Beard products and smelly stuff

With the beard revolution upon us, more and more products are surfacing designed specifically for beard maintenance and care. Nobody can deny that a clean beard is just as important as a clean bloke, and most normal shampoos and conditioners, filled with useless chemicals, just do not achieve the desired effect. A simple Google search for “beard products” will provide you with a multitude of choices for oils, creams, lotions and potions. Below are some listings that caught my eye and that have some pretty convincing witness testimonies to help you find what you’re looking for.

BeardProducts.com

Based in Cape Cod, Massachusetts USA, this company is all about 100% organic beard and moustache products. According to the ‘about’ statement, the founders were tired of trying to find facial hair products that weren’t full of chemicals. So they decided to solve their own problem and create their own. Products include beard oil, beard growth formula, moustache wax, beard cologne and assorted beard conditioners. All products are available online via the website, and can be shipped internationally.

Beard Care Products

This website is more of an outlet store, stocking various beard related products from different brands at inexpensive prices. There is a large range of products available, including beard shampoos, bar soaps, trimming and combing supplies, beard dyes, beard related shirts and general skincare for men. The site looks to be based in the United States and is unclear whether products can be shipped overseas.

Beauty and the Bees

Beauty and the Bees is a supplier of 100% natural skincare products operating out of Tasmania, Australia. Originally created for ezcema and psoriasis relief, Beauty and the Bees uses ingredients unique to Australia, the favourite being Tasmanian Leatherwood honey. The business has since grown to include a huge variety of products at reasonable prices, including Professor Edward J. Fuzzyworth’s Beard Care Gloss and Dr Beegood’s Tattoo Preserver.

The Bearded Chap

This is another Australian company, established in 1986. Similar to the issues at BeardProducts.com, The Bearded Chap could not find a suitable beard product that could cull the itching associated with beard growth, and that smelled nice at the same time. After rigorous testing, The Bearded Chap Original Beard Oil was born. This one is a bit pricier than some products at $38.00AU for a 30ml bottle, but beard oil user Ron Pearce enjoys the job it does: “It makes my beard shiny, and it smells nice… It just reeks of man.” They also have other products including moustache wax, grooming combs and brushes, and a Bearded Chap t-shirt.

Beards through the ages

Throughout the centuries, men have sported many assorted styles of facial hair; the most prominent and eye-catching being the beard. It was not until recent times that the beard had become something of a cultural icon, inspiring cult-like following amongst men and women alike. In recent times society has seen the rise of such things as facial hair related clubs, competitions and music, as well as pop culture motifs and healthcare campaigns. So, where exactly did they come from and what is it about the beard that draws so many people in?

In scientific terms, facial hair occurs as a result of the hormone dihydrotestosterone stimulating the hair follicles on a person’s face and/or neck. This hormone is also linked with balding, so unfortunately for some men they are robbed of the privilege of sporting both hairy features. In ancient times throughout history, the beard was considered a symbol of wisdom, honour and power. It was not uncommon for a man’s beard to be cut off or shaved as a punishment in places like Ancient India and Greece. In Ancient Macedon, Alexander the Great declared that all of his soldiers must remain clean shaven as he was worried that their beards may be grabbed and used as handles by their enemies. Notable bearded figures much later in time included Karl Marx, Abraham Lincoln and Charles Dickens. As the centuries went by, the beard faded in and out of fashion.  By the end of the 20th century, the full beard had become a rare sight among men, with close-clipped and two-day shadow styles becoming the preferred looks.

It is now mid-2013 and the beard is making a resurgence with force. Beard clubs are forming left and right for men from all walks of life to share their passion for facial hair with one another, as well as the women who support them. Beard growing competitions are becoming more and more popular, where the men are separated from the boys and they are recognised and celebrated for their manliness; the most prominent of these being the World Beard and Moustache Championships. If the increasing number of clubs for bearded men weren’t enough, there is also a band whose sole purpose is to spread their love of beards with the world. The Beards, from Adelaide, South Australia, comprises of four burly, heavily bearded blokes who perform songs about all aspects of beards, bearded life, their comical loathing for clean shaven men and beard loving ladies.

It is difficult to determine one single reason for the beard’s popularity in society today. If one thing is for certain, it can only continue to grow as they do.