Everything about hair extensions...
Whether it is incorporating a fringe, a splash of colour or adding length and volume to your hair, extensions can help you attain any style in minutes. We tell you everything you'd want to know about hair extensions.
Whether it's a change in colour, style or even the length of their hair, stars like Bella Thorne, Hilary Duff, Selena Gomez, Miley Cyrus, Victoria Beckham and countless others often surprise us with their new looks. How do you think they do it? It's the magic of hair extensions-a great way to instantly create any style. "Whether it's creating soft, romantic waves or poker straight hair, extensions can help transform your hairstlyle in hours or, sometimes, in a matter of minutes," says Aakriti Kochar, beauty and make-up expert.
Apart from being one of the key looks this season, long luscious locks have been a dream of many women. However, it takes a long time to grow hair out to a considerable length.
Besides, the care and maintenance required are monumental. But hair extensions help you attain the desirable length and texture without much difficulty.
So what's the key? It is choosing the type of extensions that are right for your hair and personality and, of course, having them done by a skilled stylist. But before you decide on getting hair extensions, read this guide carefully.
What are hair extensions?
Also called hair weaves, hair extensions are a form of real or synthetic hair that is closely attached to your scalp, adding length, thickness or colour to your natural hair. Some are long-lasting, some are not; some extensions even last up to a full year before they need to be removed. Well-matched in colour and texture, hair extensions mix with your hair, making it difficult to tell you're wearing them.
Good quality human hair extensions are available in salons. You can wash, condition, dry and colour them just like your own hair. They also provide a great deal of styling freedom. Synthetic extensions are made from various types of synthetic fibres and are usually available in beauty and fashion stores.
Extensions can be braided in, glued in, woven in, or-if you need a change of look for a special event-clipped in.
Real or fake, celebs love extensions
Bollywood's barbie doll Katrina Kaif sported red wavy extensions in New York to portray a cheerful college student who likes to dress young and radical.
Model and socialite Kim Kardashian made her long raven extensions a trademark of her look. She had them removed, but recently went back to "fake hair" despite boyfriend Kayne West wanting her to get rid of it. She tweeted a snap of her new look with the caption: "Long locks, I really missed you..."
Things to keep in your mind
Why opt for it?
If you struggle to grow your natural hair, hair extensions can not only give added length to your hair, but also extra volume.
You can try new hairstyles without getting fixed to one. In case you get bored with long hair, remove the extensions and get a new look.
Hair extensions are the best solution to cover up a bad haircut.
"You can get subtle highlights without using a chemical process such as bleaching or colouring," says Harsh Nepali, technical educator-hair. You also put on different beads and create a new style of your own.
Hair extensions are pain-free.
Cons to watch out for
"Hair extensions can cause some damage to your real hair," says Placid Braganza, a design artiste. "Since they are attached using thermal heat, knotting, braiding or gluing, they can hamper hair roots or even break, split or burn hair strands if not done carefully," he adds.
Use a special brush available in beauty stores to ensure your extensions are not destroyed.
Before going to bed, braid your hair into one large loose braid at the back of the neck.
After waking up, undo the braid and comb through, beginning at the ends, working your way up to your roots.
Use a gentle shampoo and rinse under cold water to avoid tangles. "Preferably, go for a shampoo with a pH value no higher than pH7," suggests Kochar. Dilute it in some warm water and sponge it into the hair. Do not massage. Rinse thoroughly and apply conditioner and comb your hair, starting with the ends. Let the extensions air-dry.
Avoid excessive usage of styling aids, such as mousse, gel, and hairspray. If possible, opt for alcohol-free products.
Clip-on hair extensions come in a wide variety of colours, lengths, and styles. You can opt for a human or synthetic clip-on extension
Plus points: Clip-on hair extensions give you a change of look without damaging your natural hair. "They are easy and quick to apply; usually taking five to seven minutes," says beauty expert, Sylvia Chen. "Moreover, in case you're not very comfortable, you can immediately pull them out," she adds.
Red flags: These clip-on hair extensions need to be removed before you go to bed. You cannot sleep or swim with these. So you may not want to opt for them if you're planning to wear them on a daily basis; you'd have to follow the routine of attaching them every morning and removing them before sleeping. Moreover, they may also lead to hair breakage while removing the clips; some even tend to tangle and fall apart after a few days.
Linking: Longer-lasting extensions are added to natural hair with metal rings or keratin tubing. In this process, the hair is attached to a small ring or tube, which is clamped onto pieces of real hair.
Plus points: Causes minimal damage to your natural hair as no adhesives or solvents are used. Red flags: They can be difficult to remove. Also, adding any kind of additional weight to the hair can loosen the strands after a few washes.
Bonding: Bonding or gluing is a temporary weaving method and usually involves longer hair wefts.
Plus points: This method is quick to do.
Red flags: Hair extensions attached by this method do not last too long.
Fusing: Hot fusion involves braiding extensions into natural hair and bonding them together with a wax adhesive. Recently, cold-fusion extensions made of 100% human hair have also been introduced.
Plus points: With a fusion weave, you can wash your hair every week and use products like gels and mousse to style.
Red flags: This is one of the most time-consuming and expensive methods.
Weaving: Your natural hair is braided tight and close to the scalp in cornrows, and the weft is then sewn into the braid.
Plus points: You can care for this style as you would for your natural hair. It doesn't involve a lot of maintenance cost.
Red flags: The process takes a long time, as your hair strands are braided first. It is expensive, but may last longer.
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