types of hair extensions

Different Types of Hair Extensions: A Complete Guide

Maintaining a thick, luscious mane is becoming increasingly difficult. The ever-growing pollution levels, daily stress, dirt, sweat and grime heavily affect the healthiest hair.

The ideal course of action is to have an advanced hair care routine and hope for the best.

However, what if you could take your hair to the next level?

You are right on track – hair extensions.

Numerous types of hair extensions are available, and they can make your dreams come true. However, finding the best hair extensions can be daunting, especially for a beginner exploring the market.

It is crucial to learn about the types available, their effect on natural hair, the finish, etc.

This comprehensive read will explore the different types of hair extensions and what to consider when selecting the ideal match. Regarding quality Remy hair extensions, your options are unlimited, and we are here to help you.

Types of Hair Extensions

Numerous types of human hair extensions are available in the market—clips-ins, pre-bonded, weaved—you name it. Each is unique in application, comfort, and final look.

Understanding the available options and finding the suitable one for your hair care needs is crucial.

 1. Clip-In Hair Extensions

Clip-in extensions or clip-in wefts are strands of countered hair pieces attached to silicone or fabric. The base comes with a clip and is ready for use on any hair type. The snap clips make aligning the extensions to various sections manageable and blend effortlessly with the natural hair.

Clip-in hair extensions are perfect for people looking for a less permanent solution. The extension can be removed easily whenever needed and at home. Installation barely takes 10-15 minutes and causes minimal damage to the natural locks.

Owing to its simplicity and damage-resistant use, it is one of the popular hair extension types.

Pros:

Clip—in extensions are effortless to apply and remove at home. They are a temporary wear solution; you can switch styles whenever necessary. Clip-in extensions are budget-friendly and versatile for adding length, volume, or highlights.

Cons:

Clip-ins are not a suitable option for long-term wear. Additionally, it may not be a practical solution for thinning hair conditions since it is temporary. It also requires daily application and removal and can be inconvenient to many.

Installation & Longevity:

Installing a clip-in extension is stress-free, especially if you get quality ones. Here is a quick step-by-step guide to installing clip-in hair extensions –

  • Begin by gently brushing the hair to free it from knots and tangles. It will be cumbersome to place clip-ins in an unruly mane.
  • Clip-ins are installed from the bottom up. Therefore, you must begin from the nape of your neck and section the hair in places where you want the extra hair.
  • Take the weft or the extension and use the attached clips to set it in place. Tease the spots on the clipping zones for a stronghold.
  • Continue the steps until you are happy with the overall look of your hair. The idea is to part the hair section, place the extension, and brush for a flawless finish.

Care for the extensions is vital to ensure greater longevity. Clip-in extensions offer four to six months of wear with proper care and storage.

2. Tape in hair extensions

The name explains what tape-in hair extensions are—they have a pre-taped section to be attached to the original hair. Unlike clip-ins, tape-in extensions require a professional to make them look flawless and natural.

The taped ends are aligned to the roots with heat. It activates the glue, which melts with the original hair for a fused finish.

A professional hairdresser takes about 40 minutes to an hour to install tape-in extensions. They are a semi-permanent solution that lasts up to 8 weeks with proper care. Most reputable hair salons recommend being light-handed with hair conditioning products, shampoos and styling essentials.

Products with an oily texture can cause the adhesive to loosen up and ruin the extensions.

Pros:

Tape-ins are slightly better than clip-ins for individuals seeking a permanent solution. There is no daily wear struggle, and the finish is comparatively natural.

Cons:

Using heat and adhesive on the roots damages them in the long run. Additionally, the uninstallation process entails using an adhesive remover and reinstalling. It can be a struggle for many who prefer a quick solution.

Installation & Longevity:

The installation process is similar to the clip-in one but uses adhesive strips instead of clips.

