Some men naturally have coarser hair than others. When deciding how to make a beard soft, keep this in mind before comparing your beard to other men you know: The curlier and kinkier the hair on your head is, the coarser your beard generally is. Hair type aside, however, you notice when your beard begins to feel dry and brittle. This is the side of coarseness that men try to tackle. With that goal in mind, here are some tips on how to soften a beard naturally.
Why Is Beard Hair So Coarse?
The key is to start at the problem, and the potential problems are many. Use these to begin your troubleshooting process:
- Genetics: While the hair on your head plays a role, you could have a bone-straight head of hair and have a beard full of kinks. If other men in the family have a coarse beard, then chances are that you will too.
- Length: The sebaceous glands secrete natural oils to nourish your beard, but if the beard is long, those natural oils won’t stretch very far. This is why longer beards tend to look wirier than when they are only an inch or a few inches long.
3. Washing: Are you washing your beard with body wash or antibacterial soap? This can dry out your beard and the skin beneath it. A dry beard is a coarse beard. If you keep it up, it could also lead to flaking in the near future.
4. Split Ends: Yes, believe it or not, your beard can get split ends. If you’ve ever grown out your hair and dyed it, you’ve experienced this before. Just like the hair on top of your head, it can make the ends of your beard look unruly and feel prickly. It also leads to breakage.
5. Environmental Factors: Some people get coarse beards at specific times of the year when the air is dry. The season that most comes to mind is winter. However, summer can dry out your beard if you spend a lot of time indoors with the air conditioning unit set to max cooling power.
What Can I Do to Fix It?
The easy answer is simply to apply fixes to all the problems that affect you. However, that leaves people who are genetically disposed to coarser beards with no options for softening facial hair.
- Trim Your Beard: There are two camps when it comes to beard trimming. One camp says that trimming the beard helps to prevent split ends, while another group is adamant that it causes it. What is sure is that trimming can keep your beard at a manageable length. This is an excellent solution to a coarse beard if you’re unable to produce enough sebum to keep up with the length.
- Drink More Water: When your body creates moisture, it has to come from its own internal stores. If it doesn’t have enough, then your skin and hair will suffer. This can lead to dry and brittle beards. Counteract this problem by drinking about 15.75 cups of water per day. Note that some of this can come from juices, vegetables and fruits.
- Wash & Condition: Yes, washing your hair was identified as a problem, but that depended on the products you used. There are special products for washing beards that form a nice compromise between cleaning the beard hairs but not totally stripping them of oils. This is important considering that this hair sits on an area of your body that is extremely prone to acne.
- Comb & Brush: You’ve probably thought the guys in the men’s room brushing their beards was a bit much. But they’re on to something. Combing your beard hair helps straighten it by removing the knots and tangles. Brushing further straightens the hair and helps keep your beard neat and soft. If you have exceptionally curly, wooly or kinky hair, then opt for combs with larger teeth and bigger spaces.
- Add Moisture: Never comb or brush your beard without adding some moisture or you could cause breakage. Thankfully, there are plenty of options for moisture. In a pinch, a splash of water can work. For daily use, consider beard butter, beard oils, beard balm or beard softeners. All of these add much better moisture that stands up to dry air.
6. Change Your Pillow Case: People with longer hair often give up cotton pillowcases for satin or silk. If you can sleep comfortably on this material, make the switch. Cotton absorbs the moisture around it, but silk and satin repel it. This helps to preserve the natural moisture in your beard, so you can rely less on adding oils, butters and balms.
Don’t be the guy who ignores his beard and in return is ignored by his girlfriend. Now that you’ve answered the question “why is beard hair so coarse?” and you know how to make your beard soft, use that knowledge and start softening facial hair!