Types of Hair Gel: Here’s What To Use On Your Hair and When

Each one has a purpose.

Like many other hair products used in your hair styling routines, hair gel is one of those products where you just can’t have one to do all you need it to do. There are specific types of hair gel solutions for different hairstyles. One that may be used to create defined and curly styles may not the same gel you’d use to create sleek hairstyles.

We understand that you want to eliminate the process of figuring out which hair gel is the right option for your hairstyle so we’ve done all of the work for you. Below we’ve broken down the types of hair gel products you need to create styles like mohawks, defined curls and sleek updo styles.

Types of Hair Gel You Need in Your Hairstyling Kit

types of hair gel bob
Use hair gel for everything from imparting a wet look finish to giving your style more control. Photo credit: indigitalimages.com

1. Shaping and Sculpting Gel

You’ve probably come across sculpting or molding gels a lot but we’re sure you never thought you’d ever have a need for it. Whenever you want to create a style that involves creating a particular shape, like finger waves or side swoops, a shaping or sculpting gel is ideal. Suave Professionals Control Sculpting Gel and Nexxus Exxtra Hold Sculpting Gel are two of our go-to gels for creating styles like gelled bangs and sculptural bun updos.

2. Firm Control Gel

Have you ever styled your hair into a sleek updo and noticed a few minutes later that you have flyaways all over your hair? This is why a firm control hair gel is essential. TRESemmé TRES Two Extra Firm Control Gel provides resistance to humidity all day long and continuously holds your hairstyle in place so you don’t have to worry about frizz or stray hairs.

3. Curl Defining Gel

Natural curly hairstyles are fun to wear and all, but if we’re completely honest, getting perfectly defined curls takes work. Besides making sure you’re washing your hair with the best anti-frizz (and moisturizing) shampoo and conditioner and using a quality diffuser, your hair gel of choice plays a major role in your styling routine. TRESemmé Flawless Curls Defining Gel gives you everything you need in a curl defining gel. Use this gel to achieve definition, soft (yet strong) hold, and a frizz-free finish. We love this gel as it also helps with moisture which is needed for naturally dry hair.

4. Gel for Edgy Styles

Hate to break it to you but edgy styles like mohawks don’t stand alone by themselves. Most of the time you need a generous amount of styling gel that has an extreme hold to lock the look in place. Using a gel like Bed Head by TIGI Hard Head Mohawk Gel, which helps create and hold spiky hairstyles, is perfect for edgy looks. This gel has so much hold that you can dilute it by cocktailing with another hair gel like Bed Head by TIGI Hard to Get Texturizing Paste for a softer finish.

Now that you have your guide for all of the hair gels you need for achieving different hairstyles, try your hand at the looks. Need help getting started? Here’s how you can create defined curly hairstyles at home.