I know what it’s like to try a wig and be disappointed. Whether it is my lack of homework—did I understand about fibers, cap construction, and care or was I caught up in how the model looked?
Becoming a seasoned wig wearer, one who has confidence in what to buy, and what colors and styles work best on you, takes time. Like anything new, you can’t start out as an expert. You must allow yourself to make a few mistakes, no matter how much you think you have researched things. It’s all about giving yourself a bit of grace, time, and space to find the right wig, one that feels right to you, and one that compliments you, your complexion, and your face shape.
It makes me sad to see (on various media formats), “I give up on wigs. I’ll just have to deal with this hair loss some other way.” The general theme seems to be that they try one or two wigs and decide it’s not for them. They are upset, disappointed, and often needlessly so. Things might have been different if they would have given themselves more time to do research, ask for help, and to understand it is a journey, not a sprint. Learning to buy a wig, the right wig(s) is a skill. Like any other skill, it takes time to master it.
Reading all the comments on Facebook and learning about all the disappointments was hard for me because I had been there too. I wanted to hug all those ladies and say, “it’s because it is all so new—it feels like too much hair, the color might not be the best fit or the style, and you are not used to wearing something on your head—but it will get better with time. Don’t cheat yourself out of something great without giving it a real chance.”
One bad wig experience does not mean you will never be able to wear wigs comfortably. Even several bad experiences don’t mean failure. Yes, wigs are expensive and can be intimidating to work with at first. But you have to make friends with your wig, make it your own. Once you claim it, you can begin to work with it. Also, you need to manage your expectations. Everyone’s head (and neck length) is a bit different in size and shape, and you will eventually find the wig brands and caps that work best for you, and that will make your journey much easier. Also, please remember that your wig can be modified.
There is a process and a learning curve like when you must learn anything new. A lucky few will take to wig wearing right away and have all kinds of fun trying new styles and colors. But most of us go down a different path. We struggle to learn about wig fit, the different wig caps, the difference in the fibers, wig care, colors, and sizes—it can be overwhelming.
In my field, of writing, we have “tags” for the different kinds of writers: Plotter or Pantser. I think the same idea can be applied to learning about wigs. Did you start researching all about wigs, view hundreds of videos, and pictures, research manufacturers, talk to wig wearers, or find wig blogs (a plotter)? Or did you find a local wig boutique and go in and trust the person there to just tell you what you should wear? Or did you go all out Pantser and just order a wig online that looked good to you because it looked good on the model? Maybe it was something in-between these actions, but you get my point. Did you approach wig-wearing in a more thought-out process or did you make an emotional decision?
So, yes, there is a process, but it’s one that you can learn. For me, it was research-research, and trial and error. The advice I would give is:
1. Ask for help. If you are reading this blog, then you know that you can find it at Wig Studio1. There is so much expertise there!
2. Do NOT give up, and if you are in this phase, or if you know someone who is struggling, pass this on. There is a wig and style that is for you, likely there are several, but you will never know that if you give up too soon.
Refuse to accept failure and disappointment about wig-wearing. If thousands of people can do it, so can you. So, whether you are a plotter or Pantser, keep trying because the right wig is out there waiting for you. Before you know it, you will have a collection of your own. The day will come when you look at your wigs and you will be happy that you have options.
Until next week, take a look at the wigs on sale now (and ongoing) and maybe start there. If you are not sure about style or color, ask for help. There is a world of expertise at Wig Studio1. There are wonderful blogs, videos, and all kinds of great resources. And remember, we are all in this together. Pass it on.
Until Next time,
Recently a friend asked me, “what’s the deal with all the rooted wig colors?” She was looking through my collection as I called it. “And why do you have so many wigs?” Since she is not a wig wearer, she had many questions about my wig collection. “But you can only wear one at a time,” she said as she opened my wig boxes.
I took a deep breath and I tried to explain to her about the realities of wig wearing.
