Is Hair Gel Bad for Your Hair?

After many advances in the haircare industry, hair gel remains one of the most popular and effective products for maintaining beautiful hairstyles, thanks to its holding power. Useful for anyone looking to shape their hair, sculpt a cleaner look or even define curls, hair gel is infinitely useful.

But despite its utility, hair gel can get tricky if you use too much of it or in the wrong way. It’s important to follow some golden rules when using this strong-hold product to get the best results.

But don’t worry! We wrote a guide explaining everything you need to know about hair gel, when and how to use it and whether it’s bad for your hair overall.

Table of Contents

    A Short History of Hair Gel

    Hair gel is a gelatinous product used to achieve specific hairstyles by holding strands of hair in place. It’s been on the market for almost a century and it’s still going strong, giving users the ability to hold their hair in place for hours on end — potentially until the next washing. 

    Over the years, companies have produced new formulas for hair gel. These days, there are a wide variety of products to choose from depending on your styling desires and your hair type. 

    For example, when most people think of gel, they think of the wet and shiny look. But today, you have options that give your hair a dry, matte appearance, holding your style in place with a natural look. There are also various hold strengths ranging from a slight hold to a maximum hold.

    Can Everyone Use Hair Gel?

    Pretty much anyone can benefit from hair gel to help achieve their desired style, whether their hair is thick, fine, straight or curly. 

    And while almost everyone can use hair gel, not all products are created equal. Many brands have alcohol in their formula, for example. But if you have healthy hair, don’t be afraid to use hair gel. Just check the ingredients and choose one that’s best for your hair type and the style you’re after. 

    What Happens if You Use Gel the Wrong Way

    Despite the drying effects of alcohol, there are still a lot of brands that use it in their hair gel formulas. Regardless of hair type, alcohol can dry out your hair, but it’s especially bad if your hair is wavy or curly. This happens because the alcohol seeps into the roots of your hair, eliminating essential nutrients and leaving your hair brittle and dry.

    As with any beauty product, using too much of it is also harmful. If you’re applying a lot of hair gel every day — especially if the product has a lot of alcohol — it may cause stiffness and dryness. Start with a little gel at first and then slowly add more until you achieve your desired style and hold. 

    How to Choose the Right Hair Gel

    As you might have guessed, the first step to choosing a good hair gel is to avoid any products that contain alcohol. 

    Next, pay attention to the degree of hold you need. If you want a rigid style that stays for hours, you’ll want a product with a high degree of hold. If you want your hair to have a little more flexibility, go with a gel with a lighter hold. 

    Finally, choose the gel that matches the look you’re going for. Options range from ultra-shiny to completely natural and everything in between. Between appearance and hold, there are plenty of products to choose from, so you might find you’ll need to test a few to find the right look.

    Prose’s new custom Styling Gel takes the guesswork out of finding the right gel. Simply take the consultation and you’ll get matched with a custom gel formula that’s specific to your hair needs, environment, lifestyle, and more!

    Taking Care of Your Hair and Using Gels Safely

    As with any haircare routine, you’ll want to invest in the overall health of your care. You can do so by following just a few important steps: 

    Have Questions About Which Products To Use? Consult Prose!

    It’s normal to have doubts if you’re using the right products to achieve a healthy and beautiful hairstyle. There are so many options on the market, with so many different formulas, that it’s not hard to get lost and use the wrong product.

    With these challenges in mind, Prose’s mission is to help you better understand the needs of your hair and create customized products to meet your specific styling and haircare needs.

    Get started today with our haircare consultation. Simply answer a few questions about your lifestyle and hair goals, and in a few minutes, you’ll have a personalized product from Prose with all the ingredients you need to leave your hair more beautiful and healthy than ever before.

    ONLY GOOD HAIR DAYS—Think of us as your partner in haircare. Start with our innovative consultation.GET YOUR FORMULA