Whether your beard is tight and trim, long and flowing, or somewhere in between, it should be shiny and well-groomed—not rough and scraggly. Beard oil is a must: “A beard oil is used much like a conditioner for your hair, only it helps keep the face hydrated as well,” says Dylan D’Angelo, master barber at New York’s Blind Barber. “And, bonus, they smell great.”
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Before you buy a beard oil, there are a few things you need to consider. First up: assess what’s underneath your stubble, D’Angelo says. “If you have oily skin, stick to something water-based, or don’t use anything at all. If you have dry skin, look for something natural and hydrating.” And if your skin is super-sensitive, you’ll want to avoid strongly scented beard oils, as the fragrance may irritate your face.
Speaking of fragrance, this product will live on your face all day—you’re going to want to like the way it smells. Beard oils can be warm and woody, floral and spicy, or have no scent at all. And don’t expect beard oil to work miracles if you’re not taking care of your skin. “Healthy beard hair starts with healthy skin,” D’Angelo explains. We asked barbers and real guys with real beards for what they consider the best beard oils you can buy and picked a few of our favorite products below.