The 10 Best Beard Washes

Updated April 16, 2018 by Quincy Miller

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We spent 42 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. Unfortunately, many men think that all they have to do to attain perfect facial hair is simply stop shaving, which is a recipe for looking more like Sasquatch than a sex symbol. Luckily, all it takes is one of these excellent beard washes to clean and tame your face fuzz. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best beard wash on Amazon.

10. Wild Willies Bundle

The products in the Wild Willies Bundle are jam-packed with organic oils that are rich in nutrients to help soften up your beard, such as peppermint and eucalyptus extracts. They also leave a pleasing tingle, so you can feel fresh and clean for hours after you shower.
  • creates a thick and foamy lather
  • makes facial hair shine
  • bottles aren't very full
Brand The Manskape Co
Model pending
Weight 8 ounces
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

9. Billy Jealousy

Billy Jealousy is on the pricier end of the spectrum, but it's a crowd-pleasing option that works well for beards of most hair types and lengths, providing frizz-control and bringing out a healthy, lustrous shine. You definitely want to pair it with a balm or oil, though.
  • sulfate-free formula
  • helps de-tangle gnarled beards
  • too strong for daily use
Brand Billy Jealousy
Model BJ-0666
Weight 8.8 ounces
Rating 3.5 / 5.0

8. Spartans Den Premium

Spartans Den Premium was formulated to alleviate and prevent beard dandruff, as well as to reduce itching. It's a great choice for use during those early weeks of growth to help give you the self-control necessary to see your facial hair through to its glorious conclusion.
  • calms and soothes
  • has a pump to regulate use
  • gel is thin and runny
Model pending
Weight 9.6 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

7. Zeus Shampoo

If you want a beard that looks like it was blessed by the king of the gods himself, then Zeus Shampoo belongs in your pantheon of bathroom products. It contains dragon's blood, which is a resin believed to help heal blemishes, so it's fantastic for acne-prone skin.
  • made using cruelty-free methods
  • comes in 3 masculine scents
  • may leave beard dry and coarse
Brand Zeus
Model ZEU426-109-04
Weight 7.8 ounces
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

6. Bluebeards Original

Bluebeards Original offers extra conditioning, so it's a fine option for the gentleman who is experiencing particularly dry facial hair. This also makes everything smoother and more manageable, so while the bottle may have a pirate on it, you won't see one in the mirror.
  • fresh citrus aroma
  • contains softening aloe
  • causes some faces to itch
Brand Bluebeards Original
Model BBO-BB05
Weight 9.9 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

5. Polished Gentleman

True to its name, Polished Gentleman will leave you red carpet ready, thanks to its mix of manuka honey, biotin, and tea tree oil. It comes with both a shampoo and a conditioner, making it the perfect all-in-one solution for looking your sexiest.
  • makes beards easy to comb and style
  • encourages hair growth
  • leaves skin red for a while
Brand Polished Gentleman
Model pg-sc
Weight 10.4 ounces
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

4. Professor Fuzzworthy's

You could be forgiven for buying Professor Fuzzworthy's for the amazing name alone, but you'll also be pleased with the softening properties it gains from using all-natural oils that were sourced in Tasmania. You can use it on all of your body hair, if you so desire.
  • scent isn't overpowering
  • each cube lasts a couple months
  • great for sensitive skin
Brand Beauty and the Bees Tas
Model COMINHKR066490
Weight 4.8 ounces
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

3. Grave Before Shave

A tube of Grave Before Shave is ideal for any man who views his beard as a lifestyle, not just a hairstyle. With a scent that's reminiscent of old-school barbershops. you'll feel a little manlier every time you rub it onto your face -- and you'll look better, too.
  • argan oil to moisturize skin
  • noticeable difference in a few days
  • reduces itching
Model pending
Weight 4 ounces
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

2. Honest For Men

A bar of Honest For Men is a low-cost but effective way for the hirsute gentleman to achieve a cleaner, softer, healthier beard. This is an excellent choice for men suffering from unruly hairs, as it helps tuck flyaways back in place, so that you always look put-together.
  • makes hair appear fuller
  • good for dealing with dandruff
  • made using sustainable ingredients
Brand Maple Hill Naturals
Model pending
Weight 5.6 ounces
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

1. Mountaineer Brand Timber

The formula used in Mountaineer Brand Timber features the subtle scent of cedar and fir woods, making it great for the mountain man - even if he never gets out of the suburbs. It's a mild cleanser made with Castile soap designed to not strip your skin's necessary oils.
  • good at removing waxes and balms
  • a little goes a long way
  • contains only natural ingredients
Brand Mountaineer Brand
Model pending
Weight 4.8 ounces
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

Beard Washing 101

If your facial hair is in full bloom, yet you’re still skeptical about the efficacy of beard wash, you’re probably not alone. Yet there’s an abundance of beard washes on the market today for a reason — and it’s not a well-organized conspiracy within the beard product industry to trick you into purchasing more grooming items (though that sounds like an intriguing film plot). It’s because there’s a genuine difference between regular shampoo and beard wash.

