Ever thought of how you can add a few tweaks here and there to make your beard better? You know something quite creative that makes your beard stand out, well I have. Recently, I had an encounter that led me to this. A friend asked me to if he could use Vaseline on beard to make his mustache shinier. Honestly, I told him I didn’t know (can’t have all the answers, can we?). Looking into whether Vaseline is good for your beard or mustache, I was able to draw some insights and I’ll be sharing them below.
Vaseline on Beard: How it Works?
A brief intro here wouldn’t hurt.
Vaseline also is known as petroleum jelly, is a mixture of oils and waxes which eventually forms a semisolid jelly-like substance. It was discovered by Robert Augustus Chesebrough in 1859. Here observed that factory workers used the jelly-like substance on their wounds and burns which he eventually packaged as Vaseline.
Petroleum jelly is a petroleum by-product produced through a mixture of hydrocarbons and is quite water repellent.
The main ingredient which is petroleum which helps in sealing the skin with a water protective barrier which helps the skin heals and retains moisture. It has a wide range of uses which include protecting from minor and tackle dry skin patches.
So petroleum jelly does sound like the miracle worker huh? Let’s see.
Vaseline on Beard: Petroleum Jelly Controversy
Petroleum jelly is often used in the mass production of several cosmetic, personal care, and most recently beard care products. There has been quite a controversy with the usage or inclusion of petroleum jelly as an ingredient in making beard care products. Some argue that it should not be included at all and should be very much avoided by consumers while others take a more subtle approach towards petroleum jelly by arguing that it is good for holding wax and is a good ingredient for beard and mustache wax.
The basis of the controversy on the safety of petroleum jelly is basically whether the petroleum jelly is refined or not. As said earlier petroleum jelly is a by-product of petroleum and if unrefined has some side effects which will be subsequently discussed.
Petroleum Jelly and Your Facial Hair
Petroleum jelly is not water-soluble unlike Shea butter and beeswax and it clogs your pores. Vaseline mostly works best with the skin and less with a beard or mustache. It is quite cheap and readily available.
Vaseline locks moisture in and has the side effect of preventing natural moisture by clogging in, so in order to be safe, it is advisable to test a small quantity of petroleum jelly on your skin and see how it works before moving, if you observe any allergic reaction, kindly stop usage.
When properly refined though petroleum jelly doesn’t have any side effects unless you have a personal reaction to it but the issue is that in most countries, petroleum jelly is not properly refined which roughly means that it can be contaminated with toxic chemicals called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and other harsh chemicals are not properly scrutinized.
How do I Identify Refined Petroleum Jelly?
Identifying unrefined petroleum jelly can prove quite tricky for the uninformed mind. Unrefined petroleum jelly can contain PAHs as earlier stated. PAHs are by-products of organic material combustion, commonly stored in fats upon exposure.
Identifying refined petroleum jelly requires a complete refining history (P.S I’m saying this for the benefit of those who want to use Vaseline in making their own wax). The European Union (EU) stipulates that refining history of the petroleum jelly must be known and must sufficiently prove that it is non-carcinogenic. The US pharmacopeia stipulates purity standards for cosmetic and over the counter skin products. The USP designation usually means a product has met the required purity standards. So, when next you are picking out that petroleum jelly, check the label or the company website. It will help you know whether the product has been properly refined as white petroleum and safe to use.
Vaseline on Beard: Side Effects of Petroleum Jelly
Petroleum jelly has different grades based on the level of refinement. And the side effects also occur due to the degree of refinement also.
There might be skin reactions to it although these are very rare, petroleum jelly does not normally pose any threat but reactions might occur as a result of a mixture of other ingredients. For example, petrolatum-based antibiotic ointments might cause an allergic skin reaction based on the ingredients in the product.
There are also the earlier discussed PAHs which might inadvertently result in cancer. But this is non-existent in most high-quality petroleum jelly products.
Some petroleum jelly products also worsen acne. So if your skin is prone to acne, look for the word ‘non-comedogenic.’ It interprets that the product will not clog pores on the label.
How to Apply Vaseline to your Beard and Moustache
Vaseline can be used in many ways on the beard or mustache. Some folks mix it with beeswax and use it to make mustache wax, but this does not preclude you from applying it on your beard or mustache directly.
You can use Vaseline normally in styling your beard but be careful to apply it in small quantities so that it can be washed off easily, but it’s quite good in the sense that it helps lock in moisture which is good for hair growth but the downside is that it might also prevent natural moisture which is why advocated for it to be used in meager quantities.
In summary, using Vaseline on your beard or mustache is entirely a matter of choice. Different strokes for different folks but one clear point or key takeaway. This article shows that it is mostly on the quality of petroleum jelly you use. As I always say nothing beats good nutrition, exercise, and rest in beard growth.
So that’s it, Men!! Thank you for reading my two cents on whether you can use Vaseline on your beard or mustache. Kindly drop your reviews, questions, and suggestions in the comments section. Stay scruffy