Family Health & Exercise My Boys

How to Use Beard Brush?

Beard hairs are more delicate and needed to be looked after more carefully, unlike the hair on our heads. The length and growth of the beard varies from person to person. the growth of beard depends on various factors like hormones, environment, products used, etc. the length and growth can be enhanced by following some tips like oiling your beard hair regularly, combing or brushing it with utmost care in proper direction, keeping it squeaky clean and many more.

How to Use Beard Brush?

Steps to follow while combing and brushing your facial hair

  • Step 1: Choose the right comb with the right alignment of teeth. The spacing between the teeth should be dependent on the thickness and density of your beard. The edges of the plastic comb are static due to which they are rough and delicate enough to get twisted in one or two glides. Choosing the best quality teeth can make or break the shape and texture of your beard.
  • Step 2: styling your beard should be done by beginning from lower to upper, in an upwardly position. The detangling issue would be solved if you start from the neck portion to the cheeks and then to the chin. Separating your hair strands is also important.
  • Step 3: the snags caused in your hair during the gap in combing, maybe overnight, might be stubborn but it is advised to not pull them with friction. Instead, slowly detangle them inch by inch cautiously. If they are too much crossed over each other then you can use nice beard oil to smoothen them.
  • Step 4: after all this, start combing your beard downwards to do the desired styling. You can now start the use of the brush. Brushes with soft bristles are known for superb styling and removing the frizz present in your hair.
  • Step 5: combing the mustache is the step often forgotten by men. It is too, important, as it is also counted in styling your facial hair. Comb and keep the hair of your mustache aside from your lips.
  • Step 6: do not go aggressively and put too much friction in your beard hair. Gently comb your mustache with a specialized comb for mustache.

Following the above-mentioned steps while combing your facial hair will not only detangle them but also helps in styling them.

How to Use Beard Brush?

Materials used in making beard brushes and combs

Brushes are basically made from hairs of animals such as horses or boar. Beard brush is known to be the one made from the bristles of boar’s hair as they are more appropriate in usage because they reduce frizz in a short time and spread the oil more efficiently than the brushes with horse bristles.

Combs are manufactured by the raw materials like wood (sandalwood and pear wood), metals, rubber, cellulose, silicone, plastics, etc. they are more durable and lasting than the brushes, I.e., they have a longer shelf life as compared to the brushes.

Beard combs are portable, I.e., easy to carry, but beard brushed take a lot of space to fit in. you can put your comb in the pocket of your pant but you cannot do this with your brush.

But it is one’s personal choice to choose a beard brush or a comb. Each one has its own pros and cons.

Pros of combing or brushing your hair

  1. Creates symmetry: beard combs or brushes help you attaining the desired style of your beard. They also make your face look perfectly aligned. They make the jawline look sharper.
  2. Hygienic: when you eat something, it generally struck into your facial hair. A comb with a narrow gap between teeth can help you resolve this problem. It will remove the food particles that are stuck into them. This creates a proper hygienic and clean environment and prevents health issues.
  3. Moisturizes: applying beard balm or beard oil every day before taking a shower is highly suggested for a great texture of your facial hair. They keep your beard hair strong and healthy too, by making the underneath skin moisturized. Specialized balms or creams are available for beards that are thicker as compared to the face or skin creams, as they need to penetrate the facial hair to reach into the epidermis.
  4. Gives a classy look: it gives a fine look when someone uses brushes to style your hair as per their requirements. If you really want to notice the changes, stop combing your beard for a few days and the detangling process will begin to start. Then you will know the value of beard oils and combs. Combing your beard twice a day is recommended to every man out there.

Things not to do with your beard

  • Do not use plastic combs.
  • Do not comb in the wrong direction.
  • Never use regular head combs.
  • Avoid putting extra friction.

What is the suitable time to use beard comb and brush?

Time matters in respect to combing your hair. Brushing or combing them right after you have taken a shower is said to be the best time to comb it. But first, let the facial hair air-dry for some minute. Combing in wet hair is not at all suggested as, at that time your hair is in their most delicate and weak condition, thus they might get breakage if done even gently. This will cause hair fall conditions to start appearing as well.

How to Use Beard Brush?

Tricks to comb style your beard

  1. Tap a dry towel over your beard on extremely wet hair, after a shower.
  2. Then let it air-dry for a few minutes.
  3. Put some beard oil and gently massage your beard and mustache.
  4. Run a nice wooden beard comb with wide spacing teeth.
  5. Style them by a brush with soft bristles.