· We fall in and out of love sometimes
· We like to try new colors
· We like different styles for different occasions
· Our tastes change
· Rooted is a personal preference I explained & there are many other options
Still mildly confused, she shrugged and tried on one of my wigs and stood looking at herself in the mirror for some minutes. “Oh, I look so different, a bit younger,” she said as she looked at me for confirmation.
Yes, I think you do, but you’re not getting my wig, but if you want to wear it for a day or two to decide if you want to order it, you may. Of course, then I had to give her a brief tutorial about wig care and how to secure it. By the time I was finished with my mini-lecture I know she wondered if it was worth it. But hey, she was going to walk off with one of my favorite and not inexpensive wigs.
Explaining wigs and wig-wearing to someone who has never even touched a wig before can be a challenge. But I knew if I took the time to explain things, my friend would walk away with a new understanding and appreciation for those of us who wear wigs, and she might decide to try it herself. She kept looking at herself in every available mirror as we finished the task we had before us. She might, just might, have been bitten by the wig bug herself.
As our opening of boxes, inspecting wigs, re-labeling boxes, and putting aside the ones I wanted to donate continued, she asked more questions. “Tell me about the caps, the fibers, and the colors,” she said as she continued to hold up each wig to her face. I began to worry she may walk out with half my wigs. “But first, tell me about the rooted colors. When did showing roots become a good thing? I grew up coloring mine at the first opportunity.”
I don’t know exactly when the root thing started or why, but experts seem to agree that the best way to get the most natural look from a wig or topper is with rooted colors. Ideally, the process is all about the art of starting with a darker (and complimentary) darker root which gradually blends out into a lighter tone or color through to the ends. Well, some brands do this better than others. Also, there is a personal preference involved. For example, I don’t like and won’t wear the high contrast styles/colors that have super dark roots and light blonde fibers/hair. But, some like it and some wear it well.
In theory, the root color gives the appearance of re-growth from the scalp thereby making it look “natural” as it would if one had their hair colored or lightened.
Rooting is, no matter your personal preference, a bit tricky, especially with the blonde shades. Again, some brands seem to do it better than others. There are so many blonde shades, that it can be overwhelming to decide on one, and then add rooting or not-rooting to the equation, and it might take a long time to decide on a wig and wig color.
Most women do seem to consider a rooted blonde to be more natural-looking. This said, others don’t like the idea of a dark root, and some find the root to be too dark in contrast to some wigs (I am one of those). Another thing to consider is the “lace front dots” are easier to see against the skin color. Again, some brands are better at addressing this issue than others.
The blending factor—what I love and so many others seem to as well, is that if your bio hair is darker than the lighter shades you love, having a dark root will allow you to pull out your bio hair on the side for a very realistic look. Any hair at the nape or if you put the wig into an up-do will also be much better camouflaged.
As always, your opinion is the one that counts, and you are the one who must like the wig you choose. Everyone that I know has made a mistake is two, and we learn.
As lovely as some of those all-blonde wigs look on some (I have one in the closet that has never been worn), I can’t see myself ever giving up a rooted wig.
I am grateful we have so many choices in wigs, colors, and styles, and that we have access to the wonderful instruction videos, and wig reviews that those at Wig Studio1 do for us.
It’s a great time to be a wig wearer!
Until next time,
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,
Whatever reason you have for wearing a wig, you should never feel shy about your decision. Whether you choose to tell others is your business, of course, and you shouldn’t feel pressure about it one way or the other. That includes telling those you have or hope to have romantic encounters now or in the future. You shouldn’t stress over it too much because there are things that you can do.
But yes, worry about it, you will, and that’s only natural. Will the wig slip, come off completely, and be a turnoff to your partner? All reasonable worries. As in most cases, every situation is different. A long-married couple where the woman is suffering a gradual hair loss, or a sudden loss due to a medical condition, might have a different conversation about wigs than someone just beginning to date someone special.
