Wig Basics/Care

Wigs are literally one of my favorite things. I think I got my first wig in the summer of 2014. My aunt bought me a straight black wig that had blue dip dyed ends and swept bangs. I got it from a black beauty supply place. These are actually great places to buy wigs, thought because I live in Ohio they’re harder to find unless I go into certain cities. It really sucks since I grew up in Brooklyn, New York and black beauty supply places were literally around the corner from me. If you’re wondering why i’m calling it a black beauty supply place it’s because they’re specifically different than chain stores such as Sally’s. They are usually small businesses surprisingly enough usually owned by Asian immigrants. These beauty supply stores have cheaper products for hair care, coloring, makeup, jewelry, and some accessories. They also have a large variety of wigs, weaves, and hair extensions. The products they carry specifically are more geared to African-Americans. The products work best with textured hair.

Unfortunately, even though my hair is curly they are loose curls. They aren’t tight small ringlets, or square waves and my hair isn’t super textured. I have Latin hair, my parents directly have thick, wavy, black hair. My hair can’t hold sew in weaves. I tried for my prom and it didn’t even last two weeks in my hair. It would honestly be so much easier if my hair could hold sew in weaves. Anyway, my maternal grandmother,my aunt, and her son have more African American type hair. She usually buys relaxers for her hair to straighten it. My other aunt frequents these beauty supply places specifically for weaves. I thought I might give a bit of background on black beauty supply places in case anyone questioned why I was calling them that.

The wigs in store are usually synthetic. They tend to hold their shape a little more and there are a bunch of products available to take care of your wig. The basic things you need are a wig brush(yes specifically a wig brush. If you use a regular brush or comb it will knot up the end of the hair and it will resemble dry split ends like on real hair. This will take away from the nice sleek effect that wigs already have and look ratty), wig caps, a Styrofoam head (to display your wig and help keep its shape and keep it from matting), hair nets(to hold the hair while it’s on the head), some leave in conditioner spray made for synthetic hair (this helps detangle, adds shine and takes away the frizz. I use this one specifically), some synthetic hair shampoo and some fabric softener.

You want to perodically wash your wigs. You do this by filling your sink with lukewarm water add a quarter size amount of shampoo to your palm, gently run it through your wig a few times then let it sit in the water. Some wigs you don’t have to wash but if you wear them rather frequently they might start to smell(they hold the sweat from your head, similar to real hair) After about 5 minutes drain your wig, pat dray and set it on your styrofoam head to dry. DONT comb threw it now. Once it’s dry then you can run your wig brush threw it. Try not to comb out any of the style, especially if you pick a curly wig or something similar.

The Fabric softner is to take away the shine from your wigs. Some wigs can be really shiny from the plastic synthetic hair fibers and look more fake. Sometimes this is ok if you’re using it as like a cosplay wig but if you’re trying to pass it off as your own hair you might want to take the shine down. You can do the same process as shampooing except substitute the shampoo for a bit of fabric softner or you can put the softner in a spray bottle and spray it onto your wig. This will also help give it a fresh scent.

When you put on wigs you must first try and get your hair as flat as possible. I’ve had short hair for a few years now so I just stuff my hair under a wig cap and throw the wig on. If you have longer hair you’ll want to wrap your hair around your head securing it with bobbypins or split your hair down the middle, braid it, then wrap it around your head. You just want to get it as flat as possible so your wig sits on your head correctly and there are no visible bumps. Bumps under wigs make your head look misshapen. Wigs usually come with adjustable straps on the back so you can fit it to the size of your head. I wear mine more snug so it doesn’t budge or fall off or anything like that. Put on your wig cap, tuck in all your real hair, and pull on the wig from back to front. Adjust it so it sits just right then brush through it with your wig brush. When you’re done, set you wig on the head, put the hair in a hair net so it doesn’t tangle and isn’t left just dangling and being a potential harzard (your cat or kid could snag the hair and knock it down and play with it or something and just ruin all that hard work and money you put into it) You could brush through it again before your put it in the hair net but again if your wig has a certain style, like curls, you might want to leave it be. I normally just brush through the ends a bit.

You can’t style synthetic wigs like you would your own hair or human hair wigs. They don’t handle high heat products at all. It melts the plastic fibers in the hair. If you need to restyle your wig you can use hairspray or rollers, anything that doesn’t require direct heat. You could even try steam but since it isn’t real hair it might not hold the same. If you can’t style or cut your wig yourself you can always take it to a salon. They can style it while it’s on your head so you can see how it looks on you.

This is my first wig! I styled it into a side pony. I’ll make a post about all the wigs I have an where i buy them from soon enough! I thought I’d go over the basics if anyone had any questions. Feel free to ask more and I can add them to the post!

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