SYNTHETIC VS. NATURAL HAIR EXTENSIONS: A COMPARISON
As mentioned, there are two popular types of hair extension options on the market today: synthetic and natural. Whichever you decide to go for boils down to a couple of main factors: your budget and how much versatility you’re looking for.
Let’s take a look at the characteristics of each:
These types of extensions largely comprise a soft type of plastic, and they’re mostly manufactured in Asia. While they may have a very natural look and feel, they are far from natural hair.
The major drawback is that you cannot style synthetic extensions with heat. So most of the time, you’ll have to wear them as they come. You can’t wash synthetic extensions either and it’s best not to apply any products to them to avoid damaging the material.
Sure, some people may view synthetic extensions as limiting. But they still remain the most popular option today because of how low-maintenance they are.
If you’re happy to wear extensions just as they are, without the need to style them, these are a great option. They’re also the most affordable. Synthetic extensions can last anywhere from 2-4 months with the right wear and hair extension maintenance.
As you may have already guessed, natural extensions comprise human hair. This means that they behave exactly like human hair would and, as a result, have the most natural look and feel.
While this makes natural extensions super versatile, they do require a little more maintenance. With natural extensions, you can heat-style them as you wish (but with caution). You can even perm, straighten, curl, dye, and bleach them.
Some of the most popular types of natural hair extensions originate from:
- Brazil — perfect for thick, wavy curls and hair extensions you want to color
- Malaysia — these extensions have a beautiful natural shine and have a fine and silky texture
- India — lightweight, simple to style, and ideal for naturally wavy, thick hair
- Peru — highly durable, silky soft, and one of the rarest types of human hair extensions
It’s worth noting that natural hair extensions are a little pricier than synthetic extensions. But overall, they tend to last longer.
WHY CHOOSE NATURAL HAIR EXTENSIONS?
Human hair extensions are practically identical to your own hair in a number of ways. This includes the way they sit in your hair, how you style them and treat them with your preferred products.
Essentially, you can maintain natural hair extensions just like your own hair — and most hairstylists will tell you that you should.
To add to this, natural hair extensions are actually a great way to protect your own hair. By using top-quality shampoos, conditioners, and styling products on your extensions, your natural hair can benefit too.
You also need to take great care when combing, brushing and styling your extensions. Which, in turn, your natural hair will thank you for!
You are also spoiled for choice when it comes to hair extension styles, as they act as a simple extension of your own hair. There are no holds barred and any style goes.
YAKI VS. REMI
If you’re new to hair extensions, you might be unfamiliar with these two terms. But, basically, they relate to the type of hair extension style you choose. These terms don’t relate to different types of hair extensions, but rather, how they are treated to suit your own hair.
These extensions are chemically straightened. They comprise a number of loose strands of hair that originate from a number of different hair donors. However, you can find yaki extensions with different textures, such as coarse, slinky, kinky, or dead straight characteristics.
You can also find yaki extensions made from synthetic or human hair.
Remy is a term used to describe the origin of extensions, i.e. that all the hair comes from the same donor, unlike yaki extensions. This means that the hair texture and pattern will match that of the donor. These types of extensions are a great option if you want to style them as they are a little more tolerant and tend to tangle less.
They might be on the more expensive end for hair extensions, but they will last you 2-3 years, so it’s worth the investment.
NATURAL HAIR EXTENSION APPLICATIONS
So, if you’re a novice, you might be wondering how do hair extensions work, anyway? Well, there are a few different application techniques that apply to natural extensions.
And of course, each application comes with its own price point:
- Strand by strand — this technique revolves around either hot or cold fusion. This is the most expensive and time-consuming application, but offers natural, long-lasting results (up to 6 months)
- Keratin bond — this application uses a hot fusion, strand-by-strand technique. It’s a great option for protecting your natural hair and is great for thick hair applications
- Micro-links — also called I-Tips, they’re applied with cold fusion and a strand-by-stand technique. This method is best if you want to avoid heat damage at all costs
- Tape-in extensions — this method uses a weft or track of extensions, covered by single or double-sided tape. It is then sandwiched around your natural hair. It’s one of the quickest applications but the results only last 6-8 weeks
- Glue-in extensions — as the name suggests, this application uses glue applied to the extension track, which then attaches to your natural hair. You should always consult a professional for application and removal
- Sew-in extensions — this is one of the most popular applications today. Your hairstylist braids your hair to create a place for the extensions, which are then sewn into your hair with a threaded needle
Then there is the option of a clip-in or flip-in extensions. This is the more temporary option if you’re just looking for a quick hair change for a special occasion or event. It’s best to remove these extensions from your natural hair before you go to bed. They work best with medium to thick hair.
TRANSFORM YOUR LOCKS WITH THE BOULEVARD HAIR CO.
If you’re interested in giving natural hair extensions a go and you’re based in the St. Louis region, then Boulevard Hair Co. is your hairstylist go-to.
Using only the best, industry-renowned hair extensions, our hair stylists specialize in a range of hair extension applications for the most beautiful, natural, and long-lasting results.
Learn more about how we can help you achieve your dream head of hair!