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Wig Guide | Lessons From A BaldieUpdated a month ago

Why Is It So Hard To Find A Realistic, Natural-Looking Wig?

If you are in need of a wig, then you're probably searching for a natural-looking wig and you are probably overwhelmed with hundreds of options for you to choose from - I was too. I mean wig prices range from $20 to $10,000—why and do you need a $10,000 wig for it to look real?

Hi! I'm Allison, the founder of Encelia Hair. My life changed unexpectedly during my second pregnancy when I developed alopecia universalis - total hair loss. Part of our mission at Encelia Hair is to make your wig life a breeze! Our goal is to make shopping for a wig simple, easy, & beautiful so you can get back doing the things that they love to do. Hopefully, this wig buying guide clears the air while simplifing the process.

HUMAN HAIR WIGS | WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Let's start with what you are probably searching for. You are probably searching for a wig in your natural color: brown wig, blonde wig, etc. There are hundreds of wig colors for you to choose from along with dozens of hair types. It's confusing at best so how do you decide? Let me break it down for you.

HAIR ORIGIN

Oh boy, this is a hot topic. Human hair is typically "marketed" from the "origin" of the hair - European, Malaysian, Russian, Brazilian, Indian, & the list goes on.

Here is the thing, at Encelia Hair we believe all hair is beautiful so instead of telling you what makes one hair better than the other, let's focus on the kind of hair you really want - meaning the texture, the quality (how processed or damaged is the hair), and then how much time will it take to make it look good.

HAIR TEXTURE

Choose how you want your hair to air dry: straight, wavy, curly, kinky, etc.

HAIR TYPE

At Encelia Hair, we proudly offer you Remy human hair wigs, Luxury synthetic wigs, and Traditional synthetic wigs because we understand that there is a time in a place for each hair type to shine. There are pros and cons to everything. Sometimes you need a really nice human hair wig and sometimes you need the shake and go ease & strength of a synthetic wig.

REMY HUMAN HAIR WIGS

Remy human hair is highly regarded in the alternative hair industry for its superior quality. Unlike non-Remy, also known as cuticle-free hair, Remy human hair means that great care has been taken to keep the cuticle in the natural downward direction that hair grows. AKA -Root to Tip.

  • How do you know if you really have a Remy human hair wig? Easy, gently, run your fingers up and down the wig punching against the strands of hair. If it feels smooth & silky going down but rough and you feel resistance going up, you have Remy hair.
  • Why is Remy hair better? Because the cuticle is preserved or kept intact, Remy human hair moves, feels and tangles less throughout it's lifespan making your wig life a whole lot easier, which is what we are all about! In short, unlike non-Remy hair, Remy human hair will require less maintenance because it should air dry smooth, and silky.
SYNTHETIC WIGS | WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

There are three categories of synthetics. Basic/Standard, Heat Resistant/HD Fibers, & now a new Luxury synthetic. The low price point and ease of use make synthetic wigs a great option for many of us.

Traditional/Standard Synthetic

Traditional/Basic/standard synthetic wigs are made with plastic or acrylic fibers that resemble the look, feel and color of human hair. Although basic synthetic hair has come a long way it is hard for it to have the same movement, fluidity & characteristics as high-quality Remy human hair. Traditional synthetic wigs are great when you don't want an inexpensive wig that you don't want to fuss with!

Heat Resistant/HD Fibers

Heat-resistant or heat-defiant(HD) wigs are made of synthetic fibers that can handle heat tools (280 degrees Fahrenheit) so you can change the style. Although, it's great to have styling flexibility, the HD fiber can be delicate so in general these wigs don't last as long as traditional synthetic wigs, which is why we don't sell them. The same as traditional synthetic wigs, heat-resistant wigs lacks the movement & fluidity of human hair.

Luxury Synthetic | Only Available At Encelia Hair

European human hair has reputation as the most luxurious hair in the world is undisputed, but it remains elusive to many of us due to its high price point. No other human hair and synthetic fiber can resemble the "look & feel" of European human hair.

Until now, Encelia's is proud to say that our innovative luxury synthetic fiber has the same characteristics, structure, & movement as healthy European human hair. In addition, it has a lot of other perks like fade resistance technology, less shine, tangles less, and the same characteristics as real hair - looks wet when wet no other synthetic can do that. We can hardly believe how amazing this fiber is. Learn more here

WIG CAPS | WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

The last thing you care about when your are buying a wig but it is the only thing you are going to think about when you wear a wig. When it comes to wig caps, the devil is in the details and very few brands in the alternative hair industry seems to care about these details.

At Encelia Hair, we invent & innovate our wigs from the lens of how women feel when they wear our wigs. We believe a wig should be natural-looking, comfortable, & secure without the no need for glue or adhesives. From one baldie to another, it really frustrates me that women all over the world are uncomfortable when they wear their wigs. So what makes a good wig cap?

FIT

It's simple and I am going to be a bit dramatic but the fit of the wig will literally make or break your confidence. A wig cap is a very small garment so a 1/4" difference will make a huge difference in how the wig feels. A wig cap should be snug - if it is too tight, you will have a headache in three to four hours and if it is too big, you will be worried about it falling off all of the time. The main issue is the 90% of the wigs on the market are sized to fit okay. Well, an okay fit might be okay for some garments but like shoes, your wig needs to fit you well so if you want to make your wig life a breeze, take your time to find a wig that fits you well.

