Chances are, if you have a patchy beard, or even just a light colored one, you've considered it. The final frontier of hair dye: beard dye. But if you've never dyed it before, you maybe be wondering if it's safe, how to do it, and how to take care of your post-dye beard. Luckily, we at Scruffy Jack's speak beard as our native language – and we've put together a handy beard dye primer for you.
1. Beard Dyes: An Introduction
First of all, yes, dying your beard is safe. Assuming you don't have an allergy to the dye (patch test 24 hours before dying, to make sure), you have nothing to worry about. There should be no lasting damage to your beard, because most beard dyes, like Just For Men, are deposit-only dyes. These dyes rarely contain high levels of ammonia or peroxide, which open the cuticle and allows the hair color to penetrate the cortex of the hair and fixes the dye. Rather, beards dyes in general simply deposit new color, which most dramatically affects gray/light hairs, but are much gentler than, say, permanent hair dye. Expect your home dye job to last about 6-8 weeks – depending on how often you trim, this may be as good as permanent.
2. The Application
When using the dye, take care to follow the directions. Generally speaking, this involves mixing the color developers together in a small dish, and then painting the resulting dye onto your beard. Be careful with this step! You don't want to get anymore dye onto your skin than you can avoid – it's not your skin that you're dying, after all. Paint the dye into the beard itself. A common trick used by professionals is to swipe a little Vaseline on your cheeks, just above your beardline, to prevent dye from migrating onto your face.
(And in case you're worried: the idea that Vaseline clogs pores is actually a myth – it can't clog pores because its molecular structure is too large to get inside pores. It just sits on top of your face and shines like the dickens, all greasy and glossy, until you wipe it off. Many people actually swear by it as a night time moisturizer,)
If you DO get some color on your skin, don't worry: it will fade over the course of the next 48 hours, with the natural exfoliation of your skin. You might try using a mild scrub over the dyed areas, which can help the colored skin slough off more quickly – but do NOT go crazy with the scrubbing. DO. NOT. A raw, inflamed patch of over-scrubbed skin is gonna look a heck of a lot worse than a light stain. Worst case scenario, dab over the stain with a bit of concealer (which is worth having on hand for just these scenarios). Or, you know, you can just rock it.
Alternately, you can skip the trouble of dying your own beard, and have it done by a professional. But in that case, you're probably not gonna be reading articles on how to dye your own beard.
3. How to Care for your Dyed Beard
Once your beard is dyed, continue to wash it regularly, no more or less than usual. The color will fade over the first week, so if at first you feel you've gone way too dark, know that most dyes do not settle into their actual color until after a couple washes. Having said that, a bit of Google research reveals that many men suggest buying beard dye a shade lighter than you think you need, because the results are regularly more intense than anticipated.
And our final tip: although it is important to condition your beard after every wash, even if your beard is NOT dyed, dyed beards in particular like to be well conditioned. Why? Because regular conditioning prevents color fade and maximizes shine and softness – which helps show off your newly vibrant face rug. A beard oil like Scruffy Jack's Beard Oil is essential here. Depending on your style needs, you may opt for a non-greasy beard wax like Scruffy Jack's Beard Wax.