A wig is a great transformational tool which you can use to change your appearance for any occasion. There are so many textures available now including straight hair ones, wavy ones, and curly ones. Curl textures may be loose, tightly curled or coiled. Since each texture is different, they each require different care routines.
If you are wondering what the definition of a curly wig may be, it can be described as a unit with a hair texture that has cylindrical strands. The tightness of the strand may vary by texture, with the tightest being Afro Hair otherwise sometimes called 4C Hair. It may be made from Human Hair or Synthetic Hair and may be a Lace, Closure, or Non-Lace. You have many options and as technologies progress, even more types are becoming available.
Human Hair vs Synthetic Hair
If you have had the pleasure of owning a curly hair wig, you would realize that the Human Hair ones need less maintenance. You would also realize that generally, the tighter the curl, the more maintenance your unit may need and there are several reasons for this.
Synthetic Hair Structure
Synthetic means man-made, or non-organic. Such hair is made from man-made fibers which when combined and manipulated somewhat mimic real hair. If you own a synthetic wig, you will notice that the hair tends to be dryer than Human Hair. If the hair is not good quality, it will tangle quickly and sometimes badly. However, there are some premium synthetic fibers which are easier to manage which are either tangle free or low tangling. Three popular synthetic fibers which are good quality are Kanekalon Fibers, Korean Fibers and Futura Fibers. They mimic human hair the best and are low shine so they do not look super shiny like doll hair. The feel is also soft and almost human hair like. If you own a synthetic unit that fits this description, it is probably made from one of these three fibers.
Human Hair Structure
100% Human Hair is organic and genuine and will behave like real hair on a human head when styled or washed. Since Human Hair Wigs are made from real hair, you will find that they are much easier to manage, need little maintenance and best of all, are tangle free. Just like our real hair, Human Hair is protein packed, porous and pliable, some of the features which synthetic hair lacks.
If you own both wig types, you will notice quite a difference in behavior between the human hair and the synthetic hair when you wash it. Since Human Hair is porous, it absorbs product unlike synthetic hair. Here are the comparison steps for washing the two different hair types.
Saturate hair with warm water. Make sure to saturate the entire cap as well.
Curly Hair loves moisture. Whether synthetic or human, use a deep moisturizing shampoo. If the wig is a colored human hair wig, use a moisturizing color-safe shampoo. This stops color fading and keeps the color looking vibrant. Make sure to shampoo the cap thoroughly as well to remove any product and residue.
Rinse thoroughly with warm water and repeat as needed.
Since synthetic units are made from man-made fibers which are not pliable or porous, they need to be infused with a little more moisture. Mix a few drops of fabric softener with deep moisturizing conditioner and let sit for about an hour. For human hair, you can just apply the conditioner and let sit for a few minutes. If you feel as though the hair was a bit dry before you washed it, use a few drops of fabric softener on Human Hair as well. This step of course is optional.
Rinse thoroughly with warm water.
For Synthetic Wigs, you should only air dry. For Human Hair Wigs, you can air dry or blow dry on a low setting.
- Never brush or comb curly hair, especially if it is tightly curled or coiled. Finger combing is best and is recommended, whether the hair is Human or Synthetic.
- Wash at least once a week if being worn daily.
- Even good quality synthetic wigs with a tight curl may tangle slightly, so detangle at the end of each wearing. Always use a detangling spray before attempting to detangle tightly curled hair. This way, you will avoid damaging the hair fibers.
- Never heat style tight curls. With synthetic hair, you can heat style loose curls on a lower temperature than you would for Human Hair. With human hair, it is safe to heat style loose curls on a higher temperature.
- Never comb or brush tightly curled hair, it may cause damage. Finger combing is the safest and best option to ensure longevity of your wig. For synthetic wigs it may completely destroy the unit it combed or brushed.
- Always use styling product on curly wigs before styling. This will create a barrier against the elements, while coating the hair strands for easy snag free styling. This is especially important for synthetic hair which does not have the capability to maintain moisture naturally.
- Never use shampoo without moisturizers. It will strip human hair of its natural moisture and will add dryness to synthetic hair. Using shampoo which does not contain moisturizers will cause your synthetic wigs to tangle although you condition them after. This is especially true with tightly curled or coiled hair. Also, with human hair it may lose some of its softness and sheen.
At some point, you may have owned a curly wig, but taking care of human hair vs synthetic hair can be quite different. The curl tightness should determine your care routine. The tighter the curl, the more careful you need to be, especially for synthetic wigs. We know that synthetic hair has a completely different structure than human hair, since one is organic, and the other is man-made. Whichever option you choose, just make sure to use moisturizing shampoos only, a good rich moisturizing conditioner, and finger combing should be your preference for styling. Using these tips will ensure that you maximize the life of your wig.