Star Wax – Toffee

Continuing with the new products in the new year, I am trying out the first in the Star Wax line. Their Toffee says it’s the lightest hold on the label so I went with that one. Mark over at the Star Pro Line contacted me just before Xmas about checking out their products and sent me one of each to review. And as usual I start with lightest hold first. So let’s check out this stuff.

This product is actually made in Israel. I thought that was kind of cool it’s fun for me to try pomades from all over the world. It’s really interesting to see how other countries like their hair care products.

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Well back to the review. This stuff comes in a black plastic tub with a silver lid and silver labels. It’s about the same size as the Schmiere tins diameter and height wise. The lid label is fairly simple. It has the name in the center, then the type of product it is, and a couple of points about the product and the weight info. The can wrap has the same stuff in the center, then ingredients, a warning, directions, and a blurb about the product on it. Fairly basic labeling.

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The stuff inside is a light tan colored paste looking product. It has a shiny surface to it though, which I thought was a bit odd for a paste. Most pastes have a matte look to them, but it’s always nice to see change ups. The smell of it is very salon-y, it smells like a very floral smelling salon, but also has a soft buttery hint to it as well. You can also pick up the chemical type smell from it too. Not my favorite scent, but it’s not too bad. My lady liked the scent quite a bit so that’s a plus.

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It scoops out like a paste, but has a slightly tacky/sticky feel to it as well. It feels like what Bees Knees Hair Paste would feel like if there was one. The scent really takes on that salon type smell when you scoop it out and kind of loses the buttery note. I was kind of hoping for the opposite, but it didn’t happen. In my hands it really got sticky/gummy. It felt more like a really tacky pomade than a paste in my hands. I definitely like that, hopefully that will transition over when I apply it. It turns a real whit color in your hands too, most pastes/putty’s do that though.

When I ran my hands across my hair I was delighted to find that it did in fact feel like applying a pomade. It felt kind of like putting in Nu Nile actually. Nice tacky resistance, but still goes in decently. And to my surprise the white that it leaves when you apply it quickly disappears when you put comb to hair. It combs a bit harder than you expect it to though. I thought it would be fairly easy to comb in, but it was actually slightly difficult. I had to comb slowly to prevent any tugging or pulling out hairs.

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I wasn’t able to get too much height with this stuff despite it being so tacky. Once I got it all worked in and went to form my pomp it kind of tuned into a really soft dressing. I did like the look this stuff gave my hair. It left me with a nice slicked look. And on a plus note for me, the scent weakened quite a bit after I styled my hair. I know quite a few of you would probably like the scent and a lot of ladies would too, but I just didn’t like the smell very much.after about 10 minutes it had dried completely. What I was left with reminded me of my punk days. I had total gel-met going on haha. My hair was hard as a rock! This stuff would make for a great Mohawk or liberty spikes if you took the time. Once it completely dried there wasn’t any shine to my hair at all. It leaves your hair with a kind of natural look to it, apart from the comb lines.

All throughout the day my hair didn’t budge one millimeter. It was locked into place like concrete. Not surprised at that one bit though, I knew it would hold like that because of how hard my hair dried. That’s definitely a plus, I can’t wait to put this stuff to the test against the AZ summer heat and the trials of a hardcore show. I think it will do pretty well. One of the reasons is that it’s kind of hard to wash out. I had to let my hair run under the water for a good 5 minutes to get this stuff softened up enough to wash out. So I think it will hold up good against the rigors of moshing and the sweat factor. A huge plus for me as well was how my hair felt after I washed it out. My hair was so soft and healthy feeling, it felt like puffy silk. This stuff totally conditions your hair while you have it in and makes it feel so healthy when you wash it out.

This stuff is definitely a unique product. There are pluses and minuses to it for me. I didn’t like the scent very much or the gel-met aspect. However I did like the look it gave my hair and the fact that my hair didn’t move all day, as well as the conditioning aspect of it. So on that basis alone I’d say give it a shot. You can always just use it on your off days to help get your hair back to a healthy starting point. To get ahold of this or another one of their products, head over to their website http://www.starproline.com/ and pick some up. Big thanks again to Mark for sending me this and the others to try out! I will be trying the next one up in their line after a few other new product reviews. So stay tuned for all the new stuff I’ll be checking out this year!

Til the next one,

-JC

Astra Razorblades

Finally getting to trying out some new razor blades. I got these a while back from a friend and have put off trying them until now for whatever reason. Anyway, I’m pretty stoked to try out some new blades. I even ordered a huge tester package of around 25 brands and types of different razor blades. So I’ll be trying more new stuff out this year. Today I’m checking out Astra blades.

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They come in a small cardboard box just barely bigger than the blade itself. It’s a white a green background with black writing. “Astra” is real big up at the top of the box followed by “superior platinum double edge” just below it. In the bottom right corner is a picture of the blade and the number of blades in the box. Pretty cool looking little box.

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The blade is wrapped in paper with the same design as the box on the paper. When you open the paper you see the blade wrapped a second time. This time it’s wrapped in wax paper. Most blades are wrapped in one or the other, but these come twice wrapped. Kind of cool. The blade itself has “Astra” etched across the top, and “superior platinum” across the bottom. Kind of your standard etching on the blade.

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I decided to use my Merkur razor for the first shave with this blade. I still love this razor above all my other razors. One of the best razors out there. So it was kind of a no-brainer for me to use this razor when trying these blades out for the first time.

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I had a decent amount of growth the first time I used these blades. A great first test to see how they work. The moment I made the first stroke of the razor I knew I was in for a great shave. It was very smooth and seemed to cut my hairs like they were sewing thread. I didn’t even feel the blade cutting my hairs it was so smooth. Working so well, my shave went a lot quicker than it usually does. Even my chin, where I have a few scars, was much easier to shave with this blade.

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My face was really closely shaved when I got done! Holy moly! This shave was just as close as when I used those Feather blades. However this shave went a lot faster and I didn’t have any nicks or cuts at all. You definitely don’t have to be nearly as steady handed or careful with these blades, and they give just as close of a shave. I’m definitely loving these blades a lot! But, before I make too much of a decision I am going to use them a bit more.

I tried them in all of my razors, with different lengths of growth, an with different shave products. Each time I got the exact same result. The perfect shave! I went through the whole box of five before I finished up this review. The moment I was out I ordered some more. I haven’t done that with a bald before. I also purchased a big sampler pack so I have a bunch more to try out and review for you guys. However, I don’t think I will like any of the blades better than this one. I can’t see how anything can be a better shave than these. You have to pick up a box or 10 of these blades! Yes, very really that good. Like I had said earlier, a friend had given me my original box, but you can order them on almost every shaving supply site. A few beauty supply stores carry them as well. So go out and pick up a box as soon as possible.

Stay fresh fellas,

-JC

Lone Star Pomade – Texas Crude Wax

Like I was saying in the last review, this pomade is another new product. It only came out a few months ago. However, Chris over at Lone Star is a good friend of mine so I’ve been using this one since the first test batch. I’m pretty excited to see how the final recipe turned out. He tweaked a few things since the last batch he said. So let’s check it out!

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It comes in a 6oz, stainless steel, slip cover tin. It has a lid label and a bottom label on it. And to my great surprise, these are shrink wrapped! Very cool to see this, as you very rarely see a pomade shrink wrapped. The lid label is the same label as the water bases, but with a black background instead of a white one. It also has “Texas Crude Wax” at the very bottom of the label. Nice change up. The bottom label is also black with white lettering. It has the name, website, directions, and company info on it.

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Opening up the tin you immediately get that Lone Star scent. It’s not quite as strong as the water base is, but it’s still strong and hits you right away. The pomade itself is a nice white pomade. Has a very clean look to it, keeping in the Lone Star tradition. You can tell it’s a pretty waxy pomade just from looking at the surface. It doesn’t look much different from the last installment I tried so far.

When I dug my finger in the pomade I noticed the first difference. It’s really waxy! It comes out in lots of waxy ribbons and two small clumps. Kind of like a mix between South Side pomade and Gasoline Grease. It seems a little bit waxier than the previous installments. It took a little while to get the clumps broken down in my hands. They didn’t seem to want to spread at first. After a little working with it I got it all spread out evenly. The scent gets quite a bit stronger when you work it around too. It fills up the entire room with the crisp and clean scent.

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It goes in like a really waxy pomade. Kind of stays on top and on your hands at first then slowly starts to go in. Being a bright white waxy pomade it leaves your hair with white streaks in it at first. It takes a little combing to get all of it worked in evenly and the white coloring dissipated. It was slightly tough to comb in at first. It combs kind of like High Life heavy, rough and resistant at first, then smooth yet waxy. You have a lot of control with this stuff when you’re combing it, and it always maintains it’s resistance the whole time.

20140216-233917.jpg“Oh hey, what’s up dad?!”

