My Favorite New Curly Hair Product Is Made for Dudes
Because your curls don't care what color the bottle is.
When we get a new curly hair product in the office, it always finds its way onto my desk. As the resident curl person on our #ShapeSquad, I'm honored to be the voice of a hair texture (not saying I deserve that role, but I try to do it justice) and give every product that comes my way a fair shot.
Over the years, I've found a handful I love—Controlled Chaos Curl Creme, Ouidad VitaCurl+ Gel-Cream, and Kevin Murphy's Killer Curls, just to name a few—but my newest favorite is noteworthy mostly because it feels like a mini rebellion. Because it's technically for dudes.
Meet my new hair boyfriend, Harry's Taming Cream (Buy It, $8, walmart.com).
You may have heard of Harry's because they started as direct-to-consumer razor brand (think: Billie meets Dollar Shave Club), and have grown into shower and hair products as well, which they designed by conducting interviews and product testing with thousands of men.
While they may have created this cream with dudes in mind, that wasn't going to stop me from trying it. They already have the upper hand on the wage gap, political representation, and, ya know, the patriarchy—I wasn't about to let them have better looking hair, too.
While some curly peeps opt to really lock down their ringlets, I'm more on team ~wild and free~. Since my curls are unruly but not very thick, gels usually weigh it down too much and mousses tend to give it a weird crunchiness and puff. But this product to my hair is like Goldilocks to oatmeal—just right. It's super lightweight, a tiny bit runny (so it's easier to spread through my long hair), and dries with the perfect amount of control. Bonus: The cream has an amazing barely-there scent with hints of coconut and herb.
To use it, I first towel-dry my hair, spritz in a little Ouai leave-in conditioner (Buy It, $26, sephora.com), and then run a nickel-size amount of Harry's Taming Cream from mid-strand to ends, flipping upside down to lightly scrunch and smooth it over pieces that frame my face. Then, I let it air dry.
Good news: If you accidentally put in too much product, it doesn't get weird and sticky a là Something About Mary (curly people, you know). It dries naturally and shakes out within a pretty short period of time even if you accidentally go overboard. The consistent result is bouncy, soft curls that feel like they have nothing in them. (So when people touch your hair expecting it to be a literal thornbush, they'll instead "ooooh" and "ahh." True story.) Harry's pegs their Taming Cream as having a soft hold and natural finish that will "rein in belligerent hair without tamping down your natural look." My belligerent hair and I can attest: They're right on the money.
Another great plus?? My new hair bae is a cheap date: While my other favorite curl creams run from $24 to $37 per bottle (!!), this Harry's pick is only about 1/4 of the price for a similar quantity, if not more. They pride themselves on offering "fair" prices, which they can pull off because they own their own factory in Germany which prevents extra mark-ups.
While that all sounds fine and dandy, it also sounds to me like this is what life would be like minus the pink tax. If bypassing the glitter- and flower-covered bottles in the drugstore to buy male-marketed hair and beauty items is going to save me that much $$$, I might switch over all my go-to products.
This also begs the question: Why are we gendering personal hygiene products anyways? While some products do exist to acknowledge inherent biological differences between the two sexes (say, menstrual cups), unnecessarily gendering products that could be used by any human just presents an opportunity to unfairly increase prices, reinforce gender stereotypes, and make things uncomfortable for people who fall outside the traditional binary gender model. We all have skin and hair and eyes and teeth; coloring a bottle pink or blue doesn't mean there's anything different on the inside that makes it better for one sex or the other. (Fired up? Keep reading: What's Very Wrong with How This Brand Marketed Condoms Towards Women)
So, yeah, I'm going to keep using my Harry's Taming Cream and my curls will look fabulously non-gendered—and I might just pick up some of their "dude-approved" razors and shampoo while I'm at it too.