If you all are anything like me, then the hair weave way of life seems like another world. There are so many intricate details that go into buying hair and installing it. I didn’t become an extension wearer until I got into college. So, needless to say, I was super late to the party. I knew that I wanted my extensions to look realistic. This meant quality hair with proper installation. However, I was not ready for all that entailed. Now, after three years of toying with hair extensions and installations, I finally feel like I am getting an idea of what to do. To help you all save the time I’ve wasted trying to figure things out, I decided to get an expert’s advice. So, in today’s post, I will pick the brain of Mrs. Tamara McClelland, Owner of Sophisticated Bundles. With her help, I will give you all a guide to use when picking the hair for your next installation.
Black Girl Today was able to generate a hair extension questionnaire to assist with this article. The questions posed to the Sophisticated Bundles owner were common ones that most hair extension newbies often ask. Below, I have displayed our questions and her responses:
Q: What should we look for in hair extensions? What constitutes “quality” bundles?
A: One thing you can look for when seeking quality hair extensions is a silicone mix many companies tend to use. Silicone mix is used on many hair extensions to give off the impression that you are purchasing quality hair. Silicone is a product used to hide problems in hair extensions but after a few washes, a customer starts to experience much tangling and shedding due to the silicone starting to wear off. If the hair seems very shiny with residue, more than likely the hair has been coated with silicone mix. Quality hair is typically hair that is from one donor, the cuticles all face the same direction, and the hair rarely tangles or sheds. Quality hair resorts back to its original texture after every wash or style. Keep in mind, when purchasing your hair extensions, it should look and feel like your natural hair, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
Q: How do you know which hair texture (Peruvian, Malaysian, Cambodian, Brazilian, Indian) best suits your natural hair?
A: Brazilian Hair is known for its full body, beautiful bounce, texture and versatility. It is available in many different textures such as wavy, straight and curly. The Brazilian hair tends to hold curls very well. This hair type is usually popular for most (people of) African American decent. Brazlian hair (also) usually doesn’t require a lot of maintenance. If you prefer more volume and thickness, we recommend ordering Malaysian Hair. Malaysian hair gives a great bounce with heavy body. SB has plans to offer Malaysian hair later this year. Peruvian hair is more course than Brazilian and Malaysian. It blends well with most African American relaxed hair textures, as well as Caucasian hair textures. Peruvian hair is a light-weight hair, great for sleek, straight styles. SB does not offer Peruvian hair at this time.
Q: How important is hair density to the amount of bundles needed?
A: It really depends on the look you are going for. Sophisticated Bundles Brazilian hair ranges between 3.3-3.7 ounces per bundle. For a partial weave, you will typically need 4-6 ounces of hair. For a full head weave, you will need at least 8 ounces of hair. Keep in mind, the longer and fuller styles typically require more hair. Customers who tend to love the longer looks, such as 22 inches or longer, typically need 12-16 ounces of hair.
Q: How do you care for your hair extensions? (Pre-Installation and Post-Removal)
A: Before you install your extensions, it’s always best to co-wash using a good quality shampoo and conditioner. Always start by detangling your hair first from the ends to the roots. When washing, do not rub the extensions together, this can cause tangling. Allow your hair to air dry, be careful if using blow dryers, curling wands etc., using too much heat can damage the hair, and always use a heat protectant before you apply heat. SB recommends Tresemme Thermal Creations Heat protectant. Also, try not to use too much oil on the hair, it tends to weigh the hair down which would eventually have to be washed again. SB recommends a licensed professional to remove your hair extensions. If properly removed, your hair extensions can be washed and reused if still in good condition.
Q: Any tips on choosing the appropriate hair lengths?
A: This depends on the style you desire. Before you decide on a length, you need to consider whether you want wavy, curly or straight hair extensions. If you decide on curly/wavy hair, you may want to go one size longer than you would if you were going to purchase straight hair extensions. Wavy/Curly hair tends to be heavier than straight hair.
Q: Leave-Out or Closure? Why?
A: SB always recommends closures because it gives your natural hair a break. It protects your natural hair from breakage due to excessive heat damage. The closures also look very realistic and blend effortlessly with the actual hair bundles.
Q: What is the difference between loose wave and body wave, regarding hair textures?
A: Loose Wave hair is well defined waves, giving you a more of a bouncy look. It is very versatile and can be worn curly or straight. The Body wave is somewhat similar to the Loose Wave. Body Wave is known for its versatility also. It has lots of body and volume. Body Wave tends to have more of a wavy look, (rather) than the curly look the Loose Wave tends to give. The Body Wave can be worn in its natural wavy state or styled straight.
Q: Why did you decide to begin your own company? Did you feel the hair extension industry was missing something?
A: I decided to start Sophisticated Bundles because I was tired of searching for quality hair extensions. I was spending my hard earned money for hair that would only last a month or so. I ordered hair from all over the world: China, India, etc. I ordered so much hair in hopes of finding just “all around good hair”. I wasn’t looking for perfect hair, I was mainly looking for hair worth my money. If I’m spending $500+ on hair, I expect my $500.00 worth, including the customer experience. However, the price of your hair doesn’t always mean that you’re purchasing quality hair. I started realizing the hair industry prices were not matching the quality of their products, or the customer service was terrible because they already had a large clientele. Companies should always treat (all) customers the same. Whether the customer spends $10.00 vs $500.00, everyone should always enjoy the same experience.
Q: What separates Sophisticated Bundles from fellow hair extension companies?
A: Sophisticated Bundles operates with the mindset “Everyone deserves quality hair at an affordable price” We also take pride in our customer service. Every customer receives the same experience. We are not here to compete with TOP hair companies, we are here to bring value to our customers. Sophisticated Bundles wants you to make an educated purchase by providing you with the very best customer experience, in order to do this, we go above and beyond the typical hair extension company by helping you make more informed decisions, as well as communicating with you after your purchase, regarding styling, care, etc.
Today’s article has been an exciting one to work on, for me, because I know how overwhelming the world of extensions can be. However, I did not want to do my usual one-sided beauty tips because I did not want any of my readers to be misinformed. I wanted to get a guest whose expertise I trusted and respected to give you all some good, informative advice. I hope everyone enjoyed the tips that were given. Please let me know if you all would like to see more posts like this, in the future. Look out for some major moves from the Sophisticated Bundles brand! -And in the meantime, be sure to check out the Sophisticated Bundles Website for more information about the brand and its products. You guys already know that I am all about young, black business. So, with that, The Posh Nosh brand supports the efforts of this budding company.