How do our Wigs Play a Role in our Identity?
(Wig shown above: ARIA WIG BY ELLEN WILLE | MONO PART)
Who are you? You are not just one thing. You are not just your looks, your personality, your wealth, or your job. You are many things. But as I talk to women who have lost their hair, for whatever reason, they all share a common idea. Their hair is part of their identity. I can understand that even though I know it’s “just hair” and it is not the sum of us. It doesn’t define us. But we have looked at ourselves in the mirror for X number of years and our hair has become part of what we see day after day, year after year. And then one day it looks different, or one day most is gone, or all is gone, and then what?
Oftentimes, when women lose their hair, whether temporarily or permanently, they feel the loss deep down as if they have lost something forever that was a part of who they are—or were. This can result in grief stages just like any loss. If you are new to hair loss and/or still in a grieving stage, be kind to yourself and know that you will find yourself again. I think that is why we just seem to know when we put that wig on if it is us or not. We can still see our real selves—we can see beyond the style, color, and the fact that it is a wig. We can see more than a flattering (or not) wig, we can see if that wig reflects who we are or not. You can bet that if you compromise on this, keeping a wig that you just can’t connect with, it will end up in a box. Or if not back in the box, you will make yourself wear it but will always be aware it is not you.
Unlike a new dress or shoes, a wig replaces your hair, something that you had for many years in most cases, and something you never thought you would be without. While men lose their hair and suffer from loss too, I am sure, they don’t seem to deal with it in the same way that women do. It was always more “acceptable” for men to lose their hair. For women, it has always been different, like a lot of things are for women.
While wigs can make a huge difference in how you see yourself in the mirror, and how others see you, it will begin to make a difference when you can look in that mirror and just see YOU. Then you will know that you have put the grief away, you have lived through it, and you are stronger for it. I think it took me a good while before I stopped seeing “wig” in the mirror and just started seeing myself. I worried every day for a long time that someone would look at me and figure it out. It was inhibiting and uncomfortable—and unnecessary.
One day out of the blue I remembered what my grandmother told me after my mother cut my bangs too short when I was in first grade. She took me aside as I was having a meltdown moment and looked me in the eye. (I have heard something similar from others in different ways since and maybe you have too) The gist was: “honey, remember that most people aren’t thinking about you or even seeing you, they are busy thinking about themselves.” This thought helped me as I went out into the world trying to still be me with my first wig. I wished my grandmother had been around so that I could have thanked her. But the day did finally come when I stopped watching other peoples’ eyes to see if they were looking at my head/hair/face. I just tried to look people in the eye and be myself—tried to project confidence. The more I did that, the more “me” I became. While for months at home, I still saw the wig first when I looked in the mirror, one-day things changed. I looked at the entire me, and that was the turning point. The real me and the me that I projected out to the world merged, and I was “back” at last.
Fast forward to now, and there is nothing but excitement when it comes to wigs and wig products, and I value being able to put my Muse on my head in five seconds, run my fingers through it and go. I am looking forward to shopping for more wigs for fall and winter. I just got a new one that I am kinda in love with. See my picture below.
Until Next time.
Vickie Lynn in Crowd Pleaser, RL 12/22 Shaded Cappuccino, Raquel Welch.
How to take your wig to the beach or pool—and not be sorry!
How to take your wig to the beach or pool—and not be sorry!
I always loved the saying, “where there’s a will there’s a way” because it is true. If we want something badly enough, we try harder to make it happen.
Hence all the wonderful inventions by our multi-cultural, independent-minded, hard-working people in this country. And that is true for our topic this week—we find a way. We who wear wigs refuse to be left out of anything and that includes the beach and pool. Thankfully, depending upon your hair loss you have several options to consider.
Challenge number one: Wearing wigs or toppers for summer activities
As you might guess, synthetic hair is best for the pool or beach – either a wig you have worn for a while or a less expensive piece you purchase for the beach or pool. If you are diving below the surface of the water, you may want to wear an actual swim cap that will stay on when diving into a pool or ocean.
After-care is the thing: If you do wear your wig or topper in the pool or ocean be sure to rinse it thoroughly and condition it after wearing. If you are wearing long hair, consider braiding it before going into the water. The wig cap will suffer along with the wig fibers and the cap might stretch out to the point of not being a good fit if you spend too much time with it in the water. This will vary depending on the cap construction, age of the cap, and your after-care of the cap.
