Styling a Wig: Human Hair vs. Synthetic vs. Heat-Friendly Synthetic
With the right styling, you can achieve virtually any type of look you would like with your wig. However, since different materials, fibers, and construction are involved with human hair wigs, synthetic wigs, and heat-friendly synthetic wigs, you should follow a specific approach with each. Treating each type of wig and hairpiece uniquely will help you both get the longest life from your wigs and accomplish the exact style you are going for. Continue reading for help styling your particular type of wig.
How to Style a Human Hair Wig
Human hair wigs typically offer the greatest flexibility, usually offering a wider range of styling options since they most closely mirror a natural head of hair. One of the more popular types of styling involved with human hair wigs is what is often referred to as mini-styling. This type of styling continues to be a popular option because it is quick, easy, and no complicated or expensive tools are required. For example, every time you don your wig, you can mini-style (sometimes referred to as quick-style as well) your wig by simply using your fingers in concert with a wig pick. The type of wig pick you use should simply be one that your fingers can sufficiently manipulate, with the thickness of the individual picks matching the average thickness of your hair.
For example, if you notice that your wig has been building up knots closer to the exterior part of the wig cap, closer to your scalp, then position the wig or hairpiece pick near the scalp of the wig and slowly and gently work it up to the tips. You may need to use a very gentle wiggling motion with the pick in order to work through more stubborn hair knots without pulling any hair out of the wig or damaging the natural fibers. Another wig styling element that has been especially helpful with treating extra stubborn knots in human hair wigs is leave-in wig conditioner, which can do a great job of helping you detangle your wig hair.
You can also use a curling iron (make sure it is no hotter than a lukewarm temperature to prevent permanent damage) to achieve luxurious, natural curls. You can also use a hair dryer to help set your curls, but make sure the hairdryer is set to a medium or low heat setting to help prevent damage. Similarly, if straighter hair is what you would like to accomplish, then you may use a flat iron to flatten and straighten one inch sections of your wig’s hair.
Human hair wigs are much the same as a real head of hair, so you should expect the style to wash out of your wig every time you shampoo or clean it. Try to remember which of the above styling techniques worked best for you so you can repeat the styling procedure each time.
How to Style a Synthetic Wig
One of the nicer elements about synthetic wigs is that you can purchase them pre-styled to get the exact look you want to achieve. But many people appreciate the flexibility of being able to enjoy multiple styles with the same synthetic wig. If this is you, then you would benefit from a comb or brush that is specially made for synthetic wig hair. These combs and brushes are typically less harsh on hair, treating your synthetic wig hair with a gentler touch that will prevent damage. Having said that, you should always first try to use your fingers to achieve the look you want since your fingers are the softest and least aggressive on your wig.
For quick, easy, and convenient styling, you can look for “synthetic shake and wear wigs,” which allow you to simply hold the wig in one hand and give a gentle ruffle back and forth, which releases the style of the wig. This process naturally untangles hair to reinvigorate the natural flow, volume, and movement of the wig. You can also rejuvenate your synthetic hair wig by spritzing cool water (clean distilled water or water from a bottle is best, helping to prevent mineral deposit buildup). This removes static cling and helps reform your wig.
Mouse is typically the lightest product to use if you would like to achieve beautiful curls. However, it is always best to first look for hair products that have been specially designed for synthetic hair fibers.
How to Style a Heat-Friendly Synthetic Wig
You must carefully read the description of a wig before purchasing in order to ensure that it is indeed a heat-friendly synthetic wig. Making sure you can safely use heat first will help prevent any damage from heat treatment stylings. Heat-friendly synthetic wig fibers can usually be treated at up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. To make sure you are not treating your wig at a higher temperature, and if your tool does not have a temperature gauge, you can try looking up or contacting the manufacturer of your heating tool to confirm the maximum temperature of each setting. If you cannot confirm the maximum temperature of each setting, then it is safest for you to limit yourself to the use of the medium or lowest setting.