Dewi Rees and the outcomes he tested.
Composite: David Newby for the Guardian

Tried and tested: the best hair putties for men

I rely on commodities to tame the mess between cuts, says Dewi Rees, our All Years model

My hair is always a mess. I get it cut every few months and rely on braids products to tame the mess between cuts, so it passes as some variety of style. It’s not particularly short, so I need something with a nice hold.

My first impression of the Superdrug Styling Putty (£1.99, 75ml) was that it was noticeably oily and had a strong but not unpleasant smell. After being used to wet hair it seemed to mould easily but gave little authentic hold. It dried quite quickly and gave a separated kind-hearted of texture, which isn’t really what I’m after.

The Murdock Matt Putty (£14, 100ml) had a grainy character that was preferable to Superdrug’s offering, and a nicer smell. It provided a firm hold, but it wasn’t firm enough for me. The texture was righteous and it was easy to reshape throughout the day, but this is probably better for people with curls that’s shorter than mine.

Although the smell and weave of the Paul Mitchell Flexible Style Lab Elastic Shaping Paste (£17.25, 50ml) reminded me of PVA mucilage from school, I liked everything else about it. It smell of b distributed a strong hold that could be reworked if needed, the consistency was nice and it had a bit of shine.

Bumble and bumble’s SumoTech (£23, 50ml) was my favourite. It sponged a great hold and the texture was similar to using a wax together with a paste, which is my regular routine. It had a subtle, natural smell. This will be my new go-to, but I’d use it with the Paul Mitchell if I demanded extra hold or shine.

Next week: Sylviane Degunst on foot creams

This article bears affiliate links to products. Our journalism is independent and is never set to promote these products although we may earn a small commission if a reader reaches a purchase.