When To Use Beard Balm vs. Oil? - The Difference Explained

8 minute read

Both beard balm and oil are a great addition to your daily beard routine but do you need to use them both?

This article explains when to use beard balm vs. oil and clears up any confusion.

What is the difference between beard balm and beard oil?

The main difference is consistency. Beard balm is thick and waxy. Beard oil is liquid. This is because beard balms contain waxes and butters and beard oils do not.

Below are the similarities and differences between them.



when to use beard balm vs oil

  • Beard oil is a liquid made up of a mix of oils.


  • Beard balm contains a mix of waxes, butters, carrier oils, and essential oils.

  • Beard oil contains a mix of carrier oils and essential oils without waxes or butters.

when to use beard balm vs beard oil


  • Beard balm is used for controlling and holding your facial hair in place.

  • Beard oil adds a bit of natural shine and helps tame flyaways.


  • Beard balm is best for more of a dull finish and holding capabilities.
  • Beard oil is best for adding a bit of shine and taming flyaways.


  • Beard Balm is a wax that is typically sold in a metal tin.
  • Beard Oil is an oil that typically comes in a glass container with a tincture.



Both beard balm and beard oil work well to moisturize beard hair and the skin underneath your beard. Beard oil is preferred by most for moisturizing the skin beneath your beard because the oil is easier to apply to the skin.


If you are looking for a way to soften and condition your beard, beard balm and beard oil work great.


Beard balm and beard oil both contain carrier oils and essential oils. The difference between them is that beard balm contains wax and butters as well.


Both carrier and essential oils offer antibacterial and antifungal properties.

When to use beard balm vs. oil?

Beard balm and beard oil are both great for keeping your beard moisturized. Whether you want to keep your beard moisturized or style it, there are many ways that both of these products can help.

Beard Oil

Beard oil is best for:

  • Adding Shine
  • Moisturizing Skin
  • Promoting Beard Growth

Beard Balm

Beard balm is best for:

  • Control
  • Hold
  • Styling
  • Shaping

Either Beard Balm or Beard Oil

Both Beard Oil & Beard Balm Together

If you plan to use beard oil and balm together, we recommend using beard oil first. Give the beard oil time to soak in before applying beard balm.

  • Extremely Dry Skin
  • Extremely Dry Beard Hair
  • Adding Shine and a Strong Hold

What ingredients does beard balm have vs. beard oil?

Ingredients in beard balm include a mix of waxes, butters, carrier oils, and essential oils. Beard oil ingredients include a blend of carrier oils and essential oils.

The most common ingredients are listed below. Be sure to check the labels before buying. Many companies add unnecessary chemicals and fragrances to cut costs. We recommend sticking with all-natural ingredients.

Beard Balm Ingredients

  • Wax
  • Nut Butters
  • Carrier Oils
  • Essential Oils

Beard Oil Ingredients

  • Carrier Oils
  • Essential Oils

Common All-Natural Ingredients


  • Beeswax
  • Candelilla Wax
  • Soy Wax


  • Shea Butter
  • Almond Butter
  • Cocoa Butter
  • Hemp Seed Butter
  • Macadamia Butter

Carrier Oils

  • Jojoba Oil
  • Argan Oil
  • Castor Oil
  • Coconut Oil
  • Grape Seed Oil
  • Sweet Almond Oil

Essential Oils

  • Peppermint Oil
  • Citrus Oils
  • Cedarwood Oil
  • Tea Tree Oil

How to apply beard balm vs. oil?

The application process is similar with both products. The main difference is beard balm needs to be warmed between your hands before application.

Applying Beard Balm

When applying beard balm, use the back of your fingernail to scoop out a dime-sized amount and rub it in your hands. Rubbing it between your hand will warm it up and loosen the consistency.

Apply it to your beard, starting at the roots and working your way out. Be sure to spread it evenly. You may need to repeat this process depending on the length of your beard.

Once finished, use a beard brush to style your beard. It will ensure you evenly cover every strand of hair.

Applying Beard Oil

When applying beard oil, put 2-3 drops in the palm of your hand. Rub your hands together and get a decent amount of oil on your fingertips.

Apply to your beard, making sure to get down to the roots with your fingertips. Work into your beard until it is evenly covered. (Repeat if you have a long beard)

Use a beard brush to distribute the oil and style your beard.

When should I apply beard oil and beard balm?

The best time to apply beard balm or beard oil is after washing and drying your beard. 

Washing your beard opens your pores and allows the product to absorb into your skin. This will help seal in moisture and keep your beard healthy.

Applying products to a dry or damp beard is best. When your beard is soaking wet, it can be more difficult to spread the product evenly.

If you have an extremely dry beard, apply beard oil before bed and during your morning routine.

Is beard balm or beard oil better for hair growth?

If you are looking for the best way to promote beard growth, beard oil is a better option than beard balm. Beard oil is much easier to apply to your skin and promotes hair growth.

There are also a variety of beard growth oils explicitly designed for giving your beard a boost. 

They are fortified with ingredients like biotin and caffeine. The addition of these ingredients is designed to increase blood flow and restore hair follicles.

When should I start using beard oil and beard balm?

Using beard oils and balms while growing a beard is a great way to promote healthy beard growth. It can also help train your beard to grow the way you want.

Using beard balms and oils during the first few weeks of growth will also help relieve the dreaded beard itch.

Beard balm is best for longer beards.

Beard balms are not commonly used during the first couple of weeks of beard growth. Since beard balm is used to tame stray hairs and style your beard, it doesn't affect a short beard.

Although, if you are trying to train your beard to grow a certain way, you will benefit from using beard balm during your early growth stages.

Beard oil is best during the early growth stages.

The best time to use beard oil is when your beard is in its early growth stages. This will help to promote healthy growth and keep your skin and hair follicles healthy.

Once your beard has a bit of length, switching to beard balm will help keep it in place.

Beard oil vs. beard balm: What is best for beard dandruff?

Beard oil and balm are both great for keeping your beard healthy, but when it comes to dealing with beard dandruff, beard oil is the better option.

Beard balm can seal in moisture and help soothe dry skin, but the waxes in beard balm can make removing dandruff flakes more difficult.

If you have beardruff issues, check out our article: How To Prevent Beard Dandruff.

Should I try beard oil or beard balm first?

Using beard oil is the best option for men who are just starting to grow a beard. Beard oil is easier to apply and helps to promote healthy beard growth.

A styling beard balm for men with longer beards will help control and shape their beards.

Thankfully, we have a wide variety of both beard balm and beard oils available here at Wild Willies so that you can find the perfect product. Choose your option below.

Beard Oils

Beard Oils

$ 10.00

AWARD-WINNING ORIGINAL BEARD OIL   Wild Willies one-of-a-kind beard oil is made of 10 natural vitamins and organic essential oils that condition and treat each follicle down to their roots. Our unique, easy to use, no waste, pump design enables minimal product usage… Read More

Beard Butters

Beard Butters

$ 12.00

The Best Beard Balm Money Can Buy Without even having to break the bank! Organic Beard Balm Ingredients Who wants to put nasty ingredients on their face? Since you’re on the hunt for an awesome beard butter, we’re going to… Read More

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