Bitcoin is a crypto currency that breaks down borders and helps keep existing montetary policies fair & honest. It's been built as a decentralized tool which is controlled by no single party. It's that decentralization which makes it so powerful as it's impossible to take down by malevolent governments.
At Beardbrand, we've been accepting bitcoin (btc) since December of 2013. Our core values at Beardbrand of freedom, hunger, and trust align strongly with bitcoin and other crypto currencies.
If you've been following the currency, you are probably aware that it's shot up from about $1000 per coin to over $2700 before settling around $2200. This is crazy volatility and shows both the potential for the currency and the risks. While many people look at bitcoin as an investment, I instead encourage people to consider it as it's function - a currency.
When you hold bitcoin as a currency you'll behave differently than if you hold it as an investment. For instance - think of your primary currency (let's use US Dollars for example). You aren't logging into all the exchanges to see how the dollar is performing against the Euro or the Yen. Instead you are concerned with how you can earn more dollars and how you can save them up or spend them wisely.
If you intend to hold bitcoin the same way, your priorities are about how to save more bitcoin and how to use them when appropriate. Whereas, if you look at bitcoin as an investment you'll not see the value it can bring as a currency. You may also be swooped into the emotions drawn from the volatility of the currency.
Beginner's Guide to Bitcoin
So, to get started with bitcoin you'll need to create the equivalent of a bank account. In the bitcoin world they use the term "wallet" to effectively mean the same as an account. You can have a wallet for savings, a wallet for spending, and a wallet for different sources of income.
There are a lot of providers for wallets out there, and you can check out Bitcoin.org for a few of those options. My recommendation is Blockchain.info for an online wallet, but you should consider having a hard wallet if you are carrying larger amounts of bitcoin.
A wallet is something that is controlled by you and no one else, so as long as you keep your passwords secret, no one can freeze or control your money. Also, for any type of online wallet you'll want to setup two factor authentication plus backup phrases if you lose your device.
Once you have your wallet setup, you'll need to get bitcoin. There's a couple of ways to do that. The simplist is to go to Coinbase and purchase them. Coinbase is like the NYSE of bitcoin, and it's important to not treat it like a wallet. However, another way to get bitcoin is simply by providing products or services in exchange for them - just like how you'd exchange products/services for dollars (ie a normal business).
This is a 35,000 foot view of bitcoin, and I'm skimming over a lot of details to keep the concepts easier to understand. If you want more thorough introduction to bitcoin, I'd recommend you check out the subreddit /r/bitcoin and this FAQ post: https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/61s75o/rbitcoin_faq_newcomers_please_read/
Spending your Bitcoin on Beard Oil
Now that you've gained your bitcoin, let's go ahead and start buying some beard care and beard oil with them. As stated before, we have been accepting BTC since 2013 and worked with many customers who prefer this method.
Step 1) Simply add products to your cart as you normally would. When you are in your cart, you'll want to click on the blue "CHECKOUT" button.
Step 2) In the check out, fill out your relevant information.
Step 3) Select your prefered shipping method.
Step 4) Then in the payment method, select Bitcoin.
Step 5) You'll be redirected to BitPay to complete the transaction and have 15 minutes. You can either use your mobile phone & bitcoin app to scan the code and transfer the funds, or you can copy the bitcoin address and send the funds to the address you copied.
Once completed, your order will proceed as normal and you'll be rubbing beard oil into your beard in no time.
Bitcoin isn't for everyone, and there is a bit of a steep learning curve to it. Mixing two things, bitcoin and beard oil, can be a lot of fun. If you are more conservative in nature, I'd probably recommend you stay on the sidelines for a few more years. There will continue to be advancement in the space and it's a technology that rewards early adopters for making those risks.
Taking care of your financial security is a vital skill to learn, and being aware of various currencies and investment strategies is an important part of that journey. Take a moment to invest in yourself, your knowledge, and your financial health. As always, thanks for reading and keep on growing!