From its rock and roll image in the ‘50s, pomade shed its vintage skin to cater to the modern man. Many brands have formulated pomades with different hold and shine levels to suit a variety of hairstyles. Pomades are no longer just for the classic pompadour. With the best pomade for long hair, you can reinvent quiffs, comb-overs, and slick backs with a modern touch.
For this post, I scouted for the five best pomades that suit long hair. I also discussed a quick guide to help you choose the right one.
What is pomade?
Pomade is the quintessential hair product for men. You can ask your grandpa, your dad, or even your uncle, and they would all know what pomade is. Pomades saw its heydays in the 1930s to 1950s, when it’s known for slick and greasy hairstyles.
Unknown to many, pomade has been in use earlier than the rock and roll era. It was first introduced in the 18th century as a hair product for the European aristocrats. The first pomade is made of bear fat (imagine the smell!).
Nowadays, pomades are formulated with less greasiness so that it can be used on casual days. It has a waxy and creamy texture that can either be water or petroleum-based. Instead of bear fat, modern pomades are made of beeswax, lanolin wax, and other alternatives.
Pomades are used to shape the hair, especially thick and long ones. It doesn’t dry out or make a cakey texture. With this, your hairstyle remains touchable and natural-looking. It also comes in a wide variety of shine and hold.
How to choose pomade
To find the best pomade for long hair, you must consider the following aspects:
Choose the type
Pomades can either be water or petroleum-based. Both works for different hairstyles, but each one also comes with some downsides:
- Water-based. A water-based pomade can be restyled by spraying water into the hair. Also, it’s easier to rinse even without shampoo. This is the “new age” pomade where the likelihood of acne breakouts are reduced because it has minimal oils that may block the pores. However, water-based pomades tend to be more expensive, and its hold doesn’t last as long as oil-based counterparts.
- Oil-based. Oil-based pomades have lesser chemicals and can hold the hairstyle for long. It also offers a classic greasy look. The downside to oil-based pomades is you can’t restyle it nor wash it with water alone. You have to shampoo your hair vigorously to remove this product. It has a hydrophobic characteristic, which is meant to hold the style for up to two days.
Check the ingredients
Once you’ve decided on the type of pomade you want to use, the next step is to check the ingredients. I recommend looking for pomades with a natural base like beeswax or lard. You can also try lanolin wax as long as you don’t have any sensitivities.
Modern pomades are infused with loads of moisturizing ingredients to balance the potential side effects of styling.
In general, you’d want to avoid pomades packed with parabens, sulfates, phthalates, and other highly abrasive chemicals.
A thing about hold
One thing that makes pomade versatile is its hold. Hold refers to the stiffness of the product once it’s on your hair. Depending on the hairstyle you want to nail, the pomade you’ll get will vary. If you have thick and medium-length hair, you can opt for a high or super strong hold. Meanwhile, those with longer hair who wants a messy hairstyle may find medium to low hold better. Again, it’s all about the style you want to achieve.
Decide on the shine
Lastly, check the shine of the pomade. Shine is the level of greasy appearance of the product on your hair. High shine gives the classic, buttoned-up look. But for casual use, I recommend either a low or medium shine, so your hair doesn’t stand out too much.
Best Pomade For Long Hair – Top 5 Picks
OUR TOP PICK: Suavecito Matte Pomade
If you’re looking for the best pomade for long hair, you’ll never go wrong with the classic Suavecito. This one has a matte finish and a medium-strength hold, perfect for both short and long hair.
Aside from that, this is water-based so you can restyle your hair anytime. It doesn’t leave any white residue either, unlike other cakey formulas in the market. Basically, this pomade grips like wax, but without the sticky or greasy feeling.
- SHINE FREE MATTE POMADE. Suavecito Matte Pomade is exactly what you've been waiting...
- WATER SOLUBLE WITH NO WHITE RESIDUE. This lightly scented pomade combs in easily. It...
