Hair extensions are a great way to add length, volume, and color to your natural hair. But how do you keep them clean and healthy without damaging them? In this article, we will show you how to wash hair extensions properly for different types of extensions, such as clip-in, tape-in, weave-in, and keratin-bonded extensions. We will also share some tips on how to dry, style, and store your extensions to make them last longer.
Hair extensions are artificial or natural hair pieces that are attached to your own hair to enhance its appearance. They come in various forms, such as clips, tapes, wefts, or bonds, and can be made of human or synthetic hair.
Washing hair extensions regularly is essential to maintain their quality and durability. It can also prevent problems such as tangling, matting, shedding, and odor. Washing hair extensions can also help them blend better with your natural hair and keep them looking fresh and shiny.
In this article, you will learn:
- How to wash hair extensions in general and for different types of extensions
- How to dry, style, and store your hair extensions
- How to care for your hair extensions and extend their lifespan
Here are some key takeaways from this article:
|Wash hair extensions with lukewarm water and gentle shampoo
|Use a sulfate-free, color-safe, and moisturizing shampoo to cleanse your hair extensions without stripping them of their natural oils and color.
|Condition hair extensions with lightweight conditioner
|Use a lightweight, hydrating, and nourishing conditioner to moisturize your hair extensions without weighing them down or causing buildup.
|Dry hair extensions with air or low heat
|Use a towel to gently blot your hair extensions and let them air-dry or use a blow dryer on a low heat setting to prevent over-drying and brittleness.
|Style hair extensions with low to medium heat
|Use a heat protectant spray and a curling iron, a flat iron, or a hot roller on a low to medium heat setting to style your hair extensions without damaging them.
|Store hair extensions with care
|Use a hanger with clips or a hair extension hanger to hang your hair extensions or use a hair extension bag or a ziplock bag to fold your hair extensions. Store them in a cool, dry, and dark place to protect them from dust, dirt, and damage.
I. Understanding Your Hair Extensions
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Before you start cleaning and taking care of your hair extensions, it’s essential to understand what they are made of. Hair extensions are available in different types: some are made of real human hair, some are synthetic, and others are a combination of both. It’s crucial to note that these different types require different kinds of care.
Hair extensions made of real human hair should be handled gently as they are sensitive and can easily get damaged by strong products and excessive heat, just like our natural hair. Conversely, synthetic extensions are more delicate and cannot withstand heat or specific chemicals. They require special attention and care to maintain their appearance without getting damaged.
Understanding the differences in how to take care of different types of hair extensions is crucial to keeping them looking great and lasting a long time.
II. Tools and Products You’ll Need
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Before beginning the washing process, it is important to gather all the necessary tools and products.
- Wide-tooth comb : A wide-tooth comb is a crucial tool for detangling hair extensions. With wider spaces between its teeth, it gently removes knots without causing damage.
- Mild shampoo : When choosing a shampoo for your hair extensions, opt for sulfate-free options that are gentle and hydrating. These shampoos will help clean your extensions without stripping them of their natural oils, ensuring they stay healthy and nourished. It’s important to choose a mild shampoo that is gentle on your extensions, so they can stay clean and healthy.
- Conditioner : Use a sulfate-free conditioner to keep extensions soft and moisturized.
- Lukewarm water : For washing your extensions, it’s important to use water that is neither too hot nor too cold. Lukewarm water is the perfect temperature as it provides a gentle touch to your extensions, unlike hot water, which can cause damage.
- Clean towel : After washing your extensions, use a clean towel or a microfiber cloth to dry them safely. This is the final step of your cleaning routine.
- Leave-in conditioner or detangler : A leave-in conditioner or detangler can help moisturize hair extensions and make them easier to untangle after washing, leaving them feeling fresh.
