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    Hair Extensions 101 The Ultimate Guide

    How to Start Using Hair Extensions Wisely

    Maybe you want to experiment with a new look with some high-quality Russian hair extensions. Maybe you want to give your hair a rest. Maybe your hair is thinning and you want to give it a little extra oomph. Maybe you like flinging hair over your shoulders every once in a while. Why not look into trying something like cheap clip in hair extensions, which you can apply at home with just a snap and change up your look without any damage to your hair. Why not? Go for it!

    You’ll be in good company. Celebrities of almost every stripe all have experimented with hair extensions, weaves and wigs of all sorts. Long, thick, luscious hair is in. . . Women of all races and all hair types are demanding hair that’s long, longer, longest and thick, thicker, thickest. It doesn’t mean that they’re trying to be something they’re not. They just like having options. Like a hairbrush or a blow-dryer, weaves, wigs and extensions can be useful styling tools. A little artificial hair can let you try on a new look. If your hair is fragile, wearing a weave can protect it for awhile. It can give your locks some much-needed volume.

    clip in hair extensions

    There are so many options available now regarding cost and lifestyle, such as clip-in or tape-in extensions, heated seal applications, and/or bead attachments. . . all providing different effects, longevity and costs.

    If you’re going to fake it, you’ve got to do it right. And doing it right means, above all, making sure that your natural hair is kept clean, conditioned and stress-free. So before you reach for that plug of hair, make sure that you do your homework. Read on, and I’ll tell you everything you need to know about hair extensions.

    Clip-In Hair Extensions

    Clip-in hair extensions just keep becoming more and more popular because of their ease and versatility. With clip-in hair extensions you can add hair just for one night, or add in a strand or two of a contrasting color just for fun. Clip-in hair extensions offer length and thickness those other types of hair extensions offer, but without the commitment of both money and time.

    Ken Paves installs clip in hair extensions on Jessica Simpson

    You can expect to pay around $100 for full clip-in hair extensions like Jessica Simpson and Ken Paves line called, HairDo. If you simply want to add in a strand or two of color, expect to pay about $10-$30 per color strand. Also, keep in mind that these prices are for synthetic hair extensions, which cannot be styled with heated styling tools or colored. For clip-in human hair extensions, expect to pay twice as much, if not more.

    I recommend clip-in hair extensions to my clients who want longer, thicker hair for just one night or for occasional use. We get lots of requests for clip-in hair extensions at the shop just before prom. Clip-in hair extensions are ideal for creating new do’s for prom or anytime. They are affordable, easy to work with and can be used over and over again . . . that’s why they are my favorite!

    weave before and after

    Weave-In Hair Extensions

    Weave-in hair extensions are most popular in the African-American community. Weave-in hair extensions have been around for such a long time. The way hair extensions are weaved in is that a portion or all of your natural hair is braided up and then a hair net is placed over the braided hair. The human hair is then weaved into or sewn into the braids or the hair net. This gives someone who doesn’t have ideal hair naturally the opportunity to have the illusion of long, thick, silky hair.

    Weave-in hair extensions vary so greatly in prices depending on the cost of the hair, how much hair you are using and the cost that the hairdresser charges you for the service. They can run from the high hundreds to even a few thousand dollars!

    fusion hair extension

    Fusion Hair Extensions

    This video helps to explain the fusion hair extension technique. This is a natural looking style using human hair extensions. Bonded to your natural hair, these human hair extensions are bonded with a wax based bond. The benefits of these extensions are that they are virtually undetectable. You can’t see where they are attached and they blend well with your own hair. Fusion hair extensions are quite costly and can cost upwards of $650. However, these extensions last about 3-4 months, so the cost might be well worth it for some.

    Hair Weaves

    Handle With Care

    It’s important to know how to care for your investment, here are some helpful tips to help you accomplish that goal.

