Do you suffer from wig-itis? No matter what you do, you still think your wig looks fake. This is most often a new wig wearer’s affliction. We are so used to seeing our fine, thin hair, that the wig just seems like too much hair. And to be honest, sometimes it is. Some styles and brands seem to pack a lot more “hair” into their wigs than any real person would ever have. This is where a bit of skill comes into play. I have no such skill, so I depend on my hairdresser to do a bit of thinning and shaping on some styles. Some think the permatease is the problem; that it makes you look as if you have a ton of hair on top. But some permatease does work for some styles and gives the wig lasting shape to support the style.
But then, we have an additional issue. Are you frustrated because no matter what you do, your wig still looks a bit fake? This seems to be a major concern, and for obvious reasons. You don’t want to spend the time and money on a wig to have it announce to the world that it is…a WIG.
In this case there are several things to consider. We can’t expect a cheap wig to look as good as one with all the bells and whistles. We do get what we pay for in more ways than one. A good quality and well-made wig can make all the difference in how real they look and how long they last. We have all come to expect that a human hair wig will look more realistic. We know that a lace front and mono top can give our wigs a more realistic look, depending on the style. We know that synthetic wigs can be helped if we tamp down that shine and choose rooted colors. We know to look for blended shades of color because flat colors scream fake.
And back to our original issue…density. For most of us, especially if losing our hair was a drawn-out process where we got used to thinning hair, any wig might look like too much hair at first, and that takes a while to get used to for most people. If a “real” look is a big issue for you, then time as well as money is a big player. We know that we can’t expect to pull a wig from a box, put it on our head, and have it look very realistic, in most cases. We must take time to customize the wig for us—our head shape, our coloring, and learn which styles suits us best. This includes seeking professional help like a hair stylist to maybe trim, thin, cut bangs if needed, and in general, shape it up to suit our face, if needed.
Some other issues in wig wearing that sometimes get overlooked or thought about too late are: wig fit (cap size), wig placement (does it sit at the natural hairline?) and wig security. Did you prep your bio hair if needed and find a method of securing the wig that is comfortable for you? Trial and error, and time will help with this.
In the end, we get back what we put into our wigs. They are an investment, so it’s worth learning all that we can to make them look great and last a long time.
Sometimes it is hard to be objective as we stand there looking in the mirror. That’s where a professional stylist comes in. Your mom, best friend, partner, etc., might not be the best person/people to ask when it comes to picking a wig color and style—for obvious reasons. A stylist has no, or at least little, emotional investment, and it’s her or his business. They do this for a living. Trust the experts.
Until next time, wishing you all a happy holiday season. Break out that new wig and show off a little.
Most of us see what we are looking for; at first—the color of the wig, style, and length, and we imagine how it will look on us. It is only later that we think of what makes the wig what it is. The cap is vital: not only to our comfort, but it makes a difference in how the wig holds up. There are several types of caps, as most have learned by now.
Since the labor and materials used to create a varies, the price can be affected. It’s hard to talk about cap construction without talking about permatease. Some love it, some hate it, and some learn to appreciate it as necessary for some styles. Some manufacturers refer to it as “machine teased,” and that’s as good a name for it as any.
It is a structural component placed in some wigs to give it volume where the style demands. In reality, permatease is short matted fibers that are usually placed at the top of the wig to give it that permanent lift. In longer wigs, the fibers are placed/crimped to hide wefting and add volume. Most basic caps come with some level of permatease, usually in the crown area. Some with a monofilament crown or part may have some permatease but not as much as an open cap wig.
Love it or hate it, there are some pros to permatease. It helps maintain the style, and the less that you must style the wig, the longer it will last. It helps hide wefting. Because it is found more often in basic caps and open wefting, you have a wig more comfortable to wear in summer weather. Wefting allows for more air circulation. Of course, we need to also think about the cons. Since permatease is short fibers, the wigs heavy on permatease tend to come with flyaways. But they can be tamed, and over time they will flatten out on their own with a bit of help from your conditioner. The one thing that I hear most wig wearers complain about is too much volume due to the permatease. It makes the wig look too “wiggy” and unnatural. That’s the tradeoff it seems. Though some manufacturers seem to have caught on that wig wearers want more realistic looks, and the permatease that I have seen most recently has been done better.
