Over the past few years, it seems that Live Bearded has become one of the biggest of the big names in the beard care game. For whatever reason, I haven't tried any of their products, but they seem to have amassed a ton of popularity among beardsmen everywhere, so no better time than the present to see what they're all about, right? Live Bearded offers a straightforward selection of scents (including an all new offering that they have created in collaboration with Mossy Oak), nothing too exotic, just a conservative portfolio of masculine, mostly woodsy scents. I chose this particular blend just because I was looking for something that might make a nice, uncomplicated every day type of oil that I could keep in rotation for those days when I want something a little more straightforward. Will this oil be what gets me to join throngs of enthusiastic Live Bearded fans out there? Let's give it a try and find out...
The bottle says sandalwood vanilla...my expectations were a typical, clean, smooth, masculine sandalwood tempered by a bit of rich, goumand French vanilla. I wasn't expecting a ton of complexity, and I can honestly say that I didn't get much. The actual scent of this product leaves me a bit confused, It's pleasant, but it definitely isn't what I had in mind, there's a weird, sweet biscuit/nutty quality that combines with a prominent vanilla extract note to create something reminiscent of those dry, hard vanilla wafers that we all ate as kids. A lingering hint of soapiness seems to make its presence felt, really ramping up the overall sweetness of this product. Strength is medium-minus, which works well for a scent profile this straightforward. Staying power is on the lighter side, not particularly noticable within an hour or so of application.
How does it work?
Here's the deal, 99% of oils out there will have a good amount of overlap when it comes to their carrier blend, so it really seems like the biggest differences in product come down to quality of the raw ingredients used. This particular oil boasta a very short ingredients list, and seems to be made of top quality stuff. Boasting a weighty viscosity that really helps penetrate deep down into my beard, it really makes my face feel nourished and my beard feel super soft. While conditioning properties are great, this doesn't really seem to "seal in" the moisture as well as some other oils (I find that it requires a touch up once or twice throughout the course of the day). There is little to no residual greasiness which is a definite plus, and it does seem to leave a nice bit of shine that gives a great finished look to my beard.
The bottom line
As a company, Live Bearded seems to really give a shit about the bearded community, and as such I definitely plan on trying other offerings from them (their beard butter comes highly recommended), but as far as their oil is concerned, the question can be asked...is it good? Yes...Is it great? I'm going to have to say no. If you're looking for a very unfussy product that performs well, this is definitely worth considering. The drawbacks, however, are the lack of dimensionality as far as scent is concerned, and the price tag which puts this product in the same class as other oils that seem to offer a bit more in the way of performance. I actually like this stuff, and am glad that I've added it to my collection, but if I were the kind of guy who only buys one oil at a time, I think I might find this product to be a bit on the underwhelming side.
Ingredients: Argan, Jojoba, Grapeseed, Essential oils for fragrance.
$17.99 at livebearded.com