When you talk of dandruff, the first thing that comes to most people’s minds is the hair on the scalp, as the said condition mostly affects that area. However, the beard can also suffer the same fate. Dandruff on the beard is very real and can affect any one. It can affect even those who have never had such condition in the hair on their scalp. According to those who are affected, there is nothing which can be more nauseating and irritating than white flakes coming out of the smooth beard. They look ugly and everyone would like to get rid of beard dandruff. Whenever you want to get rid of any problem, it is important to first understand what causes it.
What Causes Beard Dandruff ?
There are various causes of beard dandruff, but the most common are –
1. Dry skin,
2. Fungal infection, and
3. Health related issues.
Once you have identified the exact cause, you can then identify the best solution. Here below are some suggestions on how to deal with beard dandruff caused by either or combination of the above conditions.
If the cause is dry skin:
The leading cause of dandruff on the beard is dry skin. The dry skin itself has many causes such as body dehydration or skin diseases, allergy and other conditions. The use of cheap grooming products on the skin may also cause it to dry and that will lead to the development of dandruff. To be on the safe side, avoid anything that can interfere with the normal production of the oils which keep the skin smooth and healthy.
You can get rid of dandruff caused by dry skin by simply trying to moisturize the skin. Can its because the use of cheap grooming products, invest in some quality natural soap or apply beard oil in order to ensure that the pores of the skin where the beard grows are well oiled.
If the cause if dry skin is a skin condition, get professional advice and treatment from a dermatologist. If there is no other cause, when the underlying skin condition is treated, the normal functioning of the skin will be restored, and the problem of dandruff will be no more.
Smoking and consumption of caffeine may also cause body dehydration and drying of the skin. Ensure you reduce smoking and the consumption of any drinks and beverages which may cause drying of the skin.
If the cause is fungal infection:
If the cause of the dry skin is the fungal infection, you must treat that infection by use of anti-fungal medications which may include oral tablets and topical medications. The tropical medications are applied directly to the skin while the tablets are taken orally. In most cases, the treatment includes administration of both the oral and the topical medications.
Exposing the beard skin to the sun’s rays has shown to bring some improvement in getting rid of dandruff. Fungal infections take some time to get cleared from the body, and therefore you need to apply recommended moisturizing skin products on the skin as short term way of getting rid of dandruff.
Dealing with beard dandruff caused by underlying illness:
If underlying illness or other health condition is the cause of the dry skin, then you should treat that underlying illness first. Auto immune conditions such as lupus, and other conditions such as allergy, diabetes, and other chronic ailments may cause drying of the skin and development of beard dandruff.
Sometimes, the drugs used to treat these underlying conditions may themselves cause drying of the skin and other side effects. In that case, the doctor will recommend some oils to apply on the skin to prevent the drying and flaking of the skin.
Whatever the underlying condition that could be causing drying of the skin, and dandruff, getting more exercises, eating healthier foods and taking vitamins is good for the body and will help strengthen the normal functioning of the skin.
How to Get Rid Of Beard Dandruff or Treatments
After identifying the cause of dandruff, the next step is getting rid of them. The method or way of getting rid of the dandruff is always dependent on the cause. If you are not sure of the cause of dandruff, seek medical assistance to help identify it.
The physician or other medical personnel will diagnose the condition by physical observation, from your medical history or by performing various tests on the blood samples. When the cause is clearly identified, the best method of getting rid of dandruff can be suggested, and it may include one or combination of the following –
1. Exfoliating the beard
This is a natural way of getting rid of beard dandruff. Exfoliating is important as it helps get rid of the dead cells on the skin. It also improves the circulation of the blood in the skin and opens up the skin pores.
Remember that deposits of dead cells on the skin may clog the pores where beard grows, and that may lead to the development of dandruff. Use a soft brush to exfoliate the skin where the beard is growing, and also the skin in the entire face.
You should exfoliate the skin the first thing in the morning before you cleanse or step in the bathroom or shower. If this works for you, you need to invest in some good exfoliating beard brush. The brush will help detangle the knots in the beard, tame strays, distribute oil, and will help exfoliate the skin beneath the thick beard where the common hair brush bristles may not reach.
2. Use of lactic acid cleanser:
A cleanser containing lactic acid is good for getting rid of dandruff in the beard as it dissolves the dead skin cells. It also helps get rid of the bacteria that may develop on the skin where beard grows. It will also help exfoliate and soothe the skin, and cause relief of the itch and other symptoms which accompany most dandruff conditions.
