Back to the Basics

Back to the Basics

I know that when it comes to dealing with hair care products, it can cause a lot of confusion and headaches.  Most complaint I receive when speaking about hair care products is that there are too many to keep up with. So, let me clarify things just a little so we can control and organize what we sell in our stores. That way, we can guide our customers to the right products.

First, please keep in minds that I am only going to cover hair care products – “Wet goods”, “Chemicals”.  I find it easy to keep track of Chemical goods when they are categorized in these fields:

Styling products: these are products that specializes only on Styling, such as Mousse, Gels, Hair sprays, Setting lotions, and etc.

Maintenance Products: these are products that “Maintain” the hair like cleansing, moisturizing, conditioning. Example: Shampoos, conditioners, co-wash, and daily moisturizers.

Treatment product:  These items specialize in specific needs or issues that the customer is having. Example: Hair Growth, Dandruff, dry and itchy scalp.

Then lastly you have the Color and Relaxers. These items are basically self-explanatory.

Now, some owners and managers organize their store by brands. This is a great way to organize for customer comes looking for THAT specific Brand. But what if the customer comes looking for a specific need? This are definitely some questions to think about when you set up your store. Let’s get little bit more into detail about each Category.

Styling products are definitely one of the biggest sections of the store. If you look at the data, most selling products in quantity or by dollar volume in an average sized store are the gels, especially edge control gels.

Edge control is a specially designed styling product for styling the thin hair strands (baby hair) along the hairline, typically edge of the forehead down to the temple area of the head.  It is basically a styling gel, but it is generally much less fluid than a traditional gel. In many cases, consistency is closer to mixing gel and pomade. Not only are they thick, but many edge controls have more holding than regular gels. The shorter the hair, the more difficult it is to keep it down, but these strong edge control can do the job.

There are certain edge control products that can be used for styling, but you can also fix the edge using classic gel formulas. The process can be tricky and a little messy if you’re not used to doing it, as you’ll be working on applying more fluid gel to smaller areas of hair. However, it will be much easier to use the product if you learn the techniques and have the right tools.

There are two different types of edge control, which are oil-based and water-based. If there is a special oil on the ingredient list, such as soft paraffin or mineral oil, it is definitely an edge control made of oil. When looking for water-based edge control, if the first ingredient reads water, you are likely to be dealing with water-based edge control. And take a closer look at the term “water-soluble”. Also, there are pros and cons of using which type of edge control.

Oil-based edge control Water-based edge control
Pros √ It doesn’t dry out, so you can rework the edges overtime.

√ Variety of options:

-extraordinary light/ alternative radiance finishes tend to be more subtle.

-Strong holding/ Smoother grip

√ It’s harder to wash off, so there is no need to apply a large amount on the second day

√It can be easily rinsed with water after use for a day.

√ Various options of consistency, holding force, and finish.

√ Use more in warm weather because it dries well and keeps your hair styled all day long.

√ acne is significantly reduced because it has little or no oiliness.

Cons √ It is not easy to rinse after applying it for the first time. A style should last for several days.

√ Possibility of causing acne

√ More expensive than oil-based edge control.

√ It is easily removed from the hair by washing, so it does not last long.


In general, they each have pros and cons. So it is really up to you to choose the type of pomade that best suits your preferences and needs.


Other popular products for Styling that are hot right now are the Mousses or Foam products.

Back in the days, there were foam wrap lotions and aerosol hair mousses which have evolved with the evolution of hair styles and the way that it is used for styling to Braiding Mousse to pump style Styling foams.

Hair mousse, also referred to as styling foam, is a hairstyling product to protect, stiffen, or style hair. “Mousse” originates from a French term meaning foam. Hair mousse originated in France and was brought to the North American retail market by L’Oreal in the 1980s, the first mousse product coming out under the label “Valence”. It is often dispensed in an aerosol foam spray or in cream form. Hair mousse adds volume to hair and often provides both conditioning and hold, without any clumps or build-up. It is a hairstyling product which works by using synthetic resins to coat the hairs, to assist the hair in taking a certain shape. Hair mousse is purple while in the can and turns an off-white color upon coming in contact with the air. One of the lighter-weight hair styling products, hair mousse is applied to wet hair before drying and styling. Hair mousse can be used on naturally curly or permed hair too reduce frizz and define curl – Wikipedia

Braiding mousse or foam have taken over the Mousse product category. Locticians and braiders are using more and more Mousse along with Braiding gels to hold the braids in place. Some have even used it as a detangler when they loosen the braids.

Beauty News By Tommy Song
BNB Magazine MAR 2022 ©