Hair Extensions Methods and Types

Hair Extensions Attachment Methods and Types
 
Hair extensions are a wonderful way of providing instant length, fullness, and shine to your own hair.  The first thing you  must consider before delving into extensions is if your hair is healthy enough to be able to support the hair extensions.  If your hair is dry, brittle, or  breaking, your hair will definitely not fare well with handling the additional stress imposed on your hair by Hair Extensions, no matter what some of these Hair Extension companies say.  So, please be honest with yourself, and take the proper steps to get  your hair back to health before you pursue this further.  You will save yourself a lot of grief , and hair loss,  and will  thank me later!
Before cofusing yourself  comparing  all the Hair Extension systems that are on the market, just be aware  that all Hair Extensions can generally can be classified in two categories ,  by their attachment method, and by hair type.  From there they can be broken down even further by type of material used.  Within the materials used category,  all systems  are basically the same,  some claim they use superior hair, others say they have superior advantages, but  only a few systems may offer some truly unique capabilities.
 
The method of attachments:  Strand by Strand, Weft, and Clip on

Strand by Strand

Small sectional pieces of hair are attached one by one to small sections of your own hair by using bonding (warm or cold), clamping, shrink tubing, micro tubes.  Weaving or glue were and still are practiced but are older inferior methods of practice.  These methods provide too much risk to your hair and will not be mentioned here.

Cold Fusion – Basically identical to Warm Fusion but the  keratin bond is not warmed, but rather ultrasonic waves melt the Keratin to form the bond during installation.  Cold Fusion as with Warm Fusion, bonds are removed with a special solvent, and tool. 

Pros:

  • Safest of all the extension materials
  • Lightest of all extensions
  • Safest and Healthiest for the hair

    Keratin tipped Fusion Extension

  • virtually undetectable.
  • Longest lasting method 3-6 months +
  • New inventive installation technique

Cons:

  • Most costly of all methods
  • Virtually the same as Warm Fusion but for greater cost
  • Time intensive installation

Warm Fusion - A small amount of Keratin, or other organic material  is pre-attached or utilized on the ends of a strand. The extension strands are then attached to small sections of your hair near the scalp by warming the Keratin and forming a small bond to your hair. The site of attachment is so, that the extensions can move naturally with your own hair. These extensions last 3 – 6 months or more, and should be removed or redone at that time.

Pros:

  • Same as Cold Fusion except for the installation technique
  • A few systems are re-useable

Cons:

  • Most costly of all methods with the exception of Cold Fusion.
  • Time intensive installation

 

Links, Microlinks, Beads, Tubes, Rings, or Locks - Strand to Strand technique where the extension hair strand and your hair is put through a small tube which is then squeezed shut with a special tool in order to attach the extension to your hair.

Micro-Link Extension method

  • Less expensive than Fusion techniques
  • slightly less time consuming installation compared to the Fusion method.
  • Micro-beads can be moved up when they slip down the hair shaft.
  • Longer lasting method than Weft systems.

Cons:

  • Heavier and more readily seen when compared to the other Fusion methods.
  • M-Links\ tubes are hard metallic materials and can be uncomfortable against the scalp for some especially when lying down.
  • Micro  Links frequently slip down the hair shaft and need constant readjustment.
  • M-Links contain grooves similar to a screw, and this can cause  friction which can damage the hair shaft,  when Mlinks are  clamped together.

Scalp attached extensionsThe Extension is a skin replica.  An air tight, water tight seal is created allowing  5-8 weeks of attachment. “Skin” base is adhered directly to your scalp by the use of an medical grade adhesive. Note that this method  is just being mentioned because it is a hybrid of the Strand by Strand method. 

Flat-Taped Weft Extensions

Weft Hair Extensions

A weft is a track several inches long on which the hair is attached (a swathe of hair is attached together at the top and freely hanging at the bottom). A weft can be man-made or created by machine.  The extensions are then applied by using one row (track) at the time instead of strand by strand.  Methods of attachment of Wefts consists of   Micro Rings,  Tape, Glue , and  sewing to your hair.

Micro-Rings – A weft is located on a divided section of the client’s hair. Two strands (one from the scalp and another from the weft) are joined and pulled through a micro ring, which is then flattened. This way the weft is attached by fitting together several strands both from the weft and the scalp.

Taped Hair extensions – also called skin weft, is a relatively newer technique. Hair is held together by double transparent sided polyurethane  tape.  One piece of the tape is torn off and the weft is applied the scalp. The weft and the attached hair is pulled upwards and another weft is attached underneath. That way the client’s hair section is surrounded by two wefts.

Glued Hair Weft Extensions -  Glue It is simply applied to the sewed part of the weft and then fitted on the client’s hair. 

