If you use a wig or hair extensions, you likely know that they need to be washed on a regular basis. Just because the hair isn’t actually attached to your head, does not mean it isn’t exposed to sweat, dirt, and pollution. Wigs and extensions are also styled often, so like the hair on your head, it can get dry from time-to-time—it can even get damaged due to heat styling.
If you’re a new wig or hair extension user, here is a short guide on how to take care of your natural hair wig from washing to styling:
Note: The below tips are for natural hair, not synthetic hair. If your wig or hair extensions are made out of synthetic hair, you’ll need to follow a different guide for care and maintenance.
How to Take Care of Natural Hair Wigs and Hair Extensions
If you wear your wig 24 hours a day, you’ll want to clean it every 3-4 days. If you wear your wig only during the day, but you take it off at night, every 6-8 days. If you only wear your wig for special occasions—like nights out with the girls—washing it monthly is okay.
Use Mild Shampoo
Natural hair wigs and hair extensions need the same products as you actual hair would need, but more mild. A mild soap like baby shampoo will do!
Use a Conditioning Mask
After using a mild shampoo, using a conditioner is a must. Apply it to the mid-shaft to ends and let it sit on the hair for a few minutes. Right before you’re about to wash it out, spread the conditioner to the root area and then rinse.
Blot it Dry
It’s very important you are gentle with your wig when blotting it dry. Roughing it up with a towel isn’t advised as it can create frizz and breakage. Instead, just twist the water out with your hand first and then blot it dry very gently.
Brush It out with a Detangling Brush Meant for Wigs and Extensions
After washing the wig with a mild shampoo, spray the wig down with a detangler and gently brush it out. You’ll want to use a detangling brush specifically meant for wigs and hair extensions. Wigs are very delicate, so you always need to be gentle.
Use Styling Products
After you have gently brushed it out, you’ll need to add some product. Since natural hair wigs can be styled with heat, it’s best to apply some sort of heat protectant, like a serum or oil. A leave-in conditioner would also work. ,
Unlike our actual hair, wigs can only be replenished with moisture by using product. Adding a serum or oil that also has strengthening substances such as keratin isn’t a bad idea. Especially if you often use heat on your wig.
Let it Air Dry
While it may be tempting to just use a blow dryer, it’s best to let your natural hair wig air dry. Wigs are an investment, so you likely want it to last you as long as possible. Regular blow dry sessions will shorten the life of your wig, and you likely don’t want that.
Here is a guide on how to air dry your wig into different styles.
Use Heat on Lowest Setting
If you must use a blow dryer or hot tools on your wig, be sure you only use them on their lowest settings. Wigs for women are very delicate and they can get expensive, so buying a new wig every month is likely not realistic.
The gentler you are with your wig, the longer it will last you.
We hope these tips have helped you! If you have any tips or tricks on how to take care of a natural hair wig, let us know in the comments below!
*Photos by RODNAE Productions