Styling your hair as a guy doesn’t have to be as difficult as you might think. Although there are various creams and gels to lather on your head for shaping that perfect mold or “impromptu” messy vibe, we definitely can’t lie when we say we have a total hair molding favorite: hair clay.
Hair clay is great for it’s strong holding qualities and natural look that most gels and waxes can’t compete with. Most clays never make your hair look soaked the way gels do and don’t leave behind any awkward, dandruffy residue the same way tons of waxes do as well. It’s the perfect in-between when it comes to men’s hair products because although it doesn’t look like much when it’s in your hair, it holds shape for hours on end while leaving it soft and tangible to the touch.
If you’re trying to find a new way to style that mop on your, we don’t suggest touching anything aside from hair clay. If you don’t know where to start, check out some of the best men’s hair clay below and see which one is right for you.
1. Smooth Viking Hair Clay for Men
This tiny 2oz jar proves that a little bit goes a hell of a long way. Only a smidge of Smooth Viking hair clay will give you the hold you’re looking for no matter how long you’ve been sitting at your work desk or how intense your last workout was. It doesn’t go on wet or sticky whatsoever, leaving a matte look that’s designed to add tons of texture and volume to your modern ‘do. It’s packed with nutrient-rich vitamins like beeswax, castor oil, soy oil and carrot seed oil, so as you’re styling your hair, you’re also treating those locks.
2. Hair Dough Styling Clay
Hair Dough’s styling clay is another impeccable option for getting that perfect, matte hold you’ve been wanting. It has the ability to add thickness and volume, even if you’re a dude with a thinner head of hair. Although there’s no leftover residue or shine at all, you’re still going to get a hold that will endure your entire day, no matter what you’re putting your body through when the sun’s up. The clay itself is water-based and doesn’t include any harmful chemicals that would otherwise damage your hair upon application. No matter how you’re styling your hair right now, you’ve gotta give this stuff a shot and switch it up a little next time.
3. The Art of Shaving Molding Clay
The Art of Shaving’s molding clay proves that the brand hasn’t just mastered the art of shaving itself, but even hair products — which is almost quite literally the opposite of shaving. Infused with juniper essential oils, this clay smells absolutely bomb to the nose both in the jar and on your head. It has more of a creamy consistency, throwing the idea that sticky clay idea right into the trash bin. You’ll have the ability to run your hands through it and the clay will still hold its shape no matter how much you touch it. And, given the smell, you’re going to want to touch it. Just smell your hands afterward and you’ll know why.
4. Anchors Away Courage Clay
While most hair clays are excellent for your hair and provide various nutrients to keep your strands both happy and healthy, there really aren’t many vegan clays on the market that ensure no parabens, petroleum or alcohol products. Anchors Away Courage Clay can, though. This 100% vegan and cruelty-free hair clay is a water-based clay that lasts extremely long to hold true to your style throughout even a couple of days. Courage Clay is veteran-owned and handmade right out of Tennessee, so you’re supporting an American hero whilst styling that floppy mop, which is pretty dope. Although this clay is a tad bit shinier than most hair clays, it’s an excellent choice if you’re looking for that top-notch hold and a good cause to support.
5. Kiehl’s Grooming Solutions Texturizing Clay
BEST MEDIUM HOLD
Don’t want to commit to that all-day hold? Don’t fear, Kiehl’s texturizing clay is here. Formulated with Moroccan lava clay, use this stuff more to add texture to your locks rather than a strong hold. It bulks your hair to make it look a bit thicker and stronger without adding any extra weight. Although it doesn’t last as long as some of the other clay products listed in this round-up, it still has really effective molding properties that will change the look of your hair completely when applied. When it starts to diminish in its hold, either leave as is, reapply or easily rinse the clay out to call it a night.
6. British M Urban Matte Clay
If you’re rocking a side part hairstyle, this matte clay is the clay for you. It’s incredibly light both to the touch and when it’s in your hair, so it won’t weigh your hair down when making that part. A little bit also goes a long way so you won’t feel at all wasteful when using it either. It’s incredibly matte so although it holds its shape, no one will be able to tell you’ve got anything in your hair in the first place. We don’t recommend using the matte clay if you’re prone to scent headaches though, users say that the scent is quite nice but just a little overpowering at times.
7. MOFAJANG Silver Grey Hair Wax
Although this clay is technically a wax, we couldn’t leave it out because of its wild capabilities. As you might’ve already guessed, yes, this hair clay has the ability to turn your hair a completely different color. Pictured below is the recipe used to create a trendy, silver look for whenever you feel like transitioning into your alter ego. The clay also comes in a few different colors as well, including green, gold, blue and red. Worried it won’t show up on your darker hair color? Well, don’t. It’ll show even on the darkest of strands.
8. Shiner Gold Maximum Matte Clay Pomade
BEST FOR SHORT HAIR
For guys with shorter hair, the Shiner Gold clay pomade is an A1 option for styling. The name is a little misleading, this stuff isn’t shiny or gold — it’s a white, creamy clay that is light on your fingers and leaves your hair matte to the eyes. The hold is pretty unbeatable and it smells nice too, but it does tend to struggle a bit molding longer-haired styles. We definitely recommend this more for dudes who keep their hair shorter, but still want to add a bit of volume to their fluff.