This LGBT Pride Month, we teamed up with London-based celeb hairstylist Lorraine Dublin to get the ultimate insider scoop on caring for wigs, weaves and extensions. From how often to wash your wig, to the best way to detangle extensions, the mega-stylist – whose client list includes Serena Williams and Kelly Rowland – gives us her ultimate tress-loving tips. Read on for great hair days only – this month and all year round!
(Celebrity Hair Stylist, Lorraine Dublin)
Start by making the right choice
According to Dublin, a weave and hair extensions serve different purposes. “With a weave, your natural hair is braided and the weave is sewn onto the braids. I would recommend a weave if the client wanted to grow their hair and keep it protected. It’s also a great way to change the look, length, colour, style and texture of your ‘hair’ without drastic measures,” she says.
On the other hand, Dublin would recommend hair extensions when a client wants added volume, colour and length, but with more versatility than a weave.
“A weave is less versatile because it's sewn onto static cornrows; you can’t change the parting or wear it up as easily as you would if you only had strategically placed extensions,” she says.
As for caring for both styles? This comes down to whether you’re using synthetic or natural hair. According to Dublin, “Human hair attachments – whether a full weave, wig or extensions — should be treated like your natural hair. Synthetic hair is not as durable as human hair, so treating it like your natural hair could lead to it losing its sheen and texture.”
In terms of longevity, Dublin says a weave can be left in for 6-8 weeks, and sewn-in/glued extensions 6-10 weeks, provided you wash and condition it properly in between.
Show wigs, weaves and extensions as much love as your natural hair
Like your natural hair, wigs, weaves and extensions need TLC, says Dublin. This means washing once a week, leaving conditioner on for at least 20 minutes, then rinsing thoroughly for soft, manageable strands.
“If the hair is curly, put a leave-in conditioner in the hair to keep the curls moisturised and detangled. If the hair is straight, use some leave-in spray after washing the hair before styling,” she adds.
Brush daily, wash weekly
Wigs, weaves and extensions should be brushed every day with a wide tooth comb or Denman brush, says Dublin. “A helpful tip is to spray the hair with a bit of water first and comb/brush from the ends to the roots,” she adds.
When it comes to cleansing, she recommends shampooing and conditioning once a week. But don’t scrimp and use a dodgy product just because it’s not your natural hair. “Make sure you use a moisturising sulphate-free shampoo so that it doesn’t dry the hair out,” Dublin cautions.
(check out Ariel’s full tutorial here)
Use an intensive treatment once a fortnight
Just like with natural hair, wigs, weaves and extensions will benefit from extra care now and then. Dublin therefore recommends using a treatment product, like our Like A Virgin Masque, every two weeks.
“The Like A Virgin Masque is great because it's got a lot of great moisturising natural ingredients and leaves your hair feeling soft, manageable and easy to style,” says Dublin.
She adds that shea butter (one of the ingredients in our nourishing Hair Masque), is one of her favourite natural products. “It's light, extremely moisturising and it works wonders for all ages and hair types.”
Never do this…
If there’s one big no-no, Dublin says it’s washing without combing your wig/ weave/ extensions through. “If you do then prepare for knotted hair,” she warns.
Her final piece of advice for wig and weave wearers? Avoid using too much product because you’ll get product build up and the hair won’t style easily.
Thanks Lorraine, and Happy Pride everyone!
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Looking for more hair-care tips? Check out our blog on How To Repair Damaged Hair When You Can