Difference Between Hair Gel and Hair Wax (With Table)

It is said that the only appearance men care about is their hair. And to style that hair, a various range of hair gel and wax are available in the market. They are not the same, and to acquire the desired look flawlessly. One needs to know the differences between the two before using them.

Hair Gel vs Hair Wax

The difference between hair gel and hair wax is that hair gel comes in different forms like gel and spray, but hair wax only comes as wax. Hair gel can be used in both long and short hair, but hair wax is suited for short hair. Hair gel leaves the hair with a stiff look, whereas hair wax makes the hair fluffy and bouncy.

Hair gel can come in gel or spray form. It is required to create spikes. One has to use it in wet hair. It does not last long, so once the hair is dry, the hairstyle might lose some of its charms. Men primarily use hair gel to have shiny, glossy, and spiked hair.

Hair wax is, just as its name implies, wax for hair. It is used to style short hair and make it look bouncy and fluffy. It is perfect to style dry hair. It lasts for a long time, unlike gel. Hair wax offers both, glossy and matte look according to your choice.

Comparison Table Between Hair Gel and Hair Wax

Parameters of ComparisonHair GelHair Wax
Form Hair gel comes in various forms, such as gel and spray.Hair wax comes only in one form that is solid wax.
UseHair gel can only be used on wet hair.Hair wax can be used on dry hair as well.
RemovalHair gel can be removed easily with just one wash.Hair wax needs several washes for its complete removal from hair.
FunctionHair gel gives the hair a glossy and shiny look.Hair wax has varieties, from glossy to matte.
StyleHair gel is best to get a spiky style.Hair wax brings movement to the hair, so you can use hair wax to style your hair bouncy, fluffy, or frizzy.

What is Hair Gel?

Hair gel is mainly used for a sleek glossy look. It is used to make spikes as gel helps to hold the hair. It gives hair a stiff and formal look. Hair gel should be used in wet hair as it contains alcohol which can harm dry hair. Hair gel can be used in both short and long hair. It is often used to straighten long hair.

Hair gel can last the whole day, depending on the brand. Some brands have light gels too. It is best to use light gel if one has thin hair. Hair gel has a vast price range one can choose from. But if you want the gel to last long, then you need to use expensive ones. Hair gel also has different volumes to offer.

Not only as gel, but hair gel also comes as a spray which is very convenient to use. Hair gel is easy to remove as only one rinse is enough to remove all the gel from the hair.

What is Hair Wax?

Hair wax is simply what the title suggests. It is wax for hair. It comes in solid form, and it is water and oil-based, and it lasts longer compared to hair gel. It is best to style short hair. Hair wax also has a huge price range to choose from.

Hair wax, unlike hair gel, gives the hair a bouncy look. It has both glossy and matte finish products. And one can use it even in dry hair. Rather it is advised to put wax on dry hair. Since one can use it on dry hair, it is possible to use it anywhere effortlessly.

Hair wax is creamy, so it does not make hair dry or hard. People with frizzy hair can use wax to make hair soft and smooth. Wax provides a casual look.

An ideal hair wax should not contain a lot of chemicals. It is comparatively harder to wash off the wax from hair. One rinse with water can not wipe out all the wax from hair. It needs several washes.

Main Differences Between Hair Gel and Hair Wax

  1. Hair gel comes in various forms. It can be gel as it says, or it can also come as a spray. It is easy and handy to use. On the other hand, hair wax only has one form that is wax.
  2. One has to use gel on wet hair to style it as it contains alcohol, and it should be avoided when hair is wet, but hair wax can be used on dry hair as well.
  3. Hair gel can be used in both short and long hair. Hair gel is often used to straighten hair. But hair wax is mostly tried to style short hair.
  4. Hair gel is best to get the spiky hairstyle as it keeps the hair as it is styled. And hair wax, on the other hand, brings movement to the hair. One can get bouncy and fluffy hair by using hair wax. So gel gives a formal look, whereas wax offers a casual look.
  5. Hair gel offers shiny and glossy hair, and in contrast, hair wax can give the hair both a glossy or matte look as per the preference.
  6. On the one hand, hair gel is easy to remove. Only one wash is enough to remove hair gel from one’s hair. On the other hand, hair wax is not very easy to remove from the hair. It takes more than one wash to remove the wax from one’s hair.


Both gel and wax are boons for men. One can choose it based on their hair type and preferences. One should always stick to the usage direction for the best results. Your hair products should be sulfate-free.

Some people do not know the difference between the two products and think they are the same. So they often fail to get the desired results. So one should keep the differences in mind and decide to buy the product to suit their requirements.


  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0379073802004127
  2. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ruckmani_Kandasamy/publication/315739068_Formulation_and_Evaluation_of_Herbal_Hair_Gel_for_Hair_Growth_Potential/links/5acb47814585151e80a9b320/Formulation-and-Evaluation-of-Herbal-Hair-Gel-for-Hair-Growth-Potential.pdf
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