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5 Myths about hair extensions debunked

Learn 5 myths about hair extensions thought to damage hair.

Hi, my name is Kimberly Acworth, Owner of Indulge Salons in York and Lake Oconee,Ga. I’ve been providing premium hair services to clients with fine hair that just stops growing, losing hair, shedding hair and suffering from hair loss over the 26 years of being in the hair industry. As you move through these myths that we will be debunking about hair extensions, you will feel more comfortable and educated with your stylist when it comes to maintenance and what to expect. If you would like to learn more, please go to my website at www.indulgesalon.com/services/natural-hair-extensions. We will show you many options, costs and maintenance ideas that should know before getting into hair extensions.

Myth #1. Hair Extensions will break my hair.

FACT. Hair extensions do not break off the hair. Pulling, tugging and yanking the hair can break the hair. The maintenance of the hair extensions on a daily basis with how the hair at the scalp is cared for in the proper approach will not break the hair. What you will see is that the average person sheds 80 – 100 hairs per day naturally. Those shedding hairs that are attached to the hair extension could come out depending on how strong the attached hair is to the scalp. The hair has to be brushed every day to prevent the hairs that are still attached from tangling into the other hairs that are shedding.

Every manufacturer of hair extensions has a set of instructions on how they are to be installed. If the installation is not done correctly, the hair extensions as they grow out can twist causing knotting that can cause the reaction to pull the knot out therefore tugging all of the additional weight onto the scalp causing tension and pressure to remove the knot. In some cases the extensions could “fuse” together causing a big ball of sticky glue and hair stuck together that cannot be removed but has to be cut out. There are many reasons for this situation.

Myth #2. Hair won’t grow with hair extensions.

FACT. Hair seems to grow faster because the natural hair finally has the chance to heal because the hair extensions are shielding the constant application of blow dryer, curling iron intense heat and flat iron heat. Hair on average grows 1/2″ per month. If fine hair isn’t able withstand the constant battle of heat, it can break. If the individual has medical concerns that cause hair to fall out or shed because of the side affect, then it would appear that the hair isn’t growing. Taking supplements to help assist in growth such as CollagenBlu which is a marine protein that can be taken orally does help grow hair plus give the body the additional supplement it needs for hair nutrition and energy.

Myth #3. I wont’ have to shampoo my hair extensions but once a week.

FACT. You will have to shampoo your hair 2 – 3x per week because the scalp is still underneath the hair extensions. By shampooing with a shampoo that cleans the scalp to free it of debris. Bad smells like oily scalp that hasn’t been washed in weeks could prevent hair from prematurely suffocating from buildup. Waxes, dry shampoo and other gray coverage waxes can build up as I said and clog pores.

The skin underneath is like the skin on your face and has to be cleansed. In some instances we recommend a scrub to exfoliate the buildup on the scalp. We have this conversation prior to installation about the health and care of the type of hair extensions that you will be wearing. Just like your face that needs scrubbed every day, the skin on the top of your head will need to be cleansed with non sulfate shampoo at the scalp twice. The hair mid length and ends must be cleansed too because it collects smells from the environment trapping them into the hair. It rubs on coats, car seats, pillows collecting bacteria, skin cells and will need nourishment from a conditioner. Natural hair extensions are human hair that requires a detangler, moisturizer or re-constructor depending on the type of hair that you have installed.

I have personally experienced seeing mold on the scalp from lack of shampooing properly. A strong suggestion would be to change your pillow case at least 2x per week. Don’t go to bed with your hair wet because the natural body heat and wet pillow case can attract bacteria therefore the perfect setting for mold to grow on the pillow case and at your scalp. Mold can build a habitat underneath braided wefts. Dandruff can be flaking which are dry skin cells wanting to shed normally but are trapped within the braided environment plus add to that dry shampoo or whatever styling agent is added to that little concoction. The itching is not good o watch either. Then you have skin cells underneath your fingernails… I could go on. Just wash your hair and hair extensions 2 – 3x per week. If you have questions about your situation, you can contact our salon at 717846.4424 (York, Pa) or 706.999.9911 (Lake Oconee, GA location)

Myth #4. Since I have hair extensions I don’t have to worry about pony tailing my hair.

FACT. This would naturally feel like you can pull the hair up and be done with it however; this is far from the truth. The heavier your extensions are the more weight is on your naturally fine hair. The more weight and tension that is pulling at the same spot on your head can literally pull your hair out because of the constant pulling. A good example would be box braids, braids that are pulled tight around the hairline from years since being a child into adulthood. Just as a person that has pulled their hair in the crown from tight pony tails could cause the hair to decrease in amount of hair that grows because it can become weak.

Move the pony tail around to different parts of head during the day or week. The top right of your crown, lower bottom loose braid or pony tail will give the hair a break from tension. Only use fabric type of hair holders such as the ones we recommend from Target.com

When it comes time to install hair extensions for maintenance, we do move the hair extensions around to take the pressure off the same spot preventing the tension areas. This can be done with tape-in’s, clamp extensions monthly. Other brands that are fused will have to be carefully removed then installed as a new set in surrounding areas.

Myth #5. If I have cancer or diabetes, I can’t have hair extensions.

FACT. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Of course you can however; consideration of the type of hair extensions would need to be discussed. A quick weight loss such as gastric bypass, cancer  or diabetes will have altered the body internally maybe causing weakness in the hair. Taking supplements to strengthen the hair follicle and hair are important, eating enough protein is essential to growing hair. The greens are essential to building blocks in amino acids internally to help re grow hair. Cancer survivors normally have baby fine hair that grows in and can be attached to the hair extensions. The weight and type of hair extension has to be considered so the baby fine hair doesn’t pull out because it is a different type of hair that needs to harden. An insulated clamp/bead would be perfect for this type of hair because the insulation will protect the hair however; the weight of hair or amount of hair in each extension has to be considered because as I said, the heavy weight of 20 – 30 hairs could put to much weight on the few hairs therefore pulling it out.

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