Like its counterpart beard balm, beard oil is a mixture of carrier and essential oils, but without the heavier shea butter that a balm would likely contain. An oil can help keep your hair soft and healthy, while adding a bit of shine depending on the amount that is used.

Because there are a lot of different carrier oils, the viscosity and color can vary greatly. A carrier like castor would be thicker than one such as jojoba or argan, making it harder to mix. As such, a thicker oil is likely to be used in smaller portions in the overall makeup of the beard oil.

Beard oil will normally come in glass amber-colored bottles, sometimes blue-colored, and with or without a glass dropper for easier use. The average size of beard oils on the market are 1oz (30ml), with a smaller size being half of that amount and larger sizes being up to about double.

A beard butter would fall somewhere in between an oil and a balm. Its purpose is the same as the two, but its texture and ingredients tend to vary to a greater degree. The consistency of a beard butter would be similar to that of lotion.

Beard butters will come in tubs with screw-off lids, or in bottles with pump dispensers.

Beard oil compositions will not be as abundant in ingredients as a balm or wax, and usually only contain up to about five different oils. Usually, the core ingredients will be:

  • 1-3 carrier oils
  • 1-2 essential oils
  • sometimes fragrance (chemicals used to make unique smells)

One carrier oil and one essential oil are enough to call the mixture a beard oil if its intended use is for a beard. Like balms and waxes, there is no standard as to what a beard oil contains, but it is generally made up of natural ingredients.

Remember, less is more. A beard of about 4 inches in length off the jaw/chin would need somewhere around 7 drops of oil. Every person has different needs, so use more or less and experiment on what you feel is the best amount.

  1. Wash your face and beard
  2. Pat dry, the facial hair will be slightly damp still
  3. Using the beard oil's dropper or pouring it straight from the bottle, put some into the palm of your hand
  4. Rub the beard oil between your palms
  5. Apply in an upward motion through the bottom of the beard, to the top, with your finger tips, rubbing the oil every now and then from your palms to your fingers.

Pay particular attention to the skin, which is why we're using an upward motion, to get underneath the hair easier. If you're prone to dry skin, aka beardruff (misnomer), you'll particularly want to make sure you rub the oil in well. A beard butter may do the job better if that's the case.

Here are some of the questions that are asked frequently about beard oil.

  • Do beard oils really help promote growth?

Only in the sense that a healthy, hydrated face promotes fuller and longer hair. There are misleading products on the market that claim to grow your beard out, but take these with a grain of salt. There are very few things out there that will activate more follicles to produce hair, one being minoxidil and another possibly peppermint essential oil. The oil should also help prevent breakage, however, resulting in “faster” beard growth due to not having to trim as many split ends.

  • How long does one bottle of beard oil last?

This will depend on a number of factors, the biggest including which size oil you picked up. With 30 ml (1 oz) being the most common, you can expect this to last for roughly 1.5 months when used daily in moderation. Of course, the larger your beard, the more oil you may want to use.

  • How much oil should I use?

It's all down to preference, but less is more. 1-3 drops could essentially be enough for a bare face. With a short beard going, 5 should do. Use your best judgement and experiment to find your sweet spot.

  • Can I use beard oil on a plain, shaved face?

Absolutely. In fact, it's recommended to apply a little bit of beard oil during the initial growing stages of your beard, as to avoid the beard itch. For those with naturally drier skin, it will also help with beardruff.

  • Do beard oils make your face or beard shiny?

It's a possibility that the oil can make them shiny, but not all oils are the same. Something like castor will leave a heavier sheen of shine than something like jojoba. Even so, using less of the oil and rubbing it in more should help alleviate much of the shininess. Beard oils, in general, are meant to be applied daily and used all day long, so shine isn't usually something that needs worrying about.

Mixing your own oils for your beard will be more economic than purchasing pre-made oils, but the initial costs will be higher. Your supply of oil, however, will far outlast the amount of pre-made beard oil you can purchase for the same amount of money.

When you're making your own beard oil, you don't need any special tools. All you really need is:

  1. Base (carrier) oils
  2. Essential oils
  3. Glass amber bottles

To make things a little easier, optionally use:

  1. Steel funnel for easier pouring

When mixing essential oils into your base oil, try not to go much higher than a 5% essential oil solution by the end. For example, if you have 1 oz (30 ml) of jojoba oil as the carrier, you can use up to 0.05 ounces (1.5 ml) of essential oils. Whether there are more than one essential or not.

0.05 oz is hard to measure out, so we use drops when working with small bottles of beard oil. When purchasing essential oils, they will usually come with their own cap that measures its drops. Otherwise, they sometimes come with glass droppers.

0.5 oz (15 ml) 1 oz (30 ml) 2 oz (60 ml)
1% 3 drops 6 drops 12 drops
2% 6 drops 12 drops 24 drops
3% 9 drops 18 drops 36 drops
4% 12 drops 24 drops 48 drops
5% 15 drops 30 drops 60 drops

You need to use very little essential oil compared to carrier, represented by percentages (%).

When mixing the oils together, first pour the carrier into your amber bottle, then count the drops of essential you're adding. Experiment with multiple essential oils and combinations for unique blends of smells. Close it up after the oils are added, and shake it by hand.