Hair extensions add length and/or fullness to the hair by integrating additional hair, be it real or synthetic, to the existing hair. This can be done through taping, clip-on extensions, fusion method, taped extensions or weaving methods. However it may result in hair loss known as traction alopecia. Four of the most common methods of attaching hair extensions are:
(1) Tape-in hair extension - The hair is sectioned into small units and a glue applied to hold the hair extension in place. These last from 3 to 8 weeks. Specialist shampoos are needed during this period so that the glue holding the extension in place does not dissolve. The extension can be removed at any time using a glue remover.
(2) Clip on hair extensions are the most convenient method of lengthening hair. The hair colour is matched, or mismatched depending on taste, and clipped to existing hair.
(3) Bonding - There are 2 types of bonding methods: soft bond and hard bond. Soft bond uses latex-/acrylic-based adhesives to bond the hair. Super glue (cyanoacrylate) is used to create a hard bond. Bonding can be less comfortable than other methods and may result in traction alopecia if removed inexpertly.
(4) Fusion uses a hot glue gun to attach strands of about 1/8 to 1/4 inch squared sections, or sections pre-tipped with a keratin adhesive. A heat clamp is then used to melt the adhesive to attach the extension hair to the natural hair. The process can take up to 3 hours to complete. Ordinary hair care can take place after application, but there may be skin irritation as a result of rubbing or intolerance to the chemicals involved.
Long, luscious hair.
They may be uncomfortable and fiddly, needing special after-care. Some people may feel uncomfortable using real hair and worry about its provenance.