display of different hair extensions from black to blonde to straight and curly

17 Types of Hair Extension and What to Know About Them

If you’re not a big fan of wigs, or you don’t need a wig but you do want to get longer or thicker hair, then hair extensions are your friend. They could easily change the way you look. You can add colorful hair extensions for a little fun, or you can easily change your hairstyle.

So, what exactly do you need to know about hair extensions? Here are the types and some FAQs, answered!

Materials Used to Make Hair Extensions

Hair extensions can be made from a variety of materials, including synthetic hair, natural collagen extensions, and even real human hair. Each material has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, as well as a price tag and maintenance schedule.

Hair Extensions Made of Synthetic Hair

Vigorous Synthetic Clip in Hair Extensions highlights Brown Wavy Hair Extensions 4PCS Thick Hair Extensions Clip in for Women Double Weft

Synthetic hair extensions are less expensive than real hair extensions, but they will not look as natural. Additionally, these extensions will not last as long as your natural hair. They will also not exactly match the texture and color of your own hair and will require different care than your natural hair. Synthetic hair extensions need extra time to care for since they cannot be washed or treated with the same products as your natural hair.

The heat from blow dryers, curling irons, or straighteners will also damage the extensions. It’s also critical to use a brush with a very soft bristle to avoid damaging the extensions. Despite their shortcomings, these are still a great option for many people. Synthetic extensions are ready to wear right away and will keep their style. Straight, wavy, or curly hair extensions will stay straight, wavy, or curly.

Real Human Hair

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Hair extensions made of human hair are a popular choice. Real extensions, on the other hand, are costly and only last for about six months. The real hair extensions will need to be replaced after this period. Human hair extension products have the advantage of looking exactly like your own hair. Human hair extensions can be dyed to match your natural hair color and texture.

It’s also simple to style these extensions because you can use regular curling irons and blow dryers. You can wash your hair with your regular shampoo. Because these hair extensions are made from real hair, they may become frizzy or flat depending on the weather, and bad hair days are still possible.

Natural Collagen Extensions

Natural collagen extensions are another option for material. These hair extensions have the same characteristics as human hair but are made out of natural collagen protein rather than the keratin protein found in natural hair.

These extensions are less maintenance-intensive than human hair, and they can be washed, blow-dried, curled, combed, and brushed without fear of damage. Natural collagen hair extensions are less expensive than natural hair, making them an excellent alternative to both natural and synthetic hair.

Different Methods of Making Hair Extensions

After you’ve decided on a material for your hair extensions, you’ll need to figure out how they’ll be constructed. Cost, how natural they appear, and the methods of attachment are all things to consider.

Strand by Strand

woman installs blonde hair extension strand by strand

Because of the attachment methods and the time it takes to apply strand by strand hair extensions, they are quite costly. It’s crucial to work with an experienced professional hairstylist when attaching and removing them, as it can be painful otherwise. This kind is likewise not reusable, thus proper care is required. These extensions will clump together if not properly cared for.

Each extension will be made up of 20 to 40 strands of hair and bonded to a tiny area of natural hair. With proper maintenance, these extensions can last a long time and are ideal for people with coarse or thick hair.

Wefted Panels

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Wefted panels have more hair per square inch than strand by strand panels. These can be glued, taped, or sewn in, and they are easily removed. They’re less of a commitment than strand-by-strand extensions because of this. This also implies that they will not be as long-lasting or durable. Some types of wefted panels require professional installation, but there are also clip-in options that can be completed at home. The clip-ins are ideal for a one-night look for a special event or occasion.

Wefts come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

There are many sorts of wefts to consider in the realm of weaving. Each weft has its own set of advantages, disadvantages, and benefits.