- MEDIUM STRENGTH HOLD. Suavecito Matte Pomade dries with limited hardness and no...
- STYLE WITH EASE. This matte pomade has a creamy consistency for effortless styling....
- COMMUNITY TRUSTED. Inspired by men and women who love motorcycles, custom cars, and...
Another thing that I like about Suavecito is its light scent that gives the hair a fresh whiff without being too overpowering. I actually discovered this on my barber’s shop when I dropped by for a haircut. Ever since, I keep buying for my personal styling.
You can use the Suavecito Pomade for faux hawks, slick backs, parts, and messy looks. It’s a versatile formula for a range of hairstyles. The best part is that your hairstyle will look natural and touchable. Once you’ve tried this pomade, you’ll never go back to gel anymore.
Tip: if this pomade starts losing its hold on your hair, spritz it with water, reshape, and it feels good as new.
- Water-based, restylable
- A light, refreshing scent
- Natural and touchable look
- It has a learning curve as compared to the original Suavecito pomade
ZEUS Water-Based Pomade
For those who want to stock up with pomade, ZEUS might be a good option. Like Suavecito, this is water-based and can be restyled anytime you want. My favorite part, though, is it has a grip like an oil-based pomade but with a natural shine.
If you have thin hair that needs texture and hold, the ZEUS pomade will not disappoint. It’s made specifically for thin to medium hair in varying lengths.
Another great thing about the ZEUS pomade is its natural ingredients. This is made of jojoba wax, keratin protein, castor oil, and Aloe vera leaf extracts. It’s also free from parabens, sulfates, and cruelty. ZEUS pomade doesn’t have alcohols either that may dry your scalp
- MADE IN CALIFORNIA: USA born and bred, using only the best natural ingredients!
- 3 PACK! : Get 3 of your favorite Zeus Firm Hold Pomades at a great price!
- FIRM-HOLD : Strong enough to style any hairdo and hold all day long!
- WATER BASED : Hold like an oil-based pomade, but washes out painlessly!
- PARABEN-FREE : Natural ingredients include Keratin Protein, Jojoba Wax, and Castor...
Moreover, the ZEUS pomade gives an all-day hold for almost all hairstyles. It also has a lightweight and smooth texture that’s easy to apply on the hair. This is easy to wash, too, and it doesn’t leave any annoying residue.
The bonus part is that the ZEUS pomade smells like coconut. It’s a nice scent, especially if you’re using it for casual purposes. Based on my experience, this pomade smells like salsa dancing and bumming by the beach.
- Natural ingredients
- Natural shine, firm hold
- I suggest blow-drying your hair after styling because the pomade remains weak when the hair is still wet
Challenger Matte Pomade Combo
For those who are on a budget, I recommend the Challenger Matte Pomade Combo. This one consist of two jars of medium to firm hold pomade. It also has a matte to no shine for a natural and touchable look.
The Challenger pomade boasts an all-day hold without the flaky or clumpy texture. It also smells fantastic, thanks to its subtle scent that’s not overpowering.
As for the pomade itself, it has a gelatinous and bouncy consistency. This is much fluid than clays, which makes it easy to apply on the hair.
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Another thing that I like about this pomade is its easy-to-rinse formula. It’s water-based, so you can restyle it when you want or rinse it out with water. You don’t even need to use shampoo just to remove this product from your hair.
The jar of this pomade has a carry-on size, which is perfect if you’re traveling. Each jar is only 3 ounces, which adheres to TSA standards for styling products that you can bring on the plane.
I also like that Challenger markets their pomade as a unisex product. As long as you have hair, long or short, this product will suit you well.
- TSA-approved jar size
- Natural matte finish
- All-day hold
- A little sticky, but not really a problem
Baxter of California Clay Pomade
Baxter of California is the first pomade I ever used. And I’m proud to say that this really hooked me to hair products for men.
