Last updated: August 12, 2021

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Today we are going to talk about one of the most versatile and essential beard cosmetics: the balm. If you cultivate your facial hair, you need to have this product on your bathroom shelves!

The use of balm is complementary to other products such as beard shampoo and lotions. Because of its anti-inflammatory, stimulating and relaxing properties, it can even be considered the most important part of hair care.

But do you know how and when to use the balm? And what are the most important features that the product should have to suit your needs? Don't worry, it's time to clear all your doubts and get closer to the ideal beard!




The most important facts

  • Balm is an essential cosmetic for those who grow facial hair and even for those who keep their skin smooth. It can be used on long, short and shaved beards, in this case as an aftershave lotion.
  • What sets this cosmetic apart from others is that it has anti-inflammatory and healing properties. It also serves to moisturize or control the oiliness of the hair and skin.
  • It is not very expensive to have a quality balm. It also helps that it is a product that lasts a long time, since only a small amount should be applied every day.

The Best Balm: Our Picks

With the ever-increasing popularity of beards among men, cosmetics manufacturers and exclusive companies in the field have increasingly developed products for facial hair. We have selected some excellent balm products that will give your beard a new lease of life! Below, we tell you a little more about them.

Buying guide

Since balm is so important for the health of your facial hair, it's time to learn more about it! Why use it? How to choose the best one? All your questions will be answered in the buying guide!

 Imagem mostra um homem com uma barba longa e bem cuidada.

The balm is essential to maintain a beautiful and healthy beard. (Source: Kevin Bidwell / Pexels.com)

What is balm and what is it used for?

The balm, also known by its translation in Portuguese (bálsamo), is a cosmetic for beard. It usually has a cream texture and a composition that brings anti-inflammatory, oils and healing.

It is a product that can be used both in the grown beard, to model, moisturize and give life to the strands, as in the aftershave, due to these properties mentioned above that soften a lot the skin healing process.

In case your beard is already grown, the application of the balm will make it less rebellious. The strands will gain more shine and a more defined shape, they will also be softer to the touch. The general aspect of both the hair and the face will be much better.

If you're just starting out, balm will allow hairs to grow healthier and any skin irritations and itches to be soothed. Some also have properties that stimulate growth. This is the case where use is most important!

Finally, even those who don't shave can make good use of a balm: the healing properties help a lot to improve the sensation after shaving.

In the table below, we demonstrate which is the best use you can make of the balm:

Long beard Short beard Smooth skin
Benefits of the balm Ease of shaping, hydration and shine to the hair Toning, growth aid, allergy containment Containment of allergies and skin irritations after shaving
How to use Apply to beard once a day, preferably in the morning Apply to beard once a day, preferably after showering Apply to skin always after shaving
Alternative Beard oil Balm is the best option Aftershave lotion

Balm, beard oil or aftershave lotion?

In the table above, we show that there are alternatives to balm: beard oil, for longer beards, and after shave lotion, for those who do not let the facial hair grow.

How to know which is the most suitable for you? Well, it depends on your skin and hair type.

For long beards, the question is: is your skin oily or dry? The balm regulates the oiliness, while the oil expands it.

People with excessively oily skin can suffer from irritation, allergies or even unpleasant smells if they also use a beard oil. In this situation, the balm is more suitable.

On the contrary, the oil will help with hydration, making both hair and skin look better and healthier. The balm, despite having some oil in the composition, does not achieve the same effect.

When talking about aftershave for people with smooth skin, the key factor is the amount of allergies and irritations you suffer after shaving. The more this happens, the better it is to opt for the balm instead of conventional lotions.

Below, we demonstrate with a table when to opt for each product:

Long beard Smooth skin
When to opt for the balm Your skin is oily and suffers irritations easily Your skin gets allergies and irritations after shaving
When to opt for another cosmetic Your skin is dry and needs hydration You prioritize the fragrance and the appearance of the skin after shaving

Is the balm for long beard and for after shave the same?

Note that on balm packaging there is often a usage specification. Some quote "after shave balm", others, "beard balm". There is even the "pre-shave balm", although this is much rarer.

So, you need to choose the right one. If you have a long or small and drawn beard, opt for those with moisturizing function and that should be applied directly on the hair. If you're going to use it after shaving, prefer an "after shave balm".

In the following video from the Barbeiros de Sucesso channel, there is both an explanation of when to use the balm, as a practical demonstration of how the use should be done.

How much does it cost and where to buy a quality balm?

A beard balm in a standard 140 g package can cost between R$ 15 and R$ 100. Everything will depend on the brand and composition. There are quality models in all price ranges, even the initials.

Some brands specialized only in products for beard have developed more complex balms. From them, will come the highest prices, but if you're a beard fanatic, it may be worth the investment.

If you intend to talk to a specialist before buying your balm, there's nothing like going to a barbershop. Besides selling various products, there will also be satisfactory guidance. Cosmetics shops and pharmacies are also options.

To buy over the internet, the best idea is the Brazilian Amazon. There is a wide variety of brands and types of balms there. We also recommend that you search on Amazon International and Mercado Livre.

Buying criteria: what to consider when choosing your balm

Now that you're well aware of what a balm is and the benefits it will bring to your beard, it's time for us to discuss some more issues that can help you at the time of purchase.

We've selected four issues that may be important:

We will explain the importance of each of them below!

Fragrance

Fragrance is not the flagship of a balm, however, it has its importance. That's why in the description of most models it is possible to find a mention of what the smell refers to - most often woody tones.

It is normal to understand this predilection for woody tones, since they are usually seen as more masculine. In case they don't appeal to you, there are other options on the market.

Just do a search and find a quality balm with a fragrance more compatible with what you expect.

Composition

Among oils and extracts, some components appear repeatedly in the formulas of balms. If you have a predilection, you can search for specific items that interest you.

But that's not why we created this section, but to tell you what your balm shouldn't have. Choose models that have already abolished the use of sulfates, petrolatum and parabens. These compounds are bad for you and for the environment!

No tests on animals

We know that the number of people who care about the welfare of all creatures of this world is growing. The activism against animal testing has made a lot of noise and made companies rethink their conducts.

If this is an important issue for you, you should know that there are some balm manufacturers who pride themselves on not testing on animals or using anything animal-based in their formulas.

You can continue to take good care of your beard and have a clear conscience by using products that are aligned with your animal advocacy!

Imagem mostra um homem sendo barbeado e pequenas lesões aparentes na pele.

The balm helps fight irritations and allergies that can arise on the skin. (Source: Gleb TV/ 123rf.com)

Cost effective

There is a standard in the size of balm bottles: the overwhelming majority are 140 ml. Comparing prices and cost benefit becomes easy between packages of the same size, as you just look at the final value.

But pay attention: some companies sell balms in bigger or smaller bottles. In these cases, the ideal is to divide the price by the content to know exactly how much you pay per ml and then compare. This tip can help you save a lot!

(Featured image source: pogrebkov/ 123rf.com)

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