Challenge number two: NOT wearing wigs or toppers for water activities
So, what if you are not at all interested in swimming or splashing around in a pool or ocean but want to get a bit of sun and fresh air and join your family and friends anyway. You do still have options.
· wear a sun hat with very good coverage – such as hats with big brims that flop down in the back or have a back “safari” flap.
· For hats like fedoras where the back of your head will show, use a stretchy headband to cover the parts of your head that would be exposed.
· Wear a swim scarf – a scarf made of swimsuit fabric in case you do decide to take a dip.
· Wear a head-wrap. You can wear this as a cap, do-rag, turban, or even tied into a rosette. This can be done to fit under a hat as well.
Scarves add a fun vacation vibe to your wardrobe, don’t count them out.
Fortunately, we will always see people in sun hats, scarves, and such, so you won’t feel out of place. If you’re going between inside and outside a lot, wear a cover or scarf under your hat so you can take the hat off indoors with a minimum of fuss.
Bring lots of scarves! Scarves also work well for hikes, kayaking, and other sports where the heat of a wig won’t make you happy. I have added a couple of videos for how to tie a scarf, just for your convenience, and they will lead you to others.
Remember, if we feel good about how we look, that is what we will project. Also, remember that most people are much more interested in how they look to scrutinize others too much. Once I realized that I was able to relax a lot faster when venturing out in something new for the first time, whether it be a new wig, a scarf, hat, or even a new outfit.
Go out there and have fun. A lot of us “missed” last summer staying more inside than out. So, we have a lot to make up for. Let’s get out there and join the world—and we will look good doing it.
Until next week, stop and smell the flowers.
It’s that Time Again—Wig Wearing in Summer
Yes, it’s a challenge no matter what you do. Adding another layer or two of material on your head will make it warmer. This is the time of year that I am glad that I don’t have to put anything between my head and my wig. My security measures start and stop with two bobby pins. I know this is not the case for many. I am lucky to find such a good fit with the two wigs I wear most of the time (both by Raquel Welch): Muse and Ready for Take Off. I have a thing about caps because my scalp is so sensitive, and another reason that I am glad I can manage security without glue, tape, and other helpers. But still, a wig on my head in summer is something to think about.
I work from home now so I don’t wear a wig all day long anymore as I did a few years ago (ah, the 10-hour days), but I have found that when I do wear them I am even MORE aware of having something on my head. It’s as if my scalp is saying, “What’s this? Get it off!” So for me, the cap construction is the key, that and the fit. There is nothing worse than a scratchy cap on top of your sweaty head. Well, I’m sure there are worse things, but when it happens you can think of nothing else but pulling the offender off your head—fast.
When I considered style, color, and length, I had to think of cap construction as even more important. I didn’t learn this until my third wig. I didn’t know how uncomfortable some caps could be if the fit and construction were wrong for my head. Something else I learned along the way: Along with the great comfort of 100% hand-tied caps, and they are amazing and lighter, there is also a minus (isn’t there always?). There are no wefts to aid in air circulation. For me, the tradeoff is worth it because I am not outside running around much. But for you, it might be very different. You may have to be creative about how to live with wigs during the summer months.
There are ways to get through the summer with wigs. If you are a seasoned wig wearer you have likely experimented enough to know what you must do, but if you are approaching summer as a new wig wearer, there is a learning curve, but there is help.
· Go for shorter styles, or if you must have longer, go with the one you can put up off your neck.
· Remember synthetics are cooler than human hair wigs.
· Try basic wig caps (the coolest construction); the open wefts allow air to flow through.
· Use accessories to control the volume around your face and neck.
· Try wig bands. They can help reduce cap pressure and make you more comfortable. Some have a silicone strip and can hold the wig in place.
· For short outdoor events, leave the full wig behind and think about a scarf or a cap with attachments. These are great for sitting outdoors in sun and wind when you don’t want to put a cap or scarf on top of your wig.
· Check out the wig cap liners.
Advice from my hairdresser: (who says he has been asked about this a lot from his clients)
· Don’t put your wig up in ponytails – it pulls the hair out. Better to secure an up-do on top of your head.
