When you get a haircut from your barber, it’s a rather… intimate time, if you will. Not only do you shoot-the-shit with him, you consult with him, tell them about your life in general, and so on. That’s the beauty of having a barber. Not only do they cut your hair, but you can share life experiences with them. And every time you leave that chair, you walk away with knowledge that’s new to you, but rather old to them – especially if you’ve got an old-timey barber.
Sometimes, those experiences can’t be utilized in today’s world. I mean, if only we could get away with candy for $.05, right? But luckily, in his line of work and my topic of interest, I can!
It’s a given that since he was a youth, raised out of a barbershop, he’s had the haircuts that we all loved. Many of which had different names than what we call them today. While that’s always fun to hear, that’s not what I’m trying to get from this conversation with him. What I wanted to know, was what product they used… Unfortunately, it’s been decades since he even used the product, so I can’t expect him to remember the name of the damn thing! But asking the right questions, I was able to narrow it down…
There aren’t many items today that are labeled a butch wax, nor in a stick form. So? That leaves us with one product in mind. Lucky Tiger Cru Butch in its stick form!
I’ve found it in its stick form, which is what they used in the day. But this stuff also comes in a little plastic container, with a purple label. Is there any difference to this stuff? No idea. But hey, gives me another excuse to review the product, right?
This thing is very much so like a Push Pop! Ya gotta push it up from the bottom, to get the good stuff out. When you do, you’ll see this pale orange stuff stick out. Just like a Push Pop!
The application to this stuff is a bit different from what we’re used to. Unlike the Royal Crown stick pomade that’s meant to cover up the graying edges, this stuff is meant to “butch” your hair. Meaning, you used it to stick up the fronts of say a flat-top with fenders. In the day, that’s what it called/used for! Pretty neat, eh?
But since we don’t have that hair cut, there’s a different way to use this stuff.
Much like the topcoats and cocktails I mention, there were methods they used back then, to make hair products more malleable. And that was adding certain ingredients to them. Well… There was one specific ingredient they used with the butch wax. Want to know what it is?
None other than this little thing called lanolin…
“Lanolin? La-lanolin, like– like sheep’s wool?”
Yes, like sheep’s wool. Except in a little jar!
Now, the two have been a combo that’s clearly outdated this blog. It’s one used by the youth of the golden age of America, and something that’s gonna be brought back to our stables, with the help of yours truly… wink wink.
Now, their application is probably a bit different from mine. But, this is all about experimenting and getting it right for every individual, so let’s experiment with this, shall we?
First off, my hair is too long to run this stick through my whole head of hair. So first, I rub this stuff through my palms, which is a much cleaner and easier feat to achieve, than with the Royal Crown stick! And by “much cleaner” I mean a fuckin’ shit ton cleaner!
Now the question is, to mix the stuff together, or use it as a top coat? First, I tried mixing it together. It definitely changes up the consistency of the stick, making it much softer than it is.
There’s a major difference between topcoats and cocktails or mixing pomades. Cocktails is where you actually mix different pomades into your hands, before applying to your hair. Topcoats, are just applied to the top of the styled product (your hair,) to add sheen.
From what I understand, they used to mix this stuff together. Making the cru butch much more malleable to work with, as well as being easier to spread into your hair thoroughly. So, we’ll do this method.
Here comes the innuendos!
You’re gonna rub the stick in your palms, until you’ve gotten the desired amount. Remember: More butch wax – more hold, more lanolin – more sheen. Then, scoop out the desired amount of lanolin. Now, butch wax is exactly what it is, a wax. So depending on how much hold you want, you won’t need to overly use this stuff. But as I said, it depends on the individual, so experiment! That’s the best part about this combo.
Can’t beat the innuendo description, without some visuals!
The Lucky Tiger isn’t hard to spread through your hair as is, but with the lanolin mixed in, it definitely makes it a lot easier.
As I said, the hold totally depends on how much lanolin you use or don’t use. So if you have thicker hair, you’ll want to ease up on the lanolin. For the folks with thinner hair, who don’t need a super strong hold, add that lanolin. On its own, the Lucky Tiger has a real good hold. I mean, it is meant to butch up the fenders on that flat-top! And for pompadours, it does a damn good job! Especially with my thick hair!
I didn’t use that much product. Had I done so, everything would’ve been much slicker.
It’s not too often we get to hear about how these older cats (now,) used to be as the rebel youth that we love to read about. So finding out the exact product and exactly how it was used in the day, is definitely a treat.
Overall, this little cocktail is awesome. Not only as a story from my barber, but as a styling product as well. It’s classic cocktails like these, that often gets lost in translation when folks try to find out what was used by folks, int he 50s-60s. This stuff did it for them and it definitely does it for me!
Hope you enjoyed this review and history lesson. Until the next time folks.