Basics: Hair Extensions Aftercare

Now that you have got your new extensions fitted in, or you just got your first set of the clip in hair extensions, you need to take the ultimate care of them so that they will last longer, and still look healthy and fresh.

Here's the ultimate hair extension aftercare guide you need to follow to keep your hair extensions in their top shape.

1. After application

After getting your permanent hair extensions (tape-in and u-tip extensions) fitted in, you need to wait 48 hours before washing your hair. This is to make sure that the adhesive is fully intact. Use a dry shampoo during this period to avoid the greasy look.

2. Sleeping

Hair Extension Aftercare Sleeping
  • Never go to sleep with damp or wet hair extensions. This is to prevent your hair from getting matted and tangled up.
  • Before going to bed, brush your hair extensions using a special hair extensions brush or a wide-toothed comb to brush out any tangles that may have occurred during the day. Gently start combing from the bottom, slowly making your way up.
  • You can apply hydrating oils/masks on your hair extensions before going to bed. Natural oils like coconut oil, Argan oil, Almond oil and Shea butter are great to hydrate and nourish your hair. Or use any of your favorite leave-in hydrating hair products. Only apply from mid-length to the tips, avoid applying where the adhesive is to avoid slippage.

3. Styling and Drying your hair extensions

Hair Extension Aftercare styling
  • When using the blow dryer, avoid the high heat setting and instead use the cool setting. This will prevent damage to your hair extensions.
  • Avoid having direct heat from the blow dryer on the adhesive part of your hair extensions because this will cause your extensions to slip.
  • Before blow drying your hair and hair extensions, section your hair into parts to make the process easier for you. Use a vented round brush or a special hair extension brush.
  • Start drying from root to tip. But make sure to keep the blow dryer away from your head by 15-20 cm to avoid direct heat. This is to prevent damage and direct heat to your hair extensions adhesive.
  • Never leave the bond part of your hair extensions to air dry, because after a while it will damage and weaken them.
  • Apply a little bit of hair oil/serum from mid-length to tips before blow drying your hair extensions. This will hydrate and nourish them.
  • Always use a heat protectant before blow dryer or styling your hair with either a curling iron or straightener. This protects your hair extensions and hair as well.
  • Get a trim every 6-8 weeks to get rid of damaged and split ends.

** Keep in mind, the more you use heat on your hair extensions without taking precautions like using a heat protectant, the shorter the life-span of the hair extensions gets.

4. Towel drying your hair extensions

Hair Extension Aftercare towel drying microfiber

Use a microfiber towel when towel drying your hair. Gently squeeze out the excess water without rubbing the towel against your head. This prevents tangles and frizz.

5. Brushing

  • Always use a hair brush specifically made for hair extensions. These are made to brush your extensions without causing any damage to your hair and hair extensions, especially where the adhesive is.
  • You can hold on to your hair extensions while brushing your hair to prevent any tugging that might occur from brushing.
  • You can comb your wet hair only using a wide toothed comb.
  • Always comb/brush your hair from bottom to top.

6. Tying your hair

Hair Extension Aftercare tying hair
  • Avoid tying your hair with thin elastic ties. They are very damaging and cause breakage. Instead use a scrunchie or spiral hair ties, they are gentler on your hair and hair extensions and do not cause damage.

7. Washing your hair extensions

Hair Extension Aftercare washing
  • Before showering, de-tangle your hair using a hair extensions brush or a wide-toothed comb.
  • Separate the bonds of your hair extensions to prevent the roots from getting matted and tangled.
  • It is very important to use silicon-free, alcohol-free and Paraben and Sulphate free shampoo and conditioner, as well as other hair products. These chemicals are harmful to your hair extensions as well as to your hair. They will dry out your hair extensions and lessen its life-span.
  • Never tip your over the sink or bath to wash your hair extensions. Always wash upright.
  • When shampooing your hair, gently smooth the shampoo down your hair extensions and do not rub. Rubbing will cause your hair extensions to get tangled up.
  • Do not apply the conditioner on your hair roots and hair extension bonds. This will cause your extensions to slip off. Apply the conditioner from your mid-lengths to the tips.
  • It is better to wash your hair extensions with lukewarm water than hot water. Hot water strips moisture from your hair, leaving it dry and more prone to damage.
  • When you are at the salon getting your hair washed, make sure that your hair extensions aren’t gathering at the bottom of the sink, because this will cause your extensions to tangle.
  • It is advisable to wash your hair extensions every 2-3 days. Use a dry shampoo during wash days.

8. Swimming

Hair Extension Aftercare swimming

You need to take good care of your hair extensions during summer, especially when you are on holiday, where your extensions are exposed to sea water and chlorine in swimming pools. Along with these factors and the direct exposure to the sun, your hair extensions are more prone to damage and dryness.

  • Before swimming, use special products that are specifically made to protect your hair and hair extensions from sea water, chlorine and the sun. Apply the product on your hair, then put your hair in a high bun to avoid getting it tangled. It is advised to wear a swimming cap.
  • After swimming, shampoo and condition your hair to get rid of chlorine or wash away the sea water.
  • Use a microfiber towel to dry your hair. Gently dry your hair by patting your hair down, and never rub, as this will cause breakage and damage.
  • Avoid brushing your hair after you get out of the pool. Let your hair air-dry for a while, then using a wide-toothed comb or a special hair extension brush, start brushing your hair from the ends making your way to the top.
  • After shampooing and drying your hair, apply a leave-in conditioner (only from mid-length to ends). This will hydrate and nourish your extensions.

9. Maintenance

Hair Extension Aftercare maintenance
  • You should always have your maintenance done every 6 to 8 weeks maximum.
  • If you wait longer, the removal process will be extremely difficult, and will cause your grown-out hair to get matted and tangled.
  • Always make sure that you are using the correct removing products for the removal and maintenance process. These products are specifically made for an easy and pain-free process without damaging your hair or the hair extensions.