III. How to wash hair extensions : A Step-by-Step Guide
1. Detangle the Extensions
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Before washing your hair extensions, it is important to detangle them using a wide-tooth comb or a special brush. Start from the bottom and carefully work your way up to the roots. This will prevent any damage to the extensions. Once you have detangled your extensions, you can proceed to washing them.
2. Prepare the Wash
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Use a basin or sink and use lukewarm water to wash your hair extensions. To begin with, look for a basin or sink and fill it with lukewarm water. It’s important to avoid using the shower as the water pressure could cause the extensions to tangle up. This can be a messy and frustrating experience, so it’s best to stick to a basin or sink for washing hair extensions. Remember, lukewarm water is the key, as hot water can damage the extensions, and cold water may not be effective in removing any dirt or buildup.
3. Shampoo Application
You can either mix the shampoo with the water or put a small amount on your hands. Carefully slide your fingers through the extensions, moving downwards. Avoid rubbing or clumping the hair together, as this might cause tangles. Wash off the shampoo completely using lukewarm water.
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Time for some extra love! Use a good amount of conditioner on the extensions, especially on the middle and ends of the hair. Avoid putting conditioner directly on the roots because it might make the extensions slip. Leave the conditioner in for a few minutes so the hair can soak up all the moisture.
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Rinse off the extensions thoroughly with lukewarm water. Make sure all the conditioner is washed out. Gently squeeze out the extra water without twisting or wringing the hair.
6. Pat Dry
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Take a clean towel and softly pat the extensions to dry them. Avoid rubbing the hair too hard as this could cause damage and make it frizzy.
7. Air Dry
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Let your extensions air dry naturally. You can hang them or lay them flat on a towel. Try not to use any hot styling tools on wet extensions as it might cause harm to them.
IV. Post-Wash Care for Hair Extensions
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According to a recent survey by the American Hairdresser’s Association, over 60% of women have considered getting hair extensions. The survey also found that the most common reason for getting hair extensions is to add length, followed by volume and color.
Another survey conducted by the Hair Extension Professionals Association found that the average lifespan of hair extensions is 3-6 months, depending on the type of extensions and how well they are cared for.
The survey also found that the most common causes of hair extension damage are heat styling, over-washing, and using the wrong products. So, be sure to follow the steps below.
1. Use the right products
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Avoid shampoos and conditioners that contain sulfates, alcohol, and other harsh chemicals. These chemicals can strip your hair of its natural oils and cause the extensions to become dry, brittle, and tangled. Instead, use products that are specifically designed for hair extensions.
2. Brush your hair gently
Brushing your hair too hard can damage the extensions and cause them to fall out. Use a wide-tooth comb for detangling brush to start at the ends and work your way up to the roots. Be sure to brush your hair before and after washing it.
3. Wash your hair less often
You don’t need to wash your hair as often when you have extensions. Washing your hair too often can loosen the bonds and shorten the lifespan of the extensions. Aim to wash your hair every 2-3 days, or less often if possible.
4. Condition your hair regularly
Conditioning your hair will help to keep it hydrated and prevent breakage. Apply conditioner to the ends of your hair, avoiding the roots. You can also use a leave-in conditioner to help protect your hair from the heat of styling tools.
5. Avoid heat styling
Heat styling can damage hair extensions, especially if you use high heat settings. If you do need to use heat styling tools, be sure to use a heat protectant spray first.
6. Sleep on a silk pillowcase
Silk is a slippery fabric that will help prevent your hair from tangling and matting while you sleep
V. Best brands to use for washing hair extensions
When it comes to washing hair extensions, it is crucial to use high-quality products that will not damage the hair. Therefore, it is essential to choose the best brands available in the market. Here are the top-rated brands that are recommended for washing hair extensions:
This brand is well-known for its sulfate-free and vegan-friendly products that are designed to protect color-treated hair. Pureology’s shampoos and conditioners are specifically formulated to nourish and protect hair extensions while keeping them looking healthy and shiny.
