A week of no products
Author - The Bearded Brit
This was a bit daunting for me. I had only gone about 2 days without using products before, 3 at a push. How was I going to survive a whole week? The trick to it all was to think like a clean shaven man. This was harder than it seems.
To think like a clean shaven man you have to act like one. By that I mean don’t stroke your beard or touch it at all, if you can. A man with no mane doesn’t need to ponder life while stroking his bald chin. He would look ridiculous for starters and would probably get a red chin after a while!
So, no touching of the beard. The oils from my hands could potentially dry it out quicker than usual so it was a good start.
It was a scorcher of a week for me, the sun was out pretty much everyday for long periods of time. It is a known fact that UV rays can dry out hair quickly and make things uncomfortable.
This would mean that I would need to stay out of the sun as much as possible. Well, that was not going to happen! I’m a sun worshipper so this was something I had been waiting for all year.
I nearly had second thoughts as the forecasts were looking mighty tropical but I kept my nerve and saw it through. I had to do this out of curiosity and to try and learn more about the effects on my beard through not using anything.
The week that was
Moving on to the week itself and what happened with my beard.
The first couple of days were absolutely fine. I washed my beard on the Sunday morning before heading to play football. The sun was peeking through the clouds but not really enough to give anyone a tan! Most of the second day was spent in a car travelling.
The third day was yet more driving but got a nice walk with the dog and when we got home spent some time in the garden. I had washed the beard in the morning so it still felt okay. On the fourth day it was time to clear out the garage, getting ready to put some gym equipment in it. Of course, the sun was still beating down and it would have been rude not to spend a couple of hours outside enjoying it.
Rain or shine on this beard of mine
At the end of the fourth day I could feel my skin underneath my beard was very dry. It had started to itch and was getting a bit flaky. on my upper lip and my soul patch area. I had been out in the sun as often as possible while it was shining brightly. Was it the sun that was affecting my skin? Or was it something else?
I brushed my beard every day to ensure I got as much dead skin out as possible. The flakiness remained and it had become itchy as well. This was becoming uncomfortable but I persevered with my mission. It didn’t rain.
Show me the beard oil!
Days 5 and 6 were not pleasant and I was really feeling how dry my skin was under the beard. The hair itself was feeling the effects of no oil and the sun drying it out. Washing it helped in the first couple of days but wasn’t helping towards the end of the week.
I was in pain. Desperately needing beard oil like a lost adventurer seeking water in the middle of the desert. I was beginning to realise that some sort of product was indeed, a necessary expense. I had always used beard oil but never really thought about what I would do without it. But, was I feeling these effects because my beard was used to being treated well?
I know of a couple of people who have never used beard oil or even a proper beard shampoo so I reached out to them. One had shaved his beard off as he needed to be clean shaven for his job. The other guy had trimmed his beard right down and was regrowing it. He said he couldn’t handle the dryness and had taken my advice by buying some beard oil.
The end was nigh
I made it through the week without any beard oil, butter or balm. I had washed my beard a couple of times but that was it. At the end of the week my skin was dry and a spot was forming under my lip. My beard was dry, resembling straw in texture. It was time to apply some of the good stuff. But, it wasn’t oil!!
My final thoughts on Do you need beard products?
Our hair follicles produce a serum that coats the hairs on your face. This, however, only goes so far before drying out. It can’t reach every centimetre of every hair and this is where beard oil comes in. It boosts the serum and helps to cover your beard giving it more moisture and nourishment.
It also helps to stop your skin from drying out. This is due to the carrier oils that beard products use and it is most definitely needed to keep the mane looking and feeling healthy all the time. It could be butter, oil or balm that you use but I highly recommend that you use something to keep those whiskers looking fresh.
So, if you are just starting out on your beard journey then take my advice and buy yourself some quality beard products.