Only you will know when you have reached that level of trust and intimacy in your relationship. But it might be a conversation you will want to have early on so that you can plan accordingly. I have a good friend who when planning her first serious romantic encounter just said to her partner, “I have extensions in, so no pulling on my hair.” With so many women wearing helper hair of some sort these days, the guy thought nothing of it. She decided to leave the full conversation of actually wearing a wig (and not extensions) until she decided where the relationship was headed.
Or, think about this opposite scenario: the kiss, a darn great kiss, and things are going well, and then—the hands in the hair! Imagine the shock when you yelp, and he comes away with your wig in his hand. So, okay, another scenario: You have the conversation, but then what? How do you keep looking like you did when he/she first saw you and was attracted to you? How do you look and feel sexy while keeping the wig in place?
Now, the time has come. Do you secure the wig and hope it never becomes an issue? Do you try to sleep with the wig (there are ways to secure it without doing a lot of damage) and hope to pull it off? Even if you have told your partner that you wear a wig, and they say they’re fine with it—have they seen you without it? A lot of women just don’t want to go there, especially if they don’t yet know if the relationship will lead to a permanent situation.
Whatever you decide about sharing your wig wearing, there is no right or wrong, and no rule. Each of us will need to decide this for ourselves. But if you do decide to keep your wig on all the time, including in bed, there are some tips that might come in handy.
· Though sleeping in a wig on a nightly basis is not recommended, you can wrap your head to help keep hair in place and this will be cutting down on the friction that is the culprit.
· Sleep on a silk or satin pillowcase
Some methods to secure your wig (for day and night)
· Wig Tape
· Wig Glue
· Wig Grips
· Wig Caps
· Bobby pins
· Wig Clips
All of these methods will help secure your wig. Again, it’s a personal issue. You will know or soon know after some trial and error, what works best for you. It’s also important to know that each method has pros and cons. A special tip: save your aging wig as a “sleep wig” if you have more than one wig in the same style. This is especially helpful if you prefer to keep your wig wearing more of a secret.
Most wig wearers that I know have found the fun part of wigs. We love the flexibility of choosing styles, lengths, and colors. We love the time we save in front of the mirror every morning, and being able to match the wig to our mood, or an occasion. We love not sitting in a beauty salon for hours for cuts, colors, highlights, whatever. As in everything in life, wigs come with pros, and cons, and require us to make choices, and decisions, and we learn as we go. We learn which brands, styles, and colors work for us along the way.
Take a deep breath and dive in. Nothing is perfect, nothing good comes without some effort, and wigs are no exception. But when I look at myself in the mirror “before and after” well, I must say, I’m grateful for the pros and can live with the cons.
Happy wig wearing, and take a look at all the spring/summer styles. Wow!
Until next time,
This is a recurring question, and it is easy to see why. We put money, time, and hope into our wig purchases, and don’t take this process lightly. Unfortunately, the answer is not a bottom-line one, and there is not an exact length of time for any wig. So much depends on so many things, which I’ll review here.
Generally, human hair wigs last longer than synthetic wigs. As a rule, human hair wigs (with proper care) can last a year, or much more if one wears them on occasion. Synthetic wigs generally last up to six months with proper care. If synthetic wigs are heat-friendly, their lifespan may be shorter if you use heat on them regularly. Remember too that with a bit of talent or an agreeable hairdresser, an aging wig can be trimmed and re-styled in a lot of cases, and you can get extra months of wear out of it.
How long your wig will last, and by last, we are all thinking “looking good” depends on what kind of wig, how often you wear it, how you care for it. There is no getting around the fact that just like bio hair, human hair wigs and synthetic fiber wigs must be cared for. Treat them as carefully as you do or would your bio hair.
For many, a human hair wig, with the proper care, can last more than a year when worn daily and up to three years when worn occasionally, so say many experts in the field. All wigs are not created equal, so a lot depends on the quality of the hair just as it does with the quality of fibers in a synthetic wig. Know your brand, do your research, get feedback from other wig wearers on the Wig Studio 1 Facebook site, their consultants, and the great ladies who do the reviews.
