It’s a little odd when you think about it: if you’re capable of growing a beard, all you need to do is stop shaving, and voilà, in a few weeks you’ll have the start of rugged-looking bristles. But if you want a beard, you need to know how to groom it. Today, we’ll talk about one important grooming product: beard jelly.
After all, you want to stop your beard from looking like a wiry, pricky mess.
That actually takes some doing, because there are so many options when it comes to taking care of your facial hair.
Beard jelly is kind of a niche product. It’s not as well-known or popular as beard oils and beard balms.
But it’s definitely got its fans. So, let’s find out everything you need to know about beard jelly.
Gents, we are reader supported. If you click on a link we may shave a small commission at no additional cost to you.
What is Beard Jelly?
Beard jelly is a slick semi-solid that you use to hydrate your beard. Beard Jelly has a texture that exists somewhere between beard oils (which are liquid) and beard balms (which feel waxy). “Jelly” is kind of a weird term for it, because when most people hear the term “jelly” they either think of the food similar to jam, or petroleum jelly. Beard Jelly doesn’t share the consistency of either product. It’s a little creamier, with a nice texture. While Beard Jelly is not very common when compared to other beard products, it’s really effective, and without it—or some other type of moisturizing agent—your beard can get really dry and scraggly.
Where to Buy Beard Jelly
So, there’s the short description. Here’s the in-depth description:
Brother, your beard hair is different. It may look similar to the hair on your head, but beard hair requires some special care.
Beard hair requires a good deal of combing and shaping, as well as a lot of hydration.
Left on their own, beard hair gets dried out and crinkly, and it can crack and splinter very easily.
To imbue it with hydration and moisture, most guys used beard oils or beard balms. Oils are… well, they’re oils, extracted from plants and seeds, and balms are a combination of oils and a butter (that is, a fat, usually from a plant—shea butter is very popular—and not like the butter that you’d use in food).
Beard oils and beard balms are fantastic and they get the job done, but they have a few drawbacks (and we’ll explore those below). For the longest time, you only had those two options: oils and balms.
Beard jelly is a marriage of the two textures. It has all the “spreadability” of an oil and all the “staying power” of a balm, and it can provide an incredible amount of moisture and hydration.
It’s not perfect, but that’s the draw—it offers benefits from both of oils and balms.
Beard Jelly vs
Beard Oil vs Beard Balm
So, there you have it—that’s what beard jelly is. We hinted that there are benefits and drawbacks to each type of product, so here’s how that plays out:
Beard Oil Compares to Beard Jelly
Beard oil is the OG of beard hydration. For as long as mankind has been harvesting fruits and seeds and nuts, we’ve been making oils.
And while we don’t have any real proof of this, we imagine that there was some ancient, early dude who smelled a freshly squeezed oil and thought to himself, “I’m gonna rub this in my beard,” and the
What we can say with confidence is that with the surge in popularity of beards over the last decade, there are a LOT of beards oils that have come on the market.
Most of them are a mixture of oils—usually a few carrier oils and a few essential oils—and many of them include some fantastic aromas and scents. Grave Before Shave is a company that offers a really fantastic array of scents with their oils, and if you’re looking for an oil, we’d steer your their way.
Oils aren’t perfect, though, so here’s a breakdown.
Now let’s take a look at the other go-to for beard hydration: beard balms.
How Beard Balm Compares to Beard Jelly
Beard balms are a combination of oils and butters (like shea butter, as we mentioned), and many of them also include a wax (like bees wax or candelilla wax) to help you style your beard a little bit.
They’re not as firm as a product marketed as beard wax, but they have a heavier consistency than
Balms for your beard imbue hydration, just as beard jelly products do, but they are better for certain types of beards, and not quite as necessary for others.
Since everyone’s beard is unique, we should share the advantages and disadvantages that beard balms might hold when compared to using beard jelly in your beard.
So how does beard jelly play into all this? Basically, it’s a “best-of-both-worlds” situation, where you get the effective hydration of an oil, the consistent hydration of a balm, the vitamins you’d find in both, and a nice scent, if you get a scented jelly. All good stuff, in other words, and it’s easier to apply.
We don’t mean to imply that beard oils and beard balms don’t work—they do, and they’ve got many thousands, if not many millions, of happy users.
We’re saying instead that beard jelly is a neat way to get many of the benefits that both offer. Keep scrolling to find out how to use beard jelly.
How to Use Beard Jelly
This is one of the perks of beard jelly—it’s really easy to use. Just squirt a small dollop into the palms of your hands (about the same amount you’d use if you were getting hand sanitizer … something we all know about now, right?
Rub ’em together, and work the jelly into your beard. It should work in really easily, and with a little effort, you’ll be able to feel it connect with your skin, so you can get some of the nutrients of the formula on your skin as well as your beard hair.
If you’re a miser, like we are, and you don’t want to waste a single milliliter of the material, you can put it directly onto the tines of a beard comb, and brush it into your beard.
Then, once it’s fully in, you can massage it further so that the jelly gets to your skin.
Voilà! You’re good to go.
Who Makes Beard Jelly?
So, here’s the odd thing about beard jelly. Right now, there’s only one company (that we know of) that makes it, and that’s Bossman.
"It feels great and it's easy to use, and it made our beards look full and bushy. We liked the scents a lot, and appreciated that the 4-ounce bottle can last a while."
- RTG Editorial
We don’t know if they have a patent and other companies aren’t allowed to make their own versions, or if nobody else wants to make it, but one thing is for sure. When it comes to beard jelly, Bossman is the only name in the game.
We actually wrote an entire review of Bossman Beard Oil Jelly, but here’s a quick overview.
- What We Liked: It feels great and it’s easy to use, and it made our beards look full and bushy. The scents—most of them—we liked a lot, and the jelly came in a 4-ounce bottle, rather than the single-ounce bottles that oils usually come in, and the two-ounce tins that beard balms usually come in. We go through a lot of beard products, and that 4-ounce bottle can last a while.
- What We Thought Could Improve: Two of the scents features either patchouli or frankincense or both, and not everybody likes those scents. People seem to love them or hate them. The scents were balanced and not “pushy,” though, and that’s nice. Other than that, thumbs up.
Why Does Your Beard Need Hydration?
Using beard jelly is a great way of giving your beard the hydration it needs. But why is this so important?
Beard hair is especially prone to drying out because of exposure to the sun and air. If you don’t add hydration, you will end up with damage, such as split ends.
If you want to grow your beard longer, you have to think about its health. Another reason for hydrating your facial hair is the necessity of taking care of the skin underneath it.
When you use beard jelly, you’re taking care not only of the hair, but your face.
Beard Jelly: There You Have It
Now you know! Beard jelly is a “new-ish” product and it’s surprisingly effective. We’re hoping to see more companies make it, because we love it but we want more options.
Interested in starting your own beard jelly company? Get on with your bad self! We wish you all the success in the world.
Michael Morris is the head writer here at Rough and Tumble Gentleman. He's got a ducktail beard and loves Brazilian jiu-jitsu. He's married to the woman of his dreams and lives in Brooklyn, NY.