Weaves/Extensions

There are so many things we can do with our hair. Hair extensions allow us to completely change our look or just modify it a little bit. There are so many different styles to choose from when it comes to extensions.

Golden Brooks

Golden Brooks

Let’s talk about the kind of hair we can use to extend or change our hair. The type of hair you add to your own will determine how realistic your extensions look. There are both synthetic and human hair extensions available.

Synthetic hair, which is plastic, is extremely affordable but it has limited uses and can be damaging to your natural hair. You should not use any heated appliances on synthetic hair because it will melt. Synthetic hair also doesn’t do well long term as the ends can get very ratty.

Synthetic Hair

Synthetic Hair

Human hair is the best hair to use for extensions and weaves because it is so versatile and it does not damage your hair. Human hair is also the best hair to use for free flowing styles. You can use curling irons, blow dryers, hot rollers, flat irons, etc. on human hair extensions without damaging the hair.

Human Hair

Human Hair

Vanessa Simmons

Vanessa Simmons

Whatever type of hair you choose, there are several different techniques you can use to apply your hair extensions.

Bonding – Bonding glue is used to attach the extension to your natural hair near your scalp. Special care should be taken not apply the glue to your scalp as this can cause damage and irritation. If you decide to choose this method be sure to test a small patch of skin as some people have had an allergic reaction to the glue. Bonded weaves usually last for about 2-3 weeks before they start to loosen up. It is important to go to a professional to have this technique done to avoid damaging your own hair. Removing the bonding glue can be tricky. The glue can get stuck in your own hair and your stylist should take great care not to pull out your own hair during the removal process.

Tracks – This can be the best way to apply extensions if done properly. Usually with this method, your hair is braided against your scalp in either horizontal or verticals rows. Vertical rows can give you the flattest braid pattern and can also be better for your hair.

Vertical Braid Pattern

Vertical Braid Pattern

The weight of the weft (track of hair) is evenly distributed and, therefore, does not cause unnecessary stress on your hair. With the horizontal pattern, the weft can weigh down the braid and may cause hair loss.

Horizontal Braid Pattern

Horizontal Braid Pattern

The weft or extension is sewn onto the braids. You should leave out a section of the hair on the top, sides and back to cover your tracks. Also, hair left out on top will allow you to wear a part if you choose to.

A braided weave can last for about two months and can be a protective style to allow your own hair to grow. It is important to wash the hair regularly, just as you would your own. Be sure to wash your scalp also. If the braids are too tight or the extensions are too heavy on your hair, you run the risk of pulling out your own hair so be careful. Because our hair is very dry, you should apply oil to your scalp around the braids and to the hair that is left out to prevent the hair from breaking.

Fusion – The fusion method is one of the most believable and versatile. Your hair is divided into very small sections (about the same size as a microbraid) and the extension is applied using a type of wax. This method tends to last 2-3 months. A trained and certified stylist should use this technique because of the potential for hair loss when removing the fusion strands.

Fusion Method

Fusion Method

Clip-in – These are really convenient and fast. They cause no damage to your hair at all if you take them out each night. Sleeping in them can cause your hair to break or fall out because the clips tug on your hair as you move around on your pillow. With clip in hair extensions, you can change the length and look of your evey single day!

Clip-In Extensions

Clip-In Extensions

With so many different methods to use, you should be able to find the one that is right for you!