About Hair Extensions
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Hair extensions have become today’s important fashion accessory, as it enhances the beauty of the coiffure by adding length and thickness to it. Roughly they fall in two categories, viz. synthetic and natural. Both have their own pros and cons. Synthetic are less expensive and are available in variety of colors and textures, but they cannot cope up with hot temperatures, so cannot be straightened or curled. Natural extensions can withstand heat and therefore can easily withstand processing too, albeit their cost is not affordable to all. They come from different ethnic origins, like China, India, Russia and Eastern Europe.
Two techniques, namely permanent and temporary, can be used to apply these extensions to your own hair and add volume and length to them. The permanent extensions can wear well for six months too, provided they should be attached proficiently and maintained with care. The techniques of applying these permanent extensions again vary. There is a technique called hot fusion bonding, in which heat is used to warm up the extensions and then they are attached to the hair just near the scalp. So also there is cold fusion bonding, which can be taken as more secure, as it uses a glue in the application in place of heat. These are the most expensive methods and cost anywhere between $300 to $2000 as per the quality and quantity of the extension and time taken to attach them. Cold fusion is more expensive than the hot one. Weaves and braided hair extensions technique uses braids of your own hair and wefts of the extensions and both are sewn to each other. Braids are arranged in horizontal fashion midway of the scalp under the hairline and wefts are attached to them once they are completed; then they are covered by your own hair. Its price is nearly $150 for each seating and it needs to maintained quarterly. There is yet another method known as micro-looping. This method is based on small loops made of plastic to which strands of hair, real or synthetic, are attached and your own hair are pulled through these loops, after which the loops are tied near the scalp. This method costs somewhere from $100 to $1500. They wear well for 6 months and are re-usable. However, though permanent extensions have pros like natural look and durability, they have their own cons too. The major disadvantage is their high price. Their application is high-priced and their maintenance in turn is still more expensive. Further, if the heat, glues and chemicals used in the application and maintenance are not used skillfully, they are bound to damage your hair. Micro-looping is comparatively less damaging, but it has the disadvantage of the loops slipping down and also should not be used for thin hair, because the loops are most likely to pull out the roots.
Due to the disadvantage of permanent extensions, clip-ins have become more preferable. Clip-ins are temporary extensions for which you will have to spend a little and will get a wide range of choice. In this type of extensions, clips or row of clips containing extensions in form of strands of hair are clipped below the hair making them invisible. These are getting more popular, because they don’t need an expert to apply and are so cheap that they can be thrown away and replaced by new ones. Amongst these, there are again numerous synthetic varieties. The best quality among the synthetic extensions is monofiber or monofilament; their price is $20 to $40 for each packet. They miraculously resemble human hair and present numerous colors to choose from. They are useful as permanent extensions too. Silky straight Kanekalon is one more type, each packet of which comes for $5 to $10. They come in a very glistening, sleek and straight quality, but they suit only the straight or braided coiffeurs. Silky braid Kanekalon is also a kind, which suits perfectly to braided, dreadlocked or straight styles. They are very, very affordable, costing just $2 to $4. Though their texture is a bit coarse and the choice of colors is not very vast, they render fine looks. Jumbo braid Kanekalon is also one more variety, which is very cheap, $1 to $2 per bag, and come in various colors. However you cannot manage them easily and advisable only for use as a quick, disposable style. Pre-packaged dreads and braids is also an option, in which you will have to spend just $5 for the braids and a bit more for dreads.
Clip-in hair extensions are more advisable to use because they cause less damage to your own hair and you can try a number of experiments with them and have fun!