As you can see my kid photo bombed me while I was taking the picture of my hair. The pomade has a really great hold to it. And a nice, natural kind of shine to it. I was able to get a really nice rounded pomp with this pomade. One thing it didn’t do, and it’s only because it’s not greasy/tacky, was keep all the little hairs stuck together. They seemed to want to do their own thing. This generally happens whenever I use a waxy pomade. With some they’re all over the place, and with others they are somewhat controllable. This pomade allows for slight control, but they don’t stick to my other hairs.

I went out to run a few errands, mailing off orders, store, lunch, and I was outside for a few hours. Yeah it’s winter, but in AZ that doesn’t mean anything the past week has been mid to upper 80’s. So it was slightly warm outside, and there was a little breeze as well. When I got home I snapped another pic, this time free of any bombing by my son. To my surprise my hair hadn’t really moved at all. It seemed slightly shorter and I had more of those little hairs sticking out, but it was still in the same place pretty much. I’m definitely like that about it! It seems to have a longer lasting and better hold than the testers I tried. I didn’t notice any difference in the shine at all, it seemed to stay the same.

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The buildup of this stuff is pretty strong. I’d say about 95% of it stayed in my hair. I only skimmed a little bit out of the tin for touch ups the second day. It seemed to hold just as good the second day a it did the first. Instead of just cleaning my scalp like I did after the first day, I decided to shampoo my hair and try and wash it out. I applied some JS Sloane moisturizing shampoo before I wet my hair and let it sit for a few minutes, then worked up a lather and rinsed it out. To my surprise, when I got out of the shower I noticed a little more than half the pomade had come out. So even with a non-clarifying shampoo this stuff comes out of your hair decently.

I will say I liked the build up on the third day after washing some out much better than the second. The second day was good, but the third day was better. I didn’t get any more height, but I had better control and less flyaways. This is definitely a pomade you guys should check out! All around a top quality pomade made by a great dude. Thank you again Chris, I really appreciate it! Head over to http://www.lonestarpomade.com and pick up a tin of this stuff. He’s got some new merch up on the site as well. So be sure to poke around and check everything out.

Keep it slick,

-JC

Reader’s Choice Top Pomades

Hey guys! Well after finally compiling the list of all the pomades you picked as your favorites and tallying them up, I finally have the list. This list is the top 15 pomades you guys chose asĀ being the best out there during the 2013 Christmas giveaway. I was very surprised to see my pomades on this list. I am so glad you guys like them enough to put them on this list!! Thank you!!!! Some of them were tied for certain places, so some will have more that one pomade. Here you go readers, here is the top pomades out there!

Top 15 Pomades – chosen by the readers

1. High Life – Voodoo Brews (1 & 2)

2. DAX – Wave and Groom

3. Frankengrease

4. Lockhart’s – Goon Grease

5. Black & White

6. Murray’s – Superior/The Iron Society/J Hillhouse & Co. Kustom Brew

7. Royal Crown Pomade/DAX – Green and Gold/Murray’s – Nu Nile

8. High Life – Heavy/Layrite – Super Hold/Silver Dollar Pomade/DAX – High & Tight awesome hold

9. Atomic Pomade

10. Sweet Georgia Brown(blue tin)/Dr. Rubin’s – Firm/Tres Flores(solid)/Shiner Gold

11. The Iron Society – firm/Layrite – Deluxe/Grandad’s Old Fashioned(original)

12. Royal Crown Hair Dressing/Tres Flores(molding)/Lockhart’s – Heavy & Medium/Suavecito Original & Firme

13. Cock Grease XX/Brylcreem/Murray’s – Super Light/DAX – Neat Waves

14. Mr. Ducktail/Blackjack – Double Down/Bona Fide/Grandad’s – Heavy/DAX – Super Neat

15. Dixie Peach/The Classics – 40’s/DAX – High & Tight awesome shine/Bees Knees Pomade(original)/Bone Crusher/Schmiere – Hart/High Life – Medium/DAX – Black Beeswax/Rob’s Chop Shop – Slick w50

All the rest of the choices were tied for 16th-20th place. However, as there were still about another 60-75 pomades I don’t think I need to list all of them. Plus that would just be too many to try and list on one post. Now a lot of my readers always ask me what my favorite pomade/pomades are. So I decided to make my list of my top 10 pomades and top 5 ringing gels/water bases for you. Just like your guys’ list mine has some that are tied for a certain place. My pomadesĀ aren’t included in my list, because I made them for what I wanted them to be and they are automatically my favorite pomades, as I made them for myself and what I wanted.