Synthetic wigs can comfortably last between four and six months when worn every day on average, with the shorter ones lasting on the higher end of that timeline (due to lack of constant friction of fibers on clothes). I have had shorter wigs last up to a year and look good, even the heat-friendly ones if I rotate them. In general, synthetic wigs tend to have a shorter lifespan than human hair wigs as they are prone to tangling which affects their day-to-day resilience, and of course, if you use heat and a lot of products, it means more washing.
Tips summary to help you get more wear out of your wigs:
A human hair wig doesn’t receive the oils and vitamins from the scalp like your natural hair would to keep it rejuvenated after styling and daily life. So, remember to wash your human hair wig with extra attention and be sure, to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions. This goes for heat appliances, blow-dryers, shampoo, conditioner, and the right comb and brush. Remember the individual strands of hair are attached to the cap. Overuse of heat, over conditioning, etc., can loosen the knots.
A synthetic wig, especially the heat-resistant ones, can look as natural as a human hair wig when you care for them properly. Again, think heat, correct care products, wash only when needed.
Wig rotation is a great thing! Not only do you get to leave the house in perfect hair (and different styles and/or colors if you wish) but if you rotate your wigs, you wash them less and that will prolong their life
At last, but certainly not least, wig care doesn’t end with just the obvious. Putting your wig on improperly or taking it off improperly can damage the lace front, over-stretch the cap, and might loosen your fibers. Treat them with care. Also, storage is important, especially when traveling and long-term storage. Make sure they are stored properly. Again, take advantage of the Wig studio 1 Facebook page for some great and imaginative tips on wig storage. There are some resourceful people on that site!
Until next time, me and my Muse in Shaded Cappuccino wishes you a good week,
- Understand Your Wig Cap’s Construction: Is it hand-tied, machine wefted, lace front, mono top, mono crown, mono part?
- Respect Your Fibers: Read any manufacturer’s care instructions or do a search to find out how to care for your wig fibers. Fiber composition makes a big difference in how to care for your wig. Human hair, blended (human hair with synthetic), heat-friendly or not—they all have different needs.
- Use the Correct Brush or Comb: It’s helpful to get into the habit of combing through your wig after taking it off. Gently (and with the appropriate comb type) remove any tangles. Smoothing and separating the hair fibers before storage will not only keep your wig looking its best, but it will be ready for wear the next time without worry. Always comb in small sections, slowly, starting at the ends and moving toward the crown. Careful of pulling too hard. You don’t want to unknot any fibers from the crown.
- Store Your Wig with Care: Everyone seems to have their own method. If you rotate your wigs a lot, keeping them out and on wig heads/stands is fine. If you have too many for that, you can store them in the box they came in, careful to make sure the fibers are not twisted or out of shape if you will be storing them for longer periods. Some people hang them from pegs or similar setups. If you are using boxes, remember to store them so that you can read the name on the box for easier access.
- Watch That Heat, Please: This is always a scary thing the first time you try it on your wig. Remember that synthetic hair does not respond like human hair. Start with the lowest temperature that is advised rather than the highest. Unfortunately, prolonged exposure to high temperatures will shorten the life of your synthetic wig or topper.
- Don’t over-wash! Washing your wig, especially over time, will cause some shedding and a slight loss of density, no matter how gentle you are. Everyone is different, and you can adjust the when to wash rules to you based on several things: how many hours a day your wear the wig, does your head sweat, how many products do you use, to name a few. If you take the wig off and can smell the wig cap, that’s a clue. If your fibers seem to be sticking together, that’s a clue. If your fibers look dull and lifeless…yes, a clue. You get the idea. Use good judgment, and with the idea in mind that the more you wash, the shorter the lifespan.
