The Truth Behind 10 Popular Myths About Hair Extensions for Textured Hair
Time to read 7 min
Time to read 7 min
Hair Extensions for textured hair... A multi-billion dollar industry in its own right. Nowadays, everyone has an opinion on everything, including textured hair. From old wives tales to scientifically based facts, it is a landmine out there.
This week I wanted to focus on the myths surrounding hair extensions for textured hair. As extensions grow increasingly popular for protective styling and convenience, so too have the misconceptions around how they affect our delicate natural strands. Questioning everything from whether working out or properly cleansing extensions is even possible, to if hair can safely grow underneath or if colouring them inevitably wrecks your mane.
In this week's post, I'm tackling the top myths to bring some clarity on what's exaggerated versus the legitimate realities.
Here are 10 common myths around hair extensions for afro hair:
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FACTS: (False). Poor quality hair extensions can rub against and pull on your natural strands, gradually causing split ends and breakage over time. Similarly, very tight braiding at the roots when getting sew-ins puts strain on the follicles that can also lead to hair loss after months of constant tension. Properly installed, temporary hair extensions like salon-grade tape-ins, clip-ins and micro bead links lay gently on top of your hair without excessive pulling or friction though thanks to adjustable application methods. As long as your stylist properly matches the hair extension’s weight and texture to your own density and curl pattern for a secure yet comfortable fit all over your head, hair should seamlessly continue growing underneath..
FACTS: (Partly True). Over time, the cumulative strain from heavy hair extensions that pull relentlessly on fragile edges lacking much anchoring hair follicles can cause localised traction alopecia and thinning at the temples and nape of the neck if left unchecked. But protective styling tips like distribution of weight across multiple braiding points versus just the perimeter edges, gently pinning back overhanging hair off the face rather than tightly slicking back styles, sleeping on satin to avoid friction from cotton pillowcases, and tension-free removal methods all prevent excessive edge damage despite extensions being present. Periodically giving edges a break helps too.
FACTS: (False). In fact, temporary human hair extensions like tape-ins, clips-ins and micro links can be gently shampooed and conditioned much like your own natural hair a couple times a week. It keeps sebum, dirt and product build-up at bay. Just be extremely delicate when dealing with wet hair extensions to avoid tangles and don’t rub the roots vigorously. Make sure to fully air dry rather than blast heat from blow drying too. Proper cleansing keeps hair extensions fresh and manageable so they blend better with grown out roots over time.
Some claim that because hair extensions protect the ends of your hair and prevent breakage, it makes hair grow faster since you retain more length over time. However, there is no definitive scientific proof that shows hair extensions boost the rate of hair growth from your scalp. Hair typically grows about 1/2 inch per month on average regardless of whether hair extensions are present or not. Getting regular trims, eating a balanced diet rich in vitamins/minerals, scalp massages to increase blood flow, and keeping your natural hair moisturised in moisture-locking styles does more to maximise growth rate.
When properly colour-matched, textured and seamlessly pre-tipped or root-tapped by skilled stylists, high quality temporary hair extensions like tape-ins, clips-ins, or micro links closely resemble afro hair. Blending is undetectable when applied correctly along the hairline for a natural look.
Many people falsely believe that hair extensions prevent you from being able to grow out your natural hair underneath. The myth is that sew in weaves and additional hair for the braids “seal off” your own strands, blocking them from receiving proper moisture and nutrients for growth. In reality, as long as the hair extensions are installed correctly and cared for properly, your natural hair continues in its normal growth cycle uninterrupted while tucked away. So in short—hair can definitely reach longer lengths even while hair extensions remain installed long-term. Occasional trims may be needed, but overall the natural hair continues maturing at its normal pace concealed away from damage-causing elements underneath the protection of hair extensions that are well-maintained.
How long hair extensions last depends greatly on the installation method, aftercare and lifestyle factors. But with proper maintenance between salon visits, many temporary hair extension such as tape-ins, micro bead links and sew-ins can safely stay in for up to 8-12 weeks at a time before needing removal and/or reinstallation. Ensuring edges are tension-free, gently washing once a week, moisturising the hair including your own hair underneath, sleeping on a satin pillowcase and avoiding sources of friction/snagging helps them last their maximum duration before looking unkempt.
Though hair extensions protect strands, natural hair still requires care while installed long-term. Underneath weaves and wigs, old hair can dry out and new growth may not mature properly without moisture and nutrients. Lack of circulation causes matting, tangling or breakage once extensions come out. That's why natural hair needs consistent conditioning and oil treatments even while hidden away. Gently shampooing, massaging scalp oils, taking hair health breaks, and detangling regularly maintains moisture balance, minimises knots, and keeps natural manes healthy despite protective hair extensions.
Sweating is not problematic for tape-in, micro link and other temporary hair extensions as long as you properly cleanse and condition afterwards.
The key is keeping both the installed hair AND your own hair underneath moisturised while avoiding friction that can loosen bonds over time. Gentle brushing, protective night time styling and using sweatbands to absorb moisture during workouts helps. However, those with sewn-in weave extensions should avoid intense cardio exercise since excess sweat and movement weaken the threads over time. Low impact activity is best to maximise longevity.
FACTS: (Partly True).
While permanent dyes and bleaches can leach chemicals over time, selective semi-permanent colouring and quality hair dramatically reduces damage risk.
When used responsibly on resilient virgin hair by skilled stylists, moderate processing leaves hair extensions smoothly coloured for long-lasting wear without harming natural hair through transfer or dryness. Proper aftercare like sulphate-free shampooing and hydrating treatments also maintains colour purity and healthy feel without needing overly harsh repeat processing. So with conscientious methods, coloured hair extensions integrate beautifully without damaging risks.
And there you have it—the real truth dispelling the biggest myths and exaggerated fears around hair extensions for textured hair. As you can see, modern hair extension methods allow stunning versatility without necessarily wrecking your natural locks when responsibly installed and maintained.
The key is doing your homework to find quality human hair extensions, qualified stylists familiar with texture needs, and then taking precautions around gentle cleansing, night time wrapping, scalp oiling and protective handling. Take it from me, with reasonable care any woman can enjoy long flowing lengths or perfect protective styles without compromising their crown’s health or hindering growth.
If you're yearning for further inches or simply need a break from intensive daily styling, visit our wigs and hair extensions collection on Mimi et Mina. Our hair provides incredible longevity, seamlessly blends with natural texture, and retains beautiful movement wash after wash when properly cared for at home. Plus as an added perk exclusively for new readers, you can save 10% off your first hair purchase when joining our newsletter. Time to finally make those hair goals a reality!
Until next time,
False! When properly installed and cared for, high quality removable extensions like tape-ins allow natural hair to continue growing healthily underneath without friction or pull on the strands.
Yes! Workouts are fine for tape-ins, micro links, and other temporary hair extensions. Just be sure to gently shampoo post-workout, wrap hair at night with a satin cap, and moisturize strands well. Limit high-intensity activity for sewn-in weaves.
No. While the protection retains existing growth better, no evidence shows extensions actually increase the scalp's biologically normal 1/2 inch per month regrowth rate. Focus on a balanced diet, massages, and hair-healthy styles for growth.
Not necessarily! When properly color-matched, expertly textured, and seamlessly pre-tipped along the perimeter by skilled stylists, high-quality Remy or virgin hair closely resembles afro hair for an undetectable blend.
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