Here are 7 steps that you can use to tame that beast and improve your morning beard routine:
The first thing you need to do is reset that mess. This is easily done in your morning shower, using a conditioning beard wash to cleanse your beard from the grit and grime of the previous day and to give all of those overnight rogue hairs a chance to start fresh. For the sake of the skin beneath your beard, you're going to want to use something specifically designed to do the job. The issue with regular shampoo or soap is that they're designed to do one thing and that's either clean hair, or clean skin, and both of them are really good at taking away excess oils from each. Unfortunately, the skin under your beard isn't like the skin on top of your head, and needs to hold on to more of those oils. Your beard should now be clean, conditioned, and ready to start the day.
Take a clean towel and dry your beard, being careful not to damage your hair or skin through aggressive toweling. You will want to stop when your beard is damp, but no longer wet, about 80-90% dry. You are now ready to start the grooming process.
Using a quality comb, detangle and begin to straighten out your beard. You are going to want to use a few different combing paths during this step, to ensure that all of the beard hairs have been sufficiently detangled, including up from the neckline to chin and down from the cheek line to the bottom of the jaw. Once your comb can easily pass through every area of your beard, it's time to recondition.
Choose your favourite beard oil and, depending on the length of your beard, warm up between 3-10 drops in the palms of your hand and evenly massage it through your beard from the face to the tips of the hair. Make sure you do not forget to massage the oil into your skin, as the oils of your skin actually are lost throughout the day as the beard absorbs them, so make sure you give it a good head start. After you have sufficiently oiled your beard, you should now either comb or brush your beard to ensure proper distribution throughout. Allow this oil between 5 and 10 minutes to absorb into your beard before moving on to the next step. If your beard feels overly dry at this point, you have not used enough oil. If your beard feels oily or greasy, you may have used too much. Trial and error will help you perfect this step.
After you have allowed your oil to do its job and properly condition your beard, it's time to finish drying your beard and take the first step towards your creating your final beard style. Using a blow dryer, ensuring you're on the high heat and low blow settings, position your blow dryer about 8-10 inches away from your face. Using a comb or rounded brush, blow dry your beard in the direction of your ideal final style, ensuring you do not miss any regions. You will want to blow dry from the neckline to the chin first, and follow this up by blow drying from your cheek lines to the bottom of your jaw, ensuring you are blowing in the direction that you are combing. If you have any natural curls in your beard and would like to remove them, this is the time to do so, with the rounded brush, coaxing the hairs to lay as you wish. Once you are satisfied with the way your beard is resting, it is time to use the cool setting of your blow dryer to "set" your style. The heat of the blow dryer allows your hair to become more pliable and suggestible. The cool setting is what locks in the hair and helps create the base of your style.
Using a quality brush, ideally one with natural boar bristles, brush the beard one last time, in sections, from root to tip. This will help, one last time, to recondition the beard with the oils and natural sebum, and ensure a healthy, conditioned beard. The brush is also used to remove any stray hairs or frizz that the blow dryer may have caused. As you brush, the bristles will also stimulate the skin on your face, encouraging blood flow and healthier skin. You're almost done. It's now time to finalize your look.
Now grab your favourite beard styling product, either a balm or a butter. These products will not only keep your beard looking healthy, shiny and strong, it will also give you that little extra style control when you need your beard to look just right. Scrape out a dime sized amount of product and warm up between your palms until smooth. Just as you did with the oil, massage this into your beard, from face to tips, but ensure that you follow the newly locked in flow of your beard, and try not to massage too aggressively against the grain. Feel free to use your brush again to ensure proper distribution to the entire surface of the beard. As this is more of a styling product than a conditioning product, it is not completely necessary to fully saturate your beard, and a surface level distribution may be the most effective method here. If you prefer a styled moustache, this is where you will want to do so, potentially using extra product in this area using a twisting and pinching technique.
Congratulations! You have successfully tamed the beast that is your morning beard and you should now have the freshest looking, feeling and smelling beard on the block.
The visualized version: