The Ultimate Guide To The Pompadour Hairstyle


Do you know what Franz Kafka, David Beckham, and James Dean have in common? Well, apart from being incredibly talented and famous, they’ve all had the same hairstyle at some point!

The pompadour is a distinct hairstyle that’s been around for a long time. It has stood the test of time and evolved over the years. Now, it’s a worldwide favorite, well known for radically changing a man’s look, and even adding to their height.

So, if you’ve heard the name pomp somewhere and are clueless about it, you’ve come to the right place. This guide will help you decide whether you should get a pompadour and everything you need to style it!

Introduction to the Pompadour

The pompadour has some interesting historical roots, which date all the way back to the 18th century.  The name might sound ridiculous, but it was inspired by royalty – more precisely, King Louis XV’s mistress, Madame Pompadour.

What started off as a giant and poofy hairstyle, then went on to become a popular hair statement for both men and women in the 20th century. However, it truly gained traction when Elvis began sporting it.

The pompadour is basically a bulk of the hair on the top that’s pushed back. The classic pomp hairstyle involved long, slicked back hair on the side, whereas the modern one keeps the sides short.

Either way, the voluminous pomp above stayed as a prominent feature.

The Different Pompadour Styles

The pompadour comes in different lengths, textures, and styles. You could even say that there’s a pomp for every personality!

Here’s a brief guide to the many pompadours to choose from:

The Pompadour Fade

The Pomp Fade is probably the most popular among this generation. It involves the usual pomp on top, with a buzz cut on the side.

This clean-cut hairstyle is ideal for men with thin or straight hair, and it’s pretty easy to maintain.

The Long Pompadour

This hairstyle, as its name suggests, involves medium to long hair for the ‘pomp’ on top. This allows more styling options and opportunities to play with your hair.

It’s also a good way to add height for men.

The Short Pompadour

The short pomp uses short hair for the top as well as the sides. This is for men who aren’t ready to commit to the extravagance but still want stylish hair.

It’s not very high maintenance and lets you grow your hair out without messing up the style.

The Side Part Pompadour

This style adds a twist to the normal pompadour – with the top hair being parted on the side. This is a very neat and smooth hairdo, that gives a unique, angled look.

The side part makes the hair easy to maintain, and even more so with the help of a little styling product.

The Textured Pompadour

Textured Pompadours are for men who want to go beyond the basics. It involves giving the top hair a tousled look that adds a rough edge to the hairstyle.

This is perfect for curly, wavy, and thick hair. But the style does involve the use of clay and paste and requires a bit of effort.

How to Style a Pompadour

The pompadour might seem intimidating to style, with its preceding reputation and bold statement.

In reality, though, all you need is some proper styling gels, a comb, and a blow dryer. According to Faveable, this can hardly be considered over the top unless you’ve never used any of these products before.

It does need more patience and timing to style compared to other hairdos. But with enough practice, it won’t take longer than 15 minutes.

So, if you’re scared about the styling aspect, don’t worry. Here’s a detailed guide for setting the pompadour the right way and keeping it in shape all day long.

Pre-Styling Preparation

The pompadour is best styled right after a shower. Make sure that your hair is clean and conditioned, and does not contain any oil, dirt, or product.

Then, dry your hair gently with a towel. At this point, if you have very thick hair that’s tough to style, you should add a bit of pomade, wax, or clay. This should be done on damp hair but is not a necessary step.

Drying the Hair

Blow dry your hair on a high heat setting with and low air flow.  To the hair on top, move the blow dryer in an up and down motion.

This heat is not mandatory, but it certainly helps to set the pom up to a good height. For the hair on the sides, dry it in a downward motion to keep it set back.

Setting the Pomp

Once your hair is dry, add a pea-sized dollop of pomade onto to your hand. Warm the pomade up a bit by rubbing it in your hands. Then, put your hand with the product through your hair and make sure it’s equally distributed.

Remember, too much pomade will make you look like a clown. A little goes a long way. So, start off with a small amount, and only add more if you really need it.

Afterward, you use your comb to set your side hair neatly down and your top hair back. If your top hair isn’t going back as easily, it’s a sign that you need more product.

Finishing Touches

Your hair will now be a little wet, and setting up in a shape. When it’s nearly dry, but not quite, hold up the long hair at the front with a comb. Then, blow dry some more to add height. After this, you can sleek it back in the shape of the pomp again.

For the finishing touches, you should lightly comb back any wayward hairs that have come loose. Afterward, add hair spray so that the style stays on longer. You can also lightly add a bit more hair product over your hair.

Product Advice for the Pomp

You don’t always have to use pomade for styling your pomp. In fact, you need to use different products depending on the style of pompadour that you have.

For an extra sleek look, a high shine pomade is all that’s needed. But for a more textured look, it’s best to use a hair wax that has medium to strong holding strength.

In case you want a textured look with less of sculpted pomp, you could use a texturizing clay, paste, or cream. For this style, it’s wise to avoid adding the hairspray at the end, or at least not so generously.

You could also use a salt spray instead of your pomade for a more relaxed “didn’t try too hard” look.  This won’t stay for a long time and might need to be brushed away. But we think it’s totally worth it for those smoldering beachy vibes.

Extra Styling Tips

A pompadour sounds amazing so far, doesn’t it? But hold on! Before you go ahead and cut your hair, here are some extra styling tips to consider.

Hair Length

The pomp is best for men that have a decent amount of hair. Even considering the short pompadour, you’ll need at least 4 to 6 inches of hair on top.

So, unfortunately for those of you with thinning hair, it might not be a flattering look.

Face Shape

Ideally, the pompadour is meant for faces with wide jaws and high cheekbones. But for people who don’t have these features, there is a way around.

Longer faces are usually given longer hair on the sides, until the crown of the head. Rounder faces, on the other hand, are more suited to shorter hair on the sides and back.

Beard or No Beard?

If you have a beard and you’re thinking about getting a pompadour, we say, go for it!

Although most celebrities sported the look with a clean-shaven face, this doesn’t mean that a beard will look bad with it.

In fact, a beard can actually make your pomp look even better. But it is important to maintain the hair balance.

So, if you’ve got a round face, the hair on top should typically be of the same length as your beard.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know all about the pompadour, it’s time to make a decision!

This hairstyle is a mix of handsome, hot, and sophisticated, all in one. It says a lot about your personality and will definitely gain the attention of the ladies.

Of course, you should always get your hair cut by a professional barber. There’s no other way out, or else it might turn into a disaster.

But do consider this cool cut and look up a few images yourself. You never know, you might just end up getting the hairstyle of your dreams!

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