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This $20 Pomade Makes My Cheap Haircuts Look Fancy

O’douds Apothecary Matte Hair Paste
O’douds Apothecary Matte Hair Paste
Graphic: Shep McAllister

I’ve used some hair product, since I was an acne-flecked teen. Some of that has been regrettable. This pomade is not.

I first found this pomade at a fancy salon, when a barber made me look handsome; no easy task. They credited O’Doud’s Matte Paste, which I promptly bought from them for $40, and felt happy about.

The pomade worked; my fancy haircut lasted. Later, it also made my cheap haircuts look fancy with every use. This pomade was a magical glue, holding longer and going on smoother, with fewer clumps and problems than anything else I’d tried.

It’s also less expensive than I knew. As it happens, the Fancy Boy Haircut Place isn’t a great place for retail shopping; this pomade is actually less than $20 on Amazon. That’s an even better deal.


Now, besides the fact that the pomade works better than any other, I want to address one controversial advantage.

It makes me smell good.

I know, I know: you don’t want your pomade to smell like anything; you want a clean, simple product.

That’s what I thought too. But you’re wrong.

I understand the instinct, and the skepticism, but it is good that this pomade has a little something to it in the olfactory department. Striving for plain is sometimes more foolish than aiming for more. Think of a plain bagel, or a plain slice of pizza. Sure, it’s safe, but is it memorable? Hell no.

This pomade is like a sesame bagel, or a slice of pizza with a bit of chili flakes on it. It’s not overpowering; it’s subtle. But the small extra touch makes an enormous difference in a crowded field of pomade also-rans.


So, what’s it smell like? It smells like Don Draper smiling, in an uncharacteristically good mood on a sunny day. Or, a little like baby powder. It’s pleasant, vaguely warm, and confident, but not the pseudo-masculine posturing way you’d find from over-eager brands. It’s not tobacco, whiskey, or god forbid, bacon-scented; it’s a subtle and nice addition.

So: try this pomade; make your hair look fancy, all day, and smell good. It should last you like four months for twenty bucks; maybe more like six months, if you don’t go as wild as I do.

Look handsomer than you should, smell better than you do.

That’s the pomade promise.


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