Whether or not you have a favorite pomade, gel, clay, or paste, we believe that every guy's lineup should also include some of the best hair cream for men. A super lightweight, you-can-barely-tell-it's-there styler. Why? Because many (most?) hairstyles don't require heavier high-hold products. Because sometimes you just need some light follicular coating and not a full-on shellacking.
These lightweight hair creams are a lot like leave-in conditioners, but with the lightest touch of shine and sculptability. They'll accentuate and control curls without compromising volume. They'll tame the unruly long hairs that stray from the flock. They provide direction and definition but never leave it feeling firm or crusty. And if you’ve got thinning hair, some products can texturize without suffocating or weighing it down, and the best hair cream for men is also often packed with nourishing, fortifying ingredients. If you aren’t sure where to start, then peruse our favorite lightweight heavy hitters below.
The Best Styling Cream For Long, Thick Hair
The fuller your hair, the harder it can be to manage—even if all you want is baseline control. V76's ultralight cream achieves this in thicker, longer locks without giving off the appearance that any product has been applied at all. A healthy dose of shine-free oils—sweet almond, cedar leaf, and jojoba—condition simultaneously, making this product terrific for a beard in need of some hydration and control too. Best of all, 5 ounces is just $20.
The Best Ultralight Styling Cream
Oribe’s styling cream moisturizes to keep your hair healthy without adding any weight—it's a must-have for guys with even a slight hint of curl or wave. There's a good reason you'll find top-tier stylists stocking up on this stuff: "Crème for Style" gives a slightly higher hold than the other products here, making it perfect for teasing out a bit more texture, or tamping things down for a hard-parted slicked-back style.
The Best Styling Cream for Growing Your Hair Out
If you're growing your hair out and need a good cream to take you from medium to longer (and in turn, to avoid all those awkward hat-wearing months between), then stock up on Fellow's styling cream. It's terrific for all textures and keeps hair hydrated and healthy for the long haul, even as you work out the rookie kinks of this long journey.
The Best Styling CreamFor Added Texture
Some cream stylers deliver volume and definition. That's the case with Rahua's texturizing lotion: One pump gives you some serious lift and separation, especially ideal in medium- and long-length styles. It's also perfect for guys with thinning hair who want to plump up what they do have, so as to maximize their potential without weighing anything down.
The Best Hair Cream For Curls
$12.00, Scotch Porter
If you have curls or coils, then you need to focus on moisture. There's nothing better than a curl cream for this, which is best achieved with Scotch Porter's leave-in conditioner. It keeps curls defined, hydrated, buoyant, and controlled.
The Best Styling Cream For Frizz and Flyaways
An anti-frizz cream can condition and tame the hair so that it doesn't frizz, split, or poof. This dual styler and conditioner from Living Proof gives your hair a natural product-free texture while also delivering some stealth humidity defense.
The Best Hair Cream For Medium Hold and High Shine
Unlike all the squeezable and pumpable picks from this list, Hanz de Fuko's styling cream comes in a small jar, particularly since it's too dense to dispense. That extra mass delivers a medium hold (as opposed to light ones from most on this roster), but it still wears lightly in your hair. It promises a medium-to-high sheen, too. Because "Scheme Cream" is quite similar to a hair paste, it delivers pliable, reworkable style.
Our picks for the best creams, pastes, waxes, pomades, and more—everything you need to get your hair pointed in the right direction every morning.
Originally Appeared on GQ