Why is maintenance essential when it comes to hair extensions?

Instagram- The Basics (21)_miniWhen wearing human hair extensions it is essential to understand the importance of keeping up to date with maintenance appointments, as this will ensure that your hair stays healthy and your hair extensions look as good as new throughout the time you are wearing them.

What is a hair extension maintenance appointment?

Before you have your hair extensions fitted, it is very important to discuss with the person or salon fitting the extensions what is involved in a maintenance appointment, how often they recommend you have one, and the cost.  The reason it is so important to discuss this directly with the fitter is that many have different opinions on the best maintenance method, and you need to know what you are paying for and why.

What are the different types of hair extension maintenance appointments I might be offered?

Throughout the industry there is not yet an established maintenance method, as different trainers will teach different techniques, therefore we will talk about these more generally as either a maintenance replacement method or a maintenance uplift method, however there will be variations in-between which is why a direct discussion with the individual fitting the extensions is so important.

Hair extension maintenance replacement method

The maintenance replacement method is a technique which would involve scheduled appointments every 4-6 weeks.  Usually with this method the price would include some new hair, typically 1 bundle (20-25 strands) which would be used to replace missing bonds.  Using this method, the old bonds that have come out since the original fitting would not be put back in, and instead new hair and bonds would be put in their place.  If the client has not lost many bonds, the remaining pieces of new hair would be used to remove and replace bonds that are becoming a nuisance to the client, typically those around the crown of the head and around the ears.

Benefit of the hair extension replacement method

The benefit of this method is that every 4-6 weeks you are having new hair fitted, and bonds taken out and replaced.  Having the new hair fitted will help to keep the hair looking as good as new, and having the bonds replaced will mean they will continue to stay in place, and the natural hair can grow healthy underneath.  The benefit of this method is that if you have not lost too many bonds within the period of time between appointments, which should be the case for most clients, the hair is continually being refreshed every month, and therefore it is likely that you will be able to keep your extensions in for long periods on a rotation plan that will typically see you through to 5-6 months of wear.

What is the cost of this type of hair extensions maintenance appointment

Typically a maintenance appointment of this type will cost between £50-£70, which should include a new pack of hair.

Hair Extensions maintenance uplift method

The maintenance uplift method is the process of unclipping each bond, and moving it back up the hair so that it is repositioned to its original placement.  No new hair is used in this method, as any hair that has come out would need to be put to one side so that it could be reattached during this appointment, so be sure not to lose any.  An uplift would usually take place at around 6-8 weeks, and usually would involve the use of new micro rings however this is not always the case.  This method is for micro rings only and cannot be performed with the prebonded glue method.

Benefits of a hair extension uplift

The benefit of this method is that the hair extensions do not grow down as they are continually moved back up, however there are some negatives attached to this method that should be known.  When the extensions are first fitted, the tip of the hair extensions will be very hard and secure, so once the ring is clamped into place there will be a nice firm hold.  When the ring is removed after 6-8 weeks, in some case depending on the aftercare of the client, the tip can become slightly softer.  This will mean that once re attached it may not hold as successfully as it did before, and you may find you begin to lose extensions at a very fast rate, making for an unhappy customer.  The integrity of the ring is also compromised when it is opened and re-closed, therefore it is very important if opting for this method to ask that new rings are used to avoid this happening.

What is the cost of a hair extension uplift

As this is usually a much more lengthy process, this type of maintenance appointment will usually cost between £80-£100.

Why do I need hair extension maintenance?

There are a number of different reasons why maintenance appointments are very important.  The number one reason is so that your fitter can assess your hair and monitor its progress.  By looking at your hair and scalp every few weeks you can sleep easy knowing there are no problems and that your natural hair is continuing to grow as your would expect.  Your fitter can also check for any matting or tangles and have them rectified before any problems arise.  Maintenance appointments also ensure that your hair extensions can be trimmed, leaving them look healthy and full throughout the time you are wearing them.  By seeing your fitter every 4-6 weeks you will also have regular opportunities to ask questions about the extensions directly to your fitter.

Failure to keep your maintenance appointments may result in your hair extensions not lasting as long as you had hoped, or your hair extensions becoming tangled if they have not been looked after correctly.

Typically fitters will charge by the hour for removal, therefore well looked after hair extensions will not only be better for your natural hair, but also on your bank balance.  Well looked after hair extensions usually take around 1 hour to remove, however matted extensions can take anything up to 6 hours, and when you are paying by the hour you will be wishing you had stuck to your maintenance appointments, therefore if for only this reason, book in your maintenance appointments and stay up to date with them for long lasting, healthy hair extensions.

What if my fitter does not offer hair extension maintenance appointments?

If your fitter does not offer a maintenance service do not allow them to fit your hair extensions.  Maintenance is an essential part of looking after your hair extensions which any professional would be well aware of, therefore if you are told you do not need maintenance, or they do not offer this service, this should be seen as a red flag and that you need to look for an alternative.

Tips on hair extension maintenance

Maintenance appointments are essential in the aftercare of your hair extensions, however this does not mean that you should leave all of the responsibility up to your fitter and neglect your hair extensions in-between maintenance appointments with the mind set that “my fitter will fix this”.  You should be following all of the aftercare advice provided by your fitter which would include using the correct hair brush, sticking to the appropriate aftercare products, separating your bonds daily and sleeping with your hair secured in place.  Your fitter should provide you with a comprehensive list of tips for looking after your hair extensions, however those just mentioned are key in looking after your new locks.