If we don’t want to wear human hair wigs, for whatever reason, we are left to find our way to what works best for us. There are many benefits to synthetic wigs. They are more affordable than human hair wigs, and if given good care can last up to a. year, depending on the style. They come in many colors, and there are plenty of options of low or no permatease to choose from. Synthetic wigs are lighter than human hair wigs, and cooler, and can be more comfortable to wear. Your synthetic wig won’t react to the weather. Hot, cold, rainy, or dry, your wig will continue to look the same. My favorite thing about them is that they are easy to wear because they are easy to style. They have style retention, and with a bit of “training”, they can look great with a minimum of fuss.
Low maintenance is a lovely thing. Synthetic wigs are less delicate than human hair wigs and require less upkeep. But that doesn’t mean NO upkeep. To keep our wigs looking great, they still need TLC. Correct washing, drying, and styling products abound to help us with that.
So, whether you are a permatease lover or not, there is a wig (or many wigs) that’s right for you and your lifestyle. That is the real beauty of wigs—they are there for us in any color or style that we want, and we can put one on and be out the door looking great in minutes.
I have autumn fever already and have decided to go to a bit longer style. I have chosen a new wig, Racquel Welch, Upstage. Now, if I can just decide on a color…
What is your look for autumn? Ready for a new you?
Until next time,
As I have written about in previous blogs, there is a psychological impact of hair loss, like any other loss, so I don’t want to make light of it, or the pain caused by it. But to linger in the stages of grief too long can hurt us too.
So along with those grief processing steps that famously end in acceptance, let’s look at some things to think about along with way.
- Your Perspective: You know by now that you are your own worst critic. We’ve all heard it and it is true – you are harder on yourself than anyone else is. This also means that you probably view your hair loss more critically than others do.
- Your Feelings: It’s not the end of the world, and there are many worse things many other people must deal with—right? Yes, we know this, and some of us might have even had that sentence directed at us. Knowing it and internalizing it is a different thing. It takes a little time, so don’t be too hard on yourself. Learning to live with your hair loss is a psychological challenge but it is only as difficult as you make it—however, we need tools to deal with it just like any other problem or challenge.
- Your Solutions: Find help if you need it. Most of you who read this have long since gone to the doctor and you know all about your hair loss, but now you need a different kind of help. You need help from people who know about wigs and wig care. You need to find others who are dealing with this—you need support from those who can understand.
- Your Options: Professional therapy is there for you. If you’re still having trouble coping with your hair loss, some professionals can help you work through those grief stages. Don’t write off your pain because you are afraid of being seen as weak. Issues with anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem can impact your mental health both in the short and long term. Get the help that you need and don’t feel bad about it for one second.
We may not have a choice about losing our hair, but we can choose how to respond. We can refuse to live in denial and allow hair loss to destroy our confidence and quality of life. Getting the help that we need is the first step. Learning about wigs and how they can enhance your life is the next step and just as important. Talk to people who know about wigs, and don’t be shy about asking questions. I’ve found that most people do want to help if we just ask. I find this especially true in the wig community because a lot of the people have gone through the same challenges themselves. They know about the feeling of loss, dealing with self-esteem issues, going through the stages of grief, and getting to acceptance—and then going on to help others.
Things NOT to do:
Please don’t give up after trying just one or two wigs. You will likely feel the same as a lot of people: the wig has too much hair (because you are not used to seeing yourself with a thick head of hair), and the fit is not right. Granted, some wigs do have a lot of hair, but you should know that some have a lower density and no permatese if that is what you like best. In other words, don’t make quick decisions. There is a wig cap learning curve as well. Did you measure your head? Do you know about the different cap styles/construction? Also, know that it will take a while to get rid of the feeling that something is sitting on your head.
Don’t think that you will look like the wig model. Have realistic expectations. Your face shape, coloring, and age may or may not be the same as the models. Even the length of your head and neck will be different, causing the wig to look longer or shorter on you, perhaps.
