As a natural hair blogger, I am always, always experimenting with different hair products. But it wasn’t until recently that I began to appreciate the differences in various styling products. I wanted to take this time to discuss the pros and cons of products with various holding power.
Soft hold products tend to be alcohol-free and fortified with natural ingredients that provide a soft hold that moisturizes. They are marketed as providing a “touchable” hold, remaining soft to the touch. They aren’t heavy or putty-like in consistency. They are best for quick and simple styles. If you’re rocking a messy bun, these products are perfect. They are also ideal if you have a no-poo regimen. If this sounds like what you need, check out Alba Botancia Soft Hold Styling Cream, $9.99, or Ouidad Moisture Lock Define and Shine Curl Styling Gel Cream, $24.99.
If you have a hairstyle that you want to stay put for a couple of days, medium is the way to go. Medium hold products are still soft to the touch but provide a firmer hold. These products are also usually alcohol-free. You will find them in the form of creams and puddings. They are ideal for keeping frizz at bay in naturally wavy and curly hair. A little bit goes a long way, so you don’t have to slather on the product. Some of my favorites are Eden Body Works All Natural Curl Defing Creme, $8.49, or Design Essential Natural Curl Defining Gel, $27.99.
When you think styling products, this is probably what comes to mind — gels, hairsprays, and spritzes that leave your locks rock hard. Usually these products have alcohol and can dry the hair out. This creates the mold and hold. Don’t worry, these products aren’t all bad. For styles that need to stay put, this is the way to go. But keep in mind you will have to shampoo this product out before re-styling hair. My picks for firm hold are Garnier Fructis Style Fiber Gum Putty, $6.79, or Ouidad Clear Control Pomade, $27.00.
What’s your favorite styling product?