Wearing Wigs – Tips & Tricks

Since so many people have asked me about wearing wigs, I will share some tips and tricks that I learned along the way.  At one point I owned at least 30 wigs.  I have since sold at least half of them.  Initially I was afraid to wear wigs.  Yes, afraid. When you are not familiar with something, you too may be afraid to try it. My only experience with wigs prior to wearing them myself was seeing some of the older women in my family wear wigs that did not always look that great.  Granted, my frame of reference is my now deceased great aunt who did not usually take great care of her wig given her health problems.

By the time I finally tried a wig, I was 27 weeks post relaxer.  I had also seen my mother’s collection of short wigs which gave me some confidence.

Although most people probably start with a half wig, my first wig was a synthetic full lace wig (Modu Invisilace 101) since it looked most like my own straightened hair.  As you will notice, I do not use wig tape of wig glue for my styles.  I also typically do not use the combs that are inside wigs.  Instead I use wig clips and bobby pins since I found the combs that come inside wigs to be somewhat damaging to my fine hair.

If starting out with a half wig, be sure to buy a color and texture that you can match, meaning if your hair is dark brown you should buy a dark brown wig (for me that was color #2).  The texture does not have to match since you can use a flat iron to match your own hair with a straight wig or you can use various sized hair rollers with mousse or setting lotion to get your curls to match the curl pattern of the wig.  For my half wig, Polly by Outre, I was able to braid my own hair while damp to get my curl pattern to match the curls of that wig.  After a while it will be quite difficult to blend your natural hair with a straight wig.  Before I knew better, one of my attempts to flat ironing my hair to blend with a wavy synthetic wig was a total fail (video of the wig is below, not the same day though).  It was a humid day so by mid afternoon my own hair had begun to frizz and the wig (Sensationnel synthetic half wig style HZ 7058) was still beautiful and wavy.  It was a mess and it became obvious to anyone who did not know that I was wearing a half wig.  That was not a good day.  It was prior to my discovery of Brazilian Keratin Treatments which help my straight hair last for up to 9 days at a time.

The goal is to make the wig look realistic and not like you plopped Barbie doll hair onto your head.  I failed that day.

A tip to take the shine off of a new synthetic wig is to rinse the wig in  fabric softener or to add a tiny, tiny bit of cornstarch to the wig and brush it through.  These days I just wash the wig and leave it on the wig stand for a few days (maybe a week) to let the shine die down and to also get the prepackaged wig bump out of the hair.  Some wigs, due to packaging, will have a weird hump in them if you try to wear the wig right out of the package.

When securing your wig with bobby pins, be sure to put pins at the temple area and also at the nape.  You can cover up the bobby pins with a piece of the hair if they are visible after you secure your wig.  You can do the same thing when using wig clips.  Be careful with wig clips as they can rip out your hair if you are not careful when snapping them into place and when taking them out.  I have not tried it but have read that some people coat their wigs clips with a hair oil (maybe castor oil).  I do not know the results of this since I have not tried it.

A trick I use for my lace wigs is to take some strands of hair and pull them along the edge of the lace, covering the lace, and then putting the hair behind my ear.  I let my own hair line show for a more realistic look.

If you are not comfortable with using bobby pins or wig clips, you can also start out with using a headband to secure your wig.  A lot of people use this option initially which is funny to me since using headbands is a recent thing for me.  In fact, I tried all other options before going to the headband route with wigs.

Feel free to ask me about other wig tips.

Modu Invisilace 101

 Lace Front Wig - Protective hairstyle for natural hair

Polly by Outre

Lace front wig with pieces of wig secured along edge of lace and behind my ear

 lace front wig from china

Beshe shelly with a headband

 Beshe Shelly wig with headband

Video of me using Sensationnel half wig 7058