Wool caps arrive with the cold, and crazy hair arrives with the wool caps. Though important to your survival – you’ll get cold fast if you don’t hat up – beanies are the natural enemy of anyone who uses a comb. For solutions to the seasonal problem of hair that’s full of static electricity, we turned to Chase Danielle, head barber at The Modern Man Barber in Portland, Oregon, a town that’s no stranger to the watch cap.
Chief among the annoyances caused by hats is the static cling that makes your hair look like it’s trying to run away – a problem exacerbated by high-quality wool caps. Danielle recommends that, on colder days, you use hydrating shampoo because dry hair is more likely to get frizzy. And, no, soaking your head isn’t going to get the job done. “Never put your hat on wet hair because it will lock your hair into whatever shape it takes beneath that hat for the rest of the day,” says Danielle.
If you’re going to fight frizz with water, wait until after you remove the hat, then get your hands damp (not soaking), and run them through your hair to maneuver it back into shape. “If you’ve used a water-soluble pomade, cream, or gel, your hair will cooperate. If you’ve used a petroleum-based one, your hair will be stubborn and won’t move,” Danielle explains. The water-soluble products we recommend are Baxter of California Hard Cream Pomade for thinner hair, Claymation from Hanz de Fuko for average hair, and Imperial Barber Classic Pomade for robust, thick hair.
Another trick – if your hair proves relentlessly enthusiastic – is to rub the inside of your hat with a dryer sheet before you put it on. That hat will smell great and the static charge will be less powerful. If even that does help, you might want to consider avoiding wool and try out a beanie with a fleece lining. We like Patagonia’s sweater-knit beanie, but many similar models look better suited to the slopes than to your commute. Still, they all look better than wild man hair. [Hard Cream Pomade, $18; baxterofcalifornia.com]