Baxter’s clay pomade has a firm hold and matte finish. Although it holds the style really well, it remains pliable and touchable for restyling later in the day.
Based on my experience, this pomade is more waxy than clay-like. Such texture makes it easy to apply, but make sure that you blow-dry your hair if you want the hold to last until nighttime.
- Baxter of California clay pomade, infused with natural ingredients. Formulated for a...
Aside from its wax base, Baxter’s Clay Pomade is infused with beeswax and bentonite clay. Bentonite clay draws out impurities from the hair and scalp, which prevents this product from clogging your follicles.
Overall, this pomade is a perfect choice if you want to sport a modern pompadour. You can also try Baxter’s paste pomade, cream pomade, soft water pomade, and hard water pomade for a variety of finishes and hold.
For guys with thin and long hair, this is a highly recommended product. It adds a little texture and volume on the hair, not to mention that a small amount goes a long way.
- Natural matte finish
- Pliable and touchable texture
- Ideal for thin hair
- Avoid over-applying this pomade, or you’ll have a cakey hair
18.21 Man Made Hair Pomade
If you want a pomade with the classic high-shine finish, I recommend the 18.21 Man Made Pomade. It has a medium hold and a shiny finish without leaving your hair greasy. It’s perfect for slick backs, quiffs, wavy hair, and tousled look. You can also use this pomade to sport the classic pompadour but in a touchable way.
The 18.21 pomade is perfect for shaping the hair. It has elastic fibers that will tame unruly strands and hold the hairstyle all day long. It also has a sexy tobacco aroma with hints of wood, musk, vanilla, and saffron.
- SHAPE AND REFINE HAIR: This is a water-soluble blend of wax and elastic fibers that...
- ALL-DAY, FLEXIBLE HOLD: With a superior formula, this men’s pomade offers a...
- IDEAL FOR SMOOTH, SLEEK STYLES: Our high-quality pomade works best for short and...
- EASY TO USE: The pomade gel easily scoops out of the jar to allow you to comb through...
- A MANLY, SEXY AROMA: Featuring our signature sweet tobacco scent, our male styling...
Unlike other pomades that you apply with your hand, 18.21 must be applied using a comb. This will guarantee that the product is properly spread and that there are no clumps left.
Despite its oil-based look, the 18.21 Man Made pomade is water-soluble. If you want to remove the product from your hair, simply rinse it with warm water.
Personally, I reserve this pomade for special occasions. But if you want to make a bold statement with your hair, nothing is better than this high-shine formula.
- Sweet tobacco aroma
- Perfect for buttoned-up looks
- I wish it comes in a larger jar considering its price
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What hold is suitable for long hair?
A: If you’re shopping for pomade to use on your long hair, opt for a medium to firm hold. This will give the right stiffness to your hairstyle while keeping it touchable and restylable during the day. It will also help define layers while adding texture to your crowning glory.
Q: Is pomade better than gel?
A: In terms of styling, yes, pomades are way better than hair gels. Unlike gels, pomades don’t try out and make your hair flaky. Water-based pomades can be restyled and washed easily. You can also find pomades in medium to strong hold, depending on your styling needs.
Q: Should I apply pomade or wet or dry hair?
A: For the best styling results, you should apply pomade on damp hair. The small amount of moisture allows the product to spread evenly without being diluted. The moisture also makes your long hair more manageable for easier styling.
Q: Can I leave pomade on my hair overnight?
A: I don’t encourage leaving any product on your hair overnight. In the case of pomades, it may rub on your pillow and get in contact with your face. This can lead to acne or skin irritations.
Q: Should I shampoo my hair every day if I’m using pomade?
A: While shampooing daily isn’t necessary for guys, the exception would be if you’re using an oil-based pomade. This type of pomade is difficult to rinse with water alone.
With the best pomade for long hair, you can sport a suave hairstyle. From buttoned-up looks to casual, tousled hair, pomades have evolved into a modern product. It’s now formulated for the modern man.