· Don’t go into the swimming pool or ocean with a wig that you want to keep after that dip. If you run back to the bathroom and washed it immediately you might save it after an ocean dip, but once chlorine gets on the wig fibers, it’s about done.
· Make sure you wash your wig more in the summer. All the sweat and products build up fast and can cause more wig damage than washing it more often.
· Give your head/scalp a break as often as you can. Take the wig off when possible during the summer and replace it with a scarf around the house or one of those softies. Your scalp will thank you for it and your wig will last longer.
I was in my “wig room” yesterday aka my closet, and was looking for Ready for Take Off; (I have it in two colors) and love. I had not worn them for a while and put one on for the day. I was halfway through the day before I remembered I had it on, and that was because my neighbor commented on how cute my haircut was and that it made me look ten years younger. Then I remembered…this is why I have two Ready for Take Off wigs. This style and cap construction (100% hand-tied) is light, and comfortable, and I can forget I have it on. Now that is worth the money, that is worth the time and care required. And besides, I look cute in it, and ten years younger. I may now get it in more colors.
Until next time, stay cool.
(Wig shown above: SIMMER WIG BY RAQUEL WELCH)
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,
Surviving the Summer – Part 2
Last week I covered some of the survival ideas about getting through the summer with wigs and toppers. This week we will look at some travel questions and delve a bit further into the ideas and ways of making it through summer easier and with less stress.
HOW TO PACK AND STORE WIGS WHEN TRAVELING:
When you’re new to wearing wigs, learning how to pack a wig and travel with your wigs can be tricky because there are so many things to consider.
- What products should you bring? Just what you need, don’t overload on products. Take travel size shampoo, conditioner, sprays.
- How many wigs should you bring? Always have a spare or two. Instead of washing and drying wigs on your vacation rotate them so that unless you get them in the pool or ocean, you won’t need to wash them until you get home. But just in case, default to the travel size products.
- Should you buy a wig-specific carrying case or are there easier options? No need for special wig carriers, boxes, or containers.
Packing for a trip is all about one thing: suitcase efficiency.
With shoes, daytime outfits, nighttime outfits, makeup, reading materials, and all the chargers that you need, packing efficiency is a challenge. I’m a fan of the zip-lock plastic bags for storage. Cheap, easy to see what you have at a glance, and keeps the wig safe from tangling in the suitcase and keeps it from any debris. Also, it takes up much less space than a carrier, box, or structured container.
KEEP IT SIMPLE:
As noted in my blog from last week – keep it easy and simple by bringing synthetic wigs that keep their style, the necessary care products, a collapsible stand, and some headgear – hats, scarves, etc., to give your wigs and your head a break.
A RECURRING QUESTION: WHAT ABOUT GOING THROUGH SECURITY IN THE AIRPORT?
Will I have to take off my wig for airport security? No!
- Know that TSA/security is not required to ask you to remove your wig. Just like with your clothing, their scanners should be able to see through the wig.
- However—you should avoid wearing too many metal wig clips or bobby pins that could set off a sensor or raise suspicion.
- If you are asked to remove your wig and don’t feel comfortable doing it in front of all the people at security, ask for a private room. TSA is required to grant that request.
THINGS TO CONSIDER:
Because I’m a big Plan B person, I’d never put my wigs inside my checked bags. If I am going somewhere for a week or more, I put a spare wig and travel-size products in my carry-on bag. I also include a hat and scarf. Wig care products should not take up any more room in your luggage than care products for bio hair.
SOME HELPERS THAT ONLY YOU WILL KNOW ABOUT:
Dealing with the heat as a wig wearer can be a challenge, even if you are not in some tropical climate on vacation. These are some of the things you might consider to help make things easier: Bamboo caps, Wig grips, Wig liners.
Until next week, be happy, and stop and smell the flowers, Vickie Lynn…
It’s Summer—Post-Covid awakening Let’s Re-Invent Ourselves Post-Covid
(Wig shown above: IN CHARGE WIG BY RAQUEL WELCH)
As we all ease back into more “normal” days…it’s time to put on a new look to celebrate it! It’s party time, graduations, weddings, and just fun get-togethers in our future. Why not put the “regular” you on the sidelines for now, and step out in a new you—a more glamorous you?
