There are many different types of extensions and all need different types of care. Below, I will discuss taped extensions and bonded extensions.
Taped extensions are installed with a medical grade strip going across a horizontal line section. These are my preference and, in my opinion, have less breakage, matting and last longer with proper care.
Bonded extensions are preferred by clients with thinner hair that generally want hair just a little thicker with not a lot of added length. These bonds are heated up and rolled across the hair near the scalp. The heat does not damage the hair, nor does the bond. However, the most damage occurs from the heaviness of the extension or lack of care.
Your consultation should be thorough and precise. At this time, your stylist should determine the amount of hair necessary to meet your goals for length and thickness, make length and color selection, and determine appointment time required. You will get a quoted price and pre-payment is usually required for the ordering of the hair. Take your appointment seriously, you may be asked for a credit card to hold your appointment and failure to cancel within 48 hours could result in charges.
As determined in the consultation, the appointment should reflect the color, desired length and cut. The color should be done before the appointment but can be maintained as needed. Color does not have much of an effect on the bonds, lighter or darker, however, I would avoid it if possible. Most brands, especially if the hair is synthetic, do not recommend you chemically alter the hair. Most will not lift but will take color a shade darker or a tonal shift at the same level (ex if you wanted to make brown extensions red). I personally have successfully bleached Cinderella hair but would not attempt at home. Easilengths do not lighten and when tried, turn a greenish hue, not pretty. A haircut should be included in the service and should have a blended result. Layers will help blend your hair with the extension length and be sure your stylist knows how to do this or it could end up with holes, too short or shelf-like.
Shampooing and Conditioning
First of all, do NOT shampoo or condition or wet your extensions for that matter, for a minimum of 48 hours. The bonds need time to set and adhere to your hair, so for optimum longevity, leave them alone for two entire days, you can apply a dry shampoo if you must. The proper shampoo and conditioners make a world of a difference to extensions. The only ones I have ever heard approved must be paraben and sulfate free. Unfortunately for those with thick, coarse hair in need of major conditioning, the only shampoos and conditioners that will not harm the extensions are ones that are oil free and generally not very moisturizing. Stay away from anything that says moisturizing, smoothing, repairing and hydrating. These all contain oils that will allow the bond to slip and your extension to fall out. Ideally the brand of extension you choose will have a care line and if not, stick to volumizing for best results.
Extension Survival Guide
You are still able to style your hair as usual if you are mindful to put minimal stress on your hair during styling and finishing. Remember, oil is the enemy BUT only for the bonds, oil is a necessity for the ends because of its healing and protective agents. Only apply the oil (or any product containing oil) to the mid shaft and ends.
Thermal tools can be used on our extensions; it is recommended you use a heat protectant and keep the styling tool on a lower temperature. Avoid using this heat on or near the tape/bonds to prevent damaging them.
Go here to get more heat protection tips
While sleeping, braid hair back or tie back loosely into a low pony. Do not sleep with wet hair or leave wet for extended periods of time, the water will weaken the bond. Also, wet before and shampoo after immediately after exposure to salt water or chlorine. These chemicals can weaken the bond.
Use a loop brush to detangle bonded extensions and to prevent matting at the base. As for any extensions or natural hair for that matter, wait to blow-dry until 80% dry to avoid further damage and tearing.
Showering with Taped-In Extensions
When it comes to showering with your Tape-In Extensions there can be some questions and concerns. Such as “can I even get my extensions wet?” We want to be sure that you know and understand what you need to do to ensure the best hold with our No-Shine, Pro-Flex II, and Duo Pro tape.
After your tape-in extensions are installed please wait 48 hours until your next shower. This will help your tape-in extensions stay in longer and give you a better hold. If you absolutely need to shower talk to your hairstylist first.
You should only be showering around two times a week. We understand that everyone’s hair is different due to the amount of oil your hair may have but we suggest this because your hair needs those nourishing oils that keep your natural hair healthy. For anyone with thick curly/wavy hair, you can get away with washing your hair once a week. If you feel that your scalp is getting oily, use a dry shampoo to absorb any excess oil your scalp may have. We also want to recommend that you use sulfate-free products because they can help your tape-in extensions last longer. They do not strip any natural oils and it will help keep your hair happy and healthy!
Scrubbing your hair
When showering we recommend that you do NOT scrub on the wefts. Try to focus on the scalp and then below. Scrubbing on the wefts could potentially loosing the bond and not give you as long of a hold as you wanted. Gently apply your condition from mid strand to the ends of your hair.
In-Shower Condition Treatments
If you feel your hair needs moisture and you have a coconut moisture treatment you would like to use, place it at the bottom of your hair and tape-in extensions. If you place it too close to the top your hair could weight your hair down and mess with your wefts.
Drying your hair
Do not brush your hair when it is wet. We also recommend that you do not wrap your head in a towel or flip your hair upside down and try to dry it with a towel. You need to slowly start at the ends and work your way up. Avoid squeezing and pulling your hair, slowly pat dry and reduce tangles.
This part may not be about showering in particular but it deals with water and chlorine. If you are going on vacation or heading to the gym to work out in a pool we recommend wearing a shower cap. A shower cap will help protect the chlorine and chemicals from getting into your wefts which could cause the edges to become loose. If you don’t want to wear a cap then we suggest that you don’t let your hair soak in the water too long and after you get out of the pool or ocean, dry your hair of as gently and as quickly as possible.