- Use Silicone-Based Products: (and other products) On Your Wig, sparingly. Over time, the use of any product will cause a buildup that can result in a lifeless, dry, and flat look. A thoroughly washing is the only answer.
- Don’t Sleep in Your Wig: Both static and sweat cause frizz, often resulting in tangles which will result in damaged fibers, and so on. It’s not worth it.
- Don’t wear your wig to the gym: No matter how cute that guy is at the gym that you want to impress or how much more attractive you feel with your wig on in general, think twice. If you must wear a wig, set aside one wig, maybe one that is shorter, and aging, one that you only wear for this one thing. Otherwise, opt for another type of headgear.
- Don’t Wear Your Wig in a Swimming Pool: The chemicals in the water are not your wig’s friend. Invest in a head wrap, bathing cap, or if you do go in and don’t plan to get your wig wet at all…. but you do, rinse it out immediately and condition it lightly, letting it air dry overnight before trying to comb through.
Your wig is an investment, both financially and emotionally. With a little thought and care, it will last you a long time and help you look your best along the way.
Please see WigStudio1 videos for more on wig care. There is a great store of information on the site.
Until next time, can you believe it’s time to think about holiday hair?
It’s a good bet that none of us would have picked hair loss as something to challenge our confidence and self-esteem. But if it’s happened to you, know that the way you choose to deal with it can make all the difference in your mood, outlook, and relationships with others.
If we stay in the denial or anger stage we run the risk of not taking advantage of those things that can help us—like wigs. We also run the risk of not getting on with our life. We don’t want to give over—not even one second of our life, to fight a battle that we can’t win. So, if you know that your bio hair is gone for good, or at least to the point that you don’t feel confident about how you look out in the world, then you have options.
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 definitely 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, there are professionals who 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 (easier said than done—but true, nonetheless). 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, dealt with the self-esteem issues, gone through the stages of grief, and gotten to acceptance—and then went further. They became experts about wigs and wig care, and now reach out to help others.
If I had to pick one thing that put me over the hurdle into acceptance, I’d have to say it was the day I found a wig that felt like it was meant for me. Long-time wig wearers have had this experience as well. Like most, I had to try a few wigs to get to my happy place, but when I did it was as if someone turned the light from dim to bright. I looked in the mirror and saw me—just me, and not the wig. I knew then that I had found a look and color that suited me, and that made all the difference. My confidence began to return.
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, 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., which 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.
--and Ollie the Owl (sitting among my violets in my living room looking very confident indeed).
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.
Though you might find varying versions of these answers, these are the ones mostly agreed upon and what my own dermatologist told me.
- Will constant wig-wearing inhibit or permanently damage your bio hair?
Wearing a wig will not inhibit hair growth. The cells that allow hair to grow will still be able to function underneath your skin while wearing a wig. If you're worried about damaging hair that is growing back out underneath your wig, wearing a wig cap can help to protect the hair that is growing in.
- Will the continued use of adhesives cause my bio hair to break or cause permanent loss?
Some people do use heavy-duty adhesives when applying lace front wigs, and it is not uncommon for hair loss to occur with the repeated use around the hairline. The combination of irritating adhesives and tension on the hairline can cause damage, with receding hairlines occurring as an undesirable—but not an uncommon outcome.
What can we do to help prevent damage to our bio hair, and scalp?:
- Massage your scalp. Having a wig sit too tightly on your head can cause the blood flow to your scalp to be reduced.
- Take your wig off before bed. Most doctors and wig experts recommend that you do not sleep in your wig – it can cause tension on your hair and cause breakages, tangling, clumping, and other undesirable outcomes.
- Shampoo your hair--regularly. The key to healthy hair (and scalp) is keeping it clean. You don’t want your wig sitting on a dirty, oily scalp. Bad for your wig and your scalp and bio hair.
- Keep on top of trimming bio hair. It might be that you choose to wear a wig all day every day. That’s fine but don’t assume that you don’t need to trim your own hair or care for it as well as you did before your wig-wearing days. Don’t forget about your bio hair.