  • Weft Made by Machine: A machine-made weft has the benefit of not unraveling when cut. This provides a lot more customization options. Because these aren’t made by hand, they’ll be less expensive, thicker, and more durable. These are a good choice if you need a large number of wefts for your hair. However, because these are bulkier, they are more difficult to conceal. They will be more noticeable if they are not attached correctly or by an inexperienced person. Machine-made wefts are also prone to shredding, which will result in a less-than-pleasant appearance.
  • Hand-Tied Weft: In a hand-tied weft, all of the hair ends are gathered and woven together by hand. This ensures that no hair strands fall off. These are popular because they can stay slimmer than a machine-made weft, making them easier to conceal in the hair. This type of weft is ideal for those with thin hair or who are concerned about their extensions being visible. The weft will not fall apart as quickly as one made on a machine after being attached (usually by sewing). A hand-tied weft has the disadvantage of not being able to be cut. It will have to be folded over and attached on top of itself if it is too long. It unravels if the weft is cut.
  • Injection-Molded Weft: You get the advantage of invisible hair extensions with an injection-molded weft. These can be firmly attached to hair without appearing bulky. This makes them ideal for folks with fine hair or who are concerned about their extensions being visible. This type of weft is usually taped and blends in nicely with your own hair. Because these wefts are lightweight, they will be comfortable to wear for longer periods of time. These wefts may be re-used as well. All that’s left is to reinforce the weft with more tape or glue.

Attachment Methods

Some hair extensions must be attached in a particular method. Others can be attached in a variety of ways. Once you’ve decided on the material and construction method for your hair extensions, talk to a professional about your options.

Glue-in or Tape-in

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Hair is usually taped or glued in at the base of the extension. Some extensions may feature a pre-taped base for quick root installation. Others may require the addition of glue to the weft to ensure a secure attachment. It’s crucial to see an expert when it’s time to have your wefts taped or glued.

The tape extension must be properly aligned to your roots. When you visit a professional, they will use a specialized tool to heat the tape or glue and activate it. This ensures that the extensions remain in the client’s hair. It’s also a good idea to see a professional when it’s time to have the extensions removed. They will remove the extensions with a glue remover that will not harm your hair.

When using tape or glue to attach or remove extensions, plan on spending about an hour. Because a tape hair extension must be continuously placed by your roots, this process would need to be redone as your hair grows out, typically every four to eight weeks. The extensions can be reused several times if they are in good condition. Special shampoo and styling treatments are required for bonded or glued in extensions to preserve the adhesive.

This type of extension is popular because it puts the least amount of strain on your head because it is attached near the roots, it looks very natural, and application is not difficult as long as the expert knows what they’re doing. On the downside, hair can only be treated with specific, safe products. Wearing these extensions in an updo is also difficult.

Clip-in Hair Extensions

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Clip-in extensions are pricey. There are a variety of reasons for their high cost, but one of the most significant is the cost of maintaining them. These are the simplest hair extensions to use, and they’re especially popular with those who want to change their style without having to go to a salon.

At the point where the strands meet, clip-in hair extensions have a silicone or fabric base. The clip is then attached to this. Self-installing clip-in hair extensions is simple and takes around 10 minutes.

These temporary hair extensions must not harm hair and may last for many months if not used every day. Washing is only necessary when there is a build-up of product, which is usually every 15 wears. There are a variety of colors to choose from, and you can use them as often as you’d like. These should, however, be removed before bedtime and only used for brief periods of time. Just be wary of low-cost clip-in extensions, as their quality will suffer as a result.


back side of blonde woman with sewn-in hair extension

Sewn-in hair extensions are woven into your natural hair. These weave extensions are more difficult to attach than other types and last longer. Before the extensions are attached, your natural hair must be braided into cornrows so that you have a place to work. Thin hair would not look well braided as a base, and it’s possible that thin hair would be damaged as a result of this process.

Because of how tightly the cornrows must be braided, getting these weave hair extensions attached is an uncomfortable experience. The procedure will also take several hours, and a skilled professional will be required to achieve the best results. These extensions appear to be very natural, and you won’t have to worry about them falling out.

These, on the other hand, might stifle the development of your natural hair, so it’s vital to pull them out and replace them on a regular basis. It’s essential to use protein-enriched shampoo and deep conditioning products when wearing these extensions to avoid damage and maintain your natural hair healthy. Because these extensions are designed to be worn for more than three months, they are often made of human hair.