My Top 10 Pomades

1. Steel Toe Pomade

2. Dixie Peach/Tres Flores(solid)

3. High Life – Light/Medium

4. DAX – Green and Gold/Vegetable Oils Pomade/High & Tight awesome hold

5. Murray’s – Nu Nile/Hair Glo/Beeswax

6. Black & White(original and lite)

7. Schmiere – Mittel

8. The Iron Society(original and firm)

9. Royal Crown Pomade/Tuxedo Club Pomade

10. Bees Knees Pomade(original, lite, high sheen, and all the limited edition ones)

My Top 5 Water Bases/Ringing Gels

1. Cool Grease – Blue

2. Grant’s Golden Brand – Medium/Monkey Brains

3. Bona Fide

4. Layrite – Deluxe

5. JS Sloane – lightweight

I hope you guys enjoyed reading these lists and that you find some cool stuff to try out as a result of reading them!

Stay greasy,

-JC

Bees Knees Pomade – Lite

So Drew over at Bees Knees was doing this collection of tutorials for different hair styles using his pomades. He asked if a bunch of us would be interested in contributing. I of course said yes to help out my good friend and have some fun. I chose a parted pompadour and would use his lite pomade. Since I was doing that I figured I might as well just review it at the same time. I’ve already been using this one for a while though. I gave him some feedback when he was first formulating it so I’ve had it in my hair through the whole process. Now it’s time to review the finalized product! Here’s what it’s like.

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It comes in the same tin as all his other products do. The label is basically the same as the Original and High Sheen. There are a few changes though. The main one is the background is a light neon green color instead of the usual blues. I like this change up a lot. It’s nice to see fresh color schemes now and then. The next change is a pretty obvious one. It says “Lite Pomade” under the name. Other than those, the label is the exact same.

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Opening it up there isn’t much change at first either. It has the same golden yellow color as the Original. And it also has the same sent as the Original. You can tell by looking at the surface that it doesn’t quite have as much wax though. You can easily see that this one is a softer pomade.

The biggest difference is a very obvious one. This one is a lot lighter than all the other pomades. It has the familiar Bees Knees tackiness to it, but it’s not as tacky as the others. This one feels a little more greasy as well. You can see it has a similar look to the original, yet the softer feel is easily noticeable. I love the texture of this pomade. It feels more like a medium than a light, but it is significantly lighter than the others.

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It spreads around in your hands so perfectly! Takes about 5 seconds to make it feel like a light tacky grease. Very easily workable and spreadable. The scent really gets nice and strong when you spread the pomade around. It’s not like your normal pomade that softens up when you work it around either. It only softens up a little bit, then keeps a nice tacky feel to it. It goes in quite a bit easier than the Original does obviously, but it does have some resistance to it. It’s kind of like applying DAX’s high & tight awesome hold. Combing it in is a lot easier though. It feels like a nice medium grease when you comb it in.

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Hold wise, it’s not a light at all. It holds my hair like a solid medium pomade. I got a nice rounded medium pomp going with it. It allowed me to slick my sides down pretty good even though I have short hair right now. Definitely liking that a lot. I had a perfect part too. I get asked sometimes if I have a razored in part, or if I use a special comb or anything. I do not. It’s just a matter of combing with a wide toothed comb and splitting your hair along one of the lines it makes. It comes out looking super sharp and only takes about 5 seconds tops.

The hold lasts all day long too. I was surprised my hair didn’t move at all. For being as light as it is, it shouldn’t hold as well as it does. I’m thinking the tackiness comes into play with how well it holds. And man, the shine on this stuff!! It starts off as kind of a medium sheen, but at the end of the day it’s a nice high shine. Perfect for me! Medium hold that doesn’t move and a shine that gets better throughout the day. The buildup is with this pomade is great as well. Just enough comes out that it’s not overly greasy the following days.

Guys you have to try this pomade. It’s awesome!! There’s not one thing I didn’t like about it. It works great for a light pomade. It works great as a medium pomade. So if you like either of those types of pomades, buy this one. You can find it on
http://www.beeskneespomade.com
Drew also has a few other products on there as well. So check out the whole site while you’re there. Thanks again Drew!! I’ll be continuing the new stuff with the next pomade. It’s only been out for a little while now. And like this one I have tried it since it’s first tester installment and have been using it up until the final finished product. So I’m excited to test that one out!

Keep it greasy,

-JC