How many times you should style or comb your facial hair?

Using a combing your hair for detangling your beard hair once a day is normal. While brushing them three to four times per day for styling is known to be okay. But when this activity exceeds this standard time, then it might weaken your beard hair and can cause hair damage. To prevent the condition of hair loss, you should carefully do this process.

Continue Reading
Animals Family Me, Myself and I My Boys Parenting RIP

Friend. Protector. Family.: RIP Mater

***This post began as a comment on Facebook in response to the notes I received after I posted the status update and pictures shown below. But in typical FB fashion, it was being a punk and in typical Emmie fashion, I was blabbering on and on. So I dusted off this blog and decided to just post this here. Thanks for coming back to visit.***

Friend. Protector. Family.: RIP Mater

Thank you all for your kind thoughts. All of us are taking this very hard. For those of you who asked what happened, all we really know is that Mater got sick and went downhill fast. The very long version is as follows:

Mater vomited once on Saturday morning. We withheld food, figuring it was a stomach bug. He threw up a small amount Saturday night and then was fine until Sunday night when he vomited water. We came home (we were in the Bay dropping off the boys for camp). By Monday night, he was perking up a bit…asking for food, following me around the house close to normal. I fed him a small amount of rice. He kept it down all night. I gave him a bit more the next morning (Tuesday) but when we came home from work we found he’d thrown it up in his crate.

By that point it was clear that Harley hadn’t contracted whatever he had (they always share little stomach bugs so that was unusual) so I was no longer inclined to think it was something that simple. I called our vet who was closing for the night. They sent us to the emergency vet. (Side story: Just before we left, I took Mater into the backyard. Our neighbor’s dog was out and they did their usual tussle at the fence. Normally I’d shush him but something told me to just let him have his fun while he could. Yesterday morning, I heard the neighbors’ dog outside waiting for Mater like normal. It broke my heart.)

I got him to the emergency vet. He was solemn but wagged his tail when the tech and the vet came in. At this point, everyone thought it was an obstruction…that he’d ingested something he shouldn’t have and that it was lodged in his digestive system somewhere. X-rays indicated that was unlikely. Blood work showed his liver values were through the roof. The ER vet said his levels looked like those of a dog who ingested something poisonous. We couldn’t think of anything he could have gotten into. I told her I needed to know if he wasn’t going to make it. That I had to go get my boys who were two and a half hours away.

We started him on antibiotics and fluids and the emergency vet kept him overnight to run some more tests. In the middle of the night, she called to say his liver wasn’t producing the proteins to clot his blood (which meant they couldn’t get a biopsy of his liver, the next step in diagnosing him along with an ultrasound). He could suffer from internal bleeding at any time. The nurse caring for him said he “looked worse” in the morning. The radiologist that reviewed the film confirmed that obstruction was highly unlikely and said his liver looked smaller than it should be. The vet informed me that it would be extremely difficult to figure out what was going on and likely significantly harder to fix it. She explained the procedure for euthanasia.

At first we asked to move him to his regular vet. But as we thought about it, we wondered whether we should just keep him there so as to avoid the anxiety and discomfort of a car ride. I called our vet to tell him our concerns but he pushed hard to evaluate him himself. “He’s my patient,” he said. “Let me try to save him.” I couldn’t blame him. (In case you question his motives, he offered us a break on the expenses and was significantly cheaper than the emergency vet even without the discounts. He’s a good guy.)

The car ride over was awful. Mater cried the whole time, like I’ve never heard him cry. He threw up as we pulled into the parking lot. I got help getting him inside and talked with the vet. He ran a couple more tests (it wasn’t parvo but he had bacteria in his stool) and asked for two days to try to treat him with antibiotics. Scoot went to get the boys so they could see him that day (Wednesday) just in case. He rushed down to the Bay, told them Mater was really sick and that we wanted to give them a chance to see him, and they headed back. While they were on their way back, I got a call that Mater had a seizure. He wasn’t responding to the antibiotics (now on hour 18). I asked the vet to keep him comfortable and told him that the boys would be back in about two hours.

