What's Going on with Natural Hair and Pomades?


I have been noticing the increase in the amount of pomades on the natural hair market. I was wondering a possible reason why this could be happening, when many pomades (especially commercial ones) contain petroleum jelly. As a natural, I already know that petroleum (or petrolatum) jelly is not my friend because it can clog the pores of my scalp. But, not all pomades contain this ingredient.They may also contain wax. The idea of not using pomades on my scalp is far from the one instilled in me and most African Americans as a kid to "grease my scalp". The good thing is that there are other possible uses for pomades that contain petroleum jelly, and I will discuss it a little later.

Dictionary.com defines the word "pomade" as being "a scented ointment, especially one used for the scalp or dressing the hair." The most important word is "dressing". Most pomades are used for styling purposes. Because they are heavier than most hair products, they can protect against frizz and smooth the hair. As a result, you don't have to always use gel for your hair style.

Another use for pomades (that contain petroleum jelly) is as a sealant. You can apply a moisturizer, water, or leave-in conditioner to your hair and then apply the pomade on top to seal the moisture into your hair, especially your ends). Essential oils and Shea Butter can also be used as sealants. Pomades are big hits in the winter because their formulas are heavy and can protect the hair against drying out (when applied properly) from the extreme cold. Some pomades can also be used for your your skin, especially the ones with petroleum jelly.

I must also add that if you are going to use a petroleum based pomade, keep in mind that it also may cause build up on your hair. I would advise to do your research when deciding to use it for both your hair and your skin. Check the ingredients of the products that you want to purchase.


Do you use pomades? If so, for what purpose?