Got a bathroom collection of half used hair products??
So do you know what to use to style your hair or are you about to give up and shave your head ready to pursue the simple hair life of a buddist monk? Do you have a bathroom full of half used, semi discarded tins and jars that look more like a recycling drive at your local scout hall.
Its seems that over the last 2-3 years men’s styling products have been popping up everywhere, in all forms and with flashier packaging and imagery that promise to make you the coolest dude around.
Now…as much as there is no product out in the marketplace that guarantees to get you laid.. heavy, greasy and oily products are proven to be a passion killer. Nobody likes to wake up next to a pillow case that looks like a penguin cleaning rag from the Exon Valdez spill of 1989.
Perhaps its time we look at some of the latest products, trends, hair types and how to wrangle a style that has you looking more like Mark Bouris rather than Donald Trump.
So first things first.
The 4 things that make up the perfect product choice.
- Your hair type is going to play the most important part of the process. Wanting to look like David Beckham when you’re rolling with a natural fro like Snoop Dogg, ain’t gonna happen.
Your hairdresser or barber may be a magician but there’s only so much we can do!
If you’re truly wanting something achievable, find out what suits your hair type by asking your barber…that’s their job. They should determine whether you’re sporting fine, medium or coarse hair. Each of these categories requires different products and it’s important to understand the difference. Throwing a pomade or heavy wax into fine hair is going leave you looking like that greasy-headed kid at school that looked like he never washed. In the same sense, if you’re using a light styling powder in thick coarse hair you might as well start reciting Bob Marley songs because your hair will matt and look dry and dreadlocked.
- As in No.1, your hair length will determine what is achievable over which product will look good in your bathroom. Wrong product in the wrong length of hair equals hair nightmare!
- Your lifestyle is also going to come into affect here guys too. A ‘quick and out the door’ guy hasn’t got the time for a high maintenance checklist of blowdrying products and finishing sprays. And a guy wanting a slick pompadour won’t achieve that with a comb and a prayer.
- Then there’s always your personal preference too. Do you want a shiny product, a sticky product, a strong hold, something to slick or want to simply rock an a-la-naturale look.
The who, what, where and why of products is confusing to everyone so don’t beat yourself up if you’re confused on the differences between them all. Even some of us professionals still struggle…
So here is the layman’s rundown.
A Paste is usually a matt product designed for shorted textured hair. No shine and usually easy to wash out.
A Pomade traditionally is a heavy petroleum-based softer product (like Vaseline) that is for slicking and giving a high shine dressed finish. Nowadays there has been a massive movement into ‘water soluble pomades’ which give the same dressed affect but wash out easily.
A Wax is also a traditional product but of thicker consistency and very rarely washed out easily. Great for giving a separated look in short hair that lasts the day out.
A Gel…hmmm a classic tried and true player in the world of hair. These tend to be an alcohol based water soluble clear goo that are cheap and found in a variety of colours. Great for controlling longer or difficult hair however the crunch helmet-like finish ain’t necessarily a winner with the ladies.
A Styling Powder is a reasonably new addition to the world of hair. Specifically designed to give fine hair additional oomph. Sprinkle and scruff and its done!
And last but not least, Clay. Also a newer player in the realm of men’s hair products. This a dryer harder wearing more matt product than a paste and tends to be a bit harder to remove. Great for giving a grittier feeling to clean hair and replicating two days of dirtiness immediately.
So have we helped?
In summary, pick a style that suits your hair. Use a product that matches your hair type and length and make sure it suits your lifestyle. Tick these boxes and you”ll be a grinner