Years ago on this blog. I had written an article about Pomade For Beginners. In that post, I had talked about some of the things to expect while entering the world of pomade (and hair product in general.) Click the link to read that post.
Since then, I’ve gotten familiar with a fair share of hair products both good and bad. Being a barber has given me better insight as to what various hair textures out there require when it comes to products achieving certain hair styles. It’s one hell of a learning curve learning how different products work for different hair textures and hair styles, and I’d like to think that this blog has helped with that understanding.
I will be starting a series of recommendations of products that I’ve not only used on myself, or clients, but have also recommended to various individuals throughout the years. The products in this series will be products that I stand by and have no worry about when it comes to quality. There are products that I do love that come from smaller brands, but my worry is the consistency of those products may have changed since I’ve personally handled them, so I can’t say I feel all too comfortable including them in this series, but they will receive honorable mentions.
Well, that’s that. Let’s get to it!
Disclaimer: This post will contain affiliate links, in which I may earn a small commission with qualified purchases. Each affiliate link will contain a product that I’ve purchased and used both personally and professionally. I wouldn’t suggest something that I haven’t tried on my person first.
To kick off this series, I will be introducing a company that has been around for a long time. And with good reason! They’ve been a mainstay within not only just the rockabilly community, but the barbering and hair communities as well. Layrite is a staple in many barbershops and salons, and can now be found in various retailers. If you’ve heard of it or have seen it, but have yet to experience it, you’re missing out!
Starting with Layrite, is their classic Original Pomade. This has been a staple for both myself, as well as the various barbershops I’ve worked at. It’s just… great…
This product has since been deemed a “ringing gel” by various hair product communities, due to it’s gel-like properties and not being petrolatum based (traditional pomade base.) Like a gel, Layrite will wash out with just water. For many this is an absolute necessity. Whether it be due to sensitive skin, or not wanting any bits and bobs coming home with you after work, water will work just fine getting this out of your hair. But, using a shampoo wouldn’t hurt.
This stuff is a transparent orange and goes on without having to worry about any color streaks in your hair. Unless the product is a bit older or has oxidized, you won’t have to worry about any white streaks while applying or combing it through your hair. Depending on whether or not your hair is damp or dry, the application is easy. If you’re wanting more hold, I’d suggest applying it to your hair dry. If you’re looking for a little bit less hold but more malleability, then apply it to your hair while it is damp. Without fail, you can always emulsify the product in your hands first, quickly run your hands under the faucet for a quick splash of water, and go straight to it. You won’t have to worry about getting too much sheen from Layrite Original Pomade if you loosely rake it through your hair. If you comb your hair into a slick style, it’ll have a slight sheen finish. But if you comb through it after it settles, you’ll get more of a matte finish.
Hair Textures and Hair Styles:
The most important part!
Now, more often than not you’ll see this product being used for contours and pompadours. I mean, that’s expected! But, this stuff works surprisingly well for other hair styles. Granted, there may be a bit of extra work involved…
If you are indeed going for either classic hairstyle mentioned above, regardless of texture Layrite will work for you. Finer hair textures will require less product and water, while thicker hair textures may require more product. Your mileage may vary depending on weather and climate.
Now, if you have finer hair and are going for some more textured hairstyles, it will work. However, I would highly recommend using a tool like a blow dryer or hair straightener to lift the hair up. After that, you’ll only need about a pinch of product to help bring out some of the separation and assist in holding the hair up. In general, finer hair textures inherently have issue with certain hairstyles, but with using tools such as a blow dryer and hair straightener becoming more normalized over the last few years, it definitely makes it a lot easier to achieve certain styles, allowing those with fine hair textures to explore new styles!
Click here to purchase Layrite Original Pomade.
Layrite Matte Paste:
One of the newer products offered by Layrite, the Matte Paste has found it’s place in many homes and barbershops alike.
Unlike any of Layrite’s original pomade offerings, the Matte Paste has lived up to many people’s expectations and then some! It has a light creamy texture that reminds me of whipped cream cheese.. Yeah… But seriously, run your fingers through a can and you’ll pick up what I’m putting down! Being a considerably lighter product, you won’t need to use too much of this, but it is a little bit too easy to scoop out too much. It also washes out as easily as it is to scoop out!
As I mentioned, this stuff is liked whipped cream cheese. As weird as that sounds, it spreads in your hair just as easily! Due to it’s creamy white texture, you may find it a bit streaky when you make your initial application. But a quick comb through will break it up giving you a clean and even application throughout your hair. Since this is a very light product, there is very little variation when it comes to applying it to fine hair and thick hair. The main difference being using too much if you’re trying to find firm hold with this product…
Hair Textures and Hair Styles:
Being such a light product, you aren’t going to get too much hold from it. But hey, that’s fine. There’s plenty of other products that offer you hold! The Layrite Matte Paste does have it’s place in your hair product arsenal, regardless of hair type.
For lower profile hairstyles, you can’t go wrong with this. It has just enough hold to keep your hair in place, without worrying about it becoming untidy throughout the day. It’s that product that gives you a natural look without making you feel as if you have any product in your hair, while still offering “enough hold.” And for those that have grown their hair out throughout this year and are entertaining longer hairstyles, this is perfect for you. You can keep those little hairs neatly tucked behind your ear without worry of it flying around looking like Farrah Fawcett. I mean, unless that’s the look you’re going for.
