The Best Beard Washes (Because Your Beard Is Filthy)

In an era when science seems to be on the on the defense, sometimes we wonder about research like this recent European study about whether it would be hygienic to evaluate dogs and humans in the same MRI scanner. As ludicrous as the initial hypothesis may sound, turns out the conclusions were both unexpected and, honestly, a little disturbing. 

The upshot was that “bearded men harbor a significantly higher burden of microbes and more human-pathogenic strains than dogs.” Another of the findings indicated that those “human-pathogenic microorganisms (those that could make us sick, that is) were more frequently found in human beards (in seven of the 18 men tested).” Meaning – your beard is a hell of a lot dirtier than your dog’s fur. And that’s just … disturbing.

And the findings don’t get better. Let’s just say the rest of the study may find your wife or girlfriend curled up with Fido tonight, while you, John Bunyan, sleep on the couch. 

So, keep things clean with both our loved ones and man’s best friend by keeping those beards washed and pathogen-free with one of our best beard washes, as described below. 

Wahl Beard Wash
Wahl Beard Wash

Wahl—known for its expertise in barbering and grooming tools—celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. And the brand is bringing all that experience to bear on a brand new beard care line that includes this beard wash as well as beard softener, balm, and oil. Since the hair on your face is wiry and coarse (while the skin beneath is more sensitive than your scalp) a normal shampoo just won’t do the trick and, in fact, it could do more damage by stripping away moisture. This wash keep things clean and fresh…gently. 

Beard Brand Old Money Beard Wash
Beard Brand Old Money Beard Wash

Of course with a name like Beard Brand, you’d better keep a real focus on hirsute pursuits. The brand’s website doesn’t disappoint, including everything from conditioning balms to mustache wax. The Old Money wash includes fragrant notes of aged oak, black pepper, and amber. Cleansing agents are gentle on the face, but tough enough to handle coarse, curly beard hairs. Beard Brand recommends using only once or twice a week. 

Scotch Porter Moisturizing Beard Wash
Scotch Porter Moisturizing Beard Wash

Scotch Porter identifies this product as part one of a four step process for a happy, healthy beard. Follow cleansing with its Hydrate & Nourish Beard Conditioner and Beard Balm to keep everything moisturized and hydrated (you know how we get about cleaning and moisturizing). Follow up with Smoothing Beard Serum, sealing in moisture while eliminating frizz. 

Stubble & ‘Stache Face and Beard Wash
Stubble & ‘Stache Face and Beard Wash

Beyond just cleansing, Stubble & ‘Stache energizes your morning routine with an aromatherapist’s blend of aloe, ginseng, menthol, eucalyptus, rosemary, sage and black pepper oil; all natural botanicals, vitamins, antioxidants, and cleansers. And speaking of science, Stubble says the wash provides essential nourishing elements to the cell’s bio-electric metabolism. Ummm. Okay. Maybe best of all, the brand donates a portion of profits to support wounded heroes as they travel the road to recovery. 

Mountaineer Brand Beard Wash
Mountaineer Brand Beard Wash

Mountaineer Brand was founded by Eric Young in 2013 when he was growing his traditional Fall beard and began to research beard care options so he could keep it without irritation and itchiness (holler!). As a father of three on a lower than average salary, cost-conscious Eric decided he would learn how to make his own. Now with his sister and COO Meredith, the company has gone on to develop a whole collection of personal care products from its West Virginia headquarters. Since we’re on a scientific tip, Mountaineers beard wash is made from saponified oils of cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, olea europaea (olive) oil, simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil and helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil, and much more, but since we didn’t get to take Latin in high school, we’ll leave it right there. 

Art of Shaving The Men’s Peppermint Beard Wash
Art of Shaving The Men's Peppermint Beard Wash

Yeah, yeah, we thought the whole idea of growing a beard is about not shaving, but we do tend to trust the experts at the Art of Shaving to keep on top of our bristly needs. This Peppermint Beard Wash not only leaves beard hair clean and soft, its rich lather removes dirt, oil, and impurities while also conditioning and softening. The bright scent of peppermint essential oil will brighten your morning…and may keep you focused on those mint juleps awaiting you at the end of the work day. 

Rockwell Razors Barbershop Beard & Body Soap
Rockwell Razors Barbershop Beard & Body Soap

To be honest, we’re not the biggest fans of using the same soap on your face (and beard) that you do on your body. To be blunt? We know where it’s been. And, after all, isn’t that how we started this whole piece? However, recognizing that sometimes a bar of soap is just easier to keep around than yet another bottle or tube, we like that Rockwell’s solution offers moisturizing jojoba oil and shea butter, as well as activated charcoal to detox and exfoliate. 

Brooklyn Grooming Beard Soap
Brooklyn Grooming Beard Soap

Coming to you from both the wilds of Vermont (where they know a thing or two about farm-fresh ingredients) and Brooklyn (where they know a thing or two about…well, everything, but especially about beards), Brooklyn Grooming combines family-farmed goats milk, coconut oil, cocoa butter, and pure olive oil to create this easy to use, organic product that cleanses without stripping away natural oils. 

Just For Men Control GX
Just For Men Control GX

So as much as we may want our beard to project a certain level of masculinity, authority, and experience, sometimes that may come off as too much of a good thing. If you’re feeling like you’re not quite ready to go into full-on “Daddy” (or is that “Grandpappy”?) mode, Just For Men offers a product that not only cleans and rejuvenates, it also washes in color to maintain a youthful glow. Combine with Just For Men’s Grey-Reducing Shampoo or Anti-Dandruff Shampoo to be sure the carpet matches the drapes, as it were. 

And now that you’ve adequately sanitized your beard, it’s time to take a trip into the world of beard conditioners. ‘Cause you have to maintain that newly cleaned sheen.

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