The holidays are right around the corner. Are you ready? It’s a gathering time, and sometimes you will be seeing old friends or family members you may not have seen in months or years. We all want to look our best, and our hair is a big part of our look, our style, and what makes us feel more confident. So…what happens when someone you barely know, or someone you may not have seen in a long time, asks about your hair. How do you respond when someone asks, “are you wearing a wig?”
Have you already had to deal with this? Maybe you have and you have your own responses ready based upon who asks, and how you feel about sharing your wig journey.
When asked how to respond to “Are you wearing a wig?” and the ever popular, “Is that your real hair?” Here are some responses from real wig wearers:
- I love it. Isn’t it great?
- Why do you ask?
- Yes, and here’s why (if you feel like sharing)
- Oh, that’s a sensitive question.
- Wig? What wig?
You get the idea. You will respond depending on your mood, who is asking, and your personality. I’m sure you have made your own responses or have some in mind. But if you are a new wig wearer, think about this and have your responses in mind so you won’t be caught off guard.
The good news is that it is much harder to spot a wig wearer these days. Wigs are more realistic than ever. But here are a few tips to help you avoid worrying about it.
What will give you away:
- Please, take that hair out of the box and own it. Don’t plop it on your head and expect perfection. You must make it your own. If you don’t know how to do that, learn before you wear it out. Don’t be afraid of your wig. Wigs are manufactured in a way that is “one fits a majority” in that you must customize it a little, and sometimes a lot, depending on the wig. That might include doing some heavy styling, using products, or taking it to a stylist.
- If you are not secure in your wig, it will show. It will call attention to the fact that something is not exactly as it should be. You will not move your head as naturally and might always be touching your wig or adjusting it.
- Too MUCH VOLUME is a giveaway! Yes, there are some “big hair” girls that are loathe to give that up, but nothing says “wig” louder than a big pile of hair on your head that nature could not have bestowed. Go for lower density, hand-tied wigs that look more natural if you want to avoid people asking you if you are wearing a wig. Yes, you say, but I like big hair. So, if that is you, go for it, but know that it will attract more attention. If you are okay with that, that’s just fine.
- Watch the hairline. Keep your wig at a natural hairline. If it is set too far back or forward, it will not look natural and won’t be as comfortable either.
- Color and style are the other two things that can draw unwanted attention to your hair/wig. Yes, women color their bio hair, and change their styles. But if you are trying to look as if you have real hair, and not share your wig secret, staying close to your natural color family, one that compliments your skin tone will work best. There are a range of colors that work for each person better. Find yours and have fun with styles.
In the end, it is up to you. Do you want to blend in and not have your wig a point of discussion, or you don’t care who knows you are wearing one, and have no problem discussing it? How you answer that will guide your decisions. There is no need for a bad first experience in wig wearing, or at any time. There is so much help out there, and you are certainly not alone on this journey.
Have a great holiday season, and join the Wig Studio 1 Facebook group for great tips on these topics and many more.
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WIG STUDIO 1
If you are looking for a voluminous wavy wig with the capability of multiple styles, we have two new wigs just for you! We are delighted to introduce Twix and Amber Rock from the BelleTress Collection.
Twix is chic, cool, and extremely stylish! The monofilament part and the lace front create a natural hairline and versatility of off-the-face styling options. The famous BelleTress proprietary silky fiber adds a soft and luxurious feel to the skin.
This shorter version of the Twix by BelleTress is sure to impress. This is chic, cool, and extremely stylish! The monofilament part and the lace front create a natural hairline and versatility of off-the-face styling options. The famous BelleTress proprietary silky fiber adds a soft and luxurious feel to the skin.
Now, let's meet Carrie Lite - Petite, Cameron Lite - Petite, and Miranda Lite.
Carrie Lite - Petite, Jon Renau’s best-selling shoulder-length bob, gets the ultimate upgrade to achieve a new level of luxury with a SmartLace™ Lite cap. Carrie Lite Petite features Remy human hair, a seamless ear-to-ear lace, a hand tied mono top that allows for multi-directional parting, and light hair density for the most natural look.
One of Jon Renau's most popular SmartLace™ Lite bobs is now available in a petite sized cap. With light hair density and a unique lace front that extends from ear to ear for the most realistic hair line, Cameron Lite - Petite is a timeless style with elegant layers and refined length. Her mono top and 100% hand tied cap provide the appearance of natural hair growth.
Miranda by Jon Renau is a sophisticated long layered style now available in a SmartLace™ Lite cap. The SmartLace™ front looks like a natural hairline and the monofilament part allows for a very natural part. Miranda pairs effortless natural grace with sophistication.
Want a closer look look at each new style? Watch Jon Renau's introduction video.
