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How Do I Choose the Best Permanent Hair Extensions?

A stylist putting in hair extensions.
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  • Written By: Alex Tree
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 24 July 2014
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Choosing the best permanent hair extensions requires picking an application method and carefully choosing the right color, texture, and quality. Permanent hair extensions are not actually permanent, but can last up to six months when washed with high-quality shampoos and conditioners and not heat styled. The popular application methods for long-term hair extensions are glue-ins and sew-ins. Choosing the color, texture, and quality of the weave is best performed with the help of a professional hair stylist or beauty supply store employee. In the end, all permanent hair extensions must be thrown away or put to uses besides extending your hair, because the chemicals that once coated them are gone and the hair is left dry, dull, and brittle.

Many people prefer glue-ins and sew-ins when it comes to permanent hair extensions. As far as long-term hair extensions go, these application methods have minimum upkeep. The stylist usually braids a small part of the client’s hair across his or her head and then glues or sews in the hair extensions piece by piece. This is not a quick process; in fact, most stylists recommend setting aside anywhere from two to four hours, depending on how much hair the client wants put in. These types of extensions sometimes come with the glue or thread needed to use the extensions, but most of the time the stylist supplies these accessories herself.

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Choosing the actual color, texture, and quality of the permanent hair extensions is the most difficult part. It is generally recommended to seek the help of a professional to match the texture and color as closely as possible. Quality greatly affects the price of the hair; for example, synthetic hair extensions that do not look as natural as human hair are usually the cheapest kind. Even human hair has varying quality standards, however, and salespeople at a beauty supply store can normally point potential customers in the right direction. In general, high-quality hair holds up to more washes, heat styling, and other damaging processes than low-quality extensions.

Lastly, no matter the quality or the care taken to upkeep your extensions, their quality will eventually deteriorate to the point that they no longer look good when worn. Human hair extensions undergo extensive processing to become extensions, which leaves each strand coated in chemicals. These chemicals wash off with the help of even the gentlest shampoos. In addition, dying the hair also shortens its life, especially if it is dyed a lighter color that requires bleach.

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Discuss this Article

bythewell
Post 3

@irontoenail - People all over the world sell their hair, or even donate it for charities that make wigs for cancer victims.

If you are looking to get some hair extensions, I think the best advice is to find someone you trust, who has a lot of positive references and then just get the best deal you can afford. Most of the time, the quality is going to be reflected in the price. It's not necessary to know exactly what remy hair extensions are, or the difference between single drawn and double drawn.

All you have to know is that the more expensive it is, the better it will be. If you can afford the best, you should get the best. If you can't afford the best, then get what you can afford.

irontoenail
Post 2

@KoiwiGal - While I'm sure a bit of exploitation does go on, for the most part the hair trade is probably a very good thing in those peoples' lives. It's no different from people giving blood in the States because they need a little bit of extra money. If that option wasn't available it would just mean less money for them.

It's not like they are giving something they can never get back.

I have heard that most hair extension supplies come from Asia though, so I wonder who supplies the demand for blonde hair extensions? I'm sure there are a few natural blondes in Asia, but there can't be many and most of the time the suppliers are looking for what they call "virgin" hair, that hasn't been bleached or dyed.

KoiwiGal
Post 1

I don't think I could ever bring myself to use hair extensions, just because I know most of the time the hair comes from people in poor countries who are exploited for it. It makes me think of Les Miserables and I don't want to be the person on the other side of that kind of suffering.

I have used novelty artificial hair extensions, rather than real hair extensions, but it's always so obvious that it's fake, I don't like it at all.

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