It you’re used to applying beard oil during the day, it might seem a little odd to consider using it at night—but believe it or not, many guys do! And when you think about it, it’s not so crazy—if you use a lot of beard products during the day, and you don’t wash them out at night, you have stuff in your beard overnight anyway, so you may as well be in charge of it. So here, we’ll talk about scenarios where beard oil before bed makes sense, and then we’ll go into some detail about how to apply it wisely if you do decide to use it before you get to bed.
We’ll start with the big question:
Do I Really Need to Use Beard Oil Before I Go to Bed?
Honestly—no! For the great majority of guys, using a beard oil during the day—even only a couple days a week—can provide a lot of the hydration your beard needs to stay bushy and healthy-looking.
A lot of us bearded folks have a tendency to overdo beard care and grooming, but really—a couple of days should do it, and there’s nothing written anywhere that says, “You MUST use beard oil once in the morning and once at night” or anything like that. Some guys use beard oil at night, but most don’t, and that’s usually fine.
There are, however, a few situations where it actually makes a lot of sense to use beard oil in the evening hours, so before we jump into tips, let’s discuss…
When It Makes Sense to Apply Beard Oil at Night
There are a few scenarios where PM-beard is a good idea:
If You’ve Got Beard Issues
There are some beards out there that have a lot of problems: it may be itchiness on the skin underneath the beard, it may be beardruff and flakiness, it may just be plain-old dryness. If that’s you, you may want to consider an evening application, or even a morning-and-evening application, and see if that extra attention alleviates any of your problems.
It’s not a sure thing, and everyone’s results vary, but it can be worth a shot. Some beards do well with around-the-clock tending, and a nighttime beard oil regimen may be able to help a little bit.
If You’ve Got a Gigantic Beard
Similar to the “beard-with-issues” section before this one, if you’ve got a very big, very bushy beard, it might require a lot of products in order to stay hydrated and moisturized.
That makes sense—those larger-than-life beards can really suck up beard products, and they can get out of control pretty quickly. What works for regular-sized beards may not do the trick for jumbo-sized beards, and you’ll need to take a good look at your facial hair and see if it’s in good shape or needs some more minding.
If You Shower in the Evenings
This is probably the most common reason guys apply beard oil at night. Beard oil should *only* be applied when your beard is clean (and we expound upon this below), and your beard is at its cleanest when you’re right-out-of-the-shower, and that makes it prime-time for oiling.
We wouldn’t necessarily recommend re-working your entire routine so you can shower at night, and we don’t recommend showering twice a day—that can seriously dry out your skin—but if you work nights, or you’ve got a big family and your bathroom is overwhelmed in the morning, or you just like going to bed feeling clean, consider application afterwards.
If You Live or Work in a Really Dry Place / Your Beard Dries Out Quickly
There are some environments that can zap a beard dry in hours, and you may need to apply frequently during the day, and maybe even during the evening. If you live in an arid place, or work in a dusty environment, or just find that your beard gets dry by mid-day, you may want to up your dosage.
Keep in mind, sometimes it’s not your immediate environment that’s drying out your beard—it’s you, yourself! Some of us have beards that get drier than a twig in no time flat. It’s just how it is. If that’s your situation, an in-the-morning-and-at-night routine make sense (just be sure to follow the guidelines below, to lessen your chances of running into issues).
If You Just Don’t Like the Feel of Oil in Your Beard During the Day
Beard oil is wildly popular, and of all the beard products out there, it seems to be the one that guys use most. But… well, some guys don’t like the feel of it while they’re out and about!
There’s nothing wrong with that, and we’d venture to think there are a lot of guys like this—who either don’t like the scent, or don’t like the feel, or who just can’t be bothered during their morning routine to put it on.
If that’s you, it can make sense to apply the beard oil before bed, when you’re lazing around the house or doing whatever it is you do. Just a little bit an hour or two before bed, and that can provide all the hydration and moisturization your beard needs.
You Love Beard Oil!
This sounds silly, but a lot of us love having a beard and love taking care of it. That would describe us here at Rough and Tumble Gentleman—we literally built a website about beards and how to take care of them.
So if that’s you—if you simply like grooming your beard and keeping it neat and healthy-looking—here are some guidelines on how to do it.
