Properly Caring For Your Sew-In
You've just gotten your gorgeous new extensions in, feeling high and fly as you walk out of the shop. But wait, didn't your stylist say something about being careful not to wash too much? Or was it too little? What about drying? Heat or no heat? Wait a sec, maybe you should go back in and get a cheat sheet on maintenance? No sis, don't worry. We've got you (and your natural hair, too).
The 1-2-3's of Your New Hair, Sis
1. Wash at least bi-weekly
Wash your extensions like you would your own hair. Oils and dirt will build up over time without proper care. Shampooing or only co-washing? That's up to you. Just keep in mind to use a clarifying shampoo occasionally (once a month) to remove any and all debris or product build up. If you wash weekly, you can switch between co-washing and shampooing.
Conditioning your extensions is super important, because it helps with detangling, adding moisture that may have been stripped while shampooing, and also defining your curl pattern. Using a quality conditioner will also keep your natural hair hydrated underneath. Don't forget to thoroughly rinse out any excess conditioner before wrapping up in the shower!
For added care a light weight leave in conditioner can be used in conjunction with your rinse out conditioner. This is especially important for hair extensions that have been lifted or colored.
2. Take care while drying your hair
We recommend using a microfiber cloth to soak up any excess moisture. Now is a good time to wrap your hair for at least 20 minutes and continue your beauty routine. Go ahead and apply your oils or leave-in conditioner before continuing the drying process. Or scroll through your emails. (We won't judge lol.)
After removing the excess moisture, dry your hair carefully. Make sure you pay special attention to your braids; they'll dry slower than your extensions itself. It can take up to a couple of hours for your hair to finish drying, but it's well worth it. If you don't properly dry it, you run the risk of carrying a new scent with you: eau de mildew, not to mention the unfortunate molding that could accompany it. This will damage your extensions and your natural hair. It's best not to even play that game.
Be cautious not to over-dry. Over-drying your hair can cause just as much (if not more!) damage than under-drying. Be sure to add a heat protective spray, not to damage your extensions or natural hair with heat. A hooded dryer is the best option, but we understand that it can be hard to come by on occasion. Other options include using a hand dryer with a diffuser attachment or sitting in front of an oscillating fan. If you use a hand dryer, be sure to start at the ends and work your way to the roots.
3. Invest in a satin scarf and pillowcase
Using satin is the best way to protect your hair while you sleep. We recommend using both, juuuuust in case you're the type of sleeper whose bonnet usually winds up on the floor by daybreak. No shame; we do it, too.
Be sure to detangle first, especially if you've got some serious curls you're working with. Speaking of curls, don't be afraid to braid those bad girls before putting your bonnet on. Braids are essential for keeping your curl pattern and waves while you sleep. It also helps reduce the amount of product you use too!
The whole point of wearing an extension is to give your natural hair a break, so try not to use heat on your dry hair. If you opted for a straighter look, bobby pins and a doubie wrap are a great way to keep things in order while you sleep. If curls are your happy place, keep them happy with pin curls!
3. Products and professional care
"The more the merrier," is def not our motto when it comes to products. Use as little as possible to prevent buildup and grease. However, don't be afraid to keep your edges laid. Sleek and sexy is the name of the game.
Try to see your stylist at least monthly. Professional care goes a long way with maintaining your gorgeous locks. Plus, it's always a good idea to get some me-time in, too. Remember, if you look good, you feel good!
Sometimes, it's best to switch things up. Don't be afraid to go natural for a few weeks. Even if your hair still looks killer, it's best to take it out by around eight weeks to keep your natural hair from matting underneath. It's a wonderful thing to let your scalp breathe and rest, especially when you know another gorgeous 'do is waiting for you after your break!
Overall, be sure to care for your extensions the way you care for your natural hair: with care and pride.
The right combination of routine and product use can keep your hair healthy and beautiful. Visit us at www.desiredextensions.com for your hair care needs, including that life-saving leave in conditioner we mentioned above.