(Full disclosure: I am a "Brand Viking" (affiliate) of the The Beard Struggle. The hyper links off the pictures will get you my 15% discount on any of their products and I will get a small commission, though it does not add to your price. I have been honest and fair in my review and will possibly loose my affiliate status because I have been honest about my opinion on it.)
The Beard Struggle... Viking Sea Mineral Beard Mask
I purchased this product on a whim after becoming a Brand ambassador or affiliate with the company. I was looking for something I wasn’t familiar with, something different that was unique to them. When I found this I was perplexed by the idea of a mud mask for my beard. I was also confused by the description as it seems to defy common logic which is one of my strong attributes. The website description is as follows
Are you looking for that one product that has it all?
Time to level up your beard my brother... with the one of a kind Viking Sea Mineral Mask
The sun, wind, pollution, stress, dryness, seawater all damage your beard's quality and appearance, which leads to your beard hair becoming split, thin and fragile.
Viking Sea Mineral Beard Mask contains mineral-rich dead sea mud which rejuvenates your beard. It also contains proteins, vitamin E and provitamin B5 which repair damaged hair.
It has a unique combination of biotin, castor oil, almond oil, rice-bran oil, and argan oil. which combined penetrate your skin under your beard to rejuvenate hair, leaving your beard looking soft, healthy and smelling great.
HOW TO USE: Evenly apply a medium layer to beard and let dry for 10-15 mins before rinsing. Finish by applying either our day or night beard oil.
For Best Results Use 1-2 time a week.
Ingredients: Dead Sea Mineral Mud, Water, Aloe Vera Gel, Jamaican Castor Oil, Biotin, Emulsifying Wax, Shea Butter, Macadamia oil, Rice Bran oil, Sunflower Oil, Almond Oil, Avocado oil, Argan Oil, Vitamin E, Papaya Extract and Natural Preservatives.
So right off the bat I was skeptical because this sounds like snake oil to me, but I am naturally a skeptic. Right away it says that dryness and seawater are bad for your beard, which totally explains why all the Vikings in the movies and TV shows have crap beards, right? Hollywood aside, that makes reasonable sense so I kept reading. Apply, wash and rinse then add oil. Straight forward, but if it is great for my beard then why do I need to apply something after? Then I read the ingredients and ran into a conflict for me, Dead Sea mineral mud. My father was a minister until he retired, so I remember the Dead Sea from bible class. The Dead Sea is the saltiest body of water on earth, the water is so dense because of the salt content that anyone can float. It has little to NO life in it because of the salt content.
They just told me how bad salt is for my beard? However I am also familiar with the extreme health benefits of Dead Sea Mud, I actually live close to a body of water that is famed for its beneficial mineral content in the US as well. SO while skeptical I bought some.
First let me say that the jar it comes in looks just like the pictures and is a nice quality container which I am guessing is part of the price point.(29.99 on sale, Ouch)
If you have never smelled truly swampy deep sludge mud, this is it. It is gritty and smells like you rolled face first in the salt flats. It takes a lot of work to work it through and “coat” your beard with this product. I also noticed that I lost some beard hair every time I have tried to put this in. I have worked it with my hands then combed it through with my Kent comb. As a seasoned Obstacle Course Racer with lots of time in the mud I can say that this is what my beard looks like after crawling out of an OCR. It smells lousy while in, while looking a bit like Tom Hanks in Robinson Caruso. I washed it out with my normal beard wash and put in my beard oil.
I can say my beard appeared “lighter”(fluffier?)and maybe even a little softer. Make sure and use a good beard wash or the smell can linger if you were to only rinse it out. I would not recommend it very often, I think the site encourages once a week. I would say only use it as a “scrub” when you really need to strip the junk out of your beard, maybe post OCR or after doing a lot of physical work like under a car or something. Interesting concept, not sure it is worth the price if you already have a good beard wash. Your choice, but I doubt I will purchase it again. I do want to try some of their other products, but this one was under whelming.
Be better tomorrow because of what you do today!