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WIG STUDIO 1
We all know that looking at wigs, the new colors, and styles is a lot of fun. Taking care of our wigs, well…maybe not so much sometimes. But you only have to damage one good wig before you learn a hard lesson. The secret to a great-looking wig and one that will last is proper care. There is a ton of information about wig care in the former blogs here at Wig Studio 1, and some great videos from our talented reviewers.
Wig styling is important too, and it’s easy to forget that wigs require as much care as your natural hair. Like our natural hair, don’t try to make your wig look perfect. Don’t obsess over every little flyaway hair, or overdo it with too many added products. That perfect, no-hair-out-of-place look and give way to the dreaded helmet look, and that is what gives us away as a wig wearer. Along with the basics: wash, dry, comb, and drying steps that we all learn, using the right products is number one in what can make a real difference in how our wigs look and last.
For wig care, like with some other things in life, simple things are often the best things: spritz a bit of water on the wig to freshen it up; use your fingers to add a bit of volume or to smooth out the fibers where needed. Oftentimes, it’s the “too combed” look that looks so false. It’s okay, especially with some styles, to use the fingers to style and stay away from the comb, or at least to use it sparingly. Brushes made for wigs are great but they too can affect the style or cause frizz if overused or used with a heavy hand.
Another great way of adding realism to our wigs is with hair accessories. Adding a clip, scarf, or headband can transform our look, and make the wig look even more natural. Think about the things you might have worn in your bio hair and know that most of those things you can wear with your wig as well.
No matter how great your current wig is, there will be a time when you are tempted to branch out. If you decide to change your style or color, only you can determine the way to do it. Do you want to “just go for it” and show up at work or on an occasion looking different? Or would you prefer to make a slower transformation over time? Regardless, don’t be worried about the wisdom of your decision until you have lived with the change for a few days.
Words… can soothe, sting, or mean nothing. A lot of wig wearers who are told, “Oh, I like your hair” start that internal evaluation dialogue. “Do they know it’s a wig? Should I say it’s a wig?” “Do they like it or are they just saying that to see what I will say?” Of course, it’s up to each of us to travel these tricky waters our way. I have always fallen back on a simple, “thanks.” Most people are not that interested in our hair—I promise you.
Confidence comes with time and experience. It took me years to learn that most people are caught up in their thoughts, fears, and insecurities, and are trying to get through their day just as I am. Most have little to no time to dwell on other people’s hair or makeup. Maybe a fleeting thought if something looks terrible, great, or unusual, but for the most part, we are just not that important to casual acquaintances. Your attitude will go a long way in taking the pressure off yourself when it comes to how you look. Go for what pleases you and you will be happier and have more confidence.
As for me, I am going with short styles for the spring and summer, and going lighter. As much as I would like the light blonde, I am so pale it’s possible I would disappear, so I must stick with the “kind-of-blonde” shades, which is fine. I’m loving the new Raquel Welch,“Go to Style” is so much in Shaded Iced Cappuccino or shaded Sand. Now the hard part, deciding which color.
So, until next time, when I hope to be wearing this in my photo,
A wig wearer’s worse fear is that everyone is looking at them and whispering, “wig,” because the evidence is plain to see. No one wants to deal with this. We wear wigs to look our best and not be the object of someone’s critique. So, what can you do to assure that you look like you—an attractive you and not “someone wearing a wig”? For a new wig wearer, this can be a paralyzing situation. They fear that everyone will look at them and be able to “tell,” and this can keep someone from buying a wig and/or learning how to best wear it. Don’t let this happen to you.
As we who have learned by research or trial and error know, the lace front wigs often offer the most natural look due to the illusion of a natural hairline. If you have a mono top, even better. That means you can part your hair as you like and what shows through at the part also looks natural. It makes styling effortless and enhances hair movement for a more natural look.
The dreaded shine! Yes, the synthetic wig comes with a factory coating. It is a fiber and a coating that is put on it for several reasons. Your job is to tamp down that coating, remove the shine and make it look like natural hair. Bear in mind that the lighter the fibers (in color) the more shine it will have. The light wig colors reflect more light. Most wearers have found that a cool wash/rinse, and then after the hair dries, the addition of dry shampoo will help take down that shine. You will find that with repeated wear and washes, the shine will continue to fade. However, use the appropriate dry shampoo. Some will produce a white powder that can taint darker wigs. Go slowly and sparingly! Too much and, you will end up having to wash it out and start again. You can use other tricks to disguise the shine as well. Styling in a “messier” style, wearing headbands and waves or curls will also cut down on the illusion of shine.
Make sure you position your wig at your natural hairline and secure the wig in the way in which you are most comfortable. Tape, glue, wig grips, bobby pins all are options. This is especially important if your head is shaped in such a way as not to help hold the wig down in the back.
