With the recent surge of men's grooming in the last several years (thanks fleeting metrosexual phase!), more and more products are now readily available for today's discerning men. Even my 20-year old cousin (who should be more concerned about his internship, young man!) is particular about what he buys, especially for his hair. If there's any product men are going to have a fuss over, it's what they use to manage their locks.
I wanted to give John Allan some love before the end of the year to celebrate the brand's 20th anniversary. I have always liked John Allan. The packaging and aesthetics—very simple and modern— is quite reflective of their no-frills, clean products. The popularity of the brand all began with the opening of the first full-service service salon for men in 1988 (he's known to be the pioneer in men's grooming... seriously, how often were men giving other men manicures back then?) and the shop became quite hot when an editor at GQ stumbled in one day, completely impressed and giving the shop exposure in editorial. John Allan also built a Foundation where his charities have raised nearly $100,000 for Hurricane Katrina victims, which gives him bonus points.
What I like about the products is that they contain vitamins, botanicals and marine plant extracts and they don't make crazy claims to vie for your attention. My favorite is the Matte pomade (of the three selections offered). What's unique about this water-based pomade is that it contains several botanical extracts (orange flower, lemongrass, lime and grapefruit) which nourishes and conditions the hair and scalp. Lanolin also moisturizes. And the product is at the soft medium when it comes to application. I'm not a fan of gel and hairspray (too much alcohol) and molding clay is a little too harsh. This pomade is perfect as you don't really feel like there is product in your hair, and it makes your hair feel so soft, doesn't dry it out and doesn't flake.
Ingredients in John Allan's Matte Pomade
Water (Aqua), Oleth-20, Glycerin, PVP, Paraffin, Zea Mays (Corn) Starch, Alumium Starch Octenylsuccinate, Steareth-2, Isosteareth-20, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Emulsifying Wax NF, Propylene Glycol, Lanolin, Alcohol, Stearic Acid, Sodium Magnesium Silicate, Benzophenone-4, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Flower Extract, Benzophenone-3, Cymbopogon Schoenanthus Extract, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Fruit Extract, Methyl Gluceth-20, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Fruit Extract, Hamamelis Virginiana.