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Beard Balm vs Beard Oil: What’s the Difference?

Beard Balm vs Beard Oil: What’s the Difference?


It’s no secret that sometimes the names of hygiene products can be a little confusing. Once you get past soap and shampoo, what does it all mean? Beard balm and beard oil are especially confusing. Sure, they’re different products, but they have a fair bit of overlap in their uses that makes them hard to differentiate. How do you decide which one you need to use on any given day? Here’s a quick breakdown of the differences between beard balm and beard oil to help you navigate your beard care.

Beard Oil

Beard oil comes in a liquid form and is used mainly as a way to moisturize both the hair of your beard and the skin of your face. Lots of beard oils contain essential oils for fragrance and other beneficial qualities as well. Beard oil works well for just about any hair type and stage of growth, although it’s really useful for the early stages to help reduce itching and flaking. It also works well for very long and thick beards where a solid product might be difficult to evenly distribute.

Over time beard oil will help to tame an unruly beard by adding moisture to the hair and making it healthier, softer, and more pliable, but this liquid product isn’t going to give you any hold. However, when you use beard oil you will get plenty of shine, a nice light scent, and some much-needed hydration. You can think of beard oil as more of a care product than a styling product. 

Beard Balm

Beard balm differs from beard oil mainly in that it comes in a solid form. Where beard oil comes in a bottle, you’ll get beard balm in a tin or a tub. This solid product is designed for a firmer hold, while also moisturizing and hydrating the beard. A beard balm will typically have beeswax in it, and this is the thing that sets it apart from the crowd. While you will be able to soften and melt a beard balm with the heat of your hands in order to apply it, once it cools back down on your hair the beeswax provides hold and allows the balm to be used as a sculpting product to give you control and allow you to shape your beard.

Where beard oil is a care product with some styling benefits, beard balm is a styling product with some care benefits. It will hydrate your beard and skin, and if you suffer from a lot of dryness, beard balm might be a good option for you because it’s thick and rich. The main benefit you’ll get from a beard balm, though, is light hold and control. Beard balm can even make your beard look a little thicker as the product coats the strands.

Can I Use Both?

Absolutely you can! Because beard balm and beard oil are different products with different uses, it makes sense to have both of them in your arsenal. On a day where you’re feeling a little dry and itchy, reaching for oil will help bring you back to normal, and on a day where you just can’t seem to make your beard sit the way you want it to, a little balm and a brush will help you remind your mane who’s in charge. 

You can even use beard oil and beard balm together, if you’re so inclined. You’ll just want to start off with smaller amounts of each that you typically use, so that you don’t go overboard and end up feeling greasy. Apply a little beard oil first and then move onto the balm, making sure you work them both in really well. If your beard is longer, try using a brush to get everything evenly distributed. Don’t feel like you need to be using both every day, though. While it’s a good way to make extra sure your beard is hydrated and shaped, it’s not a necessity, and if you feel more comfortable just using whichever one you need that day and heading out the door, then you’ve got a perfect routine already.

Fresh Beards carries both premium beard balms and beard oils in multiple different scents to suit every man’s tastes. Take a look at our Beard Care section right here to see what we’ve got, and also be sure to check out our other products such as beard butters and washes!

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