A relatively new addition to the hair styling product category is the hair clay. However, over the last few years, it has quickly grown in popularity and with it, the resurgence of the textured, more natural looking, and voluminous hairstyles for men. In this article, you’ll find out what men’s clay is, how to use it, and which is the best for you.
What Is A Hair Clay?
The best definition of a clay product is that it contains a clay ingredient as one of its key ingredients. Hair clays are either water-based or oil-based. The ingredients you should be on the look out for the most are bentonite or kaolin. If it has none of these, then it probably isn’t a clay. I will say this now, if you know me already you know that I prioritise water based clays and hair products when recommending.
Which Hairstyle Is Hair Clay Good For?
Hair clay is good for short to medium hairstyles that need volume and texture. A clay normally has a medium hold and a matte finish, so you want to use it on styles you want to ensure it keeps looking fairly natural.
They can be easily reworked which makes running fingers through your hair smooth. This is why hair clay is great for those of you not looking for a stiff and “locked in” hairstyle. It works perfectly for any of the messier hairstyles that are becoming popular nowadays. Just think of the just got out of bed look.
How Much Hair Clay Should I Use?
The amount of clay you use will vary from one brand to anotherdue to quality levels and will also depend on things such as your hair thickness and hair type. For a hair clay or even for any other product for that matter, start with a small pea sized amount, then add more if you feel you need it. Start small since it’s much easier to add product than to remove it.
What Is The Best Hair Clay?
Like with any hair product, the best hair clay is the one that work’s the best for you. While it may be a process of trial and error to try to find which one you like best for your desire style and hair type. Read my reviews and watch YouTube videos to find people that have your hair type and style to find the best hair clay for you. Additionally, speak to your barber, and see if they give you any special recommendations on products.
How To Use Hair Clay
To use a hair clay, follow the following steps:
Step 1. Prep the hair
No matter what anyone else says, I say clay is always best suited for use on dry hair. Use a hair dryer to prep the hair beforehand, also use a pre styling product or whatever you use for your desired style.
I recommend always using a hair dryer first to get your hair into shape and help add volume or texture to the hair. Ensure when doing this that the dryer is on medium heat, then give a cold blast at the end to set the hair in place. If done correctly, your hair should look almost in style before the product is used. This is why you only needa pea size amount..
2. Take a pea sized amount from the tub
With thicker and longer hair, the more product might be needed, but start small and apply more later.
3. Break it down
Make the clay thoroughly warm in your hands. High quality clays will eventually seem to disappear in your hands. You want to spend about 5 to10 seconds rubbing the hair clay into the hands to make it warm properly and evenly spread throughout the hand.
4. Get the product through all of your hair
To get the product through the hair, start from the back and work your way through to the front. You want to also start at the roots and work it upwards. This ensures that it’s not just products coating the ends of the hair at the front. Don’t be too bothered about style at this stage, just ensure the product is evenly spread throughout the hair. Take note, there are still millions of men out there who just apply product to the bit at the front because thats all they see in the mirror! Don’t be one of those guys!
5. Fix and finish
Now begin working the hair into the shape you are looking for using your fingers, you can use a brush, or comb but I recommend fingers if you want the more natural textured look. This is also quicker and easier, I personally think it looks better. You can then coat the hair one last time by applying the last bit of product you might have left on the hands.
6. Add more if needed
If you feel you are not getting the hold you want for your hair, then apply more product and repeat steps 2 to 5.
You will find high quality water based clays are easy to wash off the hands with just a bit of water, if you use a petroleum based clay it will be a bit more stubborn and you’ll need a soap or detergent to remove it from your hands. This is why I prefer the water based, because I don’t like the idea of putting thick grease onto my scalp!