Hair extensions are a confidence-boosting investment for many people as they help add length and volume to existing hair and can often blend seamlessly as an accent to natural growth. Due to their popularity, a variety of options exist with some offering lower prices, quicker appointments, or better blending with real hair. Reviewing the different types that pair with your real hair and deciding which is most important can help guide any future discussions with your stylist regarding extensions.
It's important to note some salons may also be brand loyalists committed to extensions from one company. Others may specialize in a certain type of extension. If where you get your hair cut and styled is the most important factor, contact your salon and ask what their preferred hair extension options are, and then tailor your research to those types or brands.
On the lower end of the time management spectrum, clip-ins are one of the more popular extension types, and they have the convenience factor of being a home or salon-ready option. With a clip-in, a section of hair is attached to a small comb — usually one inch wide. The comb can be secured beneath a top layer of hair for easy blending. Clip-in extensions range from small hair sections secured with a single comb to larger widths held in with three or more combs. Larger pieces are generally designed to add full body across the back of the head while smaller clips are for accent in the front. This option is great for a variety of hair types and experimentation for a night out or prior to investing in longer-term extensions. They need to be removed daily but can be reused at your convenience.
For moderate wear, tape-in extensions are a step up from clip-ins. With tape extensions, stylists take a section of natural hair and place tape-backed extensions on either side then seal with heat to create a thicker section of hair. The adhesives in tape-in extensions are strong enough to make it through a wedding weekend or a vacation if there are minimal wet or windy excursions, but they do eventually fail and need to be reapplied. A single taped extension can be reused two to three times before replacement according to Bustle.
Keratin bond extensions
One of the longer-lasting and most versatile extension types is a keratin bond. These extensions use small sections of hair that are sealed with heat and a special keratin adhesive right below the natural hair roots. They are added at various points to create additional volume and add length. Based on individual care and maintenance routines, these extensions can last from two to six months and, like other extensions, can be incorporated into a fresh haircut for better blending and style. For people with concerns about long-term color treatments, these extensions also make it easy to add highlights and lowlights without dye, Harper's Bazaar reports.
Contact a local salon to learn more about hair extensions.