Wigs vs. Hair Extensions – Which One to Choose?

Wigs vs. Hair Extensions - Which One to Choose?You might think that wigs are used only to cover up hair loss problems, but some girls are choosing wigs rather than extensions for the same purpose of extending their strands and adding extra thickness. If you think about it, you can get very similar results with both so in some sense, wigs and extensions are interchangeable. If you’re considering going for a wig instead of extensions, or the other way around, you might be debating which option is better and more suitable for you.

On one hand, you have extensions which are worn by so many girls and are proven to be one of the easiest ways to revive one’s locks and create that full and long look. However, wigs basically do the same job but no natural hair is needed to install it and they might look like a simpler option for some girls. In our opinion, both wigs and extensions are a great way of changing up your hairstyle and trying out something new and it’s very hard to decide which one is better. There are some aspects of extensions that are better than wigs and vice versa so it’s hard to tell. That’s why we have decided to break down all of the main things that are important to those interested in wigs or extensions and see which one is better for different situations. We cover length, volume, longevity, prices and many more, and explain whether wigs or extensions do a better job at it or are a better choice. If you have never considered using wigs, this might change your mind.

Adding Extra Length

Extending hair length is one of the main reasons girls buy and wear extensions. The concept is very simple: your locks are very short and you want them to be longer without having to wait for months. You simply buy any extension type, install it, and your strands are longer for how many inches you choose. It is very simple and works like a charm every time. However, the same thing can be done with a hairpiece as well. You can choose the desired length of the wig, put it on and hide your short strands. So the results are pretty much the same. Both wigs and extensions are available in similar lengths, usually going from about six inches to thirty. So when it comes to adding extra length, it is a tie between two.

Volume

Adding some extra thickness to your hair instantly makes it look more fresh, healthy, and certainly a lot more glamorous. This is also something that can be easily done with both hairpieces and all extension types out there. A couple of extra wefts or tapes can make a huge difference and you can finally have that diva hair you have been dreaming about. So you basically control the density by choosing the weight of the extensions and how man you actually put it which is great because not every girl wants the same thickness. That choice is also available when it comes to wigs because you can choose between different densities going from low to high density.

Hair Loss

If you’re someone who is experiencing hair loss due to an illness, regardless whether it’s mild or severe, we recommend that you go with a hairpiece and stay away from extensions. This is a situation where a wig is a definite winner because it is designed to do actually that – give you hair when you don’t have your own. Installing extensions on strands that are falling out is a very bad idea because the hair is already very weak and adding extensions would only make the matters worse. Also, if the hair loss is more visible and severe, extensions can’t even be attached because there’s not enough hair to hold it and cover it. A hairpiece, on the other hand, does not require that you have any natural hair and you can install it even if you’re bold. For a long time, wigs have been life savers for people who are going through such a heartbreaking thing as hair loss and are still the best choice. To make your situation as easy as possible, we advise you to contact medical support as soon as you notice any type of hair loss and get treatment. As soon as you get a diagnosis, you can start wearing a hairpiece which means you don’t have to wait for your strands to fall out completely. This will also minimize the stress and nobody will notice what you’re going through. Also, while you’re getting treated, your natural tresses will have time to recover and start growing again which means you won’t have to wear the wig forever, unless you’re suffering from a condition that’s permanent.

Thin Hair

Many girls with very thin strands are opting out for wigs instead of extensions and there are a couple of reasons why that is not such a crazy choice. When hair is really thin, it is also very weak which means the extra weight of the extensions might not be such a smart idea because it can lead to shedding or breakage. Extensions are also not that easy to cover up with very fine strands which may lead to them being visible, and that’s not something anybody wants because it defeats the whole purpose. In fact, the only extensions that are allowed to be installed on thin hair are tape-ins. It is because they’re very light and non-invasive. If you choose transparent tape, it is easier to hide as well. But to avoid the risk of damaging your already thin locks, wigs are actually a great choice, a much better one than extensions. You simply put the hairpiece on and your natural hair is safely hidden away underneath and on the outside you have luscious thick strands. Who wouldn’t want that? You can see our wig options here.

