Bona fide, Superior hold – strong gel-type water based pomade

Company – product

‘Wear the Crown’

Here’s the story of Luis, owner/creator of Bona fide pomade: ‘In 2012, I developed and released my first product, the superior hold. The goal was simple: create a hair product that worked under a brand name that would dictate every aspect of how I would run my business, Bona fide.  Since the beginning, I’ve taken this approach very seriously.  From me, you will never see outlandish claims like “my pomades are the best in the world” or “I’m revolutionizing the hair industry” because what works best for some might not for others and ANYONE who tells you they’re revolutionizing anything in the hair industry is trying to sell you something you don’t need. Through and through, Bona fide is transparent, honest and everything I do is in “good faith” which is what the Latin phrase bona fide means. I wouldn’t have it any other way. From Bona fide, you can expect American made hair products of the highest quality and consistency along with customer service that strives to demonstrate to you how much we appreciate your business and support!

That being said, I also see my products as tools for creative expression. I want people to play with their hair, to have fun with their hair, and to achieve whatever look and style they desire. I want them to take on the day knowing their hair is on point because they used Bona fide. Nothing beats that little boost of confidence you get when someone compliments your hair and for me that’s what it’s all about.’

Bona fide is based out of California. The fact this brand exists since 2012 is a good sign, definitely with the enormous bunch of gel-types that are around. Nowadays home brewers make them at home, without (the aid of) a lab. Bonafide was made with the help of a lab, quoting Luis: ‘In order to keep up with our demand, we produce in a lab in the USA, in small batches, to preserve consistency.’

Bona fide superior hold has a strong (firm) hold. If you are in need of more hold, the super superior is the option. But without further ado … here we come!

More info –

My hair profile

I’ve medium thick, wavy hair. I wear a side part with a contour. At the moment, I’m using a boar hair brush, a Denman plus a detangler (Tangle teezer). During styling, I use brushes most.


The superior hold is presented in a 4 oz transparent plastic container. Labels are simple, well done with a classic outlook: really dig them! Top of the lid has the Bona fide name to distinguish it from the rest of your collection so you can grab it faster. Pomade’s color is orange, fits the scent notes.


Water (Aqua), Ceteareth-25, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Glycerin, Polysorbate-20, PEG-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Fragrance (Parfum), Diazolidinyl Urea, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, DMDM Hydantoin, Orange 4 (CI 15510), D-Limonene, Benzyl Benzoate, Linalool, Methyl Ionone Gamma, Benzyl Salicylate, Coumarin, Citronellol, Citral, Geraniol, Hydroxycitronellal, Benzyl Cinnamate.


Fresh citrus scent. Looking at the ingredients list, I noticed fragrance is not one of the last components as normally but more in the forefront. The last ingredients are also used to make the fragrance and some are derived from natural sources. Smell in the jar is not overly strong. In the hair: not that strong either. Its scent disappeared quickly after I had styled: typical for gel pomades. Scent is a fresh, citrus-orange and an accessible one. I do like it.

Application process – result

Application: slightly damp for me. Dry will provide more hold but also more tug. Used scoops: 3, average size. Scooping out: easy thing, soft, not that thick texture. Breaking down: easy as typical for most gel-types. Working in: grip noticeable and a sticky feel. Dispersing evenly goes okay. Combing back: there’s resistance using a Denman brush. Changing the hair’s direction to part: some tension but okay. The pomade began to stiffen rather fast when styling but I did not need to add water to keep it workable. The strong control laid down the hairs immediately and tamed my cowlicks very well. Sides slicked down well as well. No stray issues, no waving in the front but a neat and clean style with good height. Decent volume possible. My hair does not look the best when using orthodox ones but with Bona fide, it looked very good! Pomade feels very sticky and stiff but that sensation diminished after a while. It hardened up but not into a helmet head. Styling time: rather fast, the advantage of a good gel-type comes in here without doubt! Checked the mane a while later and everything was still perfect: advantage from its locking in aspect. As with other orthodox pomades, this is a predictable one, gives you the safe feel to look good all day = it is bona fide like its name says and yes, wear the crown!


Bona fide speaks of a high sheen. The shine I got was a good staying, steady medium shine.

Hold – endurance

Superior hold = strong/firm strength. Yes, second that. My hair was great all day long. Love the way gel-types keeping everything together, no worries about sagging or waves and those things, just a clean style without hassle. What did it have to endure? Some sun and wind, temperatures around 60, some humidity, a few rain drops, a hike = great endurance!


No need to restyle. To get the the easiest restyling, using a water source is the way to avoid pull, to keep a good hold and a shiny look. Does not flake.

Washing out

Washes off with water only as it is a gel-type water based. As with most water based orthodox pomades, rinsing them out can leave hair and skin dry and coarse. Some gels do it very much and some less; some do it for you and not for me; some do it after first use, others after longer time use. Why? Because of the chemicals that make it water-soluble. These strip the natural oils from the skin as well. I always put a natural conditioner in my hair after washing out gel-types, so my hair stays soft and healthy.

Hair, scalp issues



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