Hair spray is commonly considered a product for women, but that’s just not the case. Though men might use hair spray less frequently on average, tons of guys have turned to hair spray to keep their coiffe looking spic-and-span or to add a little volume and thickness.
And why shouldn’t they? Speaking as a man, if men are anything, we’re pragmatic: If something works, it works and should be used. Modern hair spray works to keep your style looking the way you intended with a lot less risk of giving you the stiff helmet look. And that’s the beauty of modern hair sprays. They’re less crunchy than they used to be, leaving your hair with hold but with some flexibility. And if you do want that helmet look, just use more spray. If you don’t, use less spray or put some spray on a brush and use the brush to style for an effortless polished yet natural look.
But because hair spray is still considered a primarily women’s product, even by the companies making the sprays, it’s darn near impossible to identify the best hair spray for men. But we did our best to find hair spray options that can work for men willing to try something less traditionally male. (Though really, how do you think dudes got their hair in the ‘60s and ‘70s?) So if you’re sick of pomades, creams and gels, it may be time to consider the humble hair spray. Check out our picks for the best hair spray for men below. Some are the more traditional aerosol and some are more liquid sprays, but they’re all great hair spray options for men.
1. American Crew Grooming Spray
Who else but American Crew would supply the go-to hair spray for men? You can use this spray on damp or dry hair for a flexible hold, it washes out easily and it won’t leave your hair feeling sticky, crunchy, itchy or with any residue.
You might encounter some pump issues — to be fair, most hair spray nozzles clog at some point — but running the pump under hot water should clear away any clogs.
For your money and for its value and excellent utility, the American Crew Grooming Spray is the best hair spray for men.
2. Vitalis Maximum Hold Hair Spray For Men
Dudes raved about Vitalis Maximum Hold Hair Spray For Men in the user reviews for its all-around excellence as a hair spray, with multiple reviewers noting they’ve been using the spray for decades.
We can say right off the bat that Vitalis does not offer maximum hold, but that was a pro, not a con, for most guys. Because it offers a moderate, flexible hold, it won’t damage your hair or leave it crunchy, sticky or too shiny and you’ll still be able to get a comb through it if you so desire.
Plus, getting two bottles of great hair spray for men for under $10 is an absolute steal.
3. 18.21 Hair Spray For Men
For a true hair spray for men, check out the 18.21 Hair Spray For Men.
It’s lightweight while still giving you an all-day flexible hold to keep the flyaways and frizzy hairs under lock and key. And for any flyaways that step out of line, the hold is still brushable so you can touch up your style as needed.
But there was one practically unanimous conclusion among reviewers: This sweet tobacco scent came on way too strong. Even guys that loved the spray thought the smell was too strong and overstayed its welcome.
4. Consort Hair Spray for Men
BEST UNSCENTED SPRAY
Going back to what we said at the top about men: If something works, we’ll use it. Reviews for Consort Hair Spray for Men back that up. This is that spray that just works. It comes out as a fine mist so you can easily work it into your hair before it firms up into an extra hold. Plus, it’s invisible, not stiff or sticky and genuinely unscented, so you’ll have none of the trouble of the 18.21 spray.
5. Consort Hair Spray For Men, Aerosol
ALSO CONSIDER UNSCENTED
If you were feeling the Consort Hair Spray For Men above but found yourself wishing for an aerosol spray, you are in luck. Consort sells the exact same spray, just in aerosol form.
It’s unscented, offers extra hold and is a longtime favorite for some repeat customer reviewers.
6. Pacinos Freeze Hair Spray
BEST SCENTED SPRAY
For a legitimately manly and good-smelling hair spray for men, you can’t do much better than Pacinos Freeze Hair Spray. This hair spray delivers an extra strong hold, and additional texture and volume while leaving the stiffness and crunchiness in the ‘70s where they belong. Use it to style or lock in your look.
The Pacinos spray also happens to actually smell masculine, like a proper men’s cologne, which is great if you want a fragrance but don’t use a lot of other scented products.
7. TRESemmé TRES Two Ultra Fine Mist Hair Spray
BUDGET HAIR SPRAY
Yeah, bro, TRESemmé rules for all hair, whether male or female, and the TRESemmé TRES Two Ultra Fine Mist Hair Spray works for most hair types at a legit cheap price. If a spray leaves your hair flexible while keeping frizz and flyaways under control, what do you have to lose by trying it?
The only downside is it does have a feminine fragrance, but the dudes in the reviews said it didn’t last too long and that they basically didn’t give a damn because the hair spray works so well for them. So, we ask again, what do you have to lose?
8. Paul Mitchell Extra Body Firm Finishing Spray
BEST FOR EXTREME HOLD
If you’re looking for the shellac of hair sprays, you want the Paul Mitchell Extra Body Firm Finishing Spray. This spray will hold long, strong and it’s going to get the friction on. Expect maximum volume, all-day hold and shiny, full, textured hair when you use this spray.
We should note as well that this is considered a unisex spray, but we don’t consider the crisp apple scent to really be unisex or at the very least not equally masculine. But with this degree of hold, we don’t think it’ll take much spray to get the style you want and with less spray, you should have less fragrance, if the fragrance is a dealbreaker for you.
9. Mane Tame Zero-Gravity Matte Texture Spray
BEST FOR MATTE FINISH
Too many hair products, especially the stronghold variety, leave your hair way too shiny. That’s where Mane Tame Zero-Gravity Matte Texture Spray can help.
It gives you the volume, thickening and texture you want without the shine, leaving your hair looking styled but still natural.
10. Brickell Men’s Texturizing Sea Salt Spray for Men
BEST FOR TEXTURE
Brickell is one of our favorite up-and-coming grooming brands for its all-around solid men’s grooming products. The Brickell Men’s Texturizing Sea Salt Spray for Men is no exception to that trend.
For that always-sexy beach bum look, this sea salt spray thickens and volumizes hair while bolstering your natural waves and curls for a highly textured look.
Nobody wants to get sunburnt in pursuit of a look you can get with a few sprays of Brickell.