Don’t be afraid to put your hands in and on your wig. This can be tricky because you don’t want to mess up the “factory part” if there is a chance you might want to return the win. If you know you like it and will keep it, get in there and style it. Very few wigs come right out of the box looking great. Don’t be afraid to use the proper products on it to make it your own look. Put clips in or wear a headband to add an even more realistic look.
Don’t give up because you haven’t found the right way to secure your wig. And by “right” I mean the way that works for you. Different people like and use different methods. I am a “purist” in that I like nothing but an occasional clip or bobby pin to secure mine if I go to the dentist. But I have found a cap that fits me well. Also, I don’t do a lot of up and down, running around, being outside, etc., that might require a more secure means. So, as you can see, securing your wig is a very personal choice. Find what works for you and your life.
A happy ending—yes, there is one. Before you know it you will be a pro in your own right. You will know all about caps, fibers, heat-friendly wigs, and how to care for them. You’ll know which colors and styles flatter you—and there is when the fun begins. You have options! Just take a look at the website today—wow.
Until next time, remember, we must make many choices every day. Today, let’s Choose to be Confident.
Vickie Lynn --and Ollie the Owl (sitting among my violets in my living room looking very confident indeed).
As lovely as your wig may be, and as beautiful as you may look in that style and color, it’s not a great experience if your head is uncomfortable. Is your head itchy after an hour, do you get a headache, is your head overly heated? This could be due to several things: how much helper hair is in your wig, the fit of the cap, the wig construction itself. What is touching your head? How is your wig secured?
You must be at peace with the wig you’ve chosen, and the cap plays a huge role. Maybe it plays a larger role than you thought, but if you are like me, you learned quickly that cap comfort can make or break your day.
When I first started on my wig journey, I was all about color and style. I didn’t know about permatese, the difference in fibers, what heat-friendly meant, or that all wigs with lace fronts were not created equal. Not to mention that I knew little or nothing about mono tops, partial mono tops, mono parts, or anything about the cap that I was going to be wearing on my head for many hours a day every day. Maybe you knew more than I did about wigs when you started, but I’ve since learned that so many people get discouraged about the very basics of wig-wearing—the cap, and how to keep the wig on.
As you can imagine, after wearing an uncomfortable wig for nine hours or more, I was unhappy with my first wig decision. Of course, the wig itself was fine. The color, style, and actual fit were good. My problem was that I had a sensitive scalp, and I needed a monofilament top, something easier on that area of my head that was most sensitive. I needed a lace front because I didn’t want to always wear bangs or worry about the wind blowing up and showing the edge of the wig. I needed a wig with a bit of stretch. Unfortunately, I just didn’t know what I needed until it was a problem. And worse, I had no idea what my options were. For fortunately for you and me we now have so much more information and companies like this that make a great effort to educate their buyers and help them make good decisions about what works best for them. We all have different needs when it comes to wig-wearing, just like we all have different tastes in styles and colors. It’s all about figuring out what we need to be happy with our wig. It’s a process.
After trial and error, I made peace with one of Raquel Welch’s wigs. It had everything that I had decided I needed to be a happy wig wearer. I have only strayed from the brand once and was disappointed. That’s not to say that there are not many other great options out there, and I will likely try others, but once I knew what would make me happy, I felt more secure in branching out with color and style. I came to see that a wig cap made all the difference. I’ve never made that mistake again.
If you are new to wigs, it is helpful to get some advice about wig cap structure and your options. Think about how you will be wearing your wig—many hours a day? What is your environment—hot, outdoors, moving around a lot? How sensitive is your scalp? How true to wig cap size are you—do you know how to decide between petite, average, and large and how to make adjustments to the wigs? How comfortable are you with wig security? Do you know the options available to you?
As you can see, and as many of you have already learned or are now learning, that cap that no one sees but you is just as important, if not more so at times than what everyone does see—the color, the style. Don’t shortchange yourself on the cap. You will never be entirely happy with your wig choice if you pick the wrong cap. And the one you want, or need might cost a bit more, but it will be worth it every single day if you can go through the day and not think about your wig. Trust me on this.
