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Should I get Hair Extensions?

J. Beam
J. Beam

Hair extensions are just one of many services offered by professional, full-service hair salons. They're pieces of real or synthetic hair that are attached to your own hair to instantly create additional length or volume. Extensions are only semi-permanent and will either have to be replaced or reapplied periodically. There are several different methods of attaching them, which vary by personal preference of the client and the expert stylist. Whether or not you should get them is a personal decision, but you'll need to keep in mind that they can be quite expensive and require regular maintenance, which adds to the price. Putting them in can also be time consuming, and some people find certain attachment methods to be painful.

The hair used for extensions ranges from 100% natural human hair to 100% synthetic material. Human hair is the most expensive, but preferred by those who can afford it because it often looks much more natural. A client who wants extensions must have relatively healthy hair at least 3 to 5 inches (7.62 to 12.7 cm) in length. Longer hair is acceptable, but most stylists won’t attach hair extensions to shorter lengths.

Most hair salons offer hair extension services.
Most hair salons offer hair extension services.

Hair extensions are bonded or woven to the natural hair in small strands attached close to the scalp. The most common method of binding is with a synthetic glue-like bond that is safe for both the scalp and natural hair. Extensions can also be fused to the natural hair or sewn into braids. The methods of attachment will vary with the stylist and depend largely on how he or she was taught to perform the service.

Hair extensions are very expensive.
Hair extensions are very expensive.

Once the extensions have been applied, the client can often wash and style their hair as if it had grown on their head naturally. The stylist will recommend different types of hair care products, such as shampoo and conditioner, and provide a list of those that should be avoided because of their potential to chemically weaken the bonds.

Hair extensions are one of the most expensive salon services available, but many people whose natural hair is damaged or who have cut their hair short only to regret it find the cost is worthwhile. The extensions can be applied to hair of most any ethnicity. Many celebrities take advantage of this service to quickly change their look either pre- or post-movie roles.

Blonde hair extensions.
Blonde hair extensions.

Not every full service salon offers hair extension services so you will have to do research if you are interested. Check with a local upscale salon or look for information in your local phone book. You can also ask your current stylist if they can recommend a stylist who specializes in adding extensions.

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Discussion Comments


i love clip in hair extensions. i definitely recommend them.


allienoelle- My extensions last for about three months too.

Also, people debating on whether to get hair extensions should be aware that they are very hard to take care of. You will need to invest in expensive shampoo because regular shampoo will damage the extensions.

The extensions, even if you get human hair extensions, will often dry out fast and will require you to do a lot of maintenance to keep the hair looking healthy.

Because extensions will make your hair thicker, you must also be willing to spend extra time washing, drying and styling your hair.


In my experience, I have found that hair extensions last for only approximately two to three months. I have had the woven type of hair extensions on two separate occasions.

The synthetic hair is attached to tiny braids of your natural hair at the base of your scalp with a needle and thread. This method is also referred to as weft hair extensions. My weft hair extensions only lasted for about two months before they fell out. It might just be because of how careful -- or not careful -- I was when I had them.

I had to go back to the salon and have them reattached. This ended up being very expensive.

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    • Most hair salons offer hair extension services.
      By: gemenacom
      Most hair salons offer hair extension services.
    • Hair extensions are very expensive.
      By: Africa Studio
      Hair extensions are very expensive.
    • Blonde hair extensions.
      By: pavel Chernobrivets
      Blonde hair extensions.
    • A stylist putting in hair extensions.
      By: RTDS
      A stylist putting in hair extensions.