle with coarse, curly as well as frizzy facial hair, an electric beard comb will work for you. They work just like hair straighteners and they are effective in battling not only oils but balms.
They are gentle to the skin rather than using a hairdryer to blow-dry your beard to get rid of the curls.
Does More Spending Mean More Quality
When it comes to beard combs, more spending definitely means more quality. This is because what determines the quality of a beard comb is specifically the materials used during manufacture.
Plastic while it’s cheap is the lowest quality and beard combs made of this material are cheap and will break in a few weeks or months.
Such combs also create static and they contain jagged edges that end up damaging your beard in the long run.
Beard combs made of wood, horn, or bone, on the other hand, don’t create static, don’t have jagged edges and they do a good job of styling your beard. They are expensive, but they will last you longer than the cheap plastic ones.
Do’s and Don’ts With a Beard Comb
- Do consider the materials that are used to make the beard comb because this affects the quality.
- Do buy a beard comb that can work well with the beard grooming products that you intend to use.
- Do consider the thickness and length of your beard when you are buying a beard comb to get one that will work for your beard.
- Don’t get so hung up on the price even when on a budget such that you get a low-quality beard comb.
FAQ About Beard Combs
Why do I need a beard comb?
A beard comb is important for a number of reasons that include combing your beard, moisturizing it, styling it, training the hairs to grow in the direction that you want, and taming unruly hairs while preventing ingrown hairs.
Should I comb my beard every day?
Yes. To keep your beard looking its best, combing it every day is a must as long as you have the right kind of beard comb.
Does combing your beard help it grow?
For facial hair to grow, blood circulation must improve in the affected area. One way that you can increase blood circulation is by massaging the skin and that is how beard combs and brushes work. Therefore, in its own way, a beard comb can promote healthy beard growth.
Are beard combs worth it?
Beard combs are worth it if you are to have a healthy-looking beard. They work by preventing ingrown hairs, helping moisturize the beard and the skin underneath and training hair to grow in the direction you want.
How often should I comb my beard?
You can comb your beard as often as you want throughout the day, but more than five times in a day is overdoing it and this may end up damaging your hair. If you have used the right beard grooming products, you don’t need to comb your beard so often.
How to comb a beard and in what direction?
In which direction you comb your beard will determine whether it will grow in the desired direction or not. Also, if you’re combing your beard right, you won’t have to worry about it getting damaged.
Combing a beard is not an easy process, especially if you are a rookie when it comes to beard growing. One of the things you may find a little challenging is the process of conditioning your beard before you start combing it.
This is necessary if you want to avoid snags and tangles. Tangles can damage the teeth of more fragile combs, but they can also damage your beard as well. To prevent this from happening, you have three available beard conditioners at your disposal: beard oil, beard balm, and anti-tangle sprays.
They all work great, and which conditioner you will choose depends mostly on your preferences.
Once you condition your beard, use beard wax to hold your beard in place. If you skip this step, throughout the day, your facial hair will get tangled again.
This happens when your beard rubs against your neck, chest or other beard hairs, and with the use of beard wax, you will avoid this. So before we discuss the five essential benefits of combing your beard, let’s first talk a little about the proper way to comb that facial hair.
When to use a beard comb?
Although combing a beard has a lot of benefits, the time you choose for this will tell the difference between a mediocre and a great looking beard.
So, the best time to comb your facial hair is after the shower. But don’t do it right after the shower, because that’s the time when your beard is still wet.
Combing wet hair almost always results in hair loss. If you don’t have a thick facial hair, combing your beard when wet will make it even less dense. A better tactic is to get out of the shower, pat dry your beard with a towel and then let it air dry for a couple more minutes.
After that, apply high-quality beard oil, and then run your beard comb through the beard. Beard oil will moisturize your facial hair and prevent your beard hairs from being pulled or broken.
If you are using a hairdryer, don’t comb your beard afterward. This is similar to wet hair. While your beard is still hot, its hairs are much weaker than usual. If you try to comb your facial hair then, you are risking to pull the hairs from their routes. By now, you probably want to know: How often should you comb your beard?
When brushing your beard, one time a day is enough. If you do it more often, you will damage it.
On the other hand, you can use a comb 3-5 times a day, and this won’t create any damage to your beard. Everything more than 5 times a day is overcombing, and you don’t want to do this.
Is it better to comb or brush your beard?
There are a few things you should consider when deciding whether you will use a comb or beard brush. It’s true that their goal is the same – to make your beard smooth and free of tangles.
However, there are more differences between these two beard care products. First is the material from which they are made. Beard brushes are often made of animal hairs like boar and horsehair. Boar bristles are proven to be better in reducing frizz and tangles and redistributing beard oils evenly through the beard.
Combs are made with hard materials, such as sandalwood and pearwood. These woods are made to be more durable and to prevent static while you comb your beard. Portability is the second difference between beard brushes and combs. Because facial hair combs are much thinner than brushes, they are also more portable.
You won’t be able to store a beard brush into the pocket, but you can do so with a comb. The facial hair comb is good for styling a beard, and it’s also of great help in shaping your beard as it grows longer.
When you’re trimming your facial hair with a beard trimmer or beard scissors, a comb will help you by providing more control and accuracy. In the end, everything gets down to your personal preferences, whether you are going to choose a comb or a brush.
Most men use combs to get rid of knots and tangles in their beards and for styling purposes while they use a beard brush to train the hairs to grow in the desired direction.
Maintaining a healthy-looking beard involves more than just leaving the beard to grow. You need to use beard grooming products like beard oil and grooming tools like beard combs.
When it comes to beard combs, you need to get it right and buy a high-quality comb such as those made of horn or wood that will not damage the beard in the process. You also need to consider the length and the width of the teeth and get one that matches the length and thickness of your beard.
Does anyone use hair spray to hold the shape/style or is this a definite no-no?
I use beard balm, homemade is so much better than store bought. It holds my beard fantastically. Hair spray is not good for your beard, it’ll probably dry it out. Hope that helps.
Is it okay for the beard if I choose to use both brush and comb? Brush at home, comb outside.