Wednesday 24 March 2010


On my recent review about Pond's Cold Cream Cleanser, I said that it was one of those products that our grannies used to love that has become trendy again. Well, the same is true for Brylcreem, except it was a cult product for our grandads (and even great-grandads) instead of our grannies. Believe it or not, it was first created in 1928 and was so popular with RAF pilots in the Second World War that they were given the nickname The Brylcreem Boys !

Looking at the funky, stylish, very modern-looking red and black tub, you'd be forgiven for thinking I'm making this all up, but the brand does like to keep in touch with its heritage, stamping "since 1928" on the lid. If you look at the vintage adverts for Brylcreem (and there are some real crackers on their facebook page - I absolutely love the "not sexy - sexy" one from the 1970's !!), you might be put off by the old-fashioned styles showing men with very greasy looking hair plastered to their heads, but the new generation of Brylcreem offers a remouldable, invisible hold. Underneath the tub (yes, underneath ! - if you don't turn the pot upside down you'll miss it !), it says it is "a multipurpose styling product that gives a strong remouldable hold without looking like your hair is overloaded". I don't know if they've changed the formula but it does seem much less greasy than in the early days. According to the label, the more you touch your hair throughout the day, the more natural and remouldable it will be - so when you see that tasty bloke at the bar running his hands through his hair, maybe he isn't trying to give you a subliminal "come hither" message, maybe he's just working his Brylcreem !

If you look on the Brylcreem website, you'll see that there are a whole range of snazzy hair products available, ranging from clay, wax, cream and gel wax to Ultimate Hold Gel, Wet Look Gel and - something that seems like a really good idea to me - the original Brylcreem with added anti-dandruff properties. That's the first time I've seen an anti-dandruff product other than shampoo, so top marks to the people who came up with that idea.

I love the smell of it. It reminds me slightly of aftershave but is unisex enough that girls could easily borrow a quick scoop from their boyfriends too ! It's fresh, smells like you've just washed your hair and "isn't poncy" (genuine male viewpoint, when I did a quick bit of market research !).

I love the eco-friendly packaging. When I reviewed Green People products, I mentioned that the excess packaging bothered me. They countered with the justification that they have to put the tub in a cardboard box because there isn't enough room on the tub to get in all the important (and legally required) smallprint. Brylcreem have cleverly got round this problem by printing their instructions and information on a little adhesive plastic flap that you peel away on the bottom of the tub. That's got to be better for the environment.

The red and black pot is eye-catching and screams virility, just in case your man is still Neanderthal enough to think that using hair and skincare is just for girls ! The red lion, that is a carbon copy of the one on the England football shirts, will cast away any lingering doubts - and you can even keep the kids occupied by doing a "brass rubbing" with the embossed lion on the lid while you grab a few minutes to get yourself ready in the bathroom. Trust me, it works - and that, for me, has to be the biggest selling point for Brylcreem that I bet they've never even thought of !

Oh, a final thought for the men out there - there's also a cool game you might like to try on the website, which apparently gets quite addictive once you’ve got it nailed. It has an amazing prize up for grabs for the best score – a masterclass with Kevin Pietersen (I have no idea who he is but if you're a man, you surely do !) and VIP tickets to an international cricket match in the summer! Have a look at !

star rating : 4.5/5
RRP : £3.19 for 75ml

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