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We chat to our customers every day about hair extensions, styling tips and advice but we’re also here to help them when they’ve had a hair related disaster. From burning their set to bleaching it and even putting it in the washing machine (not kidding) we’ve seen a lot of sad hair extensions. There are, however, a few mistakes that come up way more often than others and that are the main reasons why you’re ruining your hair extensions. So, to help any of you out there who really want to care for your set, we thought we’d share them here and hopefully save some hair in the process...
You’re Using The Wrong Products
Not all of the products that you use on your natural hair are safe to use on your hair extensions. As you’re not washing them as often, products can really build up on the hair, leaving it sticky and dull. If this is the case, you’ll also notice that your extensions don’t hold a curl as well because they’re so weighed down with product. This is why it’s so important to avoid anything heavy, especially dry shampoo and salt sprays that are really drying.
You’re Not Brushing Them Properly
The best brush to use on your hair extensions is a loop brush as the looped bristles won’t pull or snap the hair. You can also use these on your own hair so they’re a great investment to keep your hair healthy. Once you have the right tools you want to make sure that you’re brushing from the ends of your extensions upwards to gently remove any tangles without causing damage. We also recommend holding the hair together in your hands while brushing the ends so that you don’t put any tension on the clips.
You’re Burning Them
One of the worst things we see is burnt hair from using heat tools that are way too hot. The maximum temperature you want to use on your extensions is 185°C, this is the optimum temperature for heat styling. That’s why your trusty GHDs are set to this! Anything higher and you risk permanently damaging the keratin bonds in the hair leading to breakage and brittle ends. You also need to use a heat protectant every time you style your extensions to protect them from damage. Our favourite is the GHD Heat Protect Spray as it’s really lightweight so it doesn’t build up on the hair while providing complete protection from hot tools.
You’re not taking them out
Clip-ins are a temporary hair extension method and aren’t designed to be worn all the time but just for a few hours. We often get messages from girls who are wearing them to bed or to the gym which we never recommend. As you’re tossing and turning in your sleep or working out, the clips can get caught and pull on your hair leading to breakage. We always recommend unclipping them and storing them in their box every night to keep your natural hair and your extensions in the best condition.
You Botched Your Toner
Ashy blonde is really popular right now so we get that a lot of you will want to tone your hair extensions if you’ve gone for this look. Toning is really simple but it’s also one of the hardest things to get right, especially as hair extensions are more porous and take to colour far quicker than your natural hair. We’ve got a tutorial below that you can follow but we always recommend conducting a strand test first and consulting your hairstylist for advice.
You’re Washing Them
One of the biggest myths about clip-in hair extensions is that you need to wash them just as much as your regular hair, but this definitely isn’t true. In fact, getting your hair extensions wet can really dry them out so we recommend avoiding it as much as possible. If you only use lightweight products as we recommend above then you shouldn't have too much product build-up to wash out anyway. However, if you really need to wash them we always recommend using a sulphate free shampoo and being as gentle as possible with the wefts. You’ll also need to wash and condition each weft individually rather than as a full set. For a full step by step be sure to watch the video below before you wash your hair extensions.
You’re Blowdrying Them
Your natural hair is nourished by the oil from your hair follicles but unfortunately your hair extensions don’t get the same benefit. That’s why it’s so important to keep them nourished and to avoid anything that will strip them of moisture, particularly blowdrying. We always recommend washing them as little as possible but if you do, then you’ll need to let them air dry to prevent the hair from drying out. The best approach is to gently comb through the wefts before laying them flat on a towel and leaving them overnight. You can also apply some of our silicone treatment to the hair to replace any moisture lost during the washing process.