Some Helpful Tips if You Use Beard Oil at Night
It might sound silly, but applying beard oil at night is a different game than using it during the day, and there are some things you’ll want to keep in mind. First, you’ll need to…
Wash Your Beard VERY Thoroughly
We want to drive this point home—if you’re going to use beard oil before you go to bed, be sure that your beard is very, very clean.
Here’s why we say that:
For better or worse, your beard—your beautiful, manly beard—is basically a bacteria trap. It’s like a giant net, hanging off your face, sucking up all sorts of grodiness during the day.
It’s sad, but it’s true—and are we saying you should shave it off? Come on, man—don’t be silly. Beards are the best.
We’re just reminding you that throughout the day, your beard is going to collect dust, dirt, and airborne grime, and unless you wash it all out, it’s going to stay there…
…and if you then add oil into all that dust, dirt, and grime, you’re creating the ideal environment for skin irritation, rashes, acne, etc.
So washing your beard after you’ve had it out all day collecting who-knows-what is really important.
It’s best to take a shower—that is, after all, when your beard is at its cleanest, and the warm water and steamy air open your pores and make your beard hair more receptive to oil—but we know most guys don’t do that, and a thorough washing of your face and beard in the evening should do the trick. We’re big fans of Ranger Grooming Company Beard Wash, because it suds up very nicely and it washes out thoroughly—which is important when you’re standing over the bathroom sink, and you can’t expect shower water to rinse your beard wash away.
After that, pat your face and beard dry with a towel and let it sit for a few minutes.
Don’t Overdo It on the Oil
Beard oil is one of those products where a little goes a lot way—and that’s especially true if you’re putting it on before bed. If you usually use six drops, maybe dial it down to three. Whatever it is you use, a little less actually does the trick, because you’re not out-and-about where the beard oil can evaporate—you’re hanging around in your house or apartment, and then you’re lying down in your bed—meaning that the little you use should stick around longer.
Also consider that there is an element of build-up when it comes to beard oil—even if you wash it out every day, there’s always a liiiiiiiiittle bit that sticks around in your beard, and after a while, all that adds up, so it can actually make sense to occasionally take a few nights off from using beard oil.
Brush It In/Out Thoroughly
So you’re not using too much—now be sure to distribute the little that you’ve applied.
Your fingers are usually up to the task, but a comb can help you get to places your fingers can’t. We’re big fans of the Viking Revolution Dual-Sided Beard Comb—it’s got a wide-set side of teeth and a narrow-set side of teeth, so you can untangle knots and then do some fine-tuning when those knots are gone. It’s wooden, too, so it can do a good job distributing the beard oil throughout all of your beard hair.
Again, your fingers are usually good enough, but a comb can help a great deal.
Keep a Look Out for Skin Irritation
We don’t say this to worry anyone, because plenty of guys use beard oil both during the day and before bed and they don’t experience any issues, but it’s definitely something we should mention: using too much oil—or any type of beard product, for that matter—can cause some unwanted reactions on your skin.
That makes sense, if you think about—after all, your skin needs a break! If you use some kind of beard product during the day—maybe a balm or a conditioner—and then beard oil at night, that’s around-the-clock grooming. It can be too much for some guys, and you don’t want to knock your skin out of whack. Doing so can lead to any number of skin problems, like clogged pores, acne, or excessive oiliness.
So, take it slow and see what works for you. Again, most guys are absolutely fine, and if you use beard oil during the day and you don’t have any negative reaction to it, chances are you’ll be fine wearing at night. Just don’t overdo it.
Pay Attention to Your Pillow Case
Ever notice there are areas of your personal grooming that you’re fantastic about, and then there are areas of your personal grooming where you fail miserably and it’s kind of gross?
For a lot of guys, that’s bedding—they don’t change their sheets and pillow cases enough. They use them for weeks, even months(!), and don’t change them. That’s… we try not to be judgmental, especially because we’ve fallen into the not-changing-bedding trap a few times, but that’s gross.
And if you’re going to be using beard oil—and then smushing your face into a pillow all night—that can get unhygienic very quickly. That pillow is going to be smelly and oily and just as dirty as your beard at the end of the day, but you wash your beard every day, and you don’t wash your pillow case every day.
So, if you’re going to start using beard oil every night—or even a few times a week—you’re going to want to change your pillow case very frequently.
