Here at SPY, we consider beard grooming to be an artform. We’ve written extensively about how to shape your beard, how to master daily beard care, and the products you need to do it properly. To keep your beard clean, you can use one of our favorite beard washes. To keep your beard frizz-free, you can try beard oil and beard brushes. (Who said having a beard involved less work than staying clean-shaven?)
But what if there was an easier way to style, condition, shape and control your beard? Guys that are tired of stocking up on beard care products might consider investing in one of the best beard balms.
Beard balms are beeswax-based products to add more control and styling to your beard. The best beard balms also typically contain some essential oils, which help condition your facial hair and keep it moisturized and healthy.
How To Use Beard Balms To Control Your Beard
Unlike most men’s grooming products, the best beard balms simplify your grooming routine.
Here’s how it works:
Once you’ve got your tin in hand, scrape out the desired amount with a fingernail, usually somewhere from a pea-sized to a nickel-sized amount will do, and soften the balm by rubbing it between your hands and fingers.
Next, run your hands gently through your beard, massaging the balm into your skin too. Once you think you’ve got a decent spread, style that manly facial hair to your heart’s content with your hands, a beard comb or a beard brush. When you’re finished, your beard will be a bit thicker and a bit more conditioned than it was before, and you’ll be ready to turn heads.
To help you get started, we gathered a number of the best beard balms around. We found balms with a variety of great scents, a highly rated unscented balm as well as a value pick and a pick for a super strong hold. And every balm we found is made with only the best beeswax, oils and butters.
In the interest of giving you all the best options to get your beard under control, we found a great beard butter too. Beard balms and beard butters both use oils for moisture, but balms tend to use beeswax as the primary base, which gives more control and less conditioning, while beard butters use things like shea butter as the main base, which offers less control but permits more conditioning.
1. Badass Beard Care The Ladies Man Beard Balm
Badass Beard Care Beard Balm is one of the best beard balms we’ve found. It’s a bit more versatile as far as balms go because it uses shea butter and cocoa butter in addition to beeswax. So it retains its waxy consistency but remains malleable enough to offer a light-to-medium hold and tame and condition your beard hair. It comes in 12 scents that use essential oils to create their fragrance profile. For 2 ounces, this balm costs a bit more than other competing balms, but it’s made in the USA by veterans who actually use it, so you can count on its high quality. For our pick, we like the brand’s Ladies Man beard balm. It’s got a sweet citrus scent with notes of lemon, orange and vanilla.
2. Grave Before Shave Bay Rum Beard Balm
Grave Before Shave Bay Rum Beard Balm is a high-quality beard balm that will give you added control to your beard while oils, vitamin E and aloe vera condition your hairs and skin. Beeswax and shea butter work together to give you a better, more consistent hold and the Bay Rum aroma will keep your beard smelling great all day. You don’t need much of this balm to tame and protect your beard, so the 2-ounce tin will last you months.
3. Viking Revolution Beard Balm
Viking Revolution Beard Balms are among the most popular balms on Amazon, and for good reason. They’re cheaper than those of many competitors despite using the same high-quality essential oils, shea butter and beeswax, and they offer good control and conditioning so you can soften and style any wild hairs. A little bit more than a pea-sized amount is enough to start getting your hair under control and leave you with a clean citrus scent courtesy of mango butter. Considering all these factors, it’s definitely a solid pick and one of the best beard balms.
4. Henrichim Beard Balm
We checked out two dozen different beard balms when coming up with this list and Henrichim Beard Balm was the cheapest beard balm per ounce we found. But even though this tin doesn’t cost very much, it’s still one of the best beard balms on Amazon right now. It’s consistently waxy without being too stiff. It’s also fragrance-free and will leave your beard feeling smooth, clean and under control. We have another great unscented pick below, but if value is important to you, you can’t do better than Henrichim’s balm.
5. Gladiator Beard Conditioning Balm
Among balms with more than 100 reviews, Gladiator Beard Conditioning Balm was the best-reviewed balm we found, with more than four out of five Amazon users giving it 5 stars. Reviewers were definitely on to something, as this beard balm uses frankincense and myrrh with bergamot, lavender, orange and other essential oils to create a scent unlike any other. It comes in a 2.6-ounce tin, so you get more balm for your buck, too. Atomized beeswax offers increased hold without getting too sticky, while shea butter and nine types of oils work to strengthen and condition your hair and skin. And as a bonus, Gladiator Beard donates 5 percent of its profits to military veterans organizations and backs its balm up with a money-back guarantee. The complex flavor profile might be too much for guys that already wear cologne, so opt for an unscented beard balm if that’s a concern.
6. Honest Amish Heavy Duty Beard Balm
BEST FOR STRONG HOLD
If you’re looking for extra secure hold for long beards, you can’t do much better than Honest Amish Heavy Duty Beard Balm. Meant for dry and coarse beard hairs, this beard balm and leave-in conditioner will soften the thickest, scratchiest of beards while tamping down on flyaways, taming your beard hair and offering some of the strongest control. Like most of Honest Amish’s grooming products, this balm is made in the USA from all-natural, organic ingredients. This is a heavy-duty balm so it’s quite thick in the tin, but it still scrapes out easily enough and massages into your hands well enough for easy application to a damp beard. You can use it on dry beards, but dampening your beard a bit before applying will achieve the best results.
7. Burnt Whiskey Men’s All Natural Beard Balm, Deadwood
BEST VARIETY OF SCENTS
Some people find a scent they like and stick with it for life. Others enjoy a wider variety of choices. That’s where Burnt Whiskey Men’s All Natural Beard Balms come into play. Burnt Whiskey offers the same beard balm in 10 different scent profiles, so you can find the one scent that’s right for you or mix it up every day with a different great scent.
Though Burnt Whiskey offers a ton of different fragrances in its balms, it still uses the same tried-and-true ingredients in all of them: beeswax, cocoa butter, shea butter, some carrier oils like argan oil and then an essential oil or two for the scent. For our pick, we like the Deadwood scent, which is a masculine blend of cedarwood and sandalwood. The only downside with these balms is you only get half an ounce in the tins, which puts them on the pricier side of the best beard balms.
8. Beard Reverence All-Natural Unscented Beard Balm
If you like incorporating scent into your grooming routine through other products, like liquid cologne or solid cologne, then you definitely don’t want to clash with a scented beard balm. That’s where Beard Reverence All-Natural Unscented Beard Balm can help. This balm relies on beeswax, shea butter and essential oils to control and nourish your beard for a hydrated, itch-free experience. It’ll work on most beards whether you’re an office warrior or a Viking warrior. And if you find you really like this men’s grooming product, Beard Reverence offers scented versions, with fragrances like vanilla, eucalyptus and citrus, which we’ve also listed below.
9. Live Bearded Beard Butter, The Executive
BEST BEARD BUTTER
As we mentioned up at the top, beard butters help condition and control your beard, but unlike the best beard balms, they generally use shea butter as the main base as opposed to beeswax. That generally means the product is less heavy, sticky and waxy and more light, smooth and creamy inconsistency. Live Bearded Beard Butter is one such outstanding beard butter. Because it’s lighter and creamier, it’s absorbed into your skin and hair more easily for a deeper conditioning at the cost of greater styling control. That being said, the control is still light to medium and generally enough for all but the most intricate beard styles, so you’ll still be able to tame and soften your beard without weighing it down. We really like Live Bearded’s The Executive Beard Balm for its leather, cedar and vanilla scent. You’ll smell and look like a man, but a professional one.