Oil based pomades

The iron society old fashioned grooming aid – firm oil based pomade

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor the iron society firm hold pomade

Company – product

‘Be easy, friend’

The iron society is a brand with handcrafted pomades run by barber Chris DeSanty from Oregon. It was a hyped one in the past and nowadays still a valuable pomade in my opinion.

Chris offers a medium and a firm oil based. There’s also a firm gel-type water based. In the past, he made the VNM medium oil based. Last addition to the line was a clay.

I will be showcasing the firm oil based pomade which is petrolatum based.

I also did a review on the water based, here’s the link –

More info –

Bonus: The iron society –

My hair profile

I’ve medium thick, wavy hair. I wear a side part with a contour. At the moment, I’m using a brush with wild boar hair, a Denman brush plus a wide tooth comb (detangler). Use a tangle teezer to avoid tug. During styling, I use brushes most. 


Pomade comes in a 3 oz amber glass jar and costs as if it were a 4 oz. Labels are gorgeous: clean, classic 1930s style, solid and attractive. One of the most beautiful designs I know. I bought it just for the packaging. Pomade itself has a pale yellow tint.


White Petrolatum, Beeswax, Lanolin, Essential Oils.

Basic, traditional formula made out of a few ingredients such as the 1930s classics. Dig the use of essential oils instead of fragrance oils that we mostly see in petrolatum based pomades. Essential oils are mostly all natural and less harsh for scalp/hair and often have therapeutic characteristics to nourish hair and skin.


Described by the brewer as: ‘musky, masculine, with a hint of citrus.’ I detected a smoky and spicy odor, very manly and clean. Scent is not permeating, not abrasive in the jar or in the hair. Whiffs come by from time to time and these are well-balanced plus very agreeable. The scent matches its 30s labels perfectly. This scent is my favorite by far!

Application process – result

Application to damp hair to ease the styling process. It also aids to straighten out my waves. 3 average licks is what I put in. Getting it out of the jar: top layer is a bit hard but once you push slightly, the product comes out easy. Layer beneath is much softer. That’s the normal story with firm(er) holds. The TIS pomade feels rather thick. It breaks down easily. You get a sticky, waxy cream that’s not overly greasy. It feels great in the hands: predicts a good hold. Working into the mane: some grip but not painful or tedious. Disperses easily with a slight tension. Slicking back: some resistance combing back with my Denman brush. I used my tangle teezer for the first comb lap. Latter does not work perfect with waxier stuff but helps to comb through in a way you’re not breaking or ripping hairs out that much. TIS does not rip hairs out at all being a firm hold. Changing the hair’s direction to the side, then making a part went without issues. Styling process: not the easiest but not bad or a hassle the first time using (much better the next days). It just took me some more time to get the shape that I wanted in the beginning as I didn’t know the pomade. NOTE: after long time use it worls as a champ. Weight: towards a medium weight, it does not provide tons of volume to get my front lifted. Getting the right amount of volume was a little issue I experienced using it the first times. TIS provides some good control and keeps the hair together because of how sticky it is. Waxy it is but not overly. It offers a good wax-slickness ratio. My waves were tamed right away and even after some recombing they did not show through which is a big plus for me! My cowlick area is troublesome but my hair stayed in place rather quick. It kept down the sides well. Didn’t have to deal with flyaways. Hair did not tend to split. Got a nice, clean and neat hair style with some good average height. The bangs were still in place after looking back after around an hour: no sag, I just had to do some minor touch ups.


Low, natural shine, according to the brewer. For me: around a medium sheen, great for a stronger hold pomade. The shine doesn’t fade out.

Hold – endurance

Firm (strong) hold. To me: more of a firm on the lighter side but one with great results being a firm-heavy hold user. Endured well despite being in rainy, very windy weather, temperatures around the 50s, a few walks, no strenuous physical chores. I noticed minor sagging, a few strays, no splits after walking through a storm with loads of rain! TIS pomade does a great job for sure!


Restyled several times at the beginning and my waves remained under control which is a big plus in my book! Some pomade’s waxes tend to break rather quick after a few touch ups. Just don’t fancy wavy hair. Did not need to restyle. Restyling test: no waving, no hairs sticking up, no saggy mane, hair looked as new again.

Build up

Strong, clean, waxy, manageable. Good build up properties to create higher styles.

Washing out

3-4 washes, typical/normal for a petro based. Type of shampoo, your hair type and the quantity that was in enacts the easiness of process as well.

I made an inventory of degreasing methods that can help you:

Hair, scalp issues


Similar pomades

  • O’Douds heavy oil based. Some refer to the original as well but haven’t used that one.
  • The mail room barber, classic pomade.


Interested in oil based pomades only? You can join our ‘Oil Based Pomade Enthusiasts’ Facebook group –



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