I believe flyaways are the universe’s way of punishing me for years of heat damage, hair dye, and styling products filled with unpronounceable chemicals. I’ve long aspired for a slicked-back ponytail like Ariana Grande’s, but frizz sprouts up like weeds, undeterred by my attempts to squelch it. I’ve experimented with all sorts of products to contain these rogue locks, but gel leaves my hair looking wet, hairspray turns it to straw, and let’s just say that lip balm works better on lips.
I had resigned myself to a lifetime of flyaways when a fateful scroll through TikTok’s “For You” page led me to a video of a woman taming her wisps with what appeared to be mascara. I watched, rapt, as she unscrewed a small pink tube and meticulously smoothed her hairline with the tool. It was like a magic wand. One moment, she had a halo of flyways; the next, a flawless slicked-back do.
Further investigation revealed that I was watching Mia Plecic, who invented the product and somewhat famously made $10,000 in 12 hours after it first went viral on TikTok. Her feed led me to other compelling clips of the thing — called a Slick Stick — in action, and while she was obviously biased, the countless action shots across TikTok featuring satisfied customers and their slicked-back hair were not. Praise was just as glowing on Instagram. Two days (and $17) later, my own Slick Stick arrived.
I was pleasantly surprised when the mascara-like wand glided through my hair with ease, handily catching all of my flyaways at first try. My hair is naturally wavy and thick, unlike Mia’s (and other fans on TikTok), so I wasn’t sure if this product could handle my particular kind of frizz. But it worked like a magic wand on me, too, slicking down my tufts without hardening my hair or making it look oily. In fact, I couldn’t really see the product at at all, but I could smell it. The scent, sweet with hints of grapefruit and strawberries, is subtle — and it fades quickly, if you’re fragrance-adverse. Best of all, though, the smoothing effect lasted for hours.
I’ve now worn it to the gym and even tested it at a boxing class, where my flyaways stayed secure, allowing me to focus on punching the bag as opposed to brushing hair back with my forearm. I have found that occasionally, after an especially sweaty workout, I do need to reapply, but just a few swipes fix things. As an added bonus, I’ve noticed that my flyaways feel more nourished and less brittle. I suspect that’s because of the mostly natural ingredients, like jojoba and evening primrose.
And though it seems pricey for such a small tube, a little goes a long way. I’ve been using it once or twice a day for the last month and a half — I’ve even started applying it to my eyebrows to keep them in place — and I’m not even close to needing to restock. Which, when the time comes, I absolutely will be doing.
The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.