    • Don’t Shampoo as often ~~ No massaging at the scalp. Instead, glide your fingers over the scalp gently. You can use conditioner, but only through the ends and not where they extension has been attached. Skip a day of wet shampooing and use a dry shampoo in between.
    • Use Conditioner Carefully ~~ Conditioners should never be sprayed near the attachment such as the scalp area because it can loosen it. Try Simply Smooth Keratin Replenishing Magic Potion to maintain the quality of the hair extensions. At night, put your hair into a loose braid so it doesn’t tangle.
    • Comb and Brush With Care ~~ I recommend picking up the hair in your hands into a ponytail and comb from the bottom up. . . never combing at the scalp area.
    • Blow Dry With Ease ~~ Use only boar-bristle brushes as they are more gentle.
    • Watch The Heat When Flat Ironing ~~ Be sure not to have the temperature too high. I suggest 375 degrees . . . depending upon the hair texture.

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    How to Care for Clip-In Hair Extensions

    What you need to care for Clip In Hair Extensions

    Care and Styling Tips for Clip-In Hair Extensions

    Hair extensions are here to stay! Did any of you notice, in last night’s Miss America 2012 Beauty Pageant, the Final 16 contestants ALL had long layered hairstyles that were beautiful, thick and amazingly similar? (Congratulations by the way to gorgeous, Olivia Culpo of Rhode Island, our new Miss America 2012!)

    I didn’t see the contestants who were disqualified, but my guess is most of them had similar, long layered hairstyles! Hair extensions were clearly a popular accessory for this years Miss America Pageant and with clip-in hair extensions, it’s a quick and easy look you can get too!

    If you want clip-in hair extensions that last and can be styled or colored, you need to pay for real human hair extensions. There is no question your money is better spent buying human hair extensions vs. synthetic hair.

    Tips on caring for your clip-in extensions

    Here are a few tips to help you keep your clip-ins in optimal shape for better, easier styling and to increase the longevity of their life.

    • Have them trimmed. The first step is to go to a hairdresser who is experienced with hair extensions and ask for a trim to blend the new hair in with your existing hair, it makes a world of difference!!
    • Shampoo and condition the extensions every 5-10 wears depending on the amount of hair product usage and how quickly your natural oils are absorbed into the extensions. Before shampooing the extensions comb out all knots.  next bunch all the extensions together and hold the top of the tracks (where the clips are for optimal control) While washing the extensions let the water run down the strands and constantly comb through with your fingers to avoid knots and tangles later. Rinse using cool water.
    •  Blot hair extensions, with a towel(don’t rub) and apply a light serum or detangler.
    •  Air-dry before combing!! Allowing your hair extensions to air-dry will save the hair from breakage. When hair is wet it stretches and will break much easier when combed . . . not a good idea for your extensions.
    • Hang hair extensions from a drawer or similar object. This is my favorite tip, to help ease in styling  extensions. It will give you both hands to work with which improves speed, versus trying to hold the extensions and style all at once, and it makes styling much less of a headache.
    • Easy on styling products. When curling or flat-ironing your extensions, you can use a finishing spray. Using heavy hold hairspray will make it extremely hard to comb through the extensions later, but if it’s a special occasion then by all means go for the gusto!
    • Style ahead of time. It ‘s important to style clip-in hair extensions before putting them in your hair, as clipping them in first and then styling them will increase the probability of error. They can slip out as you pull and style your hair and can loosening the initial grip of the clip-ins.
    • Leave enough room. Make sure to leave out at least a half inch all the way around your hairline before clipping in extensions. Hair extensions are beautiful but you don’t want clips showing!

    Take your time sectioning & clipping in your extensions and enjoy your new do!

    Audrey Avila, owner of  On The Spot, has been in the beauty industry since 2003 and her speciality is the ability to adapt any color, cut or style to enhance ones natural beauty. Working in salon and on location to create picture perfect looks every time from the color of the hair to the gloss on their lips the final look is always remarkable. Contact Audrey on her website On The Spot or follow her on Twitter.



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