Growing a nice warm bit of face furniture may seem like a great way to stave off the cold winter winds at this time of year, but winter can be very cruel to facial fur. While beard-sporters the UK over enjoy the snugness only a flavour saver can offer, they're also finding out the hard way that cold weather, rain and the office central heating play havoc with their facial hair, causing their crumb catcher to become dry, wiry and itchy.
One problem is that, as a society, the latest generation of beard aficionados are not especially knowledgeable about their facial hair. Long a fashion taboo, it's only in the last five years that the beard has staged its come back, leaving many men clueless about beard care.
Never fear! If you want the warmth of a winter beard without the straggly, rough consequences, we've put together a helpful cold weather beard care guide to keep your Groucho Marx looking top notch.
1. Wash & GoKeeping your beard nice and clean is a priority for most beardy gents. Who wants a constant reminder of yesterday's chilli dog hanging around their face, after all (even if it was delicious)? But washing your beard can worsen the drying out process caused by cold, windy weather and central heating. That's why you need to wash it right. Try to minimise the frequency of your washes wherever possible, and switch from using regular soap or shampoo (which strip beards of their natural moisturising oils) to a natural alternative like coconut oil or argan oil.
2. Comb with CautionNobody wants a knotty, scruffy beard, but again – combing can really take it out of your beard in the winter. When you do comb, do so in conjunction with using a natural oil (like those mentioned above) to prevent causing breakages, doing damage and drying your face furniture out.
This winter beard game is all about hydration. Cold winds suck the moisture from our skin and hair leaving them dry and fragile. That's why investing in a good beard oiling routine is an essential part of cold weather beard care. Start by massaging your oil of choice into your face beneath your beard. Well moisturised skin will help keep your beard hydrated too. Next, use a wooden comb to spread the excess oil evenly through your beard for optimal results.
4. Man the DefencesThere are some products out there which will protect your furry pride and joy while you take on the weather. Beard balm and moustache wax offer a great line of defence when you're out and about, creating a protective layer between your beard and the elements.
5. Get SteamyIf you have a gym membership at an establishment with a steam room, don't miss the opportunity to give your winter beard a good, long, relaxing steam - ideal for opening up the pores and keeping your facial hair hydrated.
Does your beard suffer in the winter months? Do you have any helpful tips for keeping it in great nick all year round? Share your handy habits with other readers in the Base London Facebook group.
Winter may still be here, but spring and summer are just around the corner (as is our spanking new SS16 collection!) Check out our fresh Base London SS16 collection, now available on the website.