Remember in the last section, where we talk about skin irritation? A dirty pillow case is another way to irritate your skin—except in this case, a dirty pillow case can irritate the skin on your entire face, and not just under your beard, like excess beard oil would.
Unscented Beard Oils Can Be a Great Option
One of our favorite things about beard oils is that they’re offered in so many appealing scents. Citrus, firs, mints, and combos of just about everything—they’re delightful.
But they can be a bit much if you’re trying to go to sleep. If you’re trying to settle down for the night, all that fragrance can be undesirable, so it can make sense to go for an unscented variety, and luckily, there are dozens out there.
As for unscented options, we’re big fans of Viking Revolution Unscented Beard Oil. It’s got some great ingredients—most notably jojoba oil, which has an anti-inflammatory effect, and is similar in structure to the oil that your skin naturally makes—and it doesn’t feel too slick.
Of course—you may actually like all the fragrance when you go to sleep! And it can be nice to wake up to a mint scent—very invigorating. This is another one of those things that depends entirely on your tastes and personal preferences.
Make Sure It Gets on Your Skin
Most guys get the idea that beard oil is good for moisturizing your beard—after all, it is a “beard” oil—but that’s really only one of the things beard oil is supposed to do. It’s also supposed to hydrate your skin, and it can do a great job moisturizing skin and relieving beard itch… but you actually need to get it onto your skin, and a lot of guys don’t do that.
That’s another way a beard comb can be a great tool—it can distribute the oil evenly, and help you get the oil onto your skin. It’s a big of a pain, and it seems like an extra step, but it can make a difference. And, again—no need to overdo it.
Apply the Oil a While Before You Hit the Sack
Beard oil absorbs into your hair and skin, and that’s when it does its best work—so give it a chance to settle in, and leave anywhere from a half-hour to a few hours after you apply it. If you go to bed too soon after application, it may still be a little wet, and make a mess of your pillow case. This is another example of why it’s a good idea to use less than you normal would.
If you like washing your beard right before bed—and most of us do that, as it’s a very nice way to end the day—maybe fan it out a little bit, and give it a quick pat-down with an absorbent hand-towel or face-towel.
You Can Try Making Nighttime Application Your Once-a-Day
We alluded to this above, but it can actually make sense to apply only at night. If you don’t like having beard oil on your face during the day, or don’t like the way it looks but want to stay moisturized, then nighttime application can make a lot of sense. Just follow the guidelines above, pay attention to your skin, and find out what works for you.
Apply the Extra to Your Chest Hair!
If you’ve used beard oil even once, you know that there’s always a little bit stuck on your hands after you’ve rubbed it into your beard—so go ahead and rub that into your chest hair! The makeup of your chest hair is very similar to the makeup of your facial hair, and while it may not need that TLC, it couldn’t hurt!
Same goes for the hair on your head—beard oil typically has a lot of great ingredients in it, and many feature Vitamin E, which is great for your locks. It’s only a little bit, and you’re going to bed anyway, so what’s the diff.
Our Night-Time Beard Oil Recommendations
Alright, so now you know—that’s probably everything that could be said for the “beard oil before bed” conversation. To close out, here are our favorite beard oils for nighttime:
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Some Guys Use Carrier Oils at Night Instead of Beard Oil
There’s one other thing we should mention: some guys use carrier oils at night instead of straight-up beard oils. Carrier oils are one of the ingredients of beard oils—a beard oil you buy is just basically a bunch of carrier oils and then a few essential oils for scent—and the carrier oils are the real moisturizers in any given beard oil. They’re the ones doing the moisturizing and hydrating, so some guys figure, “Why not just use a carrier oil?”
If you decide to go that route, we like Leven Rose Jojoba Oil. It’s just a single ingredient—jojoba oil—which can be great for your skin. We actually mentioned it above—jojoba oil has a structure similar to the oil your skin naturally produces (which is called sebum), and it can balance oil production and even things out.
Many guys like the all-natural approach, and a single, all-natural, organic carrier oil can be a good option.
Sleep Tight, Amigo
That’s all we have to say about nocturnal beard oil habits, but if you need any more info, hop over to our “Contact” page and drop us a line—we’re happy to help. Otherwise, have fun, be good, and healthy beard!
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.