Perhaps it’s easiest to begin by stating what a beard wash is not: it is not a replacement for a beard balm or a beard oil. Those products have their place, but their purpose is not to clean dust, debris, and waxy substances out of your beard.

Whereas the primary function of normal shampoo is to clean your hair and rid it of the oils that make it look greasy, beard wash works to clean and nourish your facial hair without stripping out its natural oils. The presence of oil is necessary for a great-looking beard, and regular shampoo contains specific chemicals for scrubbing out oils. Without oils, your facial hair may appear dry and shriveled.

A quality beard wash won’t impact your natural oils, but it will eliminate dust, dead skin cells, and other unpleasant substances that distract from the majestic nature of your carefully manicured facial hair. Beard washes tend to include more natural ingredients (as opposed to chemicals), which are more effective at moistening the hair and protecting the skin on your face. By using regular shampoo, you’re more likely to be left with itchy, irritated skin.

If you’ve been using traditional shampoo on your beard, you should consider making the switch — it won’t take long for you to notice a healthier, fuller, and softer beard.

What Makes A Quality Beard Wash?

When it comes to what you put in (or on, in this case) your body, you can never be too careful. Say you’re given a choice between eating a food made from two or three organic ingredients, or a heavily processed, packaged snack — you already know that most expert dieticians would recommend going with the simple, all-natural option. You can think of beard washes in the same way.

If, upon checking the label of the beard wash you’re considering, you discover a laundry list of chemicals you can’t even pronounce, you should see this as a red flag. Natural ingredients play an important role in keeping your beard healthy and clean; lots of chemicals tend to lead to dry skin and dandruff. Specifically, you should try to avoid products that contain ammonium lauryl sulfate, sodium chloride, formaldehyde, and propylene glycol, as these chemicals can cause rashes and itchiness.

As always, performance is an important factor — just remember, a hefty price tag does not necessarily guarantee desirable results. An effective beard wash is often an efficient one, which means a small quantity should go a long way. When in use, the substance should generate a thick foam that moisturizes the skin and leaves the beard soft and easy to groom with a beard comb. As a rule of thumb, thick beard washes are often the most reliable and effective.

Before you make the purchase — and this goes for balm, wax, oil, or any other substance you’re applying to your body or hair — make sure you like its scent. If you have a significant other, you may want to get that person to sign off, as well. Go for something masculine and subtle; something that will attract attention, but not overwhelm the senses.

Some additional advice when it comes to the smell and the product’s shelf life: the best scents tend to come in small, amber bottles. This protects the substance inside by filtering out ultraviolet light, leaving the wash intact for a longer time. On the other hand, since the ingredients are mostly natural (assuming you went with a quality brand), the wash isn’t going to last forever, so don’t drive yourself crazy trying to conserve it.

The Importance Of Proper Care And Grooming

If you don’t take care of it, what’s the point of growing a beard in the first place? A dirty, tangled mess of hair makes you look more like a Neanderthal than a hot lumberjack. If you’re going to do the beard thing, do it right.

Especially if you live in an urban area, your beard’s going to attract dirt, dust, and other pollutants as a standard part of your everyday life. Plus, it’s situated underneath your nose and surrounding your mouth — not the ideal location for staying squeaky clean. Cleaning your beard should be a part of your routine, the same as showering regularly, washing your hair, and brushing your teeth.

Though it’s a widely deliberated topic, the expert consensus seems to recommend washing your beard about as often as you clean your hair. By failing to wash it enough, your beard runs the risk of becoming dry and gnarled. If you wash it too often, you’re simply wasting energy and money. Three times a week should be sufficient for most guys. If you use a beard trimmer to tame your mane, I’d recommend taking care of that before beginning the cleaning process.

Washing your beard is simple, but there are some nuances and techniques you’ll want to keep in mind. Moisten your beard with warm water first, which loosens the pores beneath your hair follicles, then scrub deeply enough to cleanse the skin underneath. Try to use just enough beard wash to work up a good lather, and no more than that. If your beard is relatively new, experts suggest scrubbing a bit more aggressively to stimulate the hair follicles, fostering quicker growth.

When you’re done washing, rinse your beard with water (making sure no shampoo residue remains), then dry it thoroughly using a clean towel. To finish it off, apply your preferred beard balms or oils, then comb it until it’s soft and neat. Just like that, your beard is ready for the world to admire.

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Last updated on April 16, 2018 by Quincy Miller

Quincy is a writer who was born in Texas, but moved to Los Angeles to pursue his life-long dream of someday writing a second page to one of his screenplays.

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