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How Do Hair Extensions Work?

Achieving fuller, longer, and stunning hair locks can take years of dedicated care. Our hairs take years to grow into that volume and hippie-like lengths we always desire. In this post, we’re going to learn how hair extensions actually work. 

Not many modern women have the perseverance to wait for months, spending lots of money and time to know how do hair extensions work and get desired results.

The desire to get fast, luscious, and fuller hairs without waiting for years has pushed more women into using hair extensions.

The push has massively benefited the hair extension industry, as its sales are projected to go past 1.5 billion by the end of 2022.

Even though more women are using them, and this might seem like an obvious question – but some don’t fully understand how hair extensions work (which is nothing to be ashamed of by the way!).

So, How Do Hair Extensions Work?

Hair extensions use unique mechanisms – depending on the type of hair extensions you choose (we discuss this a bit later) – to add to your natural hair and beauty.

Whether sourced from plastic fibers or human hair, extensions work to give your hair instantly fuller and a healthier look.

Available in temporary and semi-permanent options, hair extensions are perfect for ladies with straight, thick, or even curly hair.

Temporary hair extensions come ready for use. They are popular among people who just want to enhance their hair for one event because they can be worn and removed at will.

Semi-permanent options are more durable and costly. Only a qualified hairstylist can install semi-permanent hair extensions. They can’t be removed at will. Once installed, you can only maintain and clean them until you no longer need them.

Wearing a hair extension adds to your natural hair’s volume and length instantly. Most mane extensions can be styled and colored to any look and dye.

How Many Types of Hair Extensions Are Available and How Do They Work?

Beauty fanatics have so many choices at their disposal when it comes to hair extensions. Different hair extensions work differently, and that’s why before you buy, it would be good you learn about different hair extensions and how they work.

Clip-In Hair extension

Clip-ins haven’t been around for so long. They only came about in the early 2000s. Clip-ins are hair wefts with bonded clips and are perfect for adding length and volume to your natural hair.

Clip-in hairs work in such that you’ve to section the hair and then open the clip. Once you’re done, clamp it from your hair roots. Doing so may appear easy, but it does require enough time practicing. The learning process will also depend on the clip-ins you’re using.

One outstanding quality of clip-in hair extensions is the ease of maintenance with minimal to no professional input. Anyone can quickly install clip-in hair extensions by themselves. The only problem is that these types of hair extensions attach to your roots, and so they impart weight to the strands, which creates pulling and pressure, causing bald spots and hair loss.

Bonded hair extensions

Bonded hair extensions are currently the most popular. They’re more expensive, but if you get them installed by an expert, they can serve you for up to 5 months.

They are available in modern cold fusion and traditional hot fusion technologies. The hot fusion requires the hairstylist to use a mini flatiron in bonding the glue-tipped extension to the hair section.

The cold fusion involves using keratin polymers and ultrasound waves to attach the extension to your natural hair.  The safety and effectiveness of this technology have made it the perfect choice for those with damaged hair.

Sadly, the fastening process takes time, and you will have to get them professionally repositioned every two months. Bonded hair extensions are popular among celebrities because of their high pricing.

Sew-In hair extensions

These are your everyday weaves. They are simply natural hair or synthetic hair sewn into cornrows. Weaves are quite affordable and don’t require high investment to care for and maintain.

Washing them weekly using high-quality shampoo is enough to keep your hair looking impressive. They fit well with black hair.

Temporary glue-in extensions

Temporary glue-in extensions are temporary installations, as its name suggests. These types of hair extensions are ideal for those looking to create short-term dramatic looks.

Temporary glue-in extensions are fixed to your natural hair using glue. When you no longer need them, your hairstylist will use an oil-based solvent to remove them. Sadly, they are too costly, considering the little value they offer.

Tape-In hair extensions

As with tape-in hair extensions, they’re only fixed by a qualified hairstylist. The hairstylist has to tape the long hair weft to your natural hair roots. You have to sleep in a ponytail or loose braid to prevent the extensions from matting.

The unique formulation of these hair extensions makes them suitable for people with blonde or fine hair. If correctly taped and cared for properly, these types of hair extensions can last up to two months.

Ring extensions

The last choice of hair extension includes micro rings used to attach it to your natural hair. These tiny aluminum rings have silicone linings. The rings are too small to be noticed.

Women love this method of fixing hair extensions because it doesn’t damage their natural hair. Since no adhesives or heat are used, there are fewer instances it will damage your hair. With proper repositioning every few weeks, the hair can serve you for 3 months.

Also, here’s all you need to know about what a hair weave is.

How Do Hair Extensions Work – Conclusion

Understanding how do hair extensions work should come first before you even think about buying and wearing hair extensions. If you don’t have an idea of how hair extensions work, you will likely face it rough, deciding which extensions to buy.

As you’ve read above, the working mechanism of a hair extension depends on its unique design. Different types of hair extensions are installed differently, depending on the type of closure used.

The ones that use glue and heat aren’t the best for women that want their hair to grow healthier, fuller, and longer within the period they will be wearing the extensions. 

Glue and heat may trigger damage to your natural hair, affecting growth and health. Consider hair extensions with rings or bonded extensions as they don’t expose your hair to the risk of damage and may help it grow longer and stronger.


About the Author Natasha Banks