*shoes linked here
Hey ladies! As many of y’all know at this point, I opted to get hair extensions so thought I’d share my experience with them so far and answer some of your questions! FYI this is my first time getting extensions and I’ve only had them in for a few weeks so I’m going to share what I can and update this blog as needed 🙂
A little background first– I have had long hair for most of my life up until a few years ago. I decided to cut off just over 10 inches and I really loved wearing it short! I got questions at the time if I regretted cutting it, and definitely don’t regret it. I really liked mixing it up and short hair was fun to have for those 2-3 years and I can honestly see myself going back to it eventually. I don’t know if it was quarantine though, or if I was just craving change in general but earlier this year I decided to switch it up. I originally tried some clips but my natural hair was way too thick and they looked so unnatural–like it was bad. I couldn’t even pull off a ponytail with them LOL. At that point, it was either get actual extensions or wait for my hair to grow out. Like I said, I was just craving change so I figured I’d just go for the extensions.
I ended up going with NBR (natural beaded row) extensions. If you’re unfamiliar with NBR, they are known for being the “most natural” and “best” kind of extensions. They are connected to your natural hair at the fewest points than any other kind of extension and so when done properly they shouldn’t damage your hair. If you want to read all about the process I’m going to link the founder of NBR’s site. Essentially though, there is no tape, glue, or fusion techniques used. Basically, there are “tracks” placed underneath your natural hair using a string and bead technique, then the wefts are placed on the track and sewed in. Afterwards the hair is cut (and colored) to match your natural hair.
I considered going to a couple salons in Raleigh but long story short, a couple girls that I know through the med spa where I get botox recommended their friend, Hannah, who does them. They both had extensions done by her and their hair looked amazing, and since Hannah isn’t at a salon, the cost was much more reasonable (feel free to email me if you want her info – email@example.com). I had my initial consultation with Hannah and we mostly just discussed what length I wanted. Since my hair is already really thick, I was just adding in the extensions for length, not volume. She was also able to see how much hair she needed to order for me personally. I ended up spending around $600 on hair and $600 on getting them put in (which does include cut and color to blend), so $1200 total. I will say, I ended up needing 2 more rows of hair than she normally has to put in because my hair is so thick, so in general I think you can expect to pay around $400 for hair. It also depends on what length you get, and since I solely wanted them for length the hair was more expensive in that regard as well. As a sidetone: I did end up going to see Ashley (who usually does my hair) the following week because I wanted to update my color anyway, so she actually cut them more, and colored my hair as well. If you’re going to an actual salon, they will do this for you when you get the extensions placed but I just wanted to see Ashley since I’m particular about color and she always done mine.
Overall, I really like having them so far. It’s been fun to mix it up and especially have a long ponytail again hehe. They don’t itch, and they aren’t heavy. The first couple days I could tell they were there, not in a bad way but could just feel them on my head. Now, I can’t even feel them and don’t notice that they are there. The only thing I don’t love is that since I needed 4 rows of hair, I have a track along the crown of my head (usually they can just be underneath/on the backside of your head). Since the track is so high, it makes it difficult to wear my hair up higher in a topknot and I have to make sure my hair has decent volume on top so it covers the track. This isn’t a big deal and not something I constantly think of/worry about but it is on my mind since my rows aren’t just along the back/bottom. That being said, I think these type of extensions do look and feel amazing for not being real hair. I mean, I would never know that it’s not my real hair–it looks and feels like my natural hair would.
Okay, so some of the questions y’all asked!
-Cost? Like I mentioned above, I paid around $1200 but from research I did at other salons it was about double that.
-Maintenance? About every 6 weeks I will have to go in and have the tracks moved up. The price will differ for the move up depending on where you go, but mine is $100.
-How long did it take? My appointment was between 4 and 5 hours.
-How do you wash, dry and style the extensions/long hair? You can treat the extensions just like you would normal hair! So for me, I usually just let them air dry since I shower at night and then style them in the morning. I use all the same tools and products that I would on my natural hair.
-How to find someone to do them? I honestly would just google NBR in your area! Also, referrals are also the best if you know or follow someone who gets them done. But otherwise just do your research and read reviews!
-How long can you keep them in? From my understanding, they usually say about every 6 months to replace the hair. This probably also depends on how much heat you’re using on it, and how healthy it is around that 6 month mark, etc. But you shouldn’t have to give your hair a “break” from extensions all-together. You’ll just want to get the hair replaced through the process.
Let me know if y’all have other questions! xxC