I don’t know about you but when I drag myself out of bed and get into the shower, I feel anything but pretty, much less glamorous. But when I come out of the shower, (if I don’t stare too hard into the mirror) I feel that I can once again tackle the world. That gets me through, and I’d bet it is the same for you. We feel renewed and revived, and the same feeling comes over me when I get a new hairstyle/wig, a new outfit, or shoes. It’s fun to get and try new things, and for at least a few minutes, hours, or days, every time we put on or see that something new, different, we feel better.
Life is tough sometimes, and we all have our issues, some more difficult than others. But experience has taught me that we really do live one moment at a time. It is the culmination of all these moments that make up our memories. I like to look back and remember that I had moments when I stepped out of my comfort zone to try something new. For me right now that means trying new kinds of exercise, a new kind of eating (intermittent fasting), and a new look. I want to walk by the mirror and stop for a second look because I look like myself, but not exactly. Maybe I look better, just a bit different. I want to liven myself up a bit, put a little glamour back in my life, a little romance (in looks if not in fact), and value my individual moments a little more.
I recently had to force myself out of the yoga pants or leggings, find my makeup, try on outfits, and wonder what had happened to my old self. As I prepared for a writers’ conference with real people (in person!), I saw myself through new eyes. After turning around in circles and lamenting the fact that I looked like I’d been in a cave for years, and that I liked nothing in my closet, I decided to do something that I hadn’t done in years. I splurged on myself and went to a spa for a facial, manicure, and massage. Emboldened from this new happy-me-high, I went on to my favorite department store to find a new outfit. Feeling like a new person, I went home with my “new self” and realized there was only one thing missing—new hair! I pulled my newest wig, Raquel Welch’s, In Charge out of my closet. It was a little blonder than I’m used to, a bit longer, and with a fuller look than I normally wear. But it was the absolutely perfect new look for me. Could I pull this off? I know how that sounds to any of you reading this and wondering what’s the big deal—so what if the wig was a bit different than the usual, I know you are thinking. But to me, it was a big deal. I had spent a lot of time in shorter hair, and kind of blah but efficient outfits, thinking this was “just fine” and who cared if I looked anything but “just fine” anyway?
I should have care. I should have paid more attention to how the things I wore made me feel. I should have cared that when I took the time to wear things that made me look better that I felt better. When I wore wigs that suited me better or made me look younger, current, and put together, and no pun intended, “In Charge”—the feeling filtered down through my entire day and everything I did. I had been hidden from the world during Covid and now that I was re-joining it, I had to look at myself differently. More importantly, I had to CARE about how I looked, felt, acted, and interacted with others now, and I needed to decide what that person would look like to the world. What we put out into the world—words, deeds, looks, attitude, all get reflected back to us one way or the other.
I wanted to put out good things and get good things back so along with my attitude shift, I had to shift my view of myself, and realize that it is not selfish to spend time on myself—the way I look, feel, and care for myself.
Yes, I re-invented myself for one occasion, but those people won’t ever know that. They will think that I looked that way all the time—that I’m confident all the time, and I can almost believe it too. Kicking myself into gear for this one event re-started my life again as I ventured back into the post-Covid world.
I urge all of you to care for yourselves too, every day and in all areas of your life. One of the easiest and fastest ways to change our look is with a new wig. I am now brave enough to step outside my comfort zone and try wigs that I thought were “too long, too blonde, too glamorous” and see the possibilities.
Summer is here, so go new, go pretty—
Until next time, look at these options!
Coming to Terms with Hair Loss – and the grieving process
It goes without saying that hair loss – regardless of gender – can be devastating. It can dent a person’s self-esteem and negatively affect their overall quality of life.
“Studies on the psychosocial impact of hair loss have found patients’ self-esteem, body image, and self-confidence to be negatively impacted.” 1. (Dr. Francis) “Known psychosocial complications include depression, low self-esteem, altered self-image, and less frequent and enjoyable social engagement.”
It seems experts are in agreement, however, that women are significantly more likely to suffer emotionally as a result of hair loss.
Dr. Francis goes on to say: “Hair loss in a woman is so emotionally devastating that it can trigger a wide range of social and emotional issues that can negatively impact healthy daily living and overall quality of life. I have heard of women that retreat from social situations have diminished work performance, and even alter their healthy living – avoiding exercise, overeating, not treating other medical illnesses – due to their hair loss.”