If you can find any body lotion or face wash which has lactic acid as one of its ingredients, you can apply it on the beard, as it will dissolve the callused skin on the beard which may cause the development of dandruff.
As will be discussed below, you need to get professional advice and evaluation of a dermatologist or other medical professional before trying interventions such as this one.
3. Moisturize the beard and skin beneath
As earlier discussed, dry skin is leading case of dandruff. Moisture on the beard and the skin beneath will cause some relief. It will help rid of flaking and itching which may sometimes occur in the dry skin. Use special beard oil and apply it well to ensure it gets to the base of the skin.
There are many beard oil brands in the market but ensure you choose one that has natural oils and antioxidants. When the skin on which the beard grows is nourished and softened, the drying of the skin will stop and the development of dandruff will also slow down.
Some experts recommend the use of tea tree oil, which is believed to have antiseptic and anti-fungal properties which can help in healing the skin and in the prevention of infection and flakiness.
4. Application of beard dandruff shampoo
Get a good anti-dandruff shampoo then use it to wash the beard. It will help moisturize the beard and the skin beneath, and this will reduce the drying of the skin and flakiness.
Experts advise you should first wash the entire face of the beard area with some gentle washer then apply the anti-dandruff shampoo so as to get rid of the excess oils which may reduce the effect and the medicinal properties of the said shampoo.
5. Take healthier, balanced diet
Nutritional imbalance in the body can lead to the development of dandruff due to weak immune system. Ensure the diet you take is balanced, and in particular should have lots of vitamin E.
Some supplements which are alleged to contain these vitamins may have the adverse effect on your skin so check with a dermatologist for advice before adding any supplements to your diet. Ensure that you take lots of fruits and vegetables as these help boost the body immunity.
6. Stay well hydrated
As dry skin can cause the development of dandruff in the beard, it goes without saying that body hydration plays very important role in ensuring healthy development and growth of beard. Take a lot of water to ensure the body is supplied with the right amount of hydration at any given time. Avoid over exposure of the sun to direct heat of the sun.
Experts recommend that you take 8 glasses of water every day to remain properly hydrated. Avoid sugary foods and other drinks which may drain the body of the much-needed fluids.
7. Deep conditioning the skin
There are some special deep conditioning products which are intended to help prevent the irritation of the skin and development of beard dandruff. Although some experts are of the opinion that this is not always necessary, the truth is that use of deep conditioning products is one of the greatest ways of preventing beard dandruff for those who do not have it. The product leaves the beard feeling moisturized and soft.
8. Avoid sharing of combing products
If you have been sharing combing products with another person, stop it now! Sharing of hair and beard combing products may cause transmission of dandruff from one infected person to another non-infected person. Ensure the grooming products you use on the beard are personal and should not be shared with anyone else, not even your brother.
9. Disinfect combing and grooming products
Improper storage of the combing products can lead to their contamination with bacteria, fungi and other diseases or infection causing microorganisms. To ensure this does not happen, store them properly. Ensure you clean them properly with a mild disinfectant such as methylated spirit immediately after use.
10. Using specialized beard products
For those with special conditions such as sensitive skin or allergy, there are special oils, conditioners and shampoos which are specially formulated to help maintain a healthy beard, including the treatment and prevention of dandruff.You can also need to use good quality beard trimmers and shavers.
Although most of these products are a bit expensive, they will really help if you have some special precaution to be observed in getting rid of dandruff out of your beard.
What to do in extreme cases
In some cases, the foregoing interventions may not yield the desired results. In that case, you may have to shave the beard and then begin growing it all over again. For those who love the beard very much, this may be a bit challenging decision to make.
The importance of shaving is that the shave will get rid of the dead cells at the base of the skin. It will also help get rid of the dirt and bacteria that may have accumulated in the beard, leading to the drying of the skin and development of dandruff.
Although the above methods of getting rid of dandruff in the beard work well for most people, it is highly advised and recommended that you seek the professional advice of physician or dermatologist before you begin applying on the beard. This is particularly important if the cause of the dandruff is underlying health condition such as autoimmune condition or allergy. Application of some chemicals or beard dandruff products on the skin in allergic persons or to person with underlying auto immune conditions can worsen the condition.
If the cause of the dry skin and dandruff is an underlying condition, when that underlying condition is managed well or treated, then the dandruff problem will likewise resolve. If the skin in other parts of the body, or on the beard area only is irritated and bleeding, then you may need to go through specialized medication.
Generally, ensure you consult and tell all the symptoms to the physician or dermatologist, and get professional advice before trying any of the above methods of getting rid of beard dandruff.