- Avoid putting damp hair under a wig. Having damp natural hair under a wig is not only extremely uncomfortable but can also promote the growth of nasty bacteria.
- Be careful when braiding your bio hair. Braiding can be seen as an easy way to keep your natural hair out of the way under a wig. But be mindful of your technique.
- Your bio hair can continue to lose moisture just like before. So moisturize and condition your bio hair if you notice your hair feeling dry after wearing your wig. To combat any bio hair and/or scalp dryness, try using hair oils, which can penetrate well, or other treatments you might prefer to restore its moisture and good health.
- Give your hair and scalp a break. If you have natural hair under a wig for a long period of time, it can be good to give your natural hair and your scalp a break for a few days from time to time.
- Wearing wigs brings its own particular challenges. While it is tempting to put our bio hair “on hold” and forget it longer than we would have before, that is a mistake.
- Anything we do over and over again that causes friction will have a result. This includes a poor-fitting wig, too tight wigs, and bands, and twisting and braiding (if done poorly).
- The constant friction combined with adhesives can take a toll on the hairline. Try different ways of securing your wig so that the hairline is not constantly irritated by the adhesive and tension.
In conclusion, my view is that while there are challenges in wig wearing like there are in a lot of things we have to tackle, once we get past the learning curve, it’s more fun than fear.
Take care of your bio hair, scalp, and your wig…
Until next time,
Our Old Wigs – or what was I thinking and why do I still have them?
I went on a wig hunt this week—inside my own closet. I retrieved a dozen or so boxes of wigs from the area in my closet where I kept the “maybe someday” things. You know what I mean, like those jeans that used to fit, and I might get back into them “someday” maybe. In the case of wigs, these were from my earlier still learning days. And as tried them on one at a time, one thought kept going through my mind—what was I thinking? I must have thought they looked good at one time, but now, not so much. So, what happened?
Most of us are all pretty hard on ourselves, very critical of every perceived flaw, and I am no exception. But I think that when I first started out wearing wigs, I didn’t know what to expect, and what looked good (meaning believable). I think I was more concerned with that than comfort, finding the right color or style. I didn’t know how comfortable they were supposed to be, nor did I understand much about caps and how they were made or supposed to fit. I picked a few that looked good on the model, and well, lived with them. We all go through a rookie stage, and I think mine lasted through a half dozen wigs at least, maybe more. We live, we learn, we make corrections, and that includes buying wigs. So, maybe we should give ourselves a break about it, especially starting out.
Out of the dozen, I removed from my closet, only two were worth trying to salvage. I am going to see if I can bring them back to life this week. They are totally different in style and color so it will be interesting to wear them again if I do manage to rescue them. I have learned a lot about caps, fit, style, colors, and what works best for me now. So, when I shop for a wig now it is pretty easy for me to put my own filters on before I begin the shopping phase. I know what I want: mono top or mono part at the minimum, lace front, and heat-friendly fibers. I don’t have the patience for human hair care, and I don’t have the talent to style them as I would like, so synthetic works best for me. But I do like the look of human hair and I get that much easier in the heat-friendly fibers. Knowing that I am free to look at styles and color and that makes it easier to shop. Now that I don’t go to an office and see the same people every day, I am free to wear different wigs out and about. Before I didn’t discuss wigs with people I worked with but that locked me into wearing the same wigs all the time.
As I tried on my old wigs, I tried not to be so hard on myself about how they looked because after all, they had been boxed up for some time. Also, I have aged, I am paler now after the lockdown, and that is not a good look under the harsh bathroom lights. But I did have to keep wondering—what was I thinking when I bought them? I can’t answer that, but I also wondered why I kept them after looking at the condition some were in. Clearly, I liked them enough to wear them a lot! In the end, I decided it was the same as looking back at anything, your clothes from years ago, old picture of yourself in different hairstyles, shoes, whatever. Wigs are the same. We pick them for many reasons, and it seems right at the time.