 Sewed in or Braided Wefts-   client’s hair is braided, making either one spiral cornrow, which covers the whole head, or several straight ones which match the layering. After this has been done, the wefts are sewn into these cornrows

 Pros:

  • Installation time is much faster than the Strand by Strand method. 
  • Weft Attachment methods consist of sewing to original hair, taping, beads, clips etc.
  • Less costly than Strand by Strand
  • Installation time is much faster than any Strand by Strand technique

 

Braided Weft

Cons:

  • Stress Hair much more than Strand extensions. Significant more weight per hair than Strand method
  • Weft extensions utilizing Tape creates excessive residue, and makes it difficult to remove extensions without pulling out some of  your own hair. (some tape brands claim to limit residue)
  • Some people  have allergic reactions to the tape adhesive used.
  • Glue and braids are pretty much old-school applications, and these applications as we have experienced can cause the most  damage  to your hair.
  • Weft Hair extensions are more visible to the human eye compared to  Strand by Strand some tpes show less than others.
  • Maintenance intensive, needs readjustments.

Clip on Extensions - are the shortest term temporary solution in which you use on a day to day basis, and remove them before retiring for the evening.  Some clip on extensions come with Remy Hair. 

Hair types:

Remy hair is considered the best hair available since it’s structure resembles real hair with the cuticle intact, and flowing in the same direction.  Other non-Remy Hair types are processed with silicon and the cutlicle is removed.  This treated hair has tendency of tangling, drying out, matting, and oxidizing much quicker.  With other hair you will never approach the natural looks you get with Remy hair.  Finally there is synthetic hair.  Technology is ever improving the quality of synthetic hair, but as of this day Synthetic hair still does not come close to the looks and feel of real hair,  blending of the hair is a real issue with Synthetic hair. So for a bit more money your extensions will look better last longer and require less maintenance if you use Remy hair.

Don’t skimp on the Consultation:

If you are interested in getting Hair extensions,  recommended  practice would be to check your local  Salons and see what attachment methods they specialize in.  Hair Extensions as mentioned previously may not be the timely solution for everyone,  so an anticipated Hair Extension appointment should start with  a  thorough consultation.  If your Stylist is  pressuring you  in getting started right away without  giving you a detailed consultation  encompassing  your Hair’s  Health, your Expectations,  Maintenance and upkeep required, and other factors surrounding Hair Extensions,  then it might be time to start to look for another Salon. Remember the consultation is an opportunity for you to interview your Stylist and gain trust before you have work done, so ask away!

2 Responses to Hair Extensions Methods and Types

  1. susan says:

    I have hade hair extensions on an off for over 25 yrs.
    My best tried and true have been the wefts.
    I recently took them off and starting using the clip ons. Which I really liked except I just felt creepy taking them off at night.
    Like here honey,I’m not real,half of me goes in the drawer at night.

    Sorry, trying to keep a sense of humor. Then my stylist retired and I found a new lady that really was doing a great job with my clip ons. And my real hair under her care had grown itself and was looking pretty good.
    I was feeling pretty confident,but as I said I was missing something just being in my head permanently.So she told me about the tape hair.600.00 later,which may seem cheap,but not for me since I already had weft hair left,and could have had it put in for 70.00.
    I should also mention,I have very curly fine hair.And NEVER do my own hair. EVER!!!! So last night,very excited I got my new tape hair put in. When I asked to see it I should have stopped right their. I had ordered wavy hair to match my texture. this hair was stick straight. But she had been soo good,I decided to let her go. WROND decision.Looks like she cut me real hair trying to shape it,and it looks awful. Full hair and 5 thin strips going down my back. I have contacted her,and have not heard back,but have been reading that if you take them out,they may take more of your hair as well.
    Sorry,
    pls advise
    I think they are cinderella hair.
    HELP!!!,
    Susan

  2. manager says:

    Hi Susan,

    In my experience, I have chosen to only use Keratin bonded hair extensions versus any other type of hair extension because it doesn’t put your own hair at risk while trying to grow it out.

    From reading your concerns and what you are saying is that you currently have taped in hair extensions and would like to be able to remove them without damaging your hair.

    Best recommendation is if you would like to remove your taped in hair extensions at home:

    Find out where your natural hair meets the tape extensions. You need to find the place at which the tape hair extensions were attached to your hair and clip your hair to separate it from the extensions. Now you are able to see the extension tape easily.

    Apply a generous amount of heavy oils: After finding the base of the tape hair extensions, you can spray or apply a large amount of sheen oils or argan oils to your hair extensions on each tape. Little amount of oil will do a shoddy work, hence you need to apply a generous amount. The oils will lubricate and will help to loosen each tape from your natural hair. Carefully rub the sheen oil to saturate the tape so that it comes off easily.

    Please note that there are some really strong tape hair extensions out there that won’t come off easily. Here you will need the expert of a certified hair extension professional.

    Cold water wash: Removal of tape hair extensions doesn’t guarantee total removal of extensions pieces. Wash your hair with cold water while putting lots of luxury or moisturizing hair conditioner in your hair and let it soak in for at least half an hour or more. Rinse out with Cold water, because it will hardens the glue in the tape making it less adhesive and the extra adhesive will glide off your hair..

    Important that no heat is use anytime during the process of removal.

    When the hair is dry, comb it with a fine tooth comb and remove the remnants of the tape.

    Patience is the key to removing the process easily.

    I hope this help.

    If you need further assistance, you can always call me at Cool Looks Salon Studio at (540) 786 – 4639.

    Sincerely,

    Lisa

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