Your Guide To The Most Popular Types Of Hair Extensions

Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj, and Kylie Jenner are always in the news for their long and luscious locks. However, what many of us don’t know is that the secret to their beautiful hair isn’t hair supplements or secret hair treatments but simply hair extensions. 

If you are a newbie to hair extensions, there exist two main differences in different hair extension styles. The first difference exists in the quality or type of hair used – synthetic or real – and the second difference exists in terms of how these extensions attach to your actual hair. Hence, given below is a breakdown and a guide to the most popular types of hair extensions:


Type of Hair: Real Vs Synthetic 

Real hair extensions are made out of real human hair which is collected from donors. Whereas synthetic extensions contain no actual human hair and are made out of a blend of different types of plastic fiber created to imitate human hair. Celebrities often sport real hair extensions rather than synthetic ones which makes them blend seamlessly with their natural hair. 

Type of Attachment: Clip-in, Tape-in, Sew-in


Clip-in hair extensions

As the name suggests, clip-in hair extensions are extension wefts that are clipped to your natural hair. These are the easiest to apply and quite possibly cause the least amount of damage to your natural hairline. The wefts come attached with the clips which can simply open and close, and hence these can be applied at home too without much practice.

These are great for temporary use and require little to no maintenance. The total application time may take you up to 20 minutes at maximum, and these are great for beginners looking to get a feel of wearing extensions. Since they do not involve any heat or chemicals in their application, they are the least damaging to your hair.


Tape-in hair extensions

Tape-in hair extensions feature adhesive strips that are placed at the root of your hair. To activate the adhesive, the adhesive is heated which makes your extensions stay in your hair for longer. This works by placing a strand of your natural hair in between two wefts of extensions which are then glued together. 

Tape-ins are typically applied in hair salons and you would need remarkable skill to be able to apply them at home. They require some maintenance and if you have tape-in extensions you must avoid products with sulfate or oils as they would loosen the adhesive’s grip on your hair. They can last anywhere between 7-12 weeks and then have to be fully removed using an adhesive solvent.


Sew-in hair extensions

Sew-in hair extensions, also known as weaves, are great for those with naturally thick hair. The application process involves braiding your natural hair into cornrows, and then the extensions are stitched into the natural hairline using a needle and thread. Again, these cannot be performed at home by yourself and may require a professional. 

They take anywhere between 2-3 hours in the application and can last anywhere between 10-12 weeks. However, sew-in hair extensions require more than typical maintenance, and a good idea is to use moisturizing products and protein masks in your hair.