At Encelia Hair, to help you feel comfortable & confident throughout your day, we proudly offer you five cap sizes in our Lace Front wig and two sizes in our Headband wig
LACE FRONT | HAIRLINE

The only way to wear your hair off your face is to recreate a hairline with a lace front. Sadly, most lace fronts have failed us. Unfortunately, the knots are too big and the material is itchy so the lace front doesn't blend/melt into the skin. The most realistic, comfortable lace fronts should be made:

  • Swiss lace - why, because it is softer and seamlessly blends into the skin
  • Single hand-tied bleached knots - you should not see any "dots" on your lace. This is the only way for your lace front to look realistic
  • Sit snug against your head - the size of your wig is going to matter a lot and it will determine if your lace front sits snugly against your head without the need for adhesives. Trust me, there is nothing worse than applying glue to a lace front - it will stretch the lace front out, loosen the knots and it is a pain to take off.
The Encelia Lace Front wig features a 1/8 folded Swiss lace front with knots that are bleached and single, hand-tied. This wig also comes in five cap sizes for a snug fit
EAR TABS

The "v" or "u" shaped tabs next to your ear. The ear tabs are a very important part of the wig because the ear tabs are your main guide to putting on your wig correctly - they help us quickly position and adjust our wigs.

Well-designed ear tabs will sit snugly against your head and start about one finger away from your ear. Ear tabs that sit too low and touch your ear will hurt and it will be very difficult to wear sunglasses, eyeglasses, and masks. This is why the Encelia No-Slip silicone wig features five cap sizes - 1/4" inch difference in a wig makes a huge difference in comfort and we are all about how you feel in the wig!
STAYS

A stay is a small bendable "l" piece of plastic or metal that is located at the ear tabs and the nape or back of the wig. The stay is a crucial part of the wig because a well-designed stay will keep your wig firmly in place all day without the need for wig grips or adhesives.

Not all stays are created equal! Wigs that are made with plastic or cheap metal will not stay bent; failing to provide you with the security that you need to feel confident in your wig. The Encelia No-Slip silicone wig features a high-quality metal stay so it stays bent or curved all day so you will never have to use wig grips or adhesives!
TOP OF THE WIG

The top of the wig is almost as important as the hairline because if you don't believe the top of your wig loss real then your not going to feel confident wearing your wig. More to that, if the top of the wig is itchy, you are going to have a really hard time wearing your wig. Alternative hair brands have thrown a lot of marketing terms at us and many of us are confused so let's break down the different kinds of wig tops.

  • FRENCH DRAWN TOP - A french drawn top is the most realistic top that you can buy because it hides the knots, lace and it appears to look like real scalp because of the "glass silk" used.
    • HOW IS A FRENCH DRAWN TOP MADE? First, the knots are attached to lace as they normally are then a layer of "glass silk" is added to the bottom and top. Glass silk comes in different colors so make sure the one you are ordering matches the color of your scalp. I have seen many that are too white or too dark. Side note, I personally prefer the color of my glass silk to be a slight pink nude shade. Anyways, the knots pulled through a layer of "glass silk" and the "return hair" is typically shaved off. The result is a top that looks unbelievably real and undetectable.
  • SILK TOP - The knots are attached to lace as they normally are then a layer of silk is added inside the wig, making it more comfortable for the wearer but the knots and grids of the lace are still visible on the top.
  • LACE TOP or MONAFILMENT TOP - This is just a normal top, the hair is attached to lace or a monafilament material. In general, lace tops are softer than monafilment tops but that is not always the case.
At Encelia Hair, our Lace Front wig features double-layered hand tied top along with a new technic that gives you the same scalp-like top as a french drawn top at a friction of the price. Our Headband wig are double layered with a cooling mesh making it very comfortable to wear.
SIDES & BACK OF THE WIG

Look for wigs, like our No-Slip silicone wig, which is double lined for comfort and uses higher quality elastic on the sides. The elastic allows your wig to stretch and move with you, not all wigs have this movability & flexibility.

The back or nape of the wig should sit snugly against the end of the occipital bone which is where the curvature of the back of the head ends or stops. Because wigs stretch over time, a well-designed wig will have adjustable "bra looped" hooks, like the Encelia No-Slip silicone wig so you can easily adjust the circumference of your wig. Unfortently, the majority of wigs have a velcro or velvet adjustable strap, which doesn't provide the same support. The best way to think about this is, would you wear a bra that only had a connected with a velcro strap? Probably not!

THE FINAL ITEM, VENTILATION

Ventilation is a alternative hair industry term, which means how the hair is attached to the wig cap. A wig can be attached in one of two ways with some variation within the two techniques. Both techniques are great, much like the the hair type there is a time and place for both.

HAND-TIED

Each hair is hand-tied to the wig cap. Hand-tied wigs are lighter, airy and allow for total styling freedom, meaning you can easily wear ponytails, braids, etc. There are lots of different ways to knot the hair but, in the end, hand tying the hair to the wig cap is very labor intensive and more expensive to make.

WEFTED

The hair is first sewn into a "strip" and then that strip or ribbon is sewn to the wig cap. Wefted wigs are less expensive because they take less time to make. Most wefted wigs use ribbon or silicone strips to attach the hair which are then attached to the wig cap. The best wefted wigs will have feature 1) low amount of hair attached to the "weft" so the wig doesn't look puffy 2) the wefts will be closer together at the top off and then less close together at the bottom - this will maintain the dome shape of the wig without creating volume. The Encelia No-Slip silicone wig and the sport & fitness wig wefted backs are made like this.

CONCLUSION

Try to focus on fit and comfort then worry about the hair type/color/length. At Encelia Hair, we believe shopping for a wig & getting support should be simple, easy so you can get back doing the things that they love to do!

I hope this wig buying guide helpful and insightful. For more helpful tips, check out our FREE Wig Mastery program.

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