All About Hair Extensions

Go From Drab To Fab In An Instant

by Amy Vulgamott // October - November - December 2019

Is it hard for you to grow out your natural hair? Did you chop off your hair recently, only to find you’re missing your long locks again? Is your hair thinning with age, or shredding due to weight loss or a major life transition? Do you suffer from balding or patchy hair? Want to experiment with your short style? Perhaps you are seeking a one-time hair transformation for that upcoming holiday party. Maybe you want to sample a new style before committing. Considering temporary highlights or lowlights, or possibly a fun splash of color to ring in the New Year? How about bangs? These little guys pack a punch when it comes to transforming a look, but getting them may feel a little daunting – so why not give removable bangs a try, so you can remove them when you want? Or maybe you just long for that luxurious, voluminous hair you see whipping about on shampoo commercials.

Whatever your mane desire or needs may be, hair extensions can be a simple and accessible solution. They aren’t just for young, fashionable women seeking Rapunzel hair – no, hair extensions are for anyone and everyone looking for options for their locks.

These beauties give us options. There’s no need to wait for a bad haircut to grow out or resign yourself to lifeless hair just because that’s what you were born with. Your look is something you can control, and it’s absolutely liberating. I’m not just talking about adding length and volume here – hair extensions are becoming increasingly popular for altering hair color, adding texture, and even masking damaged hair.

I’m sure you’ve seen the tabloids that are filled with shocking pictures and horror stories by celebs whose extensions have damaged their hair. Well I’m here to tell you that hair extensions are totally safe – as long as they are installed and maintained properly. Be sure to talk with your stylist if you’re considering them, and see if they are a good option for you.

There are various techniques available today that can help you achieve your extension goals. Tape-in, clip-in, beading, and micro bonding are several such popular options. Not all salons offer all methods, so check with your stylist to see which versions she / he offers. Depending on which route you choose, you can plump mid-lengths and ends; add length at the front and sides of your style; thicken fine hair; achieve longer, fuller hair from a mid-length base; fill the gaps in your hair without placing any unnecessary stress to thinning strands; re-introduce hair to exposed scalp areas without any noticeable bonds or attachments; and add a streak of color to tap into your whimsical side.


– How many strands of hair do I need for a full head? The average head of hair takes between five and six packs (100 – 120 strands). However, depending on the length of your hair, as well as its thickness, this can vary.

– What color should I choose? Hair extensions are available in many colors in a variety of shades and levels. With human hair extensions, you can also color the hair to a level of your choice.

– How do I care for my extensions? Use a sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. Try not to expose the bonds to chlorinated water or other harsh ingredients.

– What can I do with my extensions once they are in? Basically anything you would do with your own hair – from curling to blow-drying, to flat-ironing and styling. Just remember to always take extra good care of your hair and hair extensions.

– Can I brush my hair with my extensions in place? Yes! I recommend using a hair extension brush – this will help ensure proper care and maintenance of the hair. When brushing, hold the hair at the roots and brush from the tips, working up.

– Can I dye my hair extensions? Yes, you can dye them – if you must color your extensions, use only a semi- or demi-permanent hair color. Never lift color, only deposit it. Be sure to keep it within two shades of the hair’s original color. And always perform a strand test first, so you can ensure that the results will be what you want.

Hair extensions have been around for quite a while – but over the years, the industry has seen lots of changes, including a wider acceptance of hair extensions as normal, and as a popular method for increasing the length, volume, and “wow-factor” of hair. People are now unabashedly sharing their extension stories … so much so, that the mystique that used to surround hair extensions has all but vanished, and the phenomenom is so much more commonplace today that they are now being mentioned in the same breath as more traditional hair care products and tools.

Full, voluminous hair will always be in style. But while many of us weren’t blessed with silky, flowing locks full of mermaid-y waves, the many extension products and techniques available today are helping women – and men – achieve the hair of their dreams.

Amy Vulgamott

Stylist with New Vision Salon.

  •   717-880-4349