How To Clean a Beard Brush in 6 Easy Steps
Knowing how to clean a boar bristle beard brush is an essential skill every bearded man should know. Your brush is going to collect hair and debris over time — it’s unavoidable. That’s why caring for this tool is just as important as using it.
What if you let all your blades get dull? That would spell disaster because you’d hurt your beard and potentially your skin, which is the opposite of the intended purpose of these tools. They’re meant to tame your beard without harming your skin.
The same goes for using a dirty beard brush. You can’t clean something dirty with something dirty. Likewise, you can’t train your beard if the bristles are falling out.
How Often Should You Clean a Beard Brush?
Going a long time without cleaning your hairbrush or beard brush can lead to damaging it. However, there seem to be varying opinions on how often you should clean your beard brush. Some people say twice a year, while others would argue twice a month. We think the middle ground of every other month should suffice, depending on your usage.
If your beard brush is mostly used for exfoliating, then wash it more often. If it’s only used for styling and distributing oil throughout your beard, then you’re safer just doing it every other month. Making sure those boar bristles stay pristine will prolong the brush’s life and save you a bit of money in the long run.
While cleaning a beard brush takes some practice, you’ll get the hang of it. The best part is that these six steps can all be done in the privacy of your home, so you can get back to brushing your beard in no time.
How Do You Clean a Beard Brush? Six Easy Steps
The six easy steps for making your old beard brush look like new are combing out loose hair strands, rinsing away the debris, shampooing the bristles, detailing the bristles, drying it all, and then oiling it up.
If you follow these steps, you’ll successfully clean your beard brush.
Some of the supplies you’ll need for this task include a comb (like a beard comb or mustache comb), a toothpick, a toothbrush, a cotton swab, beard shampoo, beard oil, and rubbing alcohol. Most of these items will come in a grooming kit, which you can grab from us at The Beard Club.
Pay attention to each step’s explanation, and you should be ready to do it yourself!
1. Comb the Loose Hair Strands Out
Grab that beard or mustache comb and begin combing through the boar bristles to get out all the old hair and any debris you find. The best way to do this is to drag the comb against the base of the bristles and follow it through to the top.
When dealing with the roots of the bristles, feel free to scrape at the layer of dandruff that has most likely accumulated over time. Be careful, of course, that you’re not too rough. The bristles can get dislodged if you press too hard.
Keep going until nothing is coming out of the brush when you comb through it. At that point, it’s time to move on to the next step.
2. Rinse Away the Dead Skin and Dirt
Your first rinse will be before applying any shampoo. Use warm water right after you comb through the bristles. The warm water will rinse out any loosened hair, dandruff, and debris that the comb couldn’t get.
3. Shampoo the Bristles Until They’re Clean
Other than the initial combing, this is the step that will show the most obvious results.
While dish soap, hand soap, body wash, and normal shampoo could all work for this step, we suggest using your beard shampoo. The other products could be harmful to your face later. The logic for this is that if any residue gets left behind, you don’t want it getting mixed into your beard.
Take the beard shampoo and massage it up and down the wet bristles, almost like you’re washing your actual beard. Gently yet firmly rub that shampoo in at the base of the bristles. Next, wet your toothbrush and scrub the bristles as much as you can. You can also scrub the handle a little to remove any dirt.
Rinse the toothbrush several times while scrubbing. Then, once you feel like you’ve covered the whole brush, rinse it off in warm water again to remove the dirt and debris. At no point should you be soaking the brush; you don’t want your wood absorbing all that water.
4. Detail the Bristles
Now, it’s time to bring in the toothpick and cotton swab and let them do some of the dirty work. The toothbrush certainly removed the majority of the dirt and grime, but the crevices that hold the bristles are tough to clean in many cases. This is where the toothpick and cotton swab comes into play.
The toothpick can easily get into the beard brush crevices and scrape out any dirt, debris, dandruff, grime, or even stray hairs hiding in the bowels of the brush. When something gets scraped out, use the cotton swab to brush it into the trash so that it doesn’t get stuck elsewhere on the brush.
Feel free to rinse the brush whenever you need to keep the playing field moist and soft. Keep going until there’s no more obvious debris, and then give your brush one final rinse. You can use some rubbing alcohol if you’d like to disinfect the brush. This step can also wait until after the next step.
5. Shake and Dry the Brush
Vigorously shake the brush in your shower or bath to rid it of the many water droplets it carries. Then, gently pat it dry with whatever towel you have on hand. As long as you’re gentle, it shouldn’t matter too much what type of towel you use.
Now, the brush needs to air dry. The proper pose it should strike while drying is bristles-down, wood-up so the water droplets go with gravity off the brush.
Leave the brush in a room-temperature space for a day to be safe before moving on. If it dries before that, move on to the next step.
6. Oil Up
Once the brush is dry, it’s time to oil it up.
Beard oil is perfect for this step because not only does it nourish the wood, but it also is safe for human skin. Using an oil that is good for your skin will protect your hands and face from any unnecessary breakouts.
Don’t stop at oiling the wood, either. The bristles can dry out as well, so be sure to oil them all the way down to their roots, especially if you used rubbing alcohol anywhere on the brush. Once you’ve oiled up the brush, lay it upside down so that the oil continues to soak in.
Why Clean Out Your Beard Brush?
Brushing your beard may not be as important as brushing your teeth, but you should do both daily (preferably twice, at least). Would you use the same toothbrush for a year without ever washing or replacing it? No, sir! So, why would you not treat your beard brush the same way?
Cleaning your beard brush inevitably protects your facial hair and keeps old dandruff from getting stuck on your hair strands. A clean brush also distributes beard oil much more effectively than a dirty one.
If you’re looking for a new beard brush or another essential facial hair tool, we have you covered. You can find high-quality beard brushes and other beard care supplies in our grooming kits.