IMAGE BY ISTOCK/ALEJANDROPHOTOGRAPHY
Whether you’re trying to grow your hair out, you don’t have a ton of time (or energy) to style your hair, or you’re simply the kind of woman who likes to switch things up, if there’s one thing you need to have in your possession, it’s a wig!
Aside from the fact that they are uber-convenient, wigs are one of the best ways to protect your own hair from styling damage. Not only that, but the styling possibilities—cut, color ‘n all—are endless!
If you’ve never purchased a wig before, we won’t lie to you. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed because there are tons to choose from, including lace front wigs (wigs that make it possible for your scalp to show through), monofilament wigs (wigs that make it easier for your scalp and natural hair to “breathe”) and, one of our personal favorites, customized wigs.
That’s why it’s a good idea to know your cap size, the style and hair type you’re after, and the kind of budget you’re working with before shopping for a wig. Also, make sure to visit a wig shop that has a reputation for great customer service — one that has professionals on hand to help you select a wig and show you how to put—and keep—it on.
Once you find the wig of your dreams and you bring it back home, it’s understandable that you might be nervous about how to secure it on your own, while making it look natural, and feel as comfortable as possible.
No worries. We’re more than happy to walk you through the steps of what you need to do in order to keep your wig snuggly in place.
First, here are few things that you’ll need.
Items every wig-owner should have in their possession
DOUBLE-SIDED TAPE OR WIG GLUE
If you’ve got a bald head or areas where hair is missing, you can keep your wig in place with the help of some double-sided tape or wig glue. If you get some that is top-quality, both are easy to apply and remove.
CLIPS OR BOBBY PINS
Some wigs automatically come with clips attached to the inside of them. But if yours doesn’t (and you’d prefer to not sew some metal clips in), all you need are some bobby pins. Make sure you use some that are close to the color of your natural hair and pin them to the perimeter of your braids (if you braided your hair beforehand) in a criss-cross pattern. That’s what will help to keep your wig intact (don’t forget to add a couple around the nape of your neck for added security!).
BABY POWDER AND OIL
If you plan on using a lot of hair product on your wig, and you want to avoid accumulating buildup, there’s a simple solution. Sprinkle a little bit of baby powder on your wig, then brush the powder through with a Denman brush. That will keep your wig from getting all “icky”.
Something else that you should have on hand is a little almond or avocado oil for your hairline. Both oils are able to keep the friction of your wig from damaging your edges over time.
AN OLD TOOTHBRUSH
What if you want to create a few “baby hairs”? No problem. An old toothbrush and some non-alcoholic styling gel can help you to accomplish that. Just try to avoid laying down baby hairs every day. If you’re not careful, that can end up weakening them.
A SATIN SCARF
It’s not uncommon for some women to sleep with their wig on from time to time. If you do decide to do that, make sure to tie your “wig hair” up with a satin scarf. Not only will it help your wig to maintain its shape, it will also keep you from waking up to a matted mess in the morning.
A WIG CAP
If you want to be super-proactive about protecting your hair, while making sure your wig remains securely in place, you definitely need to invest in a wig cap. Make sure it’s made out of nylon material, that it matches the color of your scalp and that it’s not darker than your skin tone. For the most part, wig caps work well with any kind of wig (other than half-wigs or complete lace ones).
Who needs a cap? Who needs some glue?
Now that you know about the things you’ll need in order to feel more secure in your wig, you might be wondering when you should use a wig cap (or band) vs. some double-sided tape (or glue).
IF YOU HAVE HAIR ON YOUR HEAD: PUT ON A WIG CAP OR BAND
If you have hair on your head (no matter how long or short it may be), the best way to keep your wig secure, hands down, is with the help of a wig cap or a wig headband (which is a headband that literally goes around your head).
We’ve already mentioned that a wig cap that’s made out of nylon is your best bet. But if you have long hair, you might prefer a mesh wig cap, simply because it can make it easier for you to “access” your head/hair while still keeping your wig in place.
Why do some people prefer a wig band? It’s one way for your scalp to breathe easier (which will keep you cooler). Also, because a band puts less pressure on your head than a cap, you won’t have to worry as much about getting head sores or headaches.
IF YOU DON’T HAVE HAIR ON YOUR HEAD: USE DOUBLE-SIDED TAPE OR GLUE
What if you don’t have any hair on your head? No problem. You can still secure your wig on your head by doing the following:
-Shampoo your scalp to remove any dirt or residue.
-Apply some scalp protectant in order to protect your scalp from the residue of the tape or glue. Wait 20 minutes for the protectant to dry.
-Apply the double-sided tape or glue to your scalp (particularly around the circumference of your head and top of your scalp).
-If you use glue, allow it to dry long enough for it to have a putty-like texture.
-Put the wig on your head and, with your hands, apply pressure on your wig so that it sticks to the tape or glue stuck to your scalp. Apply the same amount of pressure, all around for two minutes.
-Style as usual.
A FEW OTHER TIPS…
If you’re worried about your wig “riding up” in the back, one thing you can do is add a long hair clip or comb to the back of your neck.
If after having your wig for a while, it feels too loose on your head, adding some adjustable elastic bands to your wig may be the solution.
On super windy days, if you’re worrying that your wig will fly away, bring along another accessory—a pair of sunglasses. Putting them on top of your head will provide additional “reinforcement”.
For some additional head support, consider applying a silicone headband product like Ferdinand’s Wigs Comfy Grip Band.
Definitely the best way to ensure you have a secure wig with as few clips, pins, tape or glue as possible is to purchase a customized wig. To find a store in your area that makes one, go to your favorite search engine and put “customized wigs” along with your city and state in the search field.
Do you wear wigs? What are some tips and tricks that you use to keep your wig secure? Share them with us in the comments below!