If you have some old wigs put away that should be taken out and donated or revived or tossed – do it. They are serving no one in the closet. It is like the clothes rule, if you haven’t worn something in a year, get rid of it. You will feel better afterward, I promise.
What I need to buy now is not more wigs, but some good products that might help me revive two. I have put a link below to some of the products that I will be trying on my two rescued wigs I will post pictures of them in my next blog if I am successful. Wish me luck. One is a short one that I would love to wear this summer, so I have high hopes for that one. The other is a chin-length, straight bob-style in an unflattering color—which I wasn’t aware it would be at the time I ordered.
So, until then, see if any of these products might help you rescue a wig, or maybe make your current favorites last much longer. If we care for them, they will not be sent to the toss pile too soon. Oh, that conditioner and conditioning spray looks promising!
I will be the first to admit that I sometimes have a love-hate relationship with my wigs. On bad days I hate that I have to wear one, but mostly I am grateful that we have such amazing ones to pick from. I appreciate being able to try a new look and/or color and find the right ones for me without the trauma and drama of going through a salon process. Now I can just pick the look and style I want, put it on, and I am out the door feeling and looking just fine!
But—yes, there are challenges to wig wearing. I wanted to talk about a few today and how I have learned to overcome some of them. You likely have your own methods too, but if you are newer to wig wearing, maybe some of these tips will help you.
First, and what is a worry for all wig wearers—the security of knowing that your wig will stay in place. After all, we are all going for reality. We don’t want our wigs slipping or worse. We do all we can to make sure people don’t look at us and think—wig. So, let’s visit a few things that you can do and some things to consider when it comes to wig security.
- Basic bobbie pins. If you have bio hair and the right wig cap (the pins go through the cap to your hair), and this may be all that you need. A lot of people just use the two long pins that often come with your wig. I have done this myself at times.
- Wig grip. This is the kind of thing I find you either love or hate. If you have a sensitive scalp, have an issue with things on your head making you feel too hot, this might be an issue. Some people love them and would not be without one.
- Double-sided tape. I have used this, and after getting better at placement, (trial and error) I ended up liking this idea. If your tape placement is good you can often get several “wears” before you have to replace it.
- Glue. Wig glue has seen many advancements over the years. But it seems that most wig wearers now use something not meant for wigs at all. “It Stays” - a body-safe adhesive product developed for an entirely different purpose, seems to be the glue of choice these days. I own it but have not yet used it, but I plan to do so soon. (a tip – store it upside down so the roller ball cap doesn’t freeze up).
Second, let’s look at the wig cap itself. If you are having an issue with the wig riding up and have an adjustable cap, try adjusting the tension in the straps. Sometimes, it is as simple as that. We seem to think tighter is better for security, but it doesn’t work that way. Also, think about cap size and your head measurements. Are you wearing the right size—for your wig brand? If you are on the petite end, it could be more challenging for you to find that perfect fit in some brands.
Third, as we all know, the way the wig sits on our head, or more accurately on our bio-hair, makes a lot of difference. Depending on the type of wig cap and the amount of bio hair that you have, or don’t have, the wig can slide around more easily with certain cap structures. You may have to use different securing methods based on which kind of cap that you have. You may have to go through a bit of trial and error to find what works best, but you will find the right system for you and your various wig caps. Don’t give up too soon.
Yes, your wig comes with directions. We’ve all seen the little card enclosed with our wig. And if you have watched any wig videos, and I recommend that you watch many, you will run across all kinds of tips and tricks for taking care of your wig. I would say this—follow the manufacturer’s recommendations first and foremost. But in addition, there are things you can do to tamp down that shine and those wild and crazy pieces of hair that stick upright on top.
