Kings wear a crown.
It’s the defining “garment” of their royalty.
If you’re a father, son, brother, nephew, or uncle….
THEN YOU ARE A KING!
But please don’t walk around wearing a crown.
That’s weird….VERY wierd.
Like, no one wants to see you looking like the Burger King guy walking around town!
But there is a way to show your nobility.
There’s a calling card of sorts that announces that the king has arrived!
THE FACE CROWN!
Beards have always been a part of a man’s style. Historically, your manhood was linked to you beard. From a prehistoric context, beards were worn for warmth, intimidation, and protection.
In ancient Egyptian culture, Egyptian royalty used false beards that were made of metal. It was held in place by a ribbon that was tied over their heads. This was one of many signifiers that a man was a member of the royal family.
Listen, that literally sounds like some king-ish to me!!!!!
But we’re beyond that now and it’s a growing (pun intended) personal style element that modern gentlemen are embracing more and more. The conservative gent and workplace haven’t quite caught on fully, but the beard is on an upward trend in popular culture…regardless of ethnicity.
In my humble opinion, beards are here to stay. And as a black man there are specific steps that I must take to care for my face crown so that is announces my kingship with distinction.
In fact, beard care has it’s roots (another pun intended) in Mesopotamia. These civilizations would use beard oil to keep their crowns healthy and robust looking. It’s important to maintain a great face crown. It can communicate a couple of things to those onlookers:
- Appearance is important to you
- You are committed to style
- Pay attention to grooming details
- Cleanliness is a priority
- You are a take charge kind of guy
How do you maintain your beard? It’s actually very simple. These steps work regardless of your hair texture and/or curl patterns.
I. WASH YOUR BEARD
This is the simplest step in the process! Every day, whether you’re in the shower or at the sink, wash your beard when you wash you face. You can use a specific beard wash or a shampoo.
My preference is a beard wash. Using standard shampoo can strip your hair of essential oils that your beard needs. They an also dry out your face. Beard oils are complete with many natural products like shea, jojoba oil, keratin, coconut oil and others.
I have a specific regimen that I will detail later in the post.
II. CONDITION YOUR BEARD
Again, you can use your a standard conditioner or a specific beard conditioner. The purpose of conditioner is to replenish some of the oils that may have been washed off during the shampooing process. Conditioners don’t have harsha alcohols that will strip the hair.
Let’s discuss the process of conditioning
- Use a nickle’s size of product
- Work into your damp beard after you’ve washed it
- Use comb or pick to make sure that the product completely touches the shaft
- Let sit for 1-2 minutes. (Use this time to brush your teeth or wash your body if you’re in the shower)
- Rinse thoroughly
III. REPLENISH YOU BEARD
This process will vary with depending on what types of products work best with your texture. The important thing is to apply the beard oil or beard pomade to the hair when damp.
Gents, do not put the product in your palm and rub it in. This will not guarantee that it will be applied to every strand of hair. Instead, place in on your finger tips and apply the oil or pomade by pulling using your fingers.
Start at the base of the hair strand and gently pull away from your face. Doing this will ensure that the replenishing process works as best as possible and that the pomade will be distributed evenly.
Another option for applications is spray. But you still want to employ the finger tip method to make sure the product has an even spread.
IV. STYLE YOUR BEARD
Simply put, brush your beard if it’s not long enough to comb or comb/pick your beard out if it’s full. Styling does more than make your beard look nice and neat. It also helps to distribute the oils from the replenishing process. Thirdly, styling helps to train your beard to grow into a certain direction.
A “part B” to the styling is edging your beard up. I recommend using a straight razor because you get the cleanest line possible. This takes time and practice so exercise patience. Consult your barber for the best techniques.
Below is my washing schedule:
- Monday – Wash using beard wash, condition using beard conditioner, apply replenishing products
- Tuesday – Wash using beard wash and apply replenishing products
- Wednesday – Wash using beard wash, condition using (leave in conditioner – does not need to be rinsed, instead let it soak into hair), apply replenishing products
- Thursday – Wash using beard wash and apply replenishing products
- Friday – Wash using co-wash (washing substitute that cleanses and conditions) and apply replenishing products
- Saturday – Wash using beard wash, condition using beard conditioner, apply replenishing products
- Sunday – Wash using clarifying shampoo (Clarifying shampoo will completely strip off all of the oils and build up that have been on your hair throughout the week), condition using beard conditioner, apply replenishing products.
I have dry skin and hair so it’s important that I condition my hair a couple of times a week. Additionally, I’m in a warm environment (Houston, TX) and I sweat a lot so clarifying shampoo is absolutely necessary to remove all the sweat and build up from my busy week.
My preferred products are:
Shea Moisture with Maracuja Oil and Shea Butter
This products is great because it deep cleans my beard of dirt, flakes and odors without drying out facial hair and skin. The Maracuja Oil and conditioning Shea Butter combine in this pH balanced formula that provides a clean slate for flawless grooming.
Remember to use a dime to nickle size of this product and work it into the hair with a good lather. You want to be sure to clean the hair thoroughly
Pantene Truly Natural Co-Wash
This product helps to fuel hair with a blend nutrients and antioxidants to guard against damage while cleaning, conditioning, and detangling. Its oil enriched so it moisturizes without stripping the natural oils.
Rub a half-palm size of the cowash into my hand and apply directly to my wet beard. It’s important to work it in to the hair using your fingertips. You can use a comb to comb out the hair while the product is in. This is optional. What is a must, however, is letting it sit in your beard for about a minute.
Cantu Leave In Conditioner
Great for hydrating and mending dry or coarse hair. It’s a leave in conditioner which means you don’t rinse it out. This is infused with pure shea butter and other natural oils.
My secret weapon!!!!!! It’s not something that’s typical for beards but it works great for me. Even though it’s a pomade, the product is not heavy. It provides a dope shine that lasts all day and smells great. Hey, my wife approves!!!!
Stay fly mis amigos!