Hair Extensions
10/30/2018 12:49:36 PM

There are lots of reasons to consider hair extensions. Maybe you’re trying to avoid that awkward stage of growing out a pixie cut, or maybe you just want an extra special look for a big event. Whatever your reason, there are plenty of options out there for those who want (temporarily) longer hair.

What are hair extensions?
Hair extensions are natural or synthetic hair used to add volume and/or length to one’s hair. While extensions made from real human hair are more expensive than synthetic, they also hold up better to heat styling and are less likely to get tangled. However, synthetic extensions can look great for those who simply want a different look for a special occasion.

The most important thing to remember when getting extensions, according Lensi White, master stylist, barber, and educator for Signatures Salon in Lake Charles, is to make sure you choose an experienced stylist who understands what will look best and most natural on you. 

"The key to natural looking extensions is having a stylist who really understands the proper techniques of cutting extensions tailored to the client, which allows them to lay as natural hair would,” White says. "It definitely takes a skill and a well-trained eye that comes with experience.”

But with so many extension options available, it can be hard to even know where to begin! Here’s a breakdown of the most common types of hair extensions. 

Clip-in hair extensions are sections of hair attached to clips that that can be blended into real hair. They can be applied in minutes and are perfect for someone just looking to add a bit of length for a formal event. Hairstylists can generally work with you to find the right color and style. However, clip-in extensions aren’t really made to be worn for longer than a day, though they can be reused.

A professional can generally apply tape-in extensions pretty quickly, since they’re sold in sections and attach to the hair pretty easily. Each section has a polyurethane strip (the tape), and two sections are sandwiched together over a section of your own hair hair, adhering to one another to add volume and length. Tape-in extensions take an hour or so to apply and last about a month. 

And while most types of extensions work best on hair that’s shoulder length, according to White, tape-in extensions are ideal for those with shorter hair. "For most extensions, the hair needs to be nearly to the shoulders, but if you’re doing tape-in extensions, it can totally be shorter,” White says. "But again, it will take a well-trained stylist to blend them in!”

Weaving requires hair to be braided in a tight, horizontal cornrow. Then, sections of natural or synthetic hair are tightly sewn to the braid with a needle and thread. Woven extensions can last anywhere from two to four months and look incredibly natural when applied correctly. However, they do require extensive upkeep and maintenance to avoid bacteria build up and are sometimes a bit painful. They also must be removed by a professional.

Hot fusion
This technique is best left to highly trained professionals because it involves bonding silicone-lined hair extensions to hair roots with a special heating tool. The process can take anywhere from six to eight hours, but the results last for up to six months. Plus, the results are incredibly natural looking—like your hair grew overnight!

If you’re considering extensions, make an appointment with a trained stylist. If your regular hair stylist doesn’t do them, ask for recommendations. A stylist can evaluate your hair and expectations to find the type of extensions that fit your needs and your budget. Long, lovely locks are totally possible without months of waiting!
Posted by: Emily Alford | Submit comment | Tell a friend

Categories: Hairstyles

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