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How to Soothe Dry, Itchy Beards

by M.H. Dyer

Growing a beard is easy for most men, who usually don't miss the hassle involved with the daily clean shave. However, the skin under the beard often becomes itchy and dry, especially during cold winter weather. Don't ignore the problem because it won't go away on its own. Left untreated, dry, itchy skin may become painful and inflamed.

Limit baths and showers to 20 minutes or less. Use lukewarm or tepid water and avoid hot water, which irritates and dries the skin.

Shampoo your beard two to three times per week, using the same gentle shampoo you use for your hair. Alternatively, use a cleansing product formulated especially for facial hair. Massage the shampoo gently into your beard to stimulate the beard and remove dry skin. Avoid antibacterial soap, detergents or scented products, which irritate and dry the skin. Use a dandruff shampoo if you notice dry flakes, but dilute the shampoo slightly because dandruff shampoo is often harsh and drying.

Rinse shampoo from your beard thoroughly and remove all traces of soap. Shampoo left in the hair strips the natural moisture and oil from the skin and is often responsible for dryness, flaking and itching.

Massage a moisturizing conditioner into your beard immediately after shampooing, then rinse well.

Pat your beard dry with a soft towel. Don't rub because the friction irritates the skin.

Comb your dry beard with a wide-tooth comb or good quality hairbrush, working in the direction of hair growth. Avoid combing or brushing a wet beard because it pulls the hair and irritates the skin.

Keep indoor air moist by using a humidifier during dry weather. Keep rooms relatively cool to prevent the air from becoming too dry.

Items you will need
  • Gentle shampoo or facial hair cleanser
  • Dandruff shampoo (optional)
  • Moisturizing conditioner
  • Soft towel
  • Wide-tooth comb or good quality hairbrush
  • Humidifier

About the Author

M.H. Dyer began her writing career as a staff writer at a community newspaper and is now a full-time commercial writer. She writes about a variety of topics, with a focus on sustainable, pesticide- and herbicide-free gardening. She is an Oregon State University Master Gardener and Master Naturalist and holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative nonfiction writing.

Photo Credits

  • Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images