But why do women see a greater emotional impact from hair loss than men? I think we all know the answer to that: society puts far more pressure on women to stay young, beautiful—perfect.
For older women, hair loss is perceived as accelerated aging and women have to deal with a sense of loss of virility and sexual attraction to their mate as well.
Various studies all agree that hair loss may lead to depression, anxiety, and social phobia.
- Depression can lead to a feeling of low mood, lack of interest or pleasure in activities, loss of energy, and sleep deprivation.
- Anxiety can cause excessive worrying, difficulty in controlling those feelings, and a feeling of heightened tension.
- Social phobia or avoidance behavior follows on from the experience of anxiety symptoms, leading to social and economic suffering.
- Social anxiety disorder is characterized by the fear of humiliation or being judged negatively in social situations as well as the avoidance of such social or performance situations.
These symptoms can have a severe impact on an individual’s mental health, ability to work or study, and well-being.
One question that I see over and over: how long does it take to come to terms with this? There is no one answer for everyone, as you might expect. It depends on your support system, age, how you go through the grieving process, and how well you handle the loss.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that you won’t need time to process this and actually grieve—or that there is a time limit allowed. Hair loss is a devastating loss like so many other types of losses. You need time to grieve and go through the stages of loss until you come out at acceptance.
Developing a relationship with a good wig company, one that has advisors on all aspects of wig-wearing and hair loss, is vital. You need someone on your side, and the more the better. In a time when you might still be in the throes of the grieving process, it is hard to make decisions. That is when you need to fall back on people who can help see you through to that acceptance stage.
What I have learned: Grief isn’t linear. It doesn’t involve clearly defined stages … It carves long, meandering, and varied paths that popular myths do little to prepare us for.
So, it is crucial to remember that you will bounce around in the acceptance stage and “backslide” now and then back into the grieving process. This is normal, so don’t beat yourself up about it. In the end, we get on with things, and for me, that meant finding wigs that made me feel like me, or even better—wigs that looked better than my bio hair even at its peak! We all have challenges in life, some more serious than others. I try to keep that in mind every day and try to be grateful that my challenge is one that has support from places like WigStudio1, and others going on the same journey.
As we go into the summer months, I have already pulled out my Muse, Classic Cool, Straight up with a Twist, and In Charge. I am ready for it. Hope you are too, but if not, reach out for help. Here on this site and/or the private Facebook group. You will find a lot of support along with wig-wearing expertise.
Until next time,
- Dr. Shani Francis, American Academy of Dermatology and director of the Hair Disorders Center of Excellence at Northshore University Health System in Illinois
It’s Summer and is the Wig Cap the Thing or is it the Length?
Well, the cap is one big thing, for sure. Comfort, coolness, all of these things seem to be magnified during the summer. Unless we plan to wear a baseball cap or shave our heads and go natural, we will continue to wear our wigs. So by choice or necessity, we search to find ways to stay cool and comfortable. I have included some things here that might help us understand the cap and the cap construction so that we’ll be better able to make good decisions for our particular situation.
But summer comfort also includes the wig itself, the fibers, the length. Wearing a wig in the summer can pose challenges for many wig wearers. Certain wigs can leave you feeling hot, sweaty, and weighed down. However, there’s no need to sacrifice your wig altogether in the summertime. No!
A shorter wig for hot days would work well, especially if you change your style around daily. There are so many beautiful short wig styles for summer to choose from. I’m sure you have some already in your collection, but I’ll put links to a few of the newer ones at the end of the blog. But don’t think you must wear short wigs all the time, you can do some lovely up-do styles with the longer ones as well. Keeping your wig off your neck is key when it comes to preventing your head from overheating. In addition to opting for an up-do, if you have a longer length wig and your aim is to keep from sweating as much as possible, plaits and braids are the most effective styles to go for.
There are so many helpful YouTube videos from our wonderful ladies who do the reviews and offer helpful advice here and on our Facebook page. Check them out and get inspired! I know that I did.
As for fibers, synthetic versus human—overall, synthetic wigs are the winner during the summer months. Synthetic fibers are lighter than human hair so should keep you cooler. Also, human hair wigs will react to the hot weather in the same way natural hair would; it can lose shape and style or go frizzy with the humidity. Synthetic wigs, however, have ‘style memory’ and will hold their shape even when exposed to the elements.
