You want to change up your look. Bored with your strands? Extensions allow you to experiment with color without bleaching your hair. “Clip in one pink streak for the night or try ombre without frying or permanently altering your style,” suggests Matt Fugate, senior stylist at Sally Hershberger Downtown in New York City.
You want to grow out a bob. If you have a short cut that you’re desperate to grow out, extensions will instantly add length and ease your frustration. “It’ll help get you to that ponytail stage,” says Fugate.
2. Tape . This type of extension is sandwiched between two pieces of bioadhesive tape and lasts for six to eight weeks. While wearing them, shampoo with a sulfate-free formula and refrain from applying conditioner to your roots—the oil in it will loosen the tape. Hot yoga buffs and gym rats, these are not for you. If you do exercise while wearing them, apply dry shampoo beforehand to help soak up any moisture and prevent sweat from loosening the tape.
3. Keratin . These extensions promise three to four months of good hair days and are the most discrete of the bunch. Instead of using a traditional heat application, which can damage the hair, these are applied using an ultrasound technology that turns the keratin (a glue) from a solid to a liquid and back to a solid in just a second. The process takes about two hours and is the smartest option for women who workout often, swim (since they can withstand salt water and chlorine), and often wear their hair up (since the look is the most seamless).
1. What kind of extensions do you use? You want the answer to be 100 percent human hair.
2. Where do you source the hair from? The most common places are India and Europe. If you’re brunette or want to add volume, Indian hair is your best bet. If you’re blonde or have finer hair, European is a better fit (though a bit pricier).
3. Do you use “remy hair?” Remy hair is a process in which the cuticles are kept in tact (and laid in the same direction) while the hair is collected and treated, so hair is smoother and less frizzy.