The beard brush is the Excalibur of beard instruments. It is the end of the road and the start of your journey, the glorious summit of beard growth – from its heights you can almost smell the gods in heaven. Your beard length is medium to long and you’ve been nurturing it from six months to a year, maybe more. You are known as the beard guy amongst your friends, are habituated to random fingers stroking your face, and are well versed in all aspects of beard grooming – all except one.
A brush to your comb is the sword to your steak knife, or a stein to your middy. They basically do the same thing, but the brush is bigger, badder and better. With a decent beard, combing can be an arduous process – it gets knotted, tangled and takes ages. While they are perfect for distributing beard oil, due to their small surface area, combs are inept at navigating your beard. A brush trains your beard hairs, it organizes and controls them so they lay straight and grow properly. If you imagine kids’ hair, all curly and matted, this is because it is yet to be tamed by the brush – same goes for beards, they need to be taught.
First and foremost rule of the beard brush is it needs firm, natural bristles. Soft bristles may work for soft and thin head hair, but they won’t do shit for a coarse, brutish beard. Firm bristles remove dead skin cells, dirt, grime and dust (remember to have a shower afterwards to wash this shit out), and train your hair to grow in the right direction. Brushes can be aggressive, so only brush once a day, mornings are best, any more may damage your beard. Brush straight down to elongate your beard, then brush from underneath upwards to perk it up and give it body. And keep your beard brush just for your beard – if you use it in on your head, you’ll have head hairs on your beard and beard hairs on your head … which sounds great, but is not.
Clean your brush once a week so that you’re not replacing all the scum you clean out. Do a dry clean – pull out the hairs with your fingers, and then brush your brush with a brush (or comb), to make sure it’s fresh. Once a month wet wash the brush with water, massage the bristles to help remove any dirt and grime, and then leave it facedown to air dry.
Well done at achieving beard brush status, not only will using a brush make your beard cleaner, longer and healthier, when you are brushing in front of the mirror, or on your favourite chair, you will feel like a king and your beard will purr in approval.