Bonded Hair Extension

pre bonded black hair extensions on white background

Bonded hair extensions, also known as fusion extensions, are adhesively linked to your natural hair. Because there are a variety of adhesives available, it’s important to locate a reputable specialist who can assist you in selecting the best one for your requirements. It will take close to four hours to complete the attachment.

To apply the fusion extensions to single strands of hair, the stylist will utilize a piece of equipment that looks similar to a hot glue gun. These extensions offer a natural appearance, but they might harm natural hair. Another approach clamps the extension to the normal hair, enabling the glue to melt and fuse the natural hair and extension together. These are semi-permanent alternatives that will last four months. Only one usage of the extensions is allowed. Inquire with your hairdresser about a pre-bonded hair extension if you’re interested in this procedure.

Cold Fusion

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Cold fusion hair extensions are comparable to glued hair extensions but do not need any heat. A clamping tool is used. This kind seems natural, but it is expensive because of the time it takes to attach them and the fact that they can only be used once. When utilizing this sort of extension, some individuals get headaches or scratchy scalp.

Micro Links

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Looping a natural hair strand through a bead with the extensions attached is how micro links are linked. With pliers, it’s clamped shut after looping through the bead. If you take this route, make sure you get your extensions from a reputable source, since cheap beads might harm your hair. Silicone-lined beads are effective for preventing hair breakage.

Because of how long it takes to connect each individual bead to your hair, having these extensions applied to your hair is pricey. This is, nonetheless, one of the most natural-looking hair extensions available. A stylist may reposition the bead, and no glues or heat are involved in the process.

This form of extension is appropriate for persons with thicker hair, and it will take many hours to apply. On hair that is thinner, the beads will appear. When having micro connections linked, be sure you work with someone with a lot of expertise. If the beads are not placed correctly, they might be unpleasant to sleep on, and if they are not closed properly, they can harm the hair.

Alternatives to Hair Extensions

New items and developments are produced throughout time, like with other things. Take a look at these alternatives to standard hair extensions that are either new or distinctive. Some of these choices may be preferable for you depending on your requirements.

Clip-in Bangs

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Clip-in bangs are a simple method to include bangs into your appearance without the hassle of a haircut. Because it is simple to install and remove, this product poses no danger. All you have to do now is choose the product that best suits your hair color and portrays the style you want. Both natural and synthetic hair may be used to create clip-in bangs.

Halo Hair Extensions

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Hair halo extensions, a novel form of hair extension that uses a completely different application procedure, making hair look fuller and longer. The top of the head is wrapped in a wire device with hair extensions attached. The wire is hidden by the surrounding hair being pushed over it. Because nothing is directly linked to the hair, the wiring device is very pleasant, and natural hair is not harmed. This aids in maintaining the health of natural hair.

Micro Ring Loop Hair Extensions

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Micro ring loop hair extensions are a self-adhesive variant for those who want to do it themselves. They take around 10 minutes to install. A strand of hair is parted and dragged into a microbead, which is then clamped, in order to create a cold fusion process. Human hair extensions come in a range of hues, styles, and lengths. The microbeads are almost undetectable, and the extensions endure for many months before being removed.

Hair Blending Extensions

Hair blending extensions are among the most high-end extensions available. They are undetectable and do not cause hair or scalp damage. There is no need for anchoring; the extension’s base merely enables the underlying hair to pass through.

It’s simple to style the hair after it’s been blended, and there’s no risk of the extension being dislodged by patches of the exposed scalp or the wind. These are really comfortable to wear, and the colors have been carefully mixed to complement the wearer’s natural hair color and skin. There’s no need to clean the salon.

Is a Wig a Good Idea?

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If all of this information is making your head spin, and you’re concerned about the expense, time, and limited alternatives for permanent hair extensions, consider a wig. If you have extremely fine, thin, or thinning hair, or if you have significant hair loss, a wig may be your best option.

