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When to Use Mustache Wax

People often grow out their mustaches in the hopes of being able to attain a particular look or style. Most of the time, achieving this look involves using some mustache wax. But trying to decide when your ‘stache is long enough to use wax can be a difficult decision! 

Here are a few tips on when to begin working mustache wax into your grooming routine.

Start Using Mustache Wax As Soon As You Want Styling Control

There is no exact time when you should start using mustache wax. However, some people begin applying mustache wax when the mustache hair is approximately .25″ in length (about one month of growth). 

In contrast, others may start styling later into their mustache growing journey. 

Aside from the styling benefits, mustache wax helps tame wiry whiskers, so they don’t get in the way of your nose or mouth. 

The takeaway: It’s best to use mustache wax as soon as you want to start controlling or styling your mustache.

Different Holding Strengths

When purchasing a mustache wax, be aware that different products will have different holding strengths. Some will have a firm hold to ‘lock in’ the style. Others might provide the hair follicles with some flexibility and are less suitable for more specific styles. 

If you’re not looking for too much hold, you might want to look into beard balms. Beard balms are similar to mustache wax but are generally more conditioner than a styling agent. 

What’s In Mustache Wax

Mustache waxes usually contain plenty of natural ingredients that help to nourish the facial hair while providing you the necessary hold. Waxes often contain beeswax, carrier oil to help with conditioning, and essential oils for fragrance.

Many of the natural ingredients within mustache wax contain vitamins, antioxidants, essential oils, hydrocolloids, proteins, terpenoids, and bioactive compounds (source). These all have nourishing effects on both skin and hair. 

When You Begin Using Mustache Wax, Don’t Overdo It

You mustn’t apply too much when you start to use mustache wax. Applying too much mustache wax may lead to your mustache feeling crunchy. It is best to start with just a pea-sized amount. 

Don’t Forget to Wash

Although mustache waxes are generally all-natural, it is still recommended to wash out the wax at the end of the day. We wrote a helpful guide on how to remove mustache wax for further reading.

Leaving it in may lead to a buildup of oil on the skin or flaking of the wax. Instead, you can wash mustache wax out with a face wash or beard wash. 

Always Apply it to Clean and Dry Facial Hair

Mustache wax is best applied in the morning after cleaning and drying your facial hair. Most waxes will provide hold for 8 to 10 hours, so applying first thing after a shower will provide you with support throughout the day. 

Applying wax to a dirty mustache may lead to debris such as crumbs and dandruff being stuck into your mustache for the rest of the day. To help avoid this, cleaning, drying, and combing your facial hair before styling is recommended. 

Common Questions

Will wax make my mustache look thicker?

Mustache wax isn’t designed to make your mustache look thicker, but it may give the appearance of volume when used to style. 

Are beard balm and mustache wax the same thing?

Beard balms are similar to mustache wax, but they’re not the same. Beard balms are conditioners, whereas mustache wax is a styling agent. 

If you’re wondering which product is best for you and your needs, we’ve explained the differences between the two

Will mustache wax fill in the patchy gap?

If you’ve found a patchy gap in your mustache or beard, you might be tempted to use mustache wax to fill it in. Of course, the wax won’t be able to fill in your patchy section, but it may help hide it or make it less noticeable

Are there substitutes for mustache wax?

If you’re not a fan of mustache wax, there are alternatives. We’ve listed eight great substitutes for mustache wax here

What styles can mustache wax help me to achieve? 

Depending on the type of mustache wax you use and how strong its hold is, mustache wax can help you form pretty much any style you like. Some of the most popular styles achieved with mustache wax include: 

  • Handlebar: the ends are curled up and around, shaped to a point using wax.
  • Petite Handlebar: similar to its larger counterpart, the ends of the stache are curled up but much less dramatically.
  • English: the ends of the mustache are pulled straight and shaped to a point using wax.
  • Hungarian: similar to the handlebar but much thicker and larger.
  • Dali: named after artist Salvador Dali who wore this quirky style of mustache, the mustache is trimmed to be a thin pencil stache, and the ends of the mustache are styled upwards. 
  • Imperial: somewhere between a Dali and a Handlebar, an imperial style mustache curls straight up but not into a point – wax is used to hold the curls up. 

Check out our detailed guide on applying mustache wax for the best results.

Have Fun With Mustache Wax

Mustache wax can be a life-saver in making your facial hair appear well-groomed and tidy, but it can also be fun to apply. You can craft your mustache into anything from a Salvador Dali tribute, a full handlebar, or anything in between! You might choose to use it to experiment with new styles every day, or maybe to train your hair – regardless of your use, have fun applying mustache wax! 

Adam Williams

As the lead editor of Tools of Men, Adam loves men's grooming products. Particularly of interest is managing facial hair and perfecting the art of the modern man's skincare routine. His work has been featured or quoted in several publications, including New York Magazine, Vice, Sharpologist, MIC, Elite Daily, and more. When Adam isn't working, he enjoys spending time with his two little kids who keep him both on his toes and young at heart.

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