Wax vs Pomade: Which One is Best for Your Hair Type?

Embarking on the quest to discover the perfect hair styling product can be as daunting as traversing a labyrinth, where each twist and turn reveals yet another contender vying for the title of supreme hair sculptor. Amidst the endless array of gels, mousses, clays, and waxes, two opponents stand tall, steadfast in their pursuit of hair styling supremacy: hair wax and pomade. Both wax and pomade are revered by men and women alike for their remarkable versatility and unique attributes. In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the fascinating world of hair wax and pomade, dissecting their distinct features and how they cater to different hair types and styles.

What is Hair Wax?

Hair wax is a unisex styling product formulated to provide texture, hold, and control. It typically consists of a blend of natural waxes, such as beeswax or candelilla wax, and synthetic waxes, oils, and other ingredients that work in harmony to offer a pliable hold and natural finish. The result is a flexible, moldable product that allows for easy restyling and a wide variety of hairstyles.

What is Hair Pomade?

What is pomade? Hair pomade, akin to hair wax, is a gender-neutral styling product crafted to offer hold and control. These products usually combine a blend of waxes, oils, and other ingredients that deliver a flexible hold with finishes ranging from matte to shiny, depending on the specific pomade. Pomades have traditionally been essential for those aiming for sleek, classic looks, as well as modern styles.

Comparing Hair Wax and Pomade

To unravel the mystery of which product reigns supreme, let us delve into the nuances of hair wax and pomade, comparing their hold, finish, versatility, and suitability for different hair types.

  1. Hold: Hair wax generally offers a light to medium hold, making it ideal for those desiring texture and definition without a heavy or stiff feeling. Pomades, on the other hand, typically deliver a medium to strong hold, allowing for more sculpted and polished styles.
  2. Finish: Hair wax imparts a natural, matte finish, perfect for those seeking a subtle, understated look. Pomades, conversely, can range from matte to shiny finishes, providing versatility for those who wish to switch between matte and glossy aesthetics.
  3. Versatility: Both hair wax and pomade are renowned for their versatility, allowing for easy restyling throughout the day. Hair wax excels in adding texture and definition to shorter hairstyles, while pomades shine in crafting more polished, refined styles.
  4. Hair Types: Hair wax is particularly suitable for those with fine or thin hair, as its lightweight formula adds texture without weighing down the hair. Pomades are more adaptable, catering to a range of hair types, lengths, and conditions, making them a popular choice for many.

Choosing the Right Product for Your Hair

  • Fine Hair: Hair wax takes the crown for fine hair, as its lightweight formula adds texture and definition without burdening your delicate strands.
  • Thick Hair: Pomade emerges victorious in taming thick hair, offering control and manageability without rendering the hair rigid or unyielding.
  • Curly Hair: Pomade is generally the superior choice for curly hair, providing a flexible hold that defines curls without stiffness or crunchiness. Pomades also help combat frizz and impart much-needed moisture to curly hair.
  • Oily Hair: For those with oily hair, hair wax is the optimal choice, as it avoids adding extra greasiness while still providing control and definition.
  • Dry Hair: Pomade, particularly water-based or those containing conditioning ingredients, is ideal for dry hair, as it delivers moisture and ensures your hair remains nourished throughout the day.

Which Product Fits Your Style?

  • Textured, Tousled Looks: Hair wax is the ultimate ally for crafting textured, tousled hairstyles, providing definition and a matte finish that accentuates the hair's natural movement.
  • Sleek, Classic Styles: Pomade excels in sculpting classic, slicked-back hairstyles such as pompadours, side parts, and quiffs, offering a flexible, enduring hold and a polished finish.
  • Defined Curls: Pomade distinguishes itself in the realm of curl definition, holding curls in place while offering hydration and banishing frizz.
  • Spiky, Edgy Styles: Hair wax shines in creating spiky, edgy hairstyles, granting a pliable hold that maintains texture and volume without stiffness.

The Perfect Pair: Finding the Ideal Hold and Finish for Your Hairstyle

  • Light to Medium Hold: Hair wax asserts its dominance in the light to medium hold arena, best suited for hairstyles requiring texture and definition without feeling weighed down.
  • Medium to Strong Hold: Pomade is the answer for those seeking a more substantial hold, allowing for sculpted and polished styles that last all day.
  • Matte Finish: If your heart desires a natural, understated appearance, look no further than hair wax.
  • Shiny Finish: For those preferring a gleaming, impeccably groomed aesthetic, the answer lies in hair pomade.

The ultimate decision between hair wax and pomade rests upon the trinity of your hair type, desired hairstyle, and personal preferences. Each contender boasts its own distinctive array of advantages and drawbacks, awaiting your discerning judgment. Hair wax, the textured and tousled master of the hair styling realm, excels in crafting casual, effortless looks, its light to medium hold and matte finish the stuff of legends. Pomade, on the other hand, the refined and sophisticated maestro of the hair care world, emerges triumphant in the quest for sleek, classic styles, its medium to strong hold and shiny finish making it the go-to champion for polished locks.

As you embark on this hair-raising journey of discovery, a thorough understanding of each product's attributes and their synergistic dance with your unique hair type and styling demands will illuminate the way to the ideal choice. With the aid of this all-encompassing guide, you stand poised to navigate the nuanced landscape of wax and pomade with aplomb, equipped to select the perfect weapon for your arsenal of hair styling armaments. Remember, the path to coiffure nirvana is paved with exploration and experimentation; embrace the challenge, and allow your hair to become the canvas upon which you paint your signature style.

Comparison Table

Hair Wax

Hair Pomade



Medium to Strong



Shiny (some matte)

Hair Type

Short to Medium, Straight, Wavy, Curly

Medium to Long, Straight, Slightly Wavy

Ideal Hairstyles

Textured, Messy, Natural

Slick, Classic, Defined


Difficult (oil-based)

Varies (easy for water-based)

Oil Content

Contains (beeswax, mineral oil)

Varies (water-based or oil-based)

Wax vs Pomade: Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the main difference between hair wax and pomade?

A: Hair wax offers a moderate hold with a matte finish, making it suitable for textured, messy, and natural hairstyles. Pomade, on the other hand, provides a medium to strong hold with a shiny finish, making it ideal for slick, classic, and defined hairstyles.

Q: Is hair wax or pomade better for short hair?

A: Hair wax is generally better for short hair as it provides a moderate hold and works well with various hair types. Pomade may also work for short hair, but it is more suitable for medium to long hair lengths.

Q: Can I use hair wax on curly hair?

A: Yes, hair wax can be used on curly hair. Its moderate hold and matte finish work well with different hair types, including curly hair.

Q: How do I remove hair wax from my hair?

A: To remove hair wax, you may need to use a clarifying shampoo or a shampoo specifically designed to remove oil-based styling products. Lathering your hair with shampoo before adding water can also help break down the wax.

Q; Can I use hair wax and pomade together?

A: While it is possible to use hair wax and pomade together, it may not be necessary. Both products offer different levels of hold and finish, so using them together could result in an unbalanced or undesirable hairstyle. It's best to choose one product that suits your needs and desired look.

Q: Are hair wax and pomade suitable for all hair types?

A: Hair wax is versatile and works well for a wide range of hair types and lengths. Pomade is best suited for medium to long hair and is particularly effective for straight or slightly wavy hair. However, pomades may not provide the necessary hold or flexibility for those with curly hair.