If you dream of long, luscious locks but are stuck with limp and lifeless tresses, you might be tempted to turn to hair extensions for a quick and easy fix. But there is a lot to consider before you take the plunge and invest in extensions, and that’s why we have compiled a guide to which ones are right for you.
Human Hair or Synthetic Hair?
Extensions can be made from either real human hair, synthetic hair or a mixture of both. The more expensive the extensions are, the more likely they are to be made from 100% human hair. This is because using the real thing makes for a head of manageable, natural-looking locks that can be styled, coloured and cared for just like your own hair.
If you’re planning on having a lot of extensions added to your hair and want to wear them for a long time, it’s essential that you invest in the best you can afford and have them professionally applied in a good salon. Always make sure that the extensions you buy are ethically sourced.
If you want to wear just a few extensions, and only for special occasions, then synthetic hair should be ok for you. It’s a lot cheaper than real hair, but remember that in most cases it can’t be heat styled, so you’ll have to decide on what look you want and stick to it. It also can be a lot more difficult to manage and does become easily tangled and matted.
The Right Hue for You
What look do you want to achieve when you’re wearing extensions? If you prefer a very natural look that blends seamlessly with your own hair, it’s essential to find extensions in a shade that matches it perfectly.
Generally many brands organise their colours in the same way as hair dyes, so that it’s easy to determine the correct hue for you. Colours range from the lightest shade of blonde to the deepest shade of black and incorporate all warm and cool variations.
And, if you fancy a few sections of bold colour, then your options are limitless. You can easily pick up extensions in a range of vibrant shades, and what’s more they are usually cheaper and are perfect for occasional use.
Texture and Style
Extensions come in a vast range of textures, so that they will blend with your own locks. There are straight lengths, spiral curls and everything in between. It’s important to match the texture to your own hair for the extensions to lie and fall properly.
There are many ways to apply extensions to your hair and some can be more comfortable, gentle and affordable than others.
Clip-in/Tie-in – Ideal for occasional use and can be taken out and applied easily to achieve a variety of different looks. Because of the way they are joined to the hair, they don’t always look natural and can be obvious to the touch.
Heat Fusion – Provide long lasting results, with a natural looking finish. However, because heat is used, this method can damage your own hair.
Cold Fusion – Unlike heat fusion, cold fusion doesn’t use any heat for application, meaning that your natural hair won’t be damaged. The results are very natural looking, as well as long lasting.
Weft – Can look very natural when applied correctly, although to the touch a weft can feel chunky if not applied with skill.
Microbead – No need for glue or heat to be applied, which limits damage to your own natural hair. Extensions are fixed in place using a small bead.