I have read some “interesting” things about how to fix these issues, but experience has taught me that less is best. Too much product, whether it be the styling products or even the dry shampoo, can make the wig end up looking dirty and greasy. Start small and then adjust as you see the look that you like. My personal heroes are the dry shampoo and hair spray with a light touch. My wigs tend to be simple in style so I don’t use the styling products but can see how they certainly can add zip and “personality” to the right style. The amount of wild hair spikes and the shine also depends on the type of wig that you have. The total synthetic ones tend to be shiner, and the lighter the color the shiner they seem to be due to light reflection. I find that the heat-friendly ones with more life-like fibers tend to have less of an issue with that kind of thing. But there are some beautiful all synthetic wigs, and with a bit of TLC, you can make them look great too.
Of course, your wig care routine and maintenance will depend upon what kind of wig that you have. Real hair wigs have a different care routine, more like you’d expect of real hair. Mixed fiber wigs, (human and synthetic blends) and heat-friendly wigs, are all a bit different from strictly synthetic. I will do a separate blog on wig fibers and construction soon. The fibers used and the talent of the wig designer and crafter make all the difference in how your wig will feel, fit, and last. Choose well.
Wig storage, washing, and rotation: Some people rotate their wigs often enough that they leave them on the wig “heads” all the time. But most experts recommend that if you are not wearing your wigs very often, store them back in their boxes just like they came, inside out and netted, in most cases. The idea is that if you store them long-term on a wig “head” the wig might stretch or come to take the shape of that head and not your head. I keep two in rotation, always sitting on my “heads” and the rest in their boxes.
Seasoned wig wearers often say that having three in rotation is even better because it makes your wigs last longer because you are not washing the same ones so often. I had three in rotation when I went into an office five days a week, but now I work from home so two is more than enough at the moment. The longer wigs will take a beating faster. The friction of the fibers against your clothes and body will wear down the ends faster than seems fair. Don’t be afraid to baby them with conditioner more often and even trim them if you have that talent.
Wig Washing: A lot of people tend to over-wash or under-wash their wigs. Again, it depends so much on you and how much product that you use. I don’t use a lot of products in mine, so I can get away with a longer period in-between wig washing. The more you wash your wig, and the more care that goes into that washing will make a difference over time. Your wig fibers are not meant to last forever but will last a lot longer with the right care.
Coming blogs will focus on first-time wig wearers; wig construction and fibers; and when wearing the same wig, why we don’t look like the wig model on YouTube or the website (besides the obvious). In the meantime, send in your questions and requests for more information—what do you want to talk about, or learn more about?
I have added a couple of pictures of myself in my newest Raquel Welch “Muse,” (color RL 12/22SS Cappuccino) and a picture of my new favorite, “Straight up with a Twist” in exactly the same color, just about dry on my wig stand. These are my go-to wigs, plus my “Real Deal” wig, but that picture seems to have vanished in the dark computer-vortex, but I hope to have that in a later blog.
I have included some further links/info on where to get the products I talked about.
Two views of my two favorites, just a different light, and angle show you the lovely color blending in these wigs. It is the very same Muse wig that I am wearing in the selfie. The angle in the selfie makes it look a bit puffy on top, but it really isn’t. I was just looking downward a bit. Better photos in the future, promise. I wanted to show you how pictures can be a bit deceiving. It is about the lighting and the camera. So that is why I advise looking at a lot of wig pictures and demos and on YouTube. It will save you from being disappointed in the color if you know what to expect.
Also, no two wigs are the same. Even hand-tied by the same craft-person, no two will be identical. Understanding all this helps us decide what is important to us. Is having the exact highlights in the exact place on that wig a dealbreaker for you? If you know upfront that there will always be some differences, you’ll be happier. Also, I have learned not to make snap judgments. I like to live with a wig a few days before I decide for sure it is not for me. I like to try it on several times a day and look at it in different lights, different rooms, outside, all to get a real picture of how it looks on me—that is the real reason to buy the wig you buy. How does it look on YOU?
Send in your questions and/or topics you’d like to know more about: firstname.lastname@example.org. Just note my name in the question and they will make sure that I get it.