How to Care for Sewn-In Hair Extensions

If you’re dreaming of a voluminous, bouncy mane with plenty of jaw-dropping lengths, there’s only one option: hair extensions. And one of the most popular ways to install extensions is by sewing them in.

Sewn-in hair extensions are relatively affordable (compared to other options), are comfortable and discreet, and don’t require heat, glue, or tape. They last up to eight weeks, so you can flaunt your tresses for a solid two months before needing a visit to the salon. Yay.

While that’s great and all, your sew-in hair extensions might not be the picture-perfect hair you’re thinking of if you don’t care for them properly. That said, you need to know how to care for sewn-in hair extensions, and I’m here to share my top tips for success.

Let’s talk about caring for those new strands, babe!

How to Care for Sewn-In Hair Extensions – 10 Tips

I like to think of my hair as the most precious jewel in the world. You need to take care of them and treat them like they’re royalty, and that’s true whether you opt for clip-ins, k-tips, or sewn-in hair extensions. Here are some of my top tips for caring for the sewn-in variety.

1. Leave Them Alone for 48 Hours

I know it can be tempting to want to leave the salon and start stylin’ your new ‘do, but that can be detrimental to your brand-new sew-in hair extensions.

The biggest thing to remember is that you should not do anything to your hair for the first 48 hours after installation. That means no showering, no swimming, no styling with curling irons – you get the point. Leave them alone!

2. Detangle, Detangle, Detangle

The enemy of my enemy is my friend.” In this case, you and your wide-toothed comb or specialty hair extension looped brush should team up to fight against tangles.

Tangles are a big no-no in the sewn-in extension world. They’ll place undue stress on the braid and your roots, which can lead to some serious trouble.

So, instead of being apathetic about whether or not your tresses are forming unruly knots, get your comb or brush and get to detanglin’. Always start from the ends to the roots, as going in the opposite direction can hurt and pull on your extensions.

3. Wash Your Hair and Extensions

Your hair extension gal probably told you that you shouldn’t wash your hair every single day. And she isn’t wrong. Washing hair extensions daily is entirely unnecessary and can weaken your strands. 

What should you do instead? Wash your hair once or twice a week. I promise that’s all your hair really needs. If it feels greasy in-between washes, you can always use a handy dandy dry shampoo. (Those are lifesavers, aren’t they?)

When you wash your hair and extensions, use a sulfate-free shampoo such as MATRIX. Try to avoid applying any type of shampoo directly to the sewn part, and always be gentle.

4. Apply Conditioner to the Midshaft and Below

Hair extensions require conditioner. They don’t produce natural oils like your natural hair and scalp, so they’re prone to becoming dry and frizzy. And who wants to sport dried-out, fuzzy, and unruly locks? 

However, you should not apply your go-to conditioner directly to the sewn area. Doing so can cause your hair extensions to fall out entirely, which is much worse than simply becoming dried out and frizzed. 

You can fix dryness, but it’s far more difficult (and costly and time-consuming) to fix extensions that have fallen out.

That said, only apply conditioner to the midshaft and below. 

Tip: Consider using a deep conditioning mask every few weeks to ensure the extensions (and your natural mane) is hydrated, silky, and smooth.

5. Avoid Heat As Much as Possible

OK, so I will be the first one to admit that one of the biggest reasons I got hair extensions was so that I could enjoy voluminous ringlets – you know, the kind that Victoria’s Secret models wear.

With that in mind, I’m going to tell you this – try to avoid using heat as much as possible, as heat isn’t good for your natural or faux hair.

If you have to use hot styling tools (and I know you will!), opt for a lower setting and always apply a heat protectant. Seriously, it will work wonders at keeping your locks in tip-top shape.

6. Never Sleep With Loose Hair

I don’t care how much you think you’re a “calm sleeper,” and you don’t toss and turn every single second of the night – you still move sometimes, and this movement can wreak havoc on your hair extensions.

That said, you should never sleep with loose hair. You can put your hair in a loose, low ponytail or braid it before sleep. You can also wrap your locks with a silk scarf or put them into a silk shower cap for top-tier protection.

7. Get Them Replaced Regularly

We all wish that hair extensions could last forever. But they don’t. Sew-in hair extensions last a solid two months before they need to be replaced. (Although, some people say they can get up to three months of wear. I always recommend not pushing it out too far.).

You need to get them replaced regularly, and it’s not just for aesthetic purposes. As your natural locks grow, the sewn part will begin to creep lower and lower, making it visible and heavy on your roots – and, FYI, your roots don’t like handling too much weight.

Enjoy a flawless, comfortable, lightweight mane by getting your sewn-in hair extensions fixed up every two months.


Caring for your sewn-in hair extensions isn’t complicated, right? If you want to learn more about this interesting topic, here are a couple of frequently asked questions to take a look at.

How long can you wear sewn-in hair extensions?

Sewn-in hair extensions can be worn for about six to eight weeks. Some wearers claim they can wear their sewn-in hair extensions for up to three months, but I recommend going in for your appointment around the two-month mark. 

How do you sleep with sewn-in hair extensions?

Never sleep with loose sewn-in hair extensions. At the least, tie your hair into a loose ponytail or braid to reduce tugging and pulling. The better option is to place hair in a silk shower cap or wrap it up with a silk scarf. Opt for a silk or satin pillowcase to cut down on frizziness.

Can you put your hair up with sew-in extensions?

Sew-in hair extensions are very discreet. That said, yes, you can successfully put your hair up with this type of extension without fearing them poking through. This is one of the biggest perks of going the sewn-in route!

It’s Easy to Care for Sewn-In Hair Extensions

Essentially, you want to treat your sewn-in hair extensions like natural hair. Ensure you don’t bother them for the first 48 hours, and wash with a sulfate-free shampoo. COnditioner regularly from the midshaft down, avoid heat or use a heat protectant, and replace them when necessary.

Do you have sewn-in hair extensions? Do you have any essential tips you’d like to share? Comment in the section below!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *