Hair Extensions

The long and short of it

Hair extensions are an exciting way to add length, color and texture to your tresses without damaging or permanently altering the hair you already have. A hair extension is a lock of hair, composed of natural human hairs or synthetic hair fibers, which is sewn, clipped or glued onto the scalp and arranged to look like it is part of the natural hair growth. Both synthetic and natural hair extensions can be readily obtained at beauty supply stores and over the Internet.

The Choices

Human hair extensions are usually the most expensive type of hair extensions you can buy, but they have many advantages over synthetic hair. Real hair extensions can be treated just like your natural hair, which means you can wash, style and even use heat on the extensions without worrying about damaging the fibers. You can follow the same hair care routine you use normally.

Conversely, synthetic extensions, while they do have the advantage of being available in any color, length and texture you can imagine, cannot be styled using heat, and won't always retain their lovely texture if they are washed, because they are usually made of plastic or acrylic fibers.

How They Work

There are several different ways to attach extensions depending on your desired look and level of permanence. Extensions can be glued or sewn directly into your existing hair for a long-term effect, or clipped in using a snap-in hair clip that is sewn onto the hair extension, for a look that can be easily altered and adjusted according to your mood.

While you can use clip in hair extensions by yourself in your own home with very successful results, if you're planning to have extensions glued or sewn in, it's best to go to your local professional hair salon for best results. The procedure can take anywhere from one to several hours, depending on the thickness of your hair and the complexity of the extensions you desire.

How To Get Them

While hair extensions are becoming easier and easier to find, you may be put off by the high prices, and be interested in buying wholesale hair extensions. Salon superstores like Sally's Beauty Supply offer great deals on bulk purchases of hair extensions, but some of the most phenomenal deals you will find are over the Internet. Auction sites offer very competitive prices on wholesale hair extensions, and some sellers will even sew clips onto the extensions before you buy them, saving you a step if you were planning to use the extensions as clip-ins.

Since clip in extensions have become so accessible, many people are using them for fashion purposes, and for temporary makeovers. Clip in extensions can be used to change the length and texture of your hair from day to day with extreme ease! You can dress up your hair with some elaborate curly extensions for an evening out, or highlight your hair with some hot pink punk hair extensions for your next rock concert. Extensions enable you to change your look as often as you want, and to feel confident with your glamorous and dramatic locks.

By Cecilia Lawson