Now, back to the cap—and cap liners: When it comes to wig construction, I’ve always been a fan of hand-tied wigs. I’ve got several that’s wefted at the back and hand-tied on the crown. I’m certainly finding that the wefted construction helps keep things a bit cooler as it lets the air circulate more. Watch out for fitting even more during the summer. Too tight wigs can restrict the airflow and make you very uncomfortable fast.
Wig caps are one effective method to help reduce sweating when wig wearing. For the summer, in particular, I recommend trying the bamboo caps and/or liners. The material moves sweat to the outer surface of the fabric and dries quicker, helping to avoid excess sweating.
Cap Construction types: Monofilament – more natural-looking and more versatile (top, part, crown options). Lace Front – natural-looking, more style options. Hand-tied – More realistic movement and styling versatility, softer on the scalp (lack of wefts), lighter, cooler. Wefted-open cap – most basic, not as expensive, open construction allows it to be lightweight, breathable. Permatease is a factor for some with these.
Until next time, take a peek at the links…
Below is lace front, mono part and mono cap, both mine, both comfortable.
Please see the links below to help you learn more about caps, and what new short wigs are available right now. I have my eye on two. So many wigs, so little time!
Oh Yes, it’s Summer – Oh No, it’s Summer!
Ah, yes, what to do about those hot summer days when it comes to making important wig-wearing decisions. Just like how deciding what wig to buy and how to secure it, how to stay cool with one on during the summer is a personal process. No one solution will work for everyone. I am lucky that RW (Raquel Welch) has a cap that likes my head and there are enough of her styles available to keep me happy. Due to my personal circumstances, I don’t worry about my head sweating any more than normal in the summer, as for as security goes, but I do pay attention to the heat and how much time I spend outside.
I am a writer, so most of my time is spent inside on the computer. I am not outside doing sports, watching my kids do sports, biking, or running. Although some biking might be beneficial—but that’s another story. That’s not to say that I haven’t had my days when I could hardly wait to get home and remove that wig! So, it has happened enough that I can feel your pain, those of you who do either sweat a lot or are in the heat much more than I am.
So, what do we do? Now is the time to take a deep dive into cap construction, and to think about our styles that have hair covering our necks. I automatically gravitate to shorter styles in the summer. But not only shorter, but more natural styles, meaning less “stuff” in the cap to block airflow. That brings us to cap construction. While a full mono top is so very nice, and most often so very comfortable, it does not lend itself to a lot of airflow. With that in mind, I tend to go with the mono top but not a full one, and usually, it’s just a mono part. If I can have the majority of the cap that lends itself to better air movement, I’m more comfortable.
If you need to have (or just want to) have added security though, you will run into more challenges. Wig bands/grips, caps, glue, tape, clips? All of these security measures bring with them their own unique pros and cons. What is the least I can do and feel secure—that is what I ask myself. How about you? I rarely do more than use two long bobbie pins for my wigs, and that is usually when I go to the doctor or dentist or if I know that I will be outside in windy weather. But I know that we each have different challenges.
Our questions then are: Are there short styles of wigs that you are comfortable with that provide a good fit? Can you get away with less between your head and the wig for summer comfort? Can you give up a complete mono top for the summer? Do you have more than one summer wig so that you can rotate more often? Do you have the right care products on hand to compensate for more washing and the stress of the heat? Have you done your homework about glue and tape—how well will they hold? Can you live without that wig grip and/or wig cap?
I have included some links to really cute RW short wigs, and a couple of YouTube videos by Taz, one about another brand of short wigs, and one about our topic-wigs in the summer. I hope that you will find what works for you.
Until next time, when it will be all about wig fibers, keep cool.
Rescue or Toss – Is it Time for a Change?
So, last week I hit on the topic briefly of rescuing old wigs. I am attaching a copy of my success wig here. It came out soft, shining, and ready to wear. Sadly, my other rescue came out much like it went in—clumpy and dead. I treated them both the same, and they were about the same age. Sadly, the blonde one is no longer with me. But in the end, it was a good thing. It was time to let that shade of blonde and that style go. How about you? Are you at that place where you are hanging on to old styles and colors long after you should have let them go? How do you know when it’s time? Because in addition to the obvious wig aging there are other reasons to let that wig go. So, what are the indicators that you are holding on to something that is doing you no favors?
