Firstly, I want to start off by saying that although they look similar, head hair and beard hair are totally different types of hair. Without going into the scientific examples, just go on and feel the hair on your head, then feel the hair on your face. Do you notice any differences? Does the beard hair feel coarser, thicker, and wirey, and does the head hair feel thinner and softer?
Secondly, the scalp skin is also different to the skin underneath the facial hair on the chin and neck areas. They both produce a naturally produced oil called sebum but in vastly different amounts. This oil is essential for healthy hair growth and without it your hair follicles would break and fall out.
The scalp skin tends to produce far more sebum than the skin underneath the beard. This oil hydrates, conditions and helps the hair to grow and helps to eliminate split ends in the hair follicles.
The skin underneath the beard hair struggles to produce enough sebum oil to hydrate and support healthy growth throughout the beard hairs. This is why it is important to use good quality beard oil, beard balm or beard butter to top up the minimal sebum oil produced by the body to maintain the hair and keep it healthy. When the beard hair lacks in sebum oil it will dry out and becomes brittle, coarse and the hair tends to break.
Let’s get into what salt spray actually is
Sea salt spray is a liquid that is made to imitate salty sea water from the ocean and is designed for head hair not beard hair. Salt in itself is considered a dehydrant, it extracts and absorbs moisture. It’s pretty simple to test this theory; if you eat too much salt, what happens? It dehydrates your body and you will get thirsty. A similar thing occurs in the beard and now that we know what sebum oil is and why it is important for growing a healthy and full beard let's continue on.
What do you think the salt is doing to the sebum oil in your beard?
Well, simply put it is drying out the beard and skin by absorbing the sebum that is currently in the beard, the oil that the body is struggling to produce enough of already. The magic natural ingredient that helps the beard grow, stay healthy, hydrated and moisturized is being stripped right out, causing damage to the beard hair all for a temporary look that has long term effect on your beard.
I don’t know about you but having a beard whilst swimming in the ocean or a swimming pool I find my beard takes a bit of a beating. Generally chemicals in the pool like chlorine also damage the beard and strip away the natural sebum oil from your skin and beard hair. I always use and recommend using beard oil and or beard balm post swimming as it replenishes the lost oils from this type of activity.
We at Lejonjon do not recommend using sea salt spray as it will dry out your beard and create irreversible damage. We do recommend hydrating and conditioning your beard with a quality beard oil or beard balm.
Did you find this interesting, how about checking out our blog post on how to maintain and care for your beard and eliminate beardruff