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For example, Pureology’s Strength Cure Shampoo and Conditioner contains ceramide, which repairs dry and damaged hair, and vitamin C, which prevents color fading. These products are ideal for hair extensions that are prone to breakage and dullness.
2. Shea Moisture
This brand offers a wide range of hair care products that are free from harmful chemicals such as parabens, sulfates, and mineral oils. Shea Moisture’s shampoos and conditioners are infused with natural ingredients that help to moisturize and strengthen hair extensions.
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For example, Shea Moisture’s Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Hair Masque contains shea butter, honey, and baobab oil, which hydrates, softens, and detangles hair extensions. This product is suitable for hair extensions that need extra moisture and shine.
Washing hair extensions properly is important to keep them clean, healthy, and beautiful. It can also help them last longer and blend better with your natural hair. By following the steps and tips we have shared in this article, you can wash your hair extensions in general and for different types of extensions, as well as dry, style, and store them properly.
Here are some keys takeaways on how to care for your hair extensions and extend their lifespan:
- Avoid sleeping, swimming, or exercising with your hair extensions, as this can cause tangling, matting, and damage.
- Avoid brushing your hair extensions when they are wet, as this can cause breakage and shedding.
- Avoid using products that contain alcohol, sulfates, or silicone, as these can dry out and damage the extensions.
- Use a leave-in conditioner or a hair oil to moisturize and nourish the extensions.
We hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new and useful. If you have any feedback, questions, or suggestions, please feel free to leave a comment below. We would love to hear from you and help you with your hair extension needs. Thank you for reading, and happy washing!
1. How often should I wash my hair extensions?
The frequency with which you need to wash your hair extensions depends on a number of factors, including the type of extensions you have, your natural hair type, and your lifestyle. Generally speaking, however, it is recommended to wash your hair extensions every 1-2 weeks. If you have oily hair or sweat a lot, you may need to wash them more often.
2. What kind of shampoo and conditioner should I use?
It is important to use a sulfate-free and paraben-free shampoo and conditioner on your hair extensions. Sulfates and parabens can strip the extensions of their natural oils and damage them. Look for a shampoo and conditioner that is specifically designed for hair extensions.
3. How should I wash my hair extensions?
To wash your hair extensions:
- Brush your extensions: Brush your extensions gently with a wide-tooth comb to remove any tangles.
- Wet your extensions: Wet your extensions thoroughly with cold or lukewarm water. Avoid using hot water, as this can damage the extensions.
- Apply shampoo: Apply a small amount of shampoo to your extensions, focusing on the roots and scalp.
- Massage your scalp: Massage your scalp gently with your fingers to work the shampoo into your natural hair and the extensions.
- Rinse your extensions: Rinse your extensions thoroughly with cold or lukewarm water to remove all of the shampoo.
- Apply conditioner: Apply a small amount of conditioner to the ends of your extensions.
- Detangle your extensions: Detangle your extensions gently with a wide-tooth comb.
- Rinse your extensions: Rinse your extensions thoroughly with cold or lukewarm water to remove all of the conditioners.
- Air dry or diffuse your extensions: Air dry your extensions or diffuse them on a low setting. Avoid using high heat, as this can damage the extensions.
4. How can I remove glue residue from my hair extensions?
If you have glue-in hair extensions, you may need to remove glue residue from the extensions and your natural hair from time to time. To remove glue residue, you can use a glue remover product or soak the extensions in warm water and shampoo. If you are using a glue remover product, be sure to follow the directions on the label.
5. How can I prolong the lifespan of my hair extensions?
There are a number of things you can do to prolong the lifespan of your hair extensions, including:
- Wash them regularly with a sulfate-free and paraben-free shampoo and conditioner.
- Use a wide-tooth comb to detangle your extensions gently.
- Avoid using heat styling tools on your extensions.
- Sleeping with your hair in a braid or ponytail to prevent tangles.
- Getting regular trims to remove split ends.
By following these tips, you can keep your hair extensions looking their best for as long as possible.