I went to lay with him while we waited for the boys. When I arrived, his eyes were fixed. The vet had to sedate him and he said he thought Mater was blinded by the seizure. I put my face in his. His nose twitched. He knew I was there. I talked to him, told him
how sorry I was, that we all loved him, that the boys were on their way. I wondered whether I had time to bring Harley over, thinking maybe she could bring him comfort that I couldn’t. He adored her. But I knew there wasn’t much time and my priority was to make sure he wasn’t alone. I got all the arrangements handled. We moved him to an exam room where he was able to lay comfortably on a blanket.

The boys arrived. How they felt is their own story to tell. I, however, have never felt as terrible as a parent as I did when they walked in and said their goodbyes. Mater dragged himself into Bop’s lap as Bop sat in my arms on the edge of the exam table. It was such as juxtaposition to the early days when the puppy Mater and 2-year-old Bop wanted little to do with each other.

The boys went to the waiting room with Scoot while Mater left this world. I stayed with him, nose to nose. The end was peaceful and merciful.

Meanwhile, the boys chose the inscription for his urn: Mater Johnson. Friend. Protector. Family. September 29, 2008 – August 7, 2013.

He wasn’t even five years old.

Mater was supposed to be our way of helping the boys deal with Harley’s mortality. He was supposed to comfort them and snuggle them when she died of old age. He was supposed to be here to greet them when they walked home from school by themselves for the first time. He was supposed to hang out with them while they played video games. He was supposed to be the playful peacemaker after enduring the yelling of fights between adolescent boys and their parents. He was supposed to get in the way when we were trying to take pictures of the boys on their way to prom. He was supposed to cry at the door when DJ went off to college. He wasn’t supposed to be a distant memory by then.

Instead of enjoying all of the “supposed to”s, I’m left to mourn. To comfort my husband and my kids as we all struggle with this complete and sudden shock to our lives. To second guess every decision we’ve ever made about him and his care. To wonder what would have happened if he’d been seen sooner. To research the chicken-or-the-egg cycle that is liver failure in a fruitless search for an explanation. To question my natural inclination to plan out everything in my life. To get smacked in the face by the reality that there is so much beyond my control. To try to envision my kids’ future without him in it. To answer my boys’ questions – some of which are unanswerable. To know when to let tears flow and when to dry them. To forgive myself for my role, however big or small, in his demise. And, ultimately, to have faith that none of us will feel this way forever.

I’ll miss you, my little snuggle bug.

Friend. Protector. Family.: RIP Mater

Friend. Protector. Family.: RIP Mater

Continue Reading
Me, Myself and I My Boys Parenting Sports

I’m Either Raising a Master Manipulator Or I Suck As A Mother

While we were on our vacation in Michigan, D (our 5 year old), asked Scoot, “Daddy, will you stop being on the computer?” He then repeated the question to me. The next day, the two of us had a conversation about it and decided that while we’re not on the computer all that much, if our kid is mentioning it to us then perhaps we should cut back. Problem solved.

Until last night.

While driving home from registering D from his first soccer league, I mentioned to him that I have a soccer game at 9 pm tonight. His response: “Mommy, I don’t want you to play soccer any more.”

What? Why? I play one game once a week and it’s one of two outside-the-house activities I do (the other being the neighborhood association board which meets once a month for two hours).

“Because I want you to have fun time with me.”

OK, kid, so why don’t you break my heart while you’re at it? Am I really that bad of a mother?

I’ve always been proud of myself for not participating in a lot of non-kid activities. Though Scoot and I both work fulltime, we spend as much time as possible with our children outside of work hours. We put them in daycare near our work so that we could spend extra time on our long commute together. I can count on one hand the number of times they’ve been watched by someone other than one of us…IN 5 YEARS!

So now I’m vacillating between thinking I’m a horrible mother and thinking I’ve raised a total manipulator. Does he know that when he says stuff like that he’ll get his way? Even if “spending fun time with me” means he’s playing in his playroom while I’m doing the dishes or changing his brother’s diaper?

Don’t think I’m being too harsh on the kid…he really does know how to work it. A couple weeks ago he wanted to get “biscuit” (Lucille’s BBQ) for dinner and Scoot was ready to make a meal at home. D turned to his daddy, and said something along the lines of, “Daddy, can we please have biscuit? I’ll be so happy” and then gave him a kiss. Game. Over.

But even so, if a kid says they want more time, even if they get as much of it as you think you can give, shouldn’t you listen? Is spending a few hours a month on your own activities selfish? I’m so confused. Halp!

Continue Reading