Any guy can grow a beard these days, no credentials or experience required. But what separates the bush league growers from the big leaguers is elbow grease: That beard is a labor of love, and a daily application of beard oil will keep your scruff looking lush and feeling soft, while moisturizing the skin underneath. Meanwhile, the rookies are growing a glorified Brillo pad on their face. Chumps!
Beard oils should be judged on their nourishing ingredients (usually a combination of natural oils), how rapidly they absorb into skin and hair, and, depending on the beard, an ability to ground any flyaways. (Some oils don’t tame as well as others, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing if you’ve got a well-trimmed beard.)
A daily application of oil comes with numerous benefits. First and foremost, it keeps both beard and skin hydrated. It’s hard to moisturize the skin beneath your facial hair, and beard oil slips in there quite easily to nourish and soften it all. (This prevents the dreaded beard dandruff, particularly in winter.) And by hydrating the beard hairs themselves, the oil prevents them from turning brittle and wiry. This prevents breakage, and it also prevents the beard from itching you—as well as scratching your significant other.