  • The installation process begins from the bottom up. Depending on the extension position, the hairdresser sections the hair into small portions. The adhesive strip is then placed and fixed with a heating tool.
  • An adhesive remover is utilized during reinstallation to smoothly loosen the extension from the roots. The steady process with heat and glue can be damaging. The professionals recommend focusing on hair care and deep conditioning for hair health restoration.
  • With proper care, tape-ins last about four to eight weeks. Avoid oily products and thick conditions, as they can loosen the adhesive's hold.

3. Sew-in Hair extensions/Weaves

Sew-in hair extensions or weaves are a lengthy process that requires professional hands. The natural hair is braided in cornrows or a beehive, creating a unique pattern over the head for the extensions to be sewn in.

Sew-in extensions are installed in bundles and are not ideal for thinning hair. The cornrows must be thick enough to hold the extensions. Additionally, the installation process takes more than six hours, depending on the professional's speed.

Sew-ins demand technical prowess for longevity. The extensions must be cared for for a minimum of 8 weeks. They are the most permanent solution when it comes to hair extensions. The hair does not come in separate wefts but in a wig form. The entire piece is sewn to the natural cornrows and removable only by professionals.

Pros:

It is an absolute hair extension solution and offers a natural finish. No adhesives or clips are involved, and it is less damaging to natural hair. Deep moisturizing is recommended for comfortable and appealing long wear.

Cons:

Sewn-in extensions do not gel well with thin hair. The cornrows must be sturdy enough to hold the extension in place. Furthermore, wearing them for over four months can damage natural hair growth.

Related: Explore the best hair extensions for thin hair and unlock the secret to thicker hair.

Installation and Longevity:

The extension installation process of sew-in hair extensions requires professional hands. Here is the step-by-step process –

  • The process begins with cornrowing the hair into sections. The crisscross cornrows act as an anchor to hold the extension in place. Tiny sections are utilized for the cornrows. Each row can neither be too thin nor thick. Thin cornrows will fail to keep the extension weight. Similarly, a too thick cornrow will be critical to care for and turn mouldy.
  • Once the cornrows are ready, the ends must be secured for a complete base. The hairstylist will take a needle and thread to sew the extension with the natural hair. A knot loop is used for the strongest bond, and the process continues until the entire wig is sewn to the head.
  • Most professionals trim the ends for a cleaner and natural finish.

It is advised to avoid going overboard with the wear. Four months is the maximum number of days to utilize a sew-in extension. Further use may lead to hair growth problems. Additionally, deep conditioning is essential for longevity and maintenance.

4. Fusion & Pre-Bonded Hair Extensions

Fusion hair or pre-bonded extensions work on a mechanism similar to tape-in hair extensions. They do not come with adhesive tape. The external adhesive is utilized to place the weft. A glue gun helps fuse the extensions to the natural hair.

Pros:

It offers a natural finish and does not create visible bumps. The process is not rigorous, and it is a semi-permanent solution.

Cons:

Adhesive extension placement is the least recommended type of permanent hair extension. It causes heavy damage to nature, and the removal process is further tricky.

Installation and Longevity:

  • Like installing tape-in extensions, hair extension installation experts section the hair into parts. Individual wefts are placed in desired places and glued with a heat gun.
  • The process continues until there is a consistent look throughout the mane.
  • Fusion or pre-bonded extensions are treated similarly to natural hair. From shampoo to hair mask, you can utilize the same products you use, and unique items are not necessary.
  • The fusion ones are semi-permanent and last up to four months with proper care. It is vital to reposition the extension occasionally since the natural hair grows underneath.

5. Microlink Hair Extensions

Microlink hair extensions are also known as micro bead hair extensions, micro loop hair extensions, and more. They use a tiny silicone-lined bead to attach the weft to a section of natural hair.

Professionals use a unique tool to attach these microlink hair extensions. No heat or glue is used in the process.

Finding the best hair extension installation service is crucial since microlinks can cause heavy damage when not appropriately attached. Too tightly placed beads can cause pressure and pull on the roots.

Practiced professionals take about three to four hours to complete the installation process.