For centuries, people have relied on wigs, and modern advances have made them more natural-looking, comfortable, and long-lasting than ever before. Wigs can be adjusted to fit any face or head shape, and they can hide any cosmetic flaws caused by medical issues. Wigs come in a range of shapes and hues, as well as natural and synthetic hair. Choose one that matches your favorite color and style, or try something entirely different. There are so many options.


What kinds of hair extensions are there?

blonde to black hair extensions hanging on display

Hair extensions are available in a wide variety of styles. Real hair, synthetic hair, and natural collagen may all be used as hair extensions. In addition, there are a variety of building techniques to choose from. Wefted panels, hand-tied weft, machine-made weft, and injection molded weft are only a few examples. There is a variety of attaching options as well.

Hair extensions are available in a variety of styles, including clip-in, tape or glue-in, sewn-in, micro link, bonded, and cold fusion. Hair halo extensions, clip-in bangs, hair blending extensions, and micro loop hair extensions are some of the other alternatives available.

What’s the difference between human and synthetic hair extensions?

Synthetic hair extensions are less expensive than real hair, but they do not last as long, cannot be colored or styled with heat tools, and need special care. The sun is also a problem for artificial hair extensions. Human hair extensions may be colored, washed, and styled using heat tools just like your own hair.

How do you care for hair extensions?

The type of material used in hair extensions, as well as how they are constructed and attached, will all affect how they should be cared for. Human hair extensions may be cared for in the same way as your natural hair, while synthetic hair needs specific shampoo and maintenance. Make sure to discuss the specific care instructions for your hair extensions with your stylist.

What are the prices for hair extensions?

Synthetic hair extensions are expected to cost $60 to $85, whereas human hair extensions would cost $100 to $500, according to estimates.

How are clip-in hair extensions applied?

woman with blue hair clip puts clip-in blonde hair extensions

It takes 10 to 20 minutes to apply clip-in hair extensions. The first step is to section your natural hair and clip out the majority of the sections. Push the clips along the part’s horizontal line.

Ensure that each extension is perfectly aligned and fasten the clip with pressure. Make sure that the larger wefts are used on the larger parts of your head and the smaller wefts are used on the smaller parts. Just be careful not to use too many wefts because there won’t be enough hair to cover them.

Is it possible to mix natural and synthetic hair extensions?

It is possible to combine synthetic and natural hair, however, there are several disadvantages. These two materials need quite different types of maintenance and respond to the environment in very different ways. As a result, either one or the other is preferable.

Is it possible to buy hair extensions that will last for a long time?

When it comes to hair, the word “permanent” is a little risky. Hair is constantly growing, and we all get hair cuts on occasion, so there isn’t much that is permanent about it. There are, however, hair extensions that are considered permanent and will last for a long time.

The extensions may last anywhere from six to twelve months when I-tip and weft hair extensions are mixed and stitched in. I-tips may last up to a year. K-tips, also called keratin tips or keratin bonds, have a six-month lifespan. A heating instrument is used in conjunction with the keratin points. These are the hair extensions that last the longest, but there are many others that can last longer.

Is it possible to grow your hair with hair extensions?

Hair extensions can certainly aid in hair growth, but if installed or removed incorrectly, they can also cause damage to your hair. Your natural hair can continue to grow and thrive as long as hair extensions are attached and removed correctly. Wearing extensions forces you to be gentle with your natural hair while also encouraging it to grow.

What are Remy hair extensions?

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Remy hair extensions are made from 100% virgin human hair which has not been chemically modified. After being collected, the Remy human hair is checked to ensure that all cuticles are all the same length. After sorting, the hair is tied at the base with silk fabric or silicon, and individual wefts are hand-sewn on.

Is it true that hair extensions wreak havoc on your locks?

Hair extensions should not cause damage to your hair if they are properly attached and removed. When it comes to selecting the best hair extensions, as well as attaching and removing them from your hair, always consult an experienced professional.

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