Beards can go one of a couple ways. You can look like a rugged, gentlemanly badass–think Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal–or you can just look like a guy who hasn't shaved.
The difference is good grooming. That's why it's important to choose the best beard oil for you.
If your beard is scraggly or unruly, a lack of moisture is probably the culprit. Dryness and environmental factors cause the shafts of your beard hairs to split and fray–resulting in that wild I-live-in-a-cave-and-kill-moose-with-my-teeth look.
Regular treatment with a good beard oil ensures that your facial hair lays neatly. Here's my pick of the top ten beard oils. Because different options work better for different needs, they're in no particular order:
#1. Art Naturals Organic Beard Oil & Leave-In Conditioner
Suitable for a wide range of hair types, you can count on this product to keep your beard soft and detangled, and it's excellent for reducing dandruff.
Its ingredient list is short and high-quality–organic jojoba oil (which, among common moisturizers, is the most chemically similar to your hair's natural oils), organic argan oil, spinosa, and vitamin E.
It's not the best beard oil when it comes to consistency – it's a little watery. But the amount of product you get for your money makes up for the lower concentration. It's also easier to apply evenly.
Art Naturals has a fairly strong fragrance, so if you're someone who wears cologne every day, this may not be the pick for you.
If you're looking, however, for a product that will really work regardless of your skin and hair type–and you don't mind the scent–give this one a try.
#2. Smooth Viking Beard Oil With Added Balm
This is probably the best beard oil for first time beard-growers–it's formulated to stimulate growth and relieve itching.
Its moisture-locking capabilities (that's what the whole “both an oil and a balm” thing is about) also make it ideal for men who spend a lot of time outdoors.
The recipe this product uses is better for maintaining a new or already-healthy beard under harsh conditions than it is for repairing already-damaged hair. Rather than add more oils to imitate the body's natural oils or provide vitamins, Smooth Viking opted to focus on keeping in the moisture that's already there.
In other words, if your beard looks pretty good–but you just got a job at the lumber yard or you're going backpacking in the mountains in early March and you know it's probably not going to stay that way–this stuff is well worth the price.
#3. Beardbrand Tea Tree Beard Oil
The CEO of Beardbrand, Eric Bandholz, is a great friend of mine, so I may be a little biased here – but the popularity of his beard oil speaks for itself.
It's made with a blend of natural oils (jojoba, almond, grapeseed and castor oil) that boast a wide range of benefits, including repairing split ends and preventing dandruff. Grapefruit seed extract, a powerful antimicrobial, keeps hair clean and shiny.
But the real star is the scent. In my opinion Beardbrand is the best beard oil out there for fragrance.
Crisp, clean, bright and masculine, it's the kind of experience that starts your morning off on a good note.
#4. Leven Rose Fragrance Free Beard Oil & Conditioner
The best-selling beard oil on the market contains just two ingredients: jojoba oil and Moroccan argan oil.
Its high concentration of these high-powered hair restorers makes it a great value for the money you spend. Many customers also cite the manufacturer's commitment to ethics–they never test on animals.
The recommended amount, applied daily, will keep the average beard notably soft and manageable, while slightly more will repair damage and make naturally coarse hair easy to style.
Like many unscented products, Leven Rose just smells like its active ingredients. This doesn't bother most guys, but it's something to take into account–after all, you'll be putting it on literally right under your nose.
#5. Honest Amish Classic Beard Oil
This great-smelling oil is manufactured by a brand that's been around and trusted for a long time.
Their blend of ingredients is chosen specifically to avoid any known irritants, making it the very best beard oil for guys with sensitive skin.
Although it's only available in a two-ounce bottle, the product itself is extremely versatile–and great for both repairing damage and preventing dandruff.
#6. Bossman Beard Oil Kit
If you're looking for something that feels a little more thorough, Bossman's system includes a beard oil, a moisture-locking balm, and a fragrance, which are packaged together and meant to be used together.
The beard oil's reputation for quality is well-earned, but what really earns it its place in the best beard oil listings is the inclusion of a moisture-sealing balm that protects skin and hair from the elements.
Perfect for winter, the balm includes essential minerals for healthier beard hair.
The third part of the kit–the fragrance–is a blend of bergamot, frankincense, and patchouli. Reviewers have noted it can be quite overpowering when applied liberally, so remember that a little goes a long way.
#7. CanYouHandlebar Wisdom Beard Oil
Wisdom from CanYouHandlebar is a light, balanced recipe that absorbs quickly–so if you have oilier skin this could be the best beard oil for you. It includes vitamin E to stimulate growth in addition to a blend of high-quality natural moisturizers.
The scent is fresh, outdoorsy, and more subtle than that of most after-shave and beard products.
If you're looking for a daily conditioner with no distracting residue or smell, this could be the pick for you.
#8. Acqua di Parma Beard Serum
The iconic men's cologne brand has joined the competition for the best beard oil with this offering.
Acqua di Parma Beard Serum is as luxurious as you'd expect–especially in the scent department.
It's designed with particularly long and thick beards, which may tangle more easily, in mind.
Made with high-quality almond and grapeseed oils, it's a straightforward deep conditioner, inspired by traditional barbers' recipes from Italy.
#9. Mountaineer Brand Beard Oil
A vegan-friendly emollient scented with eucalyptus, fir tree needles and cedarwood that's possibly the best beard oil out there for detangling and conditioning.
This product is billed as an all-purpose moisturizer, but unless you have very dry skin, be advised that an oil-based product like this may be better off being used on your beard only.
Hair and skin, for many guys, have different moisture needs.
#10. Prophet and Tools Beard Oil
This one stands out as the best beard oil for quick absorption–no oily feeling, even right after you put it on–and even quicker effectiveness.
Many reviewers report a more manageable beard even on the very first use and less dandruff in a matter of days.
It's also fragrance-free, vegan-friendly and hypoallergenic, making it a great option for those with special requirements.
Prophet and Tools includes a beard-styling kit–a comb and instructional ebook–with every purchase, making this a good choice for those who want to get fancy as well.
Now you've chosen your best beard oil… Eric Bandholz, the CEO of Beardbrand, has written a GREAT article right here at RMRS. Click here for Eric Bandholz's tips on how to grow a beard, style it, and take care of it.