Happy wig days as we go into fall. I’m going to try a new style and color, how about you?
I had that thought so many times, even if I didn’t say it out loud a hundred times during my wig journey. I polled our Facebook group of wig wearers and wig lovers to ask them an important question: What do you wish you had known when you started your personal wig journey? Here is a complication of their comments:
- My wig made me look so much younger!
- That my wig wouldn’t make me look like the wig model – and I’d need to think about what looks best on me.
- That I could trust a good online company and not overpay at a wig salon.
- How much easier my traveling life would become.
- I learned that mostly it was me over-thinking it all and that most people either couldn’t tell I was wearing a wig or didn’t care if they did.
- I needed the basics—how to measure my head, pick a cap, and the differences in caps.
- The difference in synthetics and human hair wigs and the care involved in each.
- How to “train” and style synthetic wigs to get a natural look.
- Don’t buy a wig on a whim, think about how it will look on you, how to care for it, and pay attention to cap construction and size.
- It’s important to be kind to ourselves about all this. It takes time to adjust to hair loss and that pain is compounded when we are expecting perfection right away with our wig education. It takes time.
- What fibers work best for my life – do I want to deal with human hair upkeep, and synthetics that require more TLC (HD fibers)? What are the pros and cons?
- How a lace front can make all the difference in how “real” a wig can look for those who don’t want bangs.
- Watch lots of reviews and see the wig on different people, and the colors in different lights before deciding. Lighting is tricky and can give you false ideas.
- The value of going to a wig shop to get accurate measurements and trying on wigs even if you don’t buy from them when first starting.
- Don’t decide to love or hate that first wig out of the box. Know it won’t look so great until you make it your own. Give it time before you put it back in the box to return.
- Don’t be afraid to work with the wig, train it, move the part if you can and want to do that, and make it your own.
- Know that wigs can be cut and styled just like real hair (mostly) so take it to a hairstylist you know, trust, and hopefully one who might have some experience with wigs.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions!
- How to get rid of that “Barbie-hair-shine” to get rid of that fake look.
- How to secure the wig and knowing that it is different for everyone.
- What the heck is permatease? And then knowing that it varies by wig style. What you might hate in one style might work great in another. Permatease is not a bad word.
- What is a rooted wig, and why some are better than others?
- How to pluck hair from a part line to give it a more realistic look. Yes, it works!
- Do not use a hairbrush or regular comb on a synthetic wig.
- Buy products meant for wig fibers, not bio hair.
- You still must take care of your bio hair and scalp.
- Be careful of scams and buying from unknown sites or people.
- Understand the return policies of the company you buy from.
- Learning that paying a little more for a certain cap construction can make such a difference in how you feel after wearing a wig for ten to twelve hours.
- Being honest with yourself about what colors and styles work for you.
I am sure that most of you reading this will have experienced some of these things, had these thoughts, and maybe can add some of your own. I had to journey on my own for the most part. I didn’t know there were blogs like this, or Facebook groups (maybe there wasn’t when I started), but there is help out there now.
If I had to give any advice to new wig wearers, it would be this: Whether you wear wigs out of necessity or by choice, there are challenges, but that doesn’t mean that they can’t be overcome. My questions when I sit before the computer to look at new styles or think about new colors now are these: Will that look good on ME? Is this the right color for ME? Will I be comfortable with the care required to keep this style looking good?
My mantra: be honest.
In other words, Yes, that long wavy one is beautiful, BUT…I’d hate to maintain it, and my lifestyle just doesn’t fit with it. I move on. Yes, that blonde one is fantastic, but would I look like a washed-out zombie in it…I move on. You see where I’m going with this. In the end, it’s about what makes us look good so that we feel good about ourselves. If we feel good about ourselves we can be who we really are. Our wig is just another part of our preparation to meet the world, just like our makeup, clothes, and maybe our glasses. We just have the advantage of having options on those bad hair days! Take advantage of the amazing knowledge from WigStudio1 reviewers and staff. They can be your best friend when it comes to your wig journey.
Until next time, go out there and have a good hair day, and don’t forget to stop and smell the flowers.