I almost wish I didn’t have to write this. This lesson ought to be told around a camp fire, passed like a primal baton from man to son, big beard to little beard, generation to generation. The skills of beard growth and maintenance should exist in the minds of men and be shared through folklore and cave drawings, not via the impersonal tutelage of blogging. Alas, Wikipedia not your Daddy probably taught you how to shave, and I’m pretty sure ZZ Top hates camping anyways. So here we are: how to comb your beard.
First choose your weapon: Brush or Comb. This decision can be based purely on preference. However I am biased, so I will explain why brushes are for rookies.
Brushes have more grip than a comb. While this may be a good quality in bike tyres or for a wrestler, it can be detrimental to your beard growth.
The brush grip may unintentionally uproot your beard hairs before they have the chance to reach their full maturity. This is as your beautifully grown old hairs are celebrating their telogen phase (final phase before being transcended by a new follicle) they are weak, and brushes tend to rip them out, leaving your beard thinned and infantile.
So use a beard comb, but be selective. Not all combs are created equal. Find a comb that is hand-sawn and polished. This process smooths the teeth preventing micro-fissures, found on cheaper machine-cut plastic combs, which can snag and damage your beard. I suggest using the Kent Comb – it is smooth and efficient, has both fine and coarse teeth at either end and is born from a company that has been grooming legends since the days of horse and cart, stovepipes, snuff boxes, and fucking awesome beards.
The next step is conditioning. Beard oil hydrates your beard with an all-natural concoction of carrier and essential oils. This indispensable product both moisturises and conditions. It smooths out knots and tangles while preventing the hair from breaking as you comb. This will help you to tame that unruly face-mess into a malleable mistress. Check here for tips on applying beard oil.
Now your beard is ready. Begin by combing slowly and gently, spreading the oil evenly throughout your facial hair. Maintain a straight angle as you comb and move from top to bottom and side to centre. This educates the beard on where it should exist and what direction it should grow towards.
For best results, start with the comb’s wider teeth to spread the oil and begin navigating the throng. Then switch to the narrower end to fine tune its shape and wrangle in those loose hairs.
Often the moustache and under-beard are neglected. So make sure to comb that mo. And lift your beard and drag down those neck hairs to prevent them from curling up and short-changing your full potential.
To ensure your beard is always looking massive and godly, repeat this process every day.
And next time you have the younger generation at your feet, all eager and naive, absorbing your life lessons through their weak and spongy brains, accept your primal responsibility and teach them the long-forgotten folklore of ‘how to comb a beard’.
Or give up, direct them here, and call me Daddy – Miles Bouchard