Pros:

Less damaging than fusion extensions, comfortable to wear, long-lasting up to 3 months.

Cons:

Requires professional application and removal. Additionally, Microlinks are more visible than other extension types and must be repositioned every two weeks.

Installation and Longevity:

  • Each weft of the microlink extension comes with a pre-tipped keratin bead. The bead is attached to the natural hair with a specialized clamping tool.
  • When attached efficiently, the microlinks last up to 12 weeks. You must get an appointment every two to three weeks for repositioning and hair maintenance.
  • Failing to do the repositioning can lead to hair growth problems, and prolonged wear causes pain in the roots.

6. UV Hair Extensions

UV hair extensions are a modern technique that is the best for revamping one's hair. Single strands are bonded to the natural hair with a special glue. The set extension is cured under UV lights for a flawless outcome.

Although the process can be somewhat lengthy, it offers the most seamless finish. The extension will last up to six weeks with proper care and conditioning.

Pros:

UV extensions are best for covering thinning hair. The flawless finish looks natural, and only professional eyes would know the difference.

Cons:

The glue and UV cure damage natural hair. Additionally, there is a risk of discoloration of the natural strands under UV exposure.

Installation and Longevity:

The natural hair is sectioned to plan the weft placements. Professional extension installers use special glue to attach the strands. The completed sections are UV-cured for a flawless finish.

Like every other extension, UV hair extensions require proper care and maintenance for longevity. The extensions can last up to six weeks with an undetectable finish. For the best results, sulphate-free hair care products are recommended.

7. Halo extensions

Halo extensions are more straightforward to use than the other variants. The hair strands are attached to a thin wire and secured around the crown. The strands flow naturally to offer extra length and volume.

Similar to clip-in extensions, the halo can be managed without professional help. It simply sits on the head and can be styled as is.

As the name, it appears like a halo, and with care, it will last almost a year.

Pros:

It is easy to wear and manage and does not require professional help. One can attach and detach the halo themselves and experience a flawless finish.

Cons:

It is not a permanent hair solution, and the invisible halo string becomes visible at some points. However, proper styling can be adjusted for a flawless look.

Each of these hair extension types has its advantages and disadvantages. It is vital to thoroughly understand how each works and whether it benefits your lifestyle and hair needs.

Different Types of Hair Used in Extensions

Hair extensions offer a wide variety in length, volume, and texture. Colours, finishes, and quality must also be considered.

Choosing from among numerous options can be daunting. Remember, more than one kind of hair is utilized for making extensions. Let us have a look at our options –

1. Human Remy Hair Extensions

100% natural human hair, or Remy's, is considered the top-tier extension. You can experience several advantages of utilizing one –

  • It is sourced from a single donor and ensures that the cuticles, or the hair's outer protective layers, remain intact. The professional extension makers ensure the strands run in the same direction, which minimizes tangling and maintains a smooth, natural look. 
  • Remy hair can be styled with heat tools like natural hair. It can be straightened, curled, or dyed to perfectly match the natural hair. This flexibility makes it a versatile option.
  • With proper care, Remy hair extensions last for months. They are a worthwhile investment for individuals looking for hair-revamping options.

2. Human Non-Remy Hair Extension

The only significant difference between human Remy and non-Remy extensions is the cuticle. In non-Remy hair, the cuticle is either not intact or chemically removed. Additionally, non-Remy hair is not aligned in a direction and can be frizzy or tangled.

However, non-Remy hair is comparatively cheaper. Chemically treating or heat styling is not recommended, as it damages easily compared to Remy's hair.

3. Synthetic Hair Extensions

Synthetic hair extensions are the most budget-friendly option in the market. It is available in various colours and styles and can be utilized for several transformations. Here are the key features –

  • Synthetic hair requires minimal maintenance and is generally easy to style.  
  • Heat styling is not recommended for synthetic hair extensions as it can cause melting or warping.

