Anyone who is thinking about adding hair extensions to their mane asks the prying question: how long do hair extensions last? After all, you don’t want to waste a (lot) of money on something that’s going to fall out a week later.
Well, if you’re curious about hair extensions and their longevity, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve been wearing extensions for years and have also done tons of research to ensure you get the right answer.
The best way to describe how long hair extensions last is that it varies by the type. That said, let’s take a journey through all of the different kinds of hair extensions and how long they last.
Let’s get into it, girls!
Most Permanent Solutions
Some hair extensions have a longer lifespan than others. The extensions listed below are known as permanent hair extensions because they offer months of wear without needing replacement or maneuvering.
Fusion/Pre-Bonded (3-4 Months)
The most permanent option for hair extensions is fusion, otherwise known as pre-bonded hair extensions. In this application method, the strands are essentially flued to the root of your natural strands using some kind of bond. A typical adhesive is keratin glue.
While you can easily get up to 4 months of wear with proper care, it’s important to note that fusion has one of the longest application times. You can expect to spend anywhere between 3 and 4 hours applying the bonded hair extensions.
In the end, bonded hair extensions have an incredibly natural appearance that is very long-lasting. So, if you’re in the market for more permanent hair extensions with longevity, the fusion method may be right for you.
Another popular and tried-and-true method of applying hair extensions is with micro links. Micro links are commonly referred to as microbeads, micro rings, and micro-loops, too. These hair extensions are applied to the root of your natural mane using tiny beads. No glue or heat necessary.
The longevity of micro links is around 3 to 4 months, depending on how well you take care of them. You should be extra careful when using micro links as you don’t want to damage the beads. Otherwise, you will shorten the length of time you can use your extensions.
Also Read: Best Micro Bead (I-Tip) Hair Extensions
Semi-permanent hair extensions are exactly how they sound: semi-permanent. They offer quite a long time of wear, but not as many months as a permanent hair extension option.
Sew-Ins (6-8 Weeks)
Sew-in hair extensions have typically been used to sew into cornrows, but new techniques allow hair without braids to enjoy sew-ins, too. The strands are sewn into the braids or near the root using a needle and a thread.
Once installed, these extensions typically last anywhere from 6 to 8 weeks, making them a fine semi-permanent option.
However, sew-in hair extensions should never be worn past four months. Otherwise, you could create unnecessary damage to your natural locks. Deep conditioning regularly is also recommended to ensure the sew-ins stay in tip-top condition.
Last but not least, there are temporary hair extension solutions. These offer the least amount of wear. However, proper care and treatment can extend the lifespan, although they will need to be maneuvered and re-situated more often than permanent hair extensions.
Clip-Ins (3-6 Months)
Okay, okay, I know what you’re thinking. Why is clip-in labeled temporary if they last up to 6 months? Well, the temporary aspect has more to do with the application. Clip-ins are designed with a clip applied to the base of your mane and styled to hide.
Clip-ins are not typically worn overnight. That said, women will normally apply them early in the morning before work, school, or another activity. When they return home, the clips are removed. This helps to protect the extension and the natural mane. It also reduces discomfort while sleeping.
With proper care, clip-in hair extensions can easily last 3 to 6 months or longer. It depends on the quality of the clip-ins and how often they’re worn. To extend the life of clip-ins, it’s recommended to wash them sparingly and never brush while wet.
Tape-Ins (4-8 Weeks)
Tape-in hair extensions are becoming more and more popular by the day and for a good reason, too. These incredibly easy-to-apply extensions are taped on either side of your natural tresses using some type of strong adhesive.
The application can take as little as 45 minutes, but the tape offers up to 8 weeks of wear at a time. Tape-ins are notably gentler on the hair and allow your natural hair to grow more readily, which are two major benefits.
Keep in mind, too, that proper application can allow you to wear these extensions even longer than eight weeks. You will just have to have the extensions moved up on your mane to blend seamlessly with your natural hair growth.
Hair Quality Plays a Role
When it comes to the longevity of hair extensions, don’t forget to consider quality. This includes all aspects of the hair extension, from the type of hair used to the overall quality of the construction.
For example, human hair will always last longer than synthetic hair, for obvious reasons. Synthetic hair tends to get tangled, matted, and shed heavily. Human hair may have some of these issues but to a far lesser extent.
This is especially true for Remy human hair. If you can, find a highly graded Remy human hair when choosing your extensions. These are the most high-quality strands on the market and can easily see you through weeks upon weeks of wear without damage.
Some other things you might look for are hand-tied construction and double wefts.
Proper Care is Essential
If you think that you can tug on your hair extensions and treat them roughly and expect them to last a long time, you’re wrong. The longevity of your hair extensions directly relates to how well you take care of them, too.
Some quick tips for caring for your extensions and increasing their longevity include:
- Use specific shampoos and conditioners for your preferred application method.
- Never try to brush wet extensions.
- Place your hair into a loose ponytail while sleeping to avoid unwanted tangles and matting.
- Brush your hair extensions gently.
- Perform a deep conditioner on your hair regularly.
- Keep heated styling tools to a minimum.
Don’t Forget Outside Interferences
Some things you just can’t help. For instance, high humidity levels, bad air quality, and chlorinated water. Some outside interferences can have an impact on how long your hair extensions last. These things are beyond your control.
As long as you are taking the proper steps to care for your hair extensions, these outside interferences shouldn’t have too big of an impact.
Some hair extensions last longer than others. It all starts with the method of application. Permanent hair extensions like fusion and micro links can last for several months without needing to be replaced. Less permanent options, like tape-ins, only last for a few weeks.
Aside from the method of application, proper care and quality are also essential to the overall lifespan. Don’t hesitate to spend a little extra on Remy human hair and hand-tied extensions, and always take proper care of your hair.