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Matt Clay vs. Matt Paste

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Matt Clay vs. Matt Paste
There are three principal means of acquiring knowledge... observation of nature, reflection, and experimentation. Observation collects facts; reflection combines them; experimentation verifies the result of that combination.
Denis Diderot



Fellow friends,


It is my belief that throughout uncertainty and stress, one should never turn away from that which excites and brings joy. We are, after all, at the behest of our small surrounds and the feelings they invoke.

With that admittedly prophetic introduction, I am thrilled with the newest addition to my haircare range launched just this week! These 60g tins of Matt Clay and Matt Paste reveal new possibilities for experimentation and continual styling. To divulge a little, it had become apparent to me that 100g tins, whilst an excellent choice for those confident of their needs, presented slightly too much for a Nobleman unsure of which product would benefit him the most. I shan’t worry too much (yet) about those asking for a more travel appropriate size!


But in tandem with this new potential for trialling, what better time for an in-depth look at what really does separate the two; Matt Clay, and Matt Paste. What may seem like just a difference in texture, or hold, presents a more complex explanation.


Why are their respective formulations important?

Their bases, my friend! They are, at their core, entirely different entities. My Matt Clay has an oil base, which has a greater viscosity than a water base, and therefore has a different effect when taming and controlling the shape of your hair. The clay mixes three hardworking and natural ingredients; the titular clay, which is where our matt finish texture is found; beeswax, for a little shine and powerful hold; and oil, which holds the combined product together smoothly.


On the other hand, my Matt Paste is water-based, relying on integrated styling polymers to set your desired style in place. It is a lighter product, so can present a set of advantages depending on your hair type. Because the paste sets your hair, rather than holds it, you’ll find it a more formidable product for a strong, unfailing look.


Who is better suited to each product?

I always recommend the Clay to those with thicker, wilder, and fuzzier hair. The oil base does a wonderful job at conditioning those unruly strands, to soften them whilst keeping everything together smoothly.


But if you have thinner or curly, hair look no further than the Paste! These aforementioned polymers have another trick up their sleeve, adding volume where needed, and defining your natural waves and locks. An impressive feat, yes?


Consider yourself a normal haired bloke? Well, I’m afraid I can’t direct you one way or another, you’ll have to stay with me a short while longer before we can find a definitive answer.


How do you properly apply them?

This is a universal tip, always remember to apply evenly to both the front and back of your hair! Whilst your attention might be dominated by what you can see in the mirror, without proper distribution you run the risk of ending up with the dreaded limp fringe, or an area looking far greasier than the rest. Let’s not overlook the sides either, gents.


The comb is your ally in this battle for control, and I think it wise never to be too far from one!


When it comes to Matt Clay, if applied with some handy beard oil, you can transform your hair into the slicked black look famous in the previous ’20s. Otherwise dry hair for both give that lovely matt finish, start with less to gage exactly how much your hair needs for the anticipated level of hold (and if you are considering reworking the style throughout the day), and use liberally for maximum strength and durability.


Which is more versatile?

Now, I don’t like to pick favourites, but it is challenging not to with one obvious standout. My Matt Paste covers all hair types, and hair styles, and of course can still be used on thicker, wilder hair. You just might find the tin empty sooner than expected!


How will the finished look appear?

Whilst both the Matt Clay and Paste have, and no surprises here, a matt finish, they have different shines, sheens and secureness. This clay is dry, with a medium hold and low sheen finish. No shininess here without the aid of your versatile beard oil. Alternatively, the paste is medium shine, medium hold, with a natural-looking sheen.

But, there is one more consideration, and that is experimentation! Neither will act the same on wet hair, damp hair, nor with a hairdryer in use to help with styling. A word to the wise, use this tool on hair with product already in it, rather than attempting to tame fluffy hair. The word ‘fluffy’ is not one I typically like to ascribe to my appearance!


What is required for washing them off?

It might not be your most pressing question when looking for the right product, but who am I to assume? Whilst the Matt Paste will wash off with just warm water, the clay will need a little more encouragement… nothing my Caffeine Shampoo couldn’t handle.



And there we have it. The who, what, why and how of Matt Clay versus Matt Paste, and I hope you can figure out the where for yourself! If you have been balancing on the fence, unsure of which way to go, I dearly hope we have cleared up the right route for you. If not… it’s just become more economical to try both.


A pleasure as always,


Your friend,