On The Record: This Surfer-Turned-Hair Care Pro On How To Get Those Beach-Inspired Locks

BYRD founder Chase Wilson
Image courtesy of BYRD
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* BYRD makes beach and surf-inspired hair care products for guys — and gals
* Line has since expanded to body care with new collab with Venice Beach hotel
* Find out what common grooming mistakes most people make

We’ve all heard of beachy waves for women (think Giselle’s long, gorgeous flowing locks) but that sea salt-inspired look is making waves — no pun intended — with guys right now, too. Everyone from GQ to your favorite men’s subscription service, is touting the tussled look, and “surfer hair” is quickly becoming a go-to hairstyle for the summer.

Whether you’re looking to get that surf-inspired look, or just looking to tame your bedhead, you’d be wise to take a few tips from Chase Wilson.

3 years
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3 years
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byrd chase wilson Image courtesy of BYRD | Founder Chase Wilson, left

The Newport Beach-native (and former professional surfer) is the founder of BYRD, a men’s grooming line inspired by the ocean, while paying homage to Wilson’s great grandfather’s iconic barbershop at the storied Metropole hotel in Fargo, North Dakota.

With one foot planted in the past and the other in the sand, Wilson embarked on a journey to create a modern-day pomade championed by surfers and gentlemen alike. Sharing a deep affinity with classic ‘60s surf culture, BYRD beckons the return of that bygone era when grooming was an essential part of a man’s daily routine.

The brand is now sold in some of the best men’s shops in the country, and just launched a new collaboration with the Hotel Erwin in Venice Beach. BYRD’s bath collection will now be stocked in the landmark hotel off Pacific Avenue. BYRD is the the go-to for professional surfers around the world, and now guests of Hotel Erwin can look and feel the part too.

We caught up with Wilson to find out more about how he launched a grooming line, why everyone wants that Cali-inspired style, and why guys should start paying more attention to their hair.

byrd pomade hair care Image courtesy of BYRD | BYRD products at the Hotel Erwin

What inspired you to start BYRD?
Growing up in Newport Beach, surfing has been part of my life from an early age. Being a professional surfer for Quiksilver, I had a necessity for a styling product that catered to my lifestyle in the sun, salt and surf. BYRD started with a single product, our Classic Pomade, which catered to my daily surfing routine. It’s a wax-based pomade that I can wear in and out of the water and slick it back post-surf. It’s really the product that started it all.

Where does the name come from?
Inspiration for BYRD came from my nickname, “Big Bird” which started during my surf team days in Newport. My buddies ran with it and it has stuck ever since.

hotel erwin bath products byrd Image courtesy of BYRD

What makes BYRD products different from the dozens of other men’s hair products out there?
At BYRD, we see grooming as a lifestyle and strive to deliver top shelf products that effortlessly fit into one’s daily routine. We are a collective of surfers, barbers, creatives who live and breathe our products everyday. They aren’t designed in a cubicle, BYRD products are tested and refined by real Flock Members around the globe.

[Another thing that stands out about BYRD? It’s mission to further eco-friendly industry standards, which was one of the driving factors behind the brand’s collaboration with the Hotel Erwin. As Wilson puts it, “being surfers, we see plastic littered on our beaches everyday. In teaming up with Hotel Erwin, we wanted to make a conscious effort to create a sustainable amenity program that results in less plastic waste. Our custom full-size shower mounts save over 70,000 mini bottles of waste per year.” Also of note: BYRD’s custom bath formulas are produced and bottled utilizing solar energy.]

Why should guys care about their hair?
Long or short, your hairdo is part of your first impression. Spending the time to keep it healthy and looking slick will go a long way. There’s a certain confidence that comes from grooming oneself. Looking good is feeling good.

What about skin care? Why should guys care about the soap or bodywash they’re using on their bodies?
You wouldn’t put regular gas in your Porsche would you? So why rid your skin with bad ingredients just to save a buck or two? Steer away from sulfates, parabens or other harsh chemicals. The skin is your body’s largest organ, so washing off using products with quality ingredients can improve its overall look and feel.

byrd soap on a rope Image courtesy of Target

What are common mistakes guys make when it comes to grooming?
Don’t overdo it to the point where it becomes a chore. Figure out what products work best for your routine and make it effortless. Grooming should be something you look forward to every day.

You guys are based in California – how does the California weather change or affect our hair?
California weather is pretty mild all year round so you don’t have to worry too much about humidity and stuff like that. The coolest part about our coastal climate is the elements of sun, salt and surf, which are natural born recipes for great hair.

byrd surf spray texturizing hairImage courtesy of Amazon

Can you use the pomade before you go surfing or swimming?
Definitely! I originally designed our Classic Pomade with the wax based formula so it would stay in my hair and allow for the ultimate post surf slick. From there, our product line has further developed into water based products that will wash out with one quick rinse.

What do you say to guys who think using product is “girly” or too much for them?
Be more open minded!

byrd matte pomadeImage courtesy of Amazon

Every girl wants that Cali beach wave look too. How can women use your products? 
BYRD products may skew male but a lot are used by dudes and babes alike. Most steal from their man, try it out and end up getting hooked. Especially our Texturizing Surf Spray, which is a reparative styling spritz with coconut water and sea salt that adds natural beachy waves. Our BYRD Bath Collection is also unisex friendly and boasts tropical scents that will turn your bathroom into paradise.

Last question: give us your best piece of style or grooming advice.
Less is more – don’t overthink or follow the herd. Just do what comes naturally and treat each day as a new day to reinvent yourself.

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