Water Based Pomade

I thought the math was simple: More strength equals more control. Using a super strong hair styling product would help me achieve the exact hairstyle I wanted. 

When it comes to crafting classic haircuts of the past or more modern styles, a quality pomade is key. But what is pomade? And why choosing the right one often harder than picking out a cut to go with in the first place.

Pomade comes in two types: The modern approach; water-based, and the traditional approach; oil-based. While I won’t get into the full comparison, there’s a good reason why you might prefer one over the other.

When you think of grease and water, you probably already know the two don’t mix. Here’s where water-based has a slick advantage: It’s easier to wash out. Water-based pomade offers a wide variety of hold strengths and shines to choose from, and it will help cut back the chances of break-outs and acne. Further, it stays dry while keeping your hold exactly where you want it to be, all day long.

With that in mind, I’ve put together a collection of the top water-based pomades for men below. You’ll find details on how they shine, smell, wash out and hold.

Layrite Original – holds like wax and washes out like gel. If you need to restyle later, running wet fingers or a comb through your hair should do the trick. Layrite Original does have a high hold, but if you’re looking for more, try Layrite’s Superhold Pomade.

OneMan Water Based Goon Grease

Lockhart’s Water Based Goon Grease – Goon Grease is iconic to the pomade world, so when Lockhart’s released a water based version you knew it would be strong, slick and restyled if needed. Washes out of the hair in one go with just water, and your hair won’t feel dried out afterwards.

Lockhart's Sex Machine OneMan

Lockhart’s Paradox Pomade – all the benefits of a traditional pomade, with the benefits of a water based. Firm all day hold with a fresh fragrance, Lockhart’s pomade will stay flexible so you won’t get hat hair or crunch. The natural ingredients will give you hair all the nutrients needed to your hair strong and hydrated. Also available in a ‘Sex Machine’ scent; a formidable scent that is quite pungent, and stings the nostrils…in a good way.


- Max Dawson


*Article originally published in Verve Magazine September Issue https://www.vervemagazine.co.nz/what-is-pomade-oneman/

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