But wait a minute, let’s take a step back before we start tossing old wigs. Do you have wigs that you might like to try to revive? Should you spend the time and resources to rescue your old wigs—in other words--should they be rescued? The short answer is yes, if that wig can be made wearable again, then it is worth trying if only to sell it or donate it. Sometimes it really is time to move on, but that wig might be perfect for someone else.
Have you stopped actually “seeing yourself” in the mirror? Psychologists tell us that we do one of two things most often in this regard: we look but don’t “really look” because we think that we already know what we will see. Or we look too much, too closely, criticizing every part, angle, perceived flaw. Either way, we are not really seeing ourselves as we are, or as others see us.
Have you had those mornings when all at once you do look in the mirror, really look, and wonder where the heck that line came from, that discoloration, and why is your skin so….whatever. You know what I mean. Change is often slow, and when the accumulation of it is finally enough, we notice, and we are shocked. But if we had really been looking, we would have seen it in progress. But we are busy humans and who has time to stand in front of the mirror and look at themselves all the time? And therein lies part of the dilemma as to why one day we do look in the mirror and wonder why we ever bought that wig in the first place. The style, the color, doesn’t seem to be you anymore—sound familiar?
Wigs are even more of a challenge than coloring and cutting bio hair. First, they cost more, and you hope the relationship will be a long one because it doesn’t grow out if you have made a mistake. So, we are afraid of making a mistake, and because of that we often default back to our old styles and colors, trying so hard to get something “close to what I had before” and we think that is a good thing. It is not always a good thing. Maybe you have lost weight, gained weight, gotten older, gotten less or more sun, and you need to make new decisions about what looks best on you—now. Here is when I say to you—please do not ask a friend or family member. A good friend or family member will want to tell you the truth but often won’t because they don’t want to hurt your feelings. So, it puts them in a bad spot of wanting to be honest and helpful while not making you angry or hurting your feelings. Just don’t do it unless they are a professional hairstylist or wig expert who can step back and give you an unemotional opinion. Or maybe it’s something as simple as your taste has changed or your lifestyle. Maybe you retired, or work from home now and can be less structured in your life, including your look. Maybe you like short wigs for summer and want to take things up a notch with new styles or lighter colors. Don’t worry about trying to copy your old styles. There are many styles that look good on many people. The wig companies know that and that is why there are so many bobs of different lengths and short boy/pixie cuts.
When a friend of mine got a new wig (a first wig) and asked my advice I cringed (for all the reasons I stated before) but also because it made her look ten years older. Suddenly, she looked like her mother, and it was the wig—color and style. Both wrong for her, and I had to tell her. I asked her to try on two of my wigs to see the difference in how she could look to make my point that there were wigs for her that would work. I loaned her the one of mine she liked best and she forgave me for telling her that her new wig made her look older. She was able to swap it out, and she learned a good lesson.
The moral of my story is don’t be so intent in reviving your old wigs that you can’t see it is time to move on. Some might work, like one of my two that I worked on, (the success is pictured below) but if they were put in the closet, it is often for a good reason. Trying to revive an old wig can be frustrating and time-consuming because success can depend on so many things: age, wear and tear level, general care, type of fibers, and style. The one that I was able to rescue was in great condition because I had just stopped wearing short wigs for some time and had put it away (and had forgotten about it) before it had suffered much abuse. It just needed some TLC. Sadly, the other one had seen better days. Is it time to revive it for ourselves, or time to sell or donate? Rescue or toss season at my house seems to happen in the spring, even for wigs!
This RW wig (I think it is Sparkle—lace front, mono top and so comfy) was in a box for YEARS! I washed it, conditioned it, and let it dry. The next day I shook it and added a bit of water on it just from my hands. And now I have a like-new short wig for the summer!
Me and my rescued wig…
The failure: the ends are just too damaged.
So, until next week when I will be writing about wig fibers, if I can get all the information that I want on time. Otherwise, I will talk about wigs for the summer, and how to stay cool. Can you go band-less, glue-less, and cap-less all summer?