If all this information seems daunting, here is a quick overview of how to select the type of hair extension material –

  • For long-lasting, natural-looking extensions that can be easily styled, Remy human hair is the way to go. 
  • If budget is a concern and you seek a temporary change, synthetic hair extensions are a fun option. 
  • Non-Remy human hair offers a more natural finish. However, these are not as durable or versatile as Remy hair.

Consult with an experienced hairstylist for better extension recommendations and care guidance.

Key Considerations When Choosing Between Different Types of Hair Extensions

Now that we understand the various extension types and features, selecting a kind will be easy.

To ensure you choose the perfect fit for your hair and lifestyle, here are some key considerations to keep in mind:

1. Hair Type and Texture

Matching the texture of the extensions to your natural is crucial for a natural, seamless blend. Fine hair needs lightweight extensions and does not weigh it down. Clip-in or tape-in extensions with a thin weft are ideal. For thick hair, weft and sew-in extensions add volume without looking bulky.  

Similarly, curly or coiled hair requires extensions with a similar texture to avoid an unnatural contrast.

2. Desired Outcome

When choosing extensions, it is vital to have a length and volume goal. Clip-in extensions are perfect for temporary length or volume additions, while pre-bonded extensions provide long-lasting results. 

Opt for extensions that closely match your natural hair colour. You can go a shade or two lighter or darker for subtle highlights or lowlights. Consider the base colour and any existing highlights you may have for a natural finish.

3. Lifestyle and Maintenance

Tape-in or bonded extensions require professional application and removal after eight weeks. Clip-in extensions are more flexible but require daily application and removal. Consider the lifestyle and how much time you will dedicate to extension maintenance. 

Human hair extensions require similar care to natural hair—washing, conditioning, and avoiding excessive heat styling. Synthetic extensions require less maintenance but cannot be styled with heat.

4. Budget

Remy human hair extensions are the most expensive in the market. They offer the most natural look, versatility, and longevity. Non-Remy human hair is more affordable but may have limitations in styling and lifespan.

Synthetic extensions are the most budget-friendly. However, they lack the natural look and styling options of human hair. 

Bonded extensions require a professional application and add to the cost. Clip-in extensions can be applied at home, making them a more budget-friendly option. 

Consider these aspects before investing in hair extensions for a satisfactory hair journey.

Do Hair Extensions Cause Damage to Natural Hair?

Hair extensions are a dream for those seeking volume, length, and style. However, a common concern is hair damage. The answer is not a simple yes or no – it depends on several factors.

Yes, it causes damage. No, if you learn to care for it properly. Let us get into the details of how extension damage our natural hair –

  1. Improper Application—Techniques like fusion and adhesives involve attaching extensions with heat or glue. If not done correctly by a skilled professional, this weakens the natural hair. Tight braiding for weaves can also strain the scalp and hair follicles, leading to excessive hair loss.
  2. Lack of Maintenance—Both human and synthetic extensions require proper care. Human hair extensions need washing, conditioning, and avoiding excessive heat styling. The care and maintenance are similar to those of natural hair. Neglecting them can lead to dryness, breakage, and tangles. 
  3. Excessive Long Wear—Even with proper care, most extensions must be removed and reinstalled every 6-8 weeks. This allows the natural hair to rest and grow. Wearing the extension for too long can cause matting and breakage.

 Here are some tips to minimize hair extension damage –

  • Consult a professional with adept knowledge in hair extension installation. They can assess hair health and recommend the most suitable type and application method.
  • Choose gentle, lightweight extensions if you have fine hair. 
  • Maintain a healthy hair care routine for your natural hair and extensions. 
  • Take breaks from extensions to allow your scalp and hair to breathe. 
  • Never attempt to remove bonded extensions at home. Leave it to a professional.

Tips To Take Care of Your Hair Extensions

Here are some tips to ensure your extensions stay healthy, tangle-free, and look their best through the days. The list is based on professional recommendations, and the following will benefit hair enthusiasts with a positive extension experience.

