Look, I get it. You probably didn’t spring out of bed this morning all giddy to bone up on a new hair care routine for men.
But while it’s not necessarily the most intriguing topic, it is one of the most important if you want to keep that billowy mane intact now and in the future. From choosing the best haircut for your head shape to curating an arsenal of products, the details matter. Hair oils, conditioners, shampoos, pomades… if it touches your hair, some thought should be put into it.
Or better yet, just sit back, relax, and let me do the thinking part. Herewith: The best hair care routine for men that you’ll ever see. Today. That you’ll ever see today.
To nail down the best hair care routine for men, I began by poring over dozens of product comparisons, customer reviews, expert opinions, and my own experience. The resulting tips, steps, and products were picked to appeal to a wide range of men with a wide range of hair types and styles.
Favorite Products For Building a Hair Care Routine
Tame Your Mane: 6-Step Hair Care Routine For Men
You’re here for a reason, and that reason is to baby step your way into the ultimate hair care routine for men. Incoming: six crucial steps to help get you started.
What’s the right shampoo? Thought you’d never ask. The right shampoo is the one that works best for your particular scalp and hair type. Whether you have oily, dry, or regular hair, there’s a product out there with your specific needs in mind. Regardless of where you fall on the spectrum, you’re almost always better off avoiding products that use harsh chemicals and ingredients. For the best results, opt for shampoos made with all-natural ingredients.
What to do: Contrary to popular (or once-popular) belief, washing your hair every day isn’t necessarily the way to go. Even if your hair is on the oily side, washing it every other day is more than adequate. Guys with dry or normal hair — or those with thick and wavy hair — can get away with washing it every three days or so.
What to use: If you’re looking for a natural, wallet-friendly, gentle, rejuvenating shampoo to lean on (and who isn’t), you’ll find it in Oars + Alps’ Invigorating Shampoo. Its witch hazel will soothe even the driest of scalps while other all-natural ingredients like tea tree oil and menthol provide a cool, tingling sensation on your scalp.
What to consider: If you’re still walking into the nearest drug store and picking up the first cheap bottle of shampoo you see… for shame. Whether you have long hair, short hair, or no hair, there’s a product (correction: several products) made just for you. Shampoos formulated to benefit oily hair won’t be ideal for those with dry scalps and vice-versa. Take the time to suss out the best shampoo for your specific needs. Your hair can thank me later.
Especially if you value the health, strength, and continued growth of your hair. No matter the esteem you hold conditioner in, no hair care routine for men is complete without it.
What to do: As a reformed conditioner-avoider myself, I get it. Using a quality conditioner sometimes feels like extra credit. Quite the contrary, though, it’s a vital step to maintaining the overall health of your hair. All it takes is a coin-size dollop two or three times a week and you’re good to go.
What to use: When it comes to hair care for men, it bears repeating that you shouldn’t skip the conditioner step. Here with the assist is a bit of grooming-routine pampering in the form of Triumph & Disaster’s Conditioner. The 100% natural formula is easy on your hair and features a cucumber and mint scent that’s as invigorating as it is inviting.
What to consider: If you have short or close-cropped hair, you’ll only need to apply a dollop of conditioner two to three times a week. If you’re a longer-haired guy, consider increasing the frequency depending on the length and oil composition of your mane. And if you have a hard time remembering to use conditioner in the shower, don’t sleep on the many outstanding leave-in conditioners out there.
At a minimum, the best hair care routine for men should include one visit to the barbershop every month. Getting regular haircuts helps promote healthier hair, sure. But almost as importantly, it just feels good to be properly groomed. The mental and physical benefits are tough to deny.
And whether you have curly hair, straight, thin, or thick hair, any barber worth their salt will be able to recommend a beneficial hair product that may not have been on your radar. Hair powder, for instance. Heard of that? Protip: If your barber happens to sprinkle some Slick Gorilla Hair Styling Powder on your head, just go with it. Volume, texture, and compliments won’t be far behind.
Shampoo: check. Conditioner: check. Regular barbershop visits: check.
