Pomade is a hair product you apply to style your hair. It can be greasy, waxy or a water-based substance. The original ointment formula was mixed with mashed apples. Modern pomades are often scented in many ways.
Back in the 19th century, the main ingredient in the pomade is the bear fat. You can imagine it may take you a bit of work to wash it off your hair.
Then petroleum, lard, and beeswax mainly replace bear fat as the main ingredients in the early 20th century. Back in the time, film idols were well portrayed with these well-combed all back look.
In 1950s, people are amazed by Elvis’s signature popmpadour hairstyle.
Up till today, many celebrities like Leonardo Dicaprio, John Mayer, Justin Timberlake …. use pomades are used to make this slick, well groomed looks.
Difference between wax and pomade
Traditionally, the difference would be pomades gave the hair a slicker, shinier appearance, while wax gave a looser, more texturized and matte finish.
Nowadays, the difference may be hard to tell as many pomades contain beeswax. Also, there are a lot of water based pomades which would give you a rather matte finish.