As we get closer to fall, we get closer to the cooler weather and beard season. Now, we have talked about how to care for a beard before, and spoken on keeping your skin healthy, but what about both? You know how important general maintenance is in keeping your beard looking and feeling its best. However, it’s just as important to practice good skin care, as it can prevent some common (yet avoidable) issues, such as rashes, itchiness, ingrown hairs, as well as skin irritation. Another issue than can arise from inadequate skin care is an infection called folliculitis, which usually occurs in areas on the skin where the hair follicles have been damaged by shaving. Good grooming practices, such as the ones listed below, will keep all of these issues at bay while keeping both your beard and skin happy and healthy:

In the beginning stages of growing out a beard (or even just stubble), applying conditioner is absolutely key to keeping your skin free of dry patches, itchiness and redness. The hair on your face is not the same as the one on your head, so it’s a good idea to get a separate conditioner meant just for beards with nourishing oils. Use it in the shower, make sure to rinse well, and avoid this common beginner mistake. Your beard and skin will love you. With cooler temps comes dryer skin, and then you’ll be experiencing the terrifying “beard itch.” For those of you that have experienced it, you know how awful it can be.

This is a must if you want to keep the skin under your beard free of dry skin that can turn into flakes or dandruff – a look no-one wants. Exfoliating your beard means rigorously massaging it and the skin beneath with a facial cleanser to remove dead skin cells and allow your skin to breathe in fresh air. Instead of mistakenly focusing on anti-dandruff shampoos and conditioners that just deal with the symptom, exfoliate in order to focus on the root cause itself. You will be flake free in no time.

You read that right. Facials are for everyone – men or women. Men with beards frequently adopt this technique in order to keep their beards and skin, moisturized, hydrated and free of preventable issues. You can opt to get them done (at home or professionally) once a month or more, depending on your needs. Regardless of the method and frequency you choose, your skin and beard will stay nourished and happy.

So while beards will continue to rise in popularity, a well-groomed beard that takes your skin into account is what you should really be striving for. Your beard will remain healthy and full, and you can reduce common skin issues such as inflammation, itchiness, dry flakes, or even infections. Incorporate the 2-in-1 tips mentioned above and soon your beard will be the envy of the town!