Yes, checking off all of those boxes is crucial. But if the products and services you’re using aren’t right for your specific hair type and face shape, it’s all for naught. If you have thin, longer hair that tends to fall limp if left to its own devices, for instance, you may want to consider a quality hair clay or paste to help give it an extra boost of volume. My mane more or less fits that description and has found solace in American Crew’s high-hold Fiber.
Beyond product considerations, choosing the right hairstyle is largely a judgment call for the self-aware. At the end of the day, only you know which styles and lengths will look good on top of that dome of yours.
Now, this part can get a bit tricky for the uninitiated. Honing in on the right products for your hair care routine is going to take some time and some trial and error, but you’ve got this.
What to do: Hopefully by now you’ve got a sense of what you like in a hair product, from its texture and scent to its recommended use and ingredients. All that’s left to do now is choose from the seemingly endless products out there. Easy, right? Not so much. But start with the basics like an excellent shampoo, conditioner, and styling product, then take things from there.
What to use: We’ve already covered my recommended shampoo, conditioner, and pomade. Other products you might want to consider are hair gels (you’ll find plenty of options for normal or thin hair), hair oils, and hair waxes.
What to consider: Keep in mind that different hair products have different textures, from semi-oily to firm. If you like a light finishing product, Baxter of California’s Thickening Style Gel will serve you well. As with other products, all-natural ingredients are likely to be more gentle on all skin and hair types.
There’s no right or wrong way to style your hair. It’s all about what makes you feel good and what makes you comfortable. But also, you know… try not to look like an asshole.
What to do: Short of coming over there and tousling your hair myself (which… nah), you’re more or less on your own for this one. Take what you’ve learned here and play around with different products that you think will work. Rinse. Repeat. Enjoy.
What to use: If you have thin, limp hair like yours truly, you’ll need a sturdy pomade or other styling product with some legs. Hair powder is a fine option, but not my personal go-to. In the past, I’ve used American Crew’s high-hold Fiber. But if you’re looking for something a bit lighter and gentler, Tea Tree’s vegan Shaping Cream is a strong choice.
What to consider: Establishing any successful routine takes time, so start experimenting with quality yet affordable products. If something’s irritating your skin or just not working, scrap it and try something else. Once you’ve identified a type of product that works—be it a water-based pomade or dandruff shampoo—then you can start getting serious about graduating to higher-quality products.
Tips For A Good Hair Care Routine
Tip 1: Don’t Overwash Your Hair
I used to never take this advice and washed my hair every time I stepped in the shower — which was and still is every day. I’ve long since realized the error of my ways and now wash closer to four or five times a week, which is still more than is often recommended.
Baby steps. To keep your hair healthy and avoid brittleness or gradual thinning, you could easily get away with only washing two or three times per week.
Tip 2: Avoid Harsh Chemicals
When in doubt, choose products that use all-natural ingredients. Not only are they typically better for the environment, they’re also better for your hair. Harsh chemicals can dry out your scalp and hair, damaging it over time. They can also lead to skin irritation or general discomfort, depending on the product and the chemical makeup of your skin.
Tip 3: Experiment
Though I hope this list has helped you get started, it’s a general one. Ultimately, it’s up to you to take or leave certain guidance as you pay more attention to the length of your hair, whether it’s naturally dry or oily, and any number of other considerations.
Take what you’ve learned about hair care routines for men and put it to action by testing out various products and honing in from there. Trial and error will eventually lead you to your battle-tested, go-to hair care routine.
Why You Should Trust Us
As a fashion and grooming writer at FashionBeans, I compare, test, and research the products that make a gentleman a gentleman. If it can be worn, carried, or used in a way that elevates your look and feel, I’m into it. To put together this hair care routine for men, I pored over dozens of product comparisons, customer reviews, expert opinions, and my own experience. Ultimately, I want every guy to look great while focusing on the overall health and longevity of his hair.
Regardless of how much research you do before diving in, figuring out the best hair care routine is going to take some trial and error. The right products, textures, and frequency of application depend on the length of your hair, its chemical composition, and other factors. Start with the basics, do a little homework, and experiment with different products over time to hone in on a winning routine.