DIY Men's Pomade

One of my favorite movies has to be "O Brother Where Art Thou?" starring George Clooney as Everett McGill, the fast talking con-man who constantly worries about the state of his coif. Nevermind that the barn is on fire and the posse is after you, "My hair!" is his primary concern. For Everett no ordinary hair jelly will suffice. He doesn't want Fop, he wants Dapper Dan because he's a Dapper Dan man because it not only keeps his coif in order but it also has a pleasing aroma...which is half the point. In this matter I find myself strangely empathetic towards Everett's quandary of finding the perfect hair product. I have used, for many years, gels and have even explored the more traditional options of pomade and waxes. Gels work just fine but they also cost an arm and a leg unless you want to subject those around you to a snowy shower of dried gel flakes as the day wears on. Shedding gel after the lunch hour is not something that his would-be gentleman wants to do. Some of the newer pomades offer wonderful styling properties early on but seem to just disappear throughout the day. Waxes offer unparalleled hold but also take drain cleaner to get out of the hair. What is a man to do?

That was my question and thus I set out on a journey to find a suitable, homemade pomade (you like that rhyme don't you...homemade pomade). What I instantly discovered on my journey was that pomade is easy to make and uses the same base ingredients as a salve I have been making. The recipe that I landed on and ended up modifying can be found here:

The Hippy Homemaker

Briefly, it is simply equal parts beeswax, coconut oil and some kind of carrier oil. For my pomade I used vegetable glycerin as the carrier oil and added a few drops of Bay Rum essential oil. After melting everything together in the double boiler I added the Bay Rum and then poured it into a small glass bowl. At this point I whipped the concoction into submission with a whisk as it cooled. This introduced some air into the pomade making it a little bit more "fluffy" than a salve. Then I simply poured it into a 4 oz. metal tin and allowed it to finish cooling.

The results:

After my shower and shave I was eager to try out the new hair treatment so I applied a small amount to my fingers and massaged it for a few moments. Then I just ran my fingers through my hair just as I would with gel. The coverage for such a small amount was wonderful and it styled just like a commercial pomade, perhaps even a little better. The added blessing that comes with this pomade is the wonderful scent. I told my friend Scott that it smelled like I was a walking tropical, adult beverage. The beeswax and coconut oil make a delightful aroma all on their own but the addition of the Bay Rum oil puts it over the top. Thus far I am at hour #4 and it is still holding just like the moment I applied it. The second test will be to see how difficult it is to get out of my hair. I suspect, due to the lightness of the product, that it will come out rather easily with just shampoo (no need for drain cleaner). I haven't figured up how much the 4 oz. tin cost my but I'm sure it will be pennies compared to commercial hair products. So, gents (or ladies), if you're in the market for a good, easy pomade for your coif...make your own!

God bless,

UPDATE: After the first day of using the DIY pomade I'm very satisfied. It lasted all day long and when I took my shower this morning it came right out with regular shampoo.


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  2. Thanks so much for trying my recipe (and linking to it!). My hubby is a big fan of the pomade too! I actually use shea butter/jojoba oil/beeswax for our pomade recipe here at home, but I am now curious to try it with vegetable glycerin since it's more like an alcohol and not an actual "oil". It's water soluble unlike other carrier oils, so that would be why it's a lot easier to wash out. Thanks for the idea! Ooo and on a side note, I REALLY love to mix Bay West Indies essential oil with a little bit of lime essential oil and vanilla absolute, it gives it a really yummy piratey smelly ;)


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