Rapunzel, Rapunzel, wait… is that your real hair?! Most of us dream of the long, thick locks Disney characters are blessed with. But, reality has saddled us with fine, skinny hair. Not the place we want to be “skinny”!
Extensions have become much more popular and mainstream in the last few years. Everything from clip-in’s to beads or even tape that will last up to 3 months. But what’s the real story? Will they damage my hair? Is it worth the cost? Can I use extensions to help grow my hair out? Here’s what you need to know before signing your hair up!
How long will they last? Most extensions used by professional salons are quality “Virgin Remy Hair” (meaning the cuticle is intact and hair was not colored when donated). However, since the hair is not attached, it’s not getting nutrients like your hair is. Many are reusable and can last 6 months to a year, depending on how well you take care of them. Heat and product buildup can damage extensions just like it can your natural hair, shortening the time you can keep them looking nice. Ask your stylist what products they recommend. Many of the professional oils do wonders for hair extensions; they help both the extensions and your hair improve in their condition.
Hair and Makeup: Sherri Jessee, Photo: Nathan Mays
Can I use extensions to grow out my hair? Extensions wont change the rate of growth, but it will mask the process. When you remove them, it is typically a surprise how long the hair blended in has gotten over the time you have had extensions.
How much breakage/damage should I expect? Well, that depends. Are you doing a full head? Or filling in a few places? Most looking for extensions have fine hair to start. If your hair is fine, dry and damaged you can be susceptible to breakage. The type of extensions is also an important factor, the least amount of attachments to the head, the better for your hair as that is where all the stress is. Talk to your stylist, they will be using extensions that are the least damaging to your hair and will have great recommendations on how to treat them to avoid any damage from the tension of the extensions.
We know, long flowing hair is enticing…and addictive! Once you start it’s like cake…it’s so hard to stop. Talk to your stylist about upkeep, financial commitment, and options to minimize any damage to your hair. And then, go rock those long glorious locks!