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Triumph & Disaster Coltrane Hair Clay

12 Jul Tried & Tested: Triumph & Disaster Coltrane Clay

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Triumph & Disaster has been on my radar for while now. They have a great collection of products, all focused on skin and body care until now. They have just launched their first hair care product – Coltrane.

Coltrane is a Hair Clay and is the first styling product (I suspect of many) to come from the Triumph & Disaster stable. The Clay follows in-the natural footsteps of the rest of this New Zealand based brands’ products using natural ingredients, some of which are indigenous to New Zealand.

It will help if I start by explaining what type of hair I have so you can gauge whether this product will work for you and manage your own expectations; my hair is certainly not thick, it’s medium density, longer on the top, short round the back and sides, a style more commonly known as ‘Long Top, Short Sides’. I need a styling product that offers medium texture with a strong hold to achieve my look and this is one of the hardest combinations to find. Most men’s hair styling products are either very thick and sticky (good for thinner hair) or light and creamy (good for very thick hair) so I often struggle to find the perfect solution. I’m a big Reference of Sweden fan, and to date, they’ve satisfied me completely – their Rough Wax is just perfect.


Moving onto Coltrane, my first impression is of the packaging and branding both of which are beautiful. It’s masculine but not over the top and had a great graphic designer behind it. The tin is slightly deeper than most pomade-style tins making it great value for money. On opening, a pleasant essential oil style scent greets me which again isn’t over powering yet still effective. The consistency is common of Clay based hair styling products; fairly thick but still workable. The latter being Coltrane’s unique attribute. For a Clay, this is ultra-workable and that’s probably why it only offers a medium hold.

So enough fluffing around the facts, it’s time to don this bad boy.

I always use a hair dryer to ensure that my hair is completely dry before applying my styling product, and I would always recommend that you do too. Hair dried, a small amount of Coltrane warmed between my fingertips (not palms!!) and off I go. Notice I say ‘not palms’, the reason for this being, your palms are flat and push the hair down towards the scalp immediately flattening your look and unevenly distributing your product – always use your fingertips, and only your fingertips!

I like to start at the front of the head and work backwards, so I apply to Clay to my fringe and start to style. I’m really pleased with how easy Coltrane is to apply. It’s not too tacky and doesn’t feel like semi-set glue (lot of clays do) so it glides onto the hair and is really nice to work with.

I finish off styling the rest of my hair and sit back and take stock of the product.

The finish is totally matte which is completely necessary for me. It looks textured, full of volume and has flexibility built-in – something essential for those with slightly longer hair as when it moves, you need to put it back.

My recommendations:

If you’re looking for a semi-strong hold then Coltrane is perfect for you. If you need something really strong, try teaming it up with a strong hold hair spray to lock your look in place – Reference of Sweden Hold Hair Spray is unrivaled IMO.

Apply a small amount at a time, if you apply too much product to the same area you’ll struggle to achieve your style.


To wrap it up – Coltrane is an impressive Hair Clay and I very much look forward to trying the rest of their hair care and styling products when they launch.

Find it here

Note: review carried out over 4 applications.

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