Don’t be too perfect! Wispy bits are a good thing, wispy bangs can be a real asset as well. That’s not to say you must live with the dreaded wig “fliers” those bits that stand up and refuse to do otherwise. Often hairspray will tame them or just clip out the offenders, if not too many will help as well.
Don’t forget the wig part. When something looks too perfect it is a fake giveaway, and that goes for your part as well. Don’t make it perfect, and don’t forget that you can use a concealer if the contrast is too great, or you don’t like the look for the knots where the fibers are secured.
Wigs with rooted colors are a great option for a natural look. Also, remember that real hair is not just one flat color. Color gradients are very important to achieve that “real” hair appearance. Don’t buy a wig with one flat color because it screams wig.
Experiment with styling. Don’t be afraid to just sit before your mirror and try different things; an up-do, a ponytail, behind the ears, clips, and bands. All these things add to the look of naturalness. The secret: Take a selfie or several! And take several from different angles to see what others see. If you do this, you might leave the house feeling more confident. We are our own harshest critic after all.
And with all this said - there is still one more thing to think about and do. Work on your attitude—mentally prepare for wig-wearing. The more you experiment and get to know your wig, and the more you wear it, the easier it will be. You can start by wearing it around the house a few hours or out for a walk around the neighborhood. This will help you see how it feels on your head what adjustments you might need to make before you “meet the big world” so it’s worth doing. If you will be wearing a wig for many years to come, spend some time researching your options, visit the WigStudio1 FaceBook group, and watch the great video reviews.
You are going to be disappointed - if you fall in love with a wig on a model and get it home and find it’s not for you. So, do your homework before you buy, and do your prep work after you buy. Soon, you will be an expert. You will know the styles and colors that work best for you and know which vendors wig caps fit best on you. You may have a stumble or two along the way, and we all do, but eventually, you will see your wig as one of your favorite accessories, and you will leave the house knowing you look great. I promise.
Until next time,
We don’t often think too much about the origin of all the things that we use, consume, or rely on every day. That was true for me about my wigs. I started to do research, and I was fascinated by the history of wig making. While there is so much to tell, I have hit on some highlights here that I thought were particularly interesting. Hope you enjoy a little wig history.
Anthropologists speculate that wigs may have been used as long as 100,000 years ago. Wigs were quite popular among ancient Egyptians, who cut their hair short or shaved their heads in the interests of cleanliness and comfort (i.e., relief from the desert heat). While the poor wore felt caps to protect their heads from the sun, those who could afford them wore wigs of human hair, sheep's wool, or palm-leaf fiber mounted on a porous fabric. An Egyptian clay figure that dates to about 2500 B.C. wears a removable wig of black clay. The British Museum holds a beautifully made wig at least 3,000 years old that was found in the Temple of Isis at Thebes; its hundreds of tiny curls still retain their carefully arranged shape.
During the late eighteenth century, Louis XVI wore wigs to hide his baldness, and wigs were very fashionable throughout France. The modern technique of ventilating (attaching hairs to a net foundation) was invented in this environment.
A little about Methods:
Wigs of synthetic (e.g., acrylic, modacrylic, nylon, or polyester) hair are popular for several reasons. They are comparatively inexpensive (costing one-fifth to one-twentieth as much as a human hair wig). During the past decade, significant improvements in materials have made synthetic hair look and feel more like natural hair. In addition, synthetic wigs weigh noticeably less than human hair versions. They hold a style well—so well, in fact, that they can be difficult to restyle. On the other hand, synthetic fibers tend not to move as naturally as human hairs, and they tend to frizz from friction along collar lines. Synthetic hair is also sensitive to heat and can easily be damaged (e.g., from an open oven, a candle flame, or a cigarette glow).
Human hair remains a popular choice for wigs, particularly because it looks and feels natural. It is easily styled; unlike synthetic hair, it can be permed or colored. United States wigmakers import most of their hair. Italy is known as a prime source of hair with desirable characteristics; other colors and textures of hair are purchased in Spain, France, Germany, India, China, and Japan. Women contract with hair merchants to grow and sell their hair. After cutting, the hair is treated to strip the outer cuticle layer, making the hair more manageable. Wigmakers pay $80 or more per ounce for virgin hair, which has never been dyed or altered in any way. A wig requires at least 4 oz (113.4 g) of hair.
Some manufacturers blend synthetic and human hair for wigs that have both the style-retaining qualities of synthetic hair and the natural movement of human hair. However, this can complicate maintenance, since the different types of hair require different kinds of care.
(Credit for some background to: How Things are Made, Volume 3, 2021.)
I thoroughly enjoyed this video that I have included about the wig-making process and hope that you do too. I am working to get more information on certain individual vendor processes, but that information is tightly held! In the meantime, I hope you learned something, I know that I did.