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The Art of Hair Extensions; Find Out How

We Are Not The First Generation to Embrace Hair Extensions

Let’s face it. We’ve been helping out Mother Nature since time began. Think about it. In ancient Egypt with Cleopatra and her pals, elaborate wigs were all the rage. In other parts of Africa, from BCE to A.D., women used whatever it took, wool, leaves, cotton to add length to their beautiful braids. On these shores our Revolutionary War grandmothers wore animal hair powdered white and piled high atop their heads.

We’re still doing it . . . Except that now we’ve got an attitude about it. Piling on some store-bought hair is seen as a cop-out, the last province of the pretentious. But as I see it, there’s nothing wrong with gilding the lily. Maybe you want to experiment with a new look. Maybe you want to give your hair a rest. Maybe your hair is thinning and you want to give it a little extra oomph. Maybe you like flinging hair over your shoulders every once in a while. Why not? Go for it.

Hair Extension Tips

Hair extensions give women the ability to have gorgeous, long hair in an hour or less. Sounds like a dream come true! In many ways extensions are, but they need to be selected and managed carefully. That’s where a good professional comes in. While it’s possible to do extensions yourself, it is not recommended. You can end up wasting money and becoming the butt of jokes. Going to a salon ensures that your extension will look natural and makes a positive enhancement to your beauty arsenal.

Your Choices

  • Methods of Attachment ~~ There are several ways the salon can attach the extensions – with clips, caps, keratin and with sewing to your existing hair itself. Extensions with clips can be taken down or modified anytime. If you have chosen the caps method or the sewing method, these extensions require maintenance every month. If you have chosen the keratin option you need to know that they are inserted for 5-6 months and then maintenance is needed as well. The most harmless method is using clips. These are tic tac barrettes with silicon parts which are sewn to the strand and then the strands are connected to the hair.
  • Human Hair or Synthetic Hair ~~ Also, it’s important to consider whether you prefer real or synthetic hair. Real hair is much more expensive than the synthetic hair, but it’s much more durable and easier to maintain. Extensions made of real hair can be treated in any way you would your natural hair – with a flat iron, curling, hair dryer, or diffuser. And can be even dyed unlike synthetic hair.
  • Hair Types ~~ Hair extensions can be obtained in a variety of different hair types. Be sure to ask your stylist about what options they would recommend to most effectively match your existing natural hair type.
  • Size and Strand Count ~~Consider your different size options as well. The most preferred in our salon are 50-55sm and 65sm. If you have elected to use extensions with strands, you will need 120-150grams of hair depending on how thick your hair is. But if you go with keratin strands, we recommend using 150-200 extension pieces.

 

Lauren Conrad hair extension tips

Keeping Your Hair Extensions Beautiful

Now you have beautiful, long hair! Here are some tips on how to keep it looking gorgeous.

  • Combing Your Hair ~~ Combing should be done regularly, and you need to use the appropriate tool. The brush should be soft to allow gentle combing of the hair in order to prevent tearing and thinning from the frequent usage. Start from the hair ends, as you would do with your natural hair, detangle first this zone and then move to the next hair levels. Be careful with the extensions as excessive pulling could lead to tearing which can transform your marvelous and soft hair into something less desirable.
  • Shampooing ~~ Washing your extensions is important for maintaining them as long as possible, and there are several rules to follow to be sure your hair extensions will look good. First, detangle before the shampoo, second, use a good shampoo and third (and perhaps the most important) – do it slowly and carefully.
  • Drying Your Hair Extensions ~~ Leave your extensions to dry naturally. After washing your hair, put the layers on a towel or hang them and let them dry naturally. Keep in mind that the direct sunlight or the hair dryer is not recommended. If you have time, avoid drying with a flat iron or a hairdryer in order to keep your extensions in perfect condition for as long as possible.

Ponytail Extension

There’s something very seductive about instantly acquiring a massive mane; it can make you feel like Miss Glamorous. If you’re going to fake it, you’ve got to do it right. And doing it right means, above all, making sure that your natural hair is kept clean, conditioned and stress-free. Hopefully this article will help you accomplish that end.

Claudia
Contributing author Claudia Egnal has been in the beauty industry for nearly 30 years. With a wide array of cutting and coloring skills, she specializes in hair extensions, color, highlights and cutting. Her newest salon, JULDAN, opened in JULY 2012 and continues to grow due to the talent of her diverse staff and team. Connect with her on Twitter and Facebook.

 

Got a question, war story or comment about this topic? Click on the "Leave Your Comments" link at the very bottom of this article. Some of my best ideas for future articles come from reading reader comments. I'd love to hear from you!

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