Going for something that’s a bit more bouffant like a pompadour is a bit difficult with this. As I mentioned, this has very light hold. BUT… It’s not impossible… Just like the Layrite Original, achieving certain looks with this stuff is achievable… with the aid of a hair straightener or a blow dryer… If you have thicker hair, blow drying your hair into a pompadour then raking your fingers through your hair will give you a loose pompadour that won’t break up in the wind. I also know of individuals that will use this as a topper with a thicker pomade as a base, giving you firm hold while slightly breaking it up with the Matte Paste so you can shape your hairstyle a bit easier.
Click here to purchase Layrite Matte Cream.
The real nitty gritty one of the bunch. This stuff is thick, holds like a beast, and still washes out with ease! If you want a matte finish and strong hold, you should definitely look into Layrite Cement!
The closet hair product on the market I can compare this stuff to would be a clay. But, unlike some clays out there, this stuff won’t give you skid marks on your finger as you scoop it out. Sounds weird! If you’ve ever tried to use a clay that is hard like a brick, you don’t get a finger tip worth of clay, but just skid marks on your finger tip. Yeah, that was a weird way to describe it, but you know exactly what I’m talking about! But like other clay hair products, this stuff gives you a solid hold for any hairstyle, but less hassle getting it out to use!
In comparison to the rest, this is the “hardest” to apply. While you might not get any skid marks on your fingertips, you may see some streaks of Cement through your hair if your hair is a bit more than damp. Like the rest, simply combing through will quickly fix that. The best way I’ve found to apply this is to really emulsify it in your hands and get a quick splash of water in. Take your time to rake your fingers through your hair to ensure even application. You can always add more as you go along, but getting the excess out is a bit more difficult! But if you absolutely need some crazy hold, then hamfist away!
Hair textures and Hair Styles:
Similar to the Layrite Original Pomade, this stuff is great for every hair texture and style. But, just like the Original, you’ll have to go about it in certain ways…
For finer textures, a little will truly go a long way! While it’s not as easy to scoop out as the Matte Paste, you can equally get carried away with applying too much, which will cause your hair to fall flat and lifeless. So, take your time to gently add it to your hair by running your fingers through, versus slamming it on and letting your hair lay flat. I mean, if that’s your thing…
Thicker hair won’t have to worry about that too much. If you’ve got thick hair and are going for a pompadour, this stuff will easily do the trick. While you won’t have to hamfist it, taking your time to apply a decent amount in your hair will be more than enough to give you a pompadour or any bouffant hair styles with ease. The hold is more than enough to achieve such looks with minimal effort, especially for thicker haired folks.
Click here to purchase Layrite Cement.
For the most part, all of these products are water-soluble. Which means they will wash out well with just water. However, I would still suggest using a shampoo while washing your hair, just so you can get that little bit extra clean feel and don’t have to worry about any form of excess. Between the three the Cement will be the hardest one to wash out. And by hardest, I mean I would absolutely suggest using a shampoo when washing it out.
Another trait they all share is the scent. While not all of them are identical from what I can tell, they are all relatively sweet. So if you’re not into that, this might be a hard one to accept. I mean, if my lady could smell my hair from 3 aisles away in a store, you can only imagine how indistinguishable the scent is! That’s not a bad thing! Personally, the scent doesn’t bother me none. But if you’re all about the musk, earthy, more “classic” scents, then you might have a hard time with this. If you’re able to look past that factor, then you’ve got yourself one hell of a product line to work with!
There you have it!
These three are what I believe to be an absolute staple when it comes to Layrite products. From the various shops I’ve been a part of, to recommending them to other shops as to what product line they should carry, and to my personal usage, time and time again Layrite has been a part of it all. And no, I do not have any affiliation with Layrite (but that would be neat.) They’re just a fantastic company with a fantastic product line! There’s no doubt about it. To top off their product line, here are some honorable mentions.
Layrite Superhold is an all time favorite, so why not mention it? Well, simply put, it’s very similar to the Original hold, but considerably thicker. This isn’t something I would recommend right off the bat, as many of my clients have been turned off by such a product, when it’s their first venture outside of hair gel. You can only imagine how intimidating it is to go from a liquid gel to a gel pomade!
Layrite Supershine is a personal favorite, but it’s not for everyone. It has a lot of shine, and can transfer onto your hands as well as pillowcases. Some traits that beginners do not want! However, if you want to start getting into the more traditional petrolatum based products, I’d suggest starting with this one and work your way up. You’ll still get a lot of the similar traits, but without the hassle of washing it out with cola! Click here to read all about that!
Other items such as their beard oil, Grooming Spray, and their Styling Comb (my personal favorite) will be linked below if you would like to check them out.
I hope you find yourself using Layrite if you have yet to experience this product line. It was one of my first pomades years ago, and I know that I’ll always have a can on me. Layrite has been a brand I’ve wanted to work with for a very long time, but unfortunately there hasn’t been any collaboration. Hopefully the revival of this blog can make that happen? Who knows. I hope that your support can make something come to fruition!
Until the next time.
Layrite Original Pomade
Layrite Matte Cream
Layrite Grooming Spray
Layrite Beard Oil
Layrite Styling Comb