Have you ever wondered if your edge control gel is actually good for your natural hair? Continue reading to learn how it can benefit your hairstyle quick, fast and in a hurry!
Edge control gel can do wonders for a natural hairstyle, whether it’s used to sleek a fresh braid install or to quickly spruce up a stretched twist out that is on its last legs. Edge control can really help you achieve a more polished look, but is it better than using an actual hair gel? Continue reading to find out more.
This post is all about edge control gel.
What Is Edge Control Gel?
Edge control is a unique product specifically designed to tame flyway’s and add shine to the hair for a really slick, sleek and/or neater look. It is typically a firmer consistency when compared to a traditional hair gel, in that it has the stiffness of a pomade.
Edge control can take your hairstyle from dull to shiny or help to revamp an old looking hairstyle into looking refreshed, with the right application technique. It is commonly used to smooth, sculpt and lay the hair down (more specifically, the baby hairs at the hair line).
Not only is this dual product great for laying down baby hairs, but you can also use it to tame flyaway’s as well. Just think about those blow outs, twist outs and or braid outs that you’ve done that may have been on it’s last legs overtime. Edge control gel can help whip those styles right back into place with one simple pass.
Is Edge Control Better Than Gel?
It really depends on what you are going for. Both edge control and gel are phenomenal products in their own right, but it depends on the style, amount of hold and flexibility you desire when it comes time to decide which product is best for you at that particular moment.
Edge control has more of a firm, semi-solid, waxy, jam texture and can produce a firm hold that wears off over the course of a few days before you need to reapply. Traditional hair gel is more fluid in texture and often considered “wet” in feel, but is typically used to style hair into form and not be further manipulated for days at a time.
Restyling hair that has been gelled down can often result in flakes, because once the gel dries it is pretty much sets into place until wash day. Hair that is laid down with edge control can typically be restyled after a day or two without flaking and the hair is flexible enough where it will give you the ability to style and restyle as often as you like.
It is important to note that all edge control and gels are not created equal, so depending on what look you are going for, you will have to determine whether on not you’ll need a soft, medium or firm hold.
Does Edge Control Damage Your Hair Line?
If not used sparingly, edge control on the hair line can certainly cause breakage. This is because the hair that forms along the perimeter of the head (also known as your edges) are very delicate and are often a lot finer than the hair typically found in other parts of our head.
Because this product is thick like a pomade, it does a great job of sculpting the hair into place, but if you are not careful you run the risk of it snatching the hair out of its follicle or breaking it off when trying to smooth it down.
Be mindful that if your edges are thinning out whether it be due to constant rough or tight manipulation, always opt out of using edge control or any heavy hair gels. The hair is delicate and in a compromised condition, so slathering on a thick layer of gel or pomade might not be the best idea if your are trying to grow your baby hairs back.
How Do You Use Edge Control Gel?
The best way to use edge control gel is on dry hair and with an edge control brush for precise sculpting. You will notice that for many hairstyles, especially for box braids, the edge control is placed at the root of the hair where the braid is parted to help smooth down hair for added shine and taming of flyaways.
You may also notice that for many natural protective hairstyles, the baby hairs are often purposely left out of the actual installation of the style, giving special attention to the application and design of this section, once the edge control gel is applied.
You can also use the product on loose hairstyles too, by just lightly dabbing the product on your finger tips and warming it up in the palm of your hands before gliding over the areas that have frizzed out to the point of no return. For an in depth look at the best edge controls for 4c hair, click here to see the list.
Should You Wash It Off Every Night?
It is important to note that keeping edge control on your hair line more specifically, might not be the best idea. It can clog your scalp and create product buildup overtime, which can hinder hair growth in this area.
A good practice is to rinse out or gently cleanse with a very mild cleanser (maybe a co-wash), to remove any product build up. The best way to apply edge control is on clean, dry hair, so it helps to have a fresh application on each use.
By applying on fresh hair and hair that doesn’t have edge control gel cacked on from three nights ago, you also avoid it turning white overtime, flaking and becoming tangled.
What Is A Good Alternative To Edge Control?
If you really don’t want to apply any product to your edges, the alternative choice is to use good old H20, also known as water!
Gently mist your hair over with water and place a hair milk or hair butter lightly throughout. Place your satin scarf and leave it on for at least 30minutes (this works best if kept on overnight).
This method will have your baby hairs laid temporarily and your flyaways at bay for the moment, but remember that it may not last without using a product that provides some added hold.
Final Thoughts On Edge Control Vs. Gel
Remember that edge controls or gels are definitely two products that are NOT necessities in your hairstyle, but they come in handy should you choose to use them. Use very little when applying, especially on the hairline, as a little typically goes a long way. You will want to use a moisturizing clarifying shampoo at the end of the week, to ensure that all the product has been washed off properly.
Follow up with your favorite deep conditioner to make sure your hair continues to be healthy, strong and elastic. For a list of the best deep conditioners for low porosity hair, click here to find the one best for you.
Edge controls work best if you are looking to manipulate or tame frizzy hair throughout the week, while gels tend to form a cast when dried. This can make it difficult to continuously apply during the week, without ripping through the set hair or causing excesses flaking.
No matter which one you choose to use, remember that they are both great options but choosing one over the other depends on the look you’re going for and how much flexibility you want. Many people will tend to use both, by applying the gel to the main bulk of their hair (like for a wash and go for instance) and then using an edge control gel only at the hair line.
Comment below your favorite way to tame flyways! Which products are you using in your regimen when you want a sleeker look?
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