Hair extensions can be applied several different ways. One of the most popular methods is with braided weave tracks. A "track" is a cornrow braid. Hair extensions are either sewn to the braid in wefts or loose extensions are braided directly into the braid. If you sew in your weave, purchase hair in wefts. This means the hair is tied together at the top for easy sewing. Otherwise buy loose hair extensions. Partner up with someone adept at making cornrow braids and hair weaves to achieve a natural-looking result.
Choose hair that blends in with your hair colour. Extensions can be made from synthetic hair or human hair. Natural hair extensions look more real and last longer than synthetic hair extensions.
Decide between sewn-in extensions or invisible braiding. In both cases, you'll create hidden cornrow tracks horizontally across your scalp, but with "invisible braiding" you'll weave strands of loose hair extensions into each braid.
Braid small thin cornrow braids horizontally across the middle of your scalp, starting at about ear level. You want the hair on the crown of your head to cover any tracks. The number of tracks you braid depends on how much hair you want to add to your scalp.
Add strands of synthetic or human hair directly into the braid if you're doing the invisible braiding technique. As you braid the extension hair into your natural hair, separate and pull out small strands of the extension hair. These pulled-out strands will hang loose like natural hair and will hide the braid track.
Sew hair wefts to the braid tracks using heavy weaving thread if you're doing the sewn hair extension method. Hair wefts are bundles of hair tied together at the top in a long strip. Wefts are easier to sew than loose hair. Some people call wefts "tracks," but technically the track is the braid and the weft is the strip of hair.
Comb the natural hair from the crown of the head over the extensions. The extensions should be seamlessly integrated into the natural hair.
Apply a small amount of hair oil to the scalp near the braid tracks to keep the hair and scalp skin from drying out.
Invisible braiding doesn't last as long as sewn-in hair extensions, but the technique is faster to finish and puts less stress on the scalp. Hair extension reseller Laissez Faire recommends using synthetic hair with invisible braiding.
Braiding hair too tightly can lead to scalp damage and accidental loss of hair if the weave is pulled too hard.
Tips and warnings
- Invisible braiding doesn't last as long as sewn-in hair extensions, but the technique is faster to finish and puts less stress on the scalp. Hair extension reseller Laissez Faire recommends using synthetic hair with invisible braiding.
- Braiding hair too tightly can lead to scalp damage and accidental loss of hair if the weave is pulled too hard.
Things you need
- Hair, synthetic or natural
- Weaving thread (optional)
- Hair oil made specifically for cornrows or braids