I am back in my kinky-straight hair wig and I am so relieved to have my hair away for a while. Not because it came too difficult to manage but because my schedule became quite packed I began to neglect hair care seriously. With my wig regimen, taking care of my hair feels really effortless and that is what I need right now.
In the last 3 years or so there has been a huge shift from black women wearing sew-in weaves and braids to wigs. This is a trend I hope will be here for good. Wigs, when worn correctly, are much safer and less invasive than sew-in weaves and braids which are notorious for causing traction alopecia.
Although I have nothing against well constructed full wigs, I only wear u-part wigs because that is what I feel most comfortable in. When wearing a u-part wig, a partial sew-in weave or adding a few tracks to your hair, it is very important to choose your extensions strategically, why? Because it makes a big difference to whether your extensions will be protective or destructive to your hair.
In this post I will share a few tips for choosing and wearing wigs safely.
Tip 1 – Choose Your Hair Extension Texture and Colour Strategically
This tip applies to ladies who leave out some of their own hair to blend with their wigs or weaves. Many ladies choose hair extensions in textures they like and then try to make their own hair conform to or match the texture/colour they have purchased.
This often leads to the regular use of heat to make the leave-out hair sleek and smooth. In some cases, ladies who are natural relax their hairline solely for the sake of making it blend with their hair extensions. Other ladies even bleach and colour their hair to achieve the perfect blend.
If care isn’t taken, excessive use of heat, chemical dyes and relaxing too often can lead to breakage and thinning of the leave-out hair.
Ladies, it should be the other way around.
You should always choose extensions that will blend seamlessly with your own hair so that you wouldn’t have to use heat, or chemical colours and relaxers on your leave out hair. This is especially important if the wig or extensions is going to be worn very frequently.
Ladies who are relaxed should try to look for texture types that will blend with their freshly relaxed hair as well as when it is many weeks post relaxer and has a lot of new growth. Kinky straight hair is ideal for this in my opinion.
I often write posts with relaxed, texlaxed and kinky afro textured hair in mind. I do read up on all hair textures and just in case anyone would like to known about other hair textures there are so many resources and sites you can learn from such as this post about 3c hair.
Tip 2 – Extra Tight Doesn’t Make It Right
Your wig should certainly have a good fit.
Unfortunately, many ladies confuse a good fit with an excessively tight fit. I once had a client tell me she wanted her wig to be so tight that it stayed on even if it was being tugged and pulled even though it had no clips, combs and was glue free. She simply wanted the wig base itself to hug her head that tightly.
A wig that tight will place a lot of tension on your hairline and scalp and lead to breakage and traction alopecia.
Try to wear wigs that fit well and are secure enough but please remember that a wig is not a weave and as such should not feel as tight or secure as a weave that has been stitched to your hair.
Tip 3 – Handle with Care if it’s got Combs and Clips.
If you have a wig or weave clip-in that have combs and clips attached to them, try to get familiar with where the combs and clips are located. Also learn how the wig clips they are opened and close so you can put on and take off the wigs carefully and correctly. I have seen ladies tear out their hair because they were not opening the clips properly when trying to take off the wig.
Avoid placing clips and combs directly on your hairline because the hair and follicles there tends to be much weaker than other areas. When wig clips and combs are not used carefully or placed on the hairline daily for several weeks it can lead to bald patches. If your wig has clips or combs they should be placed further back than your actual hairline.
Any excess clips and combs can be removed, for instance, a lot of u-part wigs are made with 4 wig clips to keep the wigs secure. I only make use of two of the wig clips in my wigs and remove the other two that are not used and the combs at the nape area of the wig. This reduces the risk of them snagging on and breaking my hair when putting on and taking off the wig.
Tip 4- Do not forget your real hair
You must have some sort of regimen you follow when wearing wigs. You should still ensure your hair and scalp are cleaned regularly and that your hair is moisturised and sealed often enough.
The last thing you want is a dirty clogged scalp to affect your scalp health and hair growth. You also want to avoid your hair become so dry and brittle whilst wearing wigs that it begins to break.
A wig is only protective if your hair is still be well cared for underneath.
I hope all these tips will help you make the most out of wearing wigs as part of your hair care routine. If you wear wigs please do share what your routine or regimen is when wearing wigs. I might learn a thing or two from you.
My next couple of posts will be the finale of the bun of the month series and visit to a Lagos based Trichologist to learn more about her services.
Learn | Change | Grow