If you are considering obtaining hair extensions to add length and volume to your natural hair, you may wonder what your hair extension options are. While hairstylists utilize a variety of techniques when adding extensions to their client's hair, some modern techniques are growing in popularity because they produce a final result that appears extremely natural and they damage existing hair less than some older techniques.
Read on to learn about two modern heatless hair extension types and each of their unique pros and cons.
1. Tape-in Extensions
Tape-in extensions are relatively affordable and can be installed very quickly. These extensions are considered weft extensions because they are installed by attaching larger hair bundles that are at least 1-inch in width to your natural hair. When larger wefts are attached to your natural hair instead of smaller strands, a hairstylist can install a full set of extensions in less than one hour.
To apply tape-in extensions, a hairstylist attaches each extension weft to a small section of your natural hair using two adhesive bonding strips. No heat is required during extension application. These extensions can then stay in place for 6 to 8 weeks before they need to be repositioned or replaced.
The main disadvantage of this extension type is that hair products that contain oil or silicone can degrade the bonding strips, potentially causing the extension wefts to loosen. For this reason, you must be sure that any hair products that you use that contain oils or silicone do not come into contact with the adhesive tape.
2. Micro-Link Extensions
Another modern type of hair extension is the micro-link extension. The extensions are considered strand-by-strand extensions because, unlike their weft counterparts, they are installed by attaching just several strands of extension hair to several strands of your natural hair repeatedly until the stylist has achieved your final desired look. For this reason, micro-link extensions take an average of 4 to 6 hours to install and typically cost a bit more than their tape-in counterparts.
A stylist first places several strands of the extension hair and several strands of your natural inside of a small cylinder called a bead to apply micro-link extensions. Then, they use a pair of special hair pliers to clamp down on the cylinder, joining the two hair sections together tightly. Micro-link extensions can typically be left in place for about 6 to 8 weeks, just like their tape-in counterparts.
When wearing micro-link extensions, you must also avoid using hair products that contain silicone or oils near your scalp area. In addition, some people find that it takes time to get used to sleeping on the copper micro-links used to attach these hair extensions because they can feel relatively firm to the touch.
If you would like to add length and volume to your natural hair without damaging it, then consider obtaining tape-in or micro-link hair extensions. While tape-in extensions are affordable, quick, and easy, micro-link extensions can provide a slightly more natural-appearing result.