For Cleansing and Conditioning

  • Wash your extensions less frequently than your natural hair. Ideally, every 1-2 weeks, depending on your hair type and product build-up, is accurate.  
  • Use a sulphate-free shampoo and conditioner formulated explicitly for extensions. The products are gentler and will not strip away natural oils or cause colour fading. 
  • Always brush the extensions gently to remove tangles before washing. Wet them thoroughly with lukewarm water, then apply shampoo only to the roots and scalp. Massage gently to cleanse. Avoid scrubbing the extensions. Apply conditioner focusing on the mid and ends.

For Brushing and Detangling

  • Use a wide-tooth comb or a detangling brush specifically designed for extensions. These soft bristles gently glide through the hair with minimal breakage and pulling. 
  • Brushing the extensions regularly is crucial to prevent matting and tangles. Start at the ends and work up to the roots in sections. Brush twice a day, especially before bed and after showering. 
  • If your extensions are very tangled, use a detangling spray formulated for them. Gently work through the tangles with your fingers or a wide-tooth comb.

For Drying and Styling

  • Allow your extensions to air dry whenever possible. It is the gentlest method and helps preserve moisture.  
  • If you must use heat styling tools, use them on low heat settings and apply a heat protectant spray. Avoid using hot tools directly on the extensions' attachment points. 
  • Braid the extensions loosely before sleep to prevent tangles. You can also wear a satin cap to reduce friction and frizz.

Additional Maintenance Tips:

  • Schedule occasional appointments with the hair professional for thorough maintenance. It involves checking the attachment points, addressing loose strands, and trimming split ends. The frequency of the appointments depends on the type of extensions you have. 
  • Avoid harsh chemicals like chlorine in swimming pools or excessive salt water exposure. Wear a swim cap and thoroughly rinse the extensions with clean water afterwards.  
  • Treat the extensions to a deep conditioning treatment once a month. It helps replenish moisture and keep them soft and manageable. A deep conditioner formulated explicitly for extensions is perfect. However, you can opt for natural oils like coconut or argan oil.

Taking good care of your extensions ensures a prolonged lifespan. It allows you to enjoy the beauty and versatility they offer much longer.

How Much Do Hair Extensions Cost?

Hair extensions are a game-changer for your hairstyling era. However, it is critical to begin the journey correctly and be informed. We have learned about the types, care methods, longevity and more. Let us discuss the primary deciding factor – budget.

Here are a few pointers to keep in mind –

  • Human Hair extensions are the most expensive and offer the most natural look and styling versatility. Non-Remy human hair is more affordable than the Remy ones. 
  • Synthetic extensions are the most budget-friendly choice. They are perfect for temporary changes or adding a pop of colour.
  • Clip-in Extensions are the most affordable option. They start at $200 and vary depending on hair length, quality, and brand. 
  • Tape-in Extensions offer a good balance between affordability and convenience. They require a professional application, and the price list starts from $150 depending on the extension length, quality and brand. 
  • Sew-ins range from $300 and vary depending on length, volume, and other factors. Utilizing sew-ins requires professional help.
  • The above bullets highlighted the cost of each extension. However, the installation charges vary. New installations cost around $150-$200, depending on the number of attached strands. Reinstallation charges are slightly higher; the lowest range is $200 for thirty to forty strands.

Remember: These are just estimates.  The actual cost can vary significantly. It is always best to consult the hair extension brand and installation experts.

Create the Perfect Lock with Premium Hair Extensions

There is no best type of hair extensions to get. The ideal one depends on your hairstyle, preference and needs. This comprehensive read has explored the different types of hair extensions that help you create the perfect mane.

Explore the range of hair extensions and understand the benefits of each before investing. We have discussed the various care and maintenance methods to ensure a prolonged positive experience.

You can explore all types of hair extensions and professional hair extension installation services at Radiance Beauty Inc. From 100% Remy hair to synthetic halos, we deliver it all. Our experienced hair masters ensure a flawless finish and a positive wear experience.

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