Short Hair

Female with short hairIf your strands are very short, we recommend wigs. It is impossible to install extensions on short hair and they’re simply not designed to do that. You need to have at least medium length hair for the extensions to look good and blend properly. But if you still want to have longer locks, simply put on a wig. The great thing about hairpiece is that you don’t need to have any hair at all to wear it, so short strands are not a problem at all.

Realistic Look

When it comes to a natural and realistic look and feel, wigs and extensions are neck to neck. Whichever you choose, we recommend Remy hair because it looks most natural while synthetic hairpieces and extensions will not give you that. A nice installation job will also contribute to a flawless look so make sure it is done professionally. Botched applications ruin the whole look and can also cause harm to your tresses. AiryHair offers only Remy extensions and wigs, so you can bet both will look seamless and natural.

Application Methods

When it comes to different application methods, it’s hard to say whether extensions or wigs are a better choice because it really depends on your preference. Wigs are usually taped, glued, or sewn in. The first two are temporary, while sewing is a more permanent method. Extensions can be attached in many different ways, depending on the type. Clip-ins are the easiest to attach and use wefts and clips. Tape-ins are a more permanent option and are installed using invisible tape. U-tip extensions are installed using the hot fusion method, while cold fusion is used for I-tip and micro loop extensions. There are also weft extensions which can be installed in many ways. Each application method has its positive and negatives, but all of them produce great results.

Maintenance

Both wigs and extensions need care, but some need more and others need less maintenance. For example, clip-ins are very easy to take care of, but they do need to be taken off each day which does not suit everybody. Tape-ins, keratin, and micro ring extensions require you to be more careful when washing hair and sleeping, but once you install them they can be worn for longer period of time. Wigs are actually pretty low maintenance because they don’t need to be washed as often and behave just like natural strands, so your hair routine will stay pretty much the same.

Longevity

Assuming that you purchased Remy hair, both extensions and wigs last for a pretty long time and are very durable. It all depends on how often you use your new hair and whether you care for it. However, many high-quality wigs are known to last even more than some extension types (up to a year), so if you want to buy something that you can wear for a very long time, consider wigs as well.

Damaged Hair

Woman with bald scalpIf you have split ends, extreme tangling, notice extreme dryness, experience bold patches or shedding, notice that your strands lack elasticity, or have high porosity, it means that your locks are damaged. You may notice one or more of these in combination, but none of them are good news. Although these things happen very often due to certain products, overuse of hot tools, neglect, poor maintenance, diet and even genetics, it is certainly not a good look and may be the cause of much frustration. Your first solution might be to simply install some extensions that will cover up the damaged hair, but a wig might actually be a better option. Not only it completely covers up the damaged strands and gives you perfect hair, but it also gives time to the damaged strands to recover. While your locks are underneath the wig, they are not exposed to anything from the outside which might have damaged it in the first place, like the sun, different products, and hot tools. It is safely tucked away and that way it can recuperate much faster. But that doesn’t mean that you still shouldn’t take all the steps necessary to get the strands in a better condition like cutting split ends, adding more moisture, or using nurturing hair masks.

Comfortableness

All women want something that will be very comfortable to wear so you might pose a question, which is more comfortable – wigs or extensions? While quality wigs do not cause any discomfort, wearing a cap on your head might not be as comfortable as extensions. Most of us are simply not used to having a wig cap on our head and that might feel weird for some. With extensions, there is nothing on your scalp, just wefts that are attached to the hair which means more room for the scalp to breathe and less heat. If you’re concerned with wig caps, we recommend wigs made out of lace, they’re much more comfortable.

Short and Long-Term Options

We recommend clip-in and wire extensions for those who are looking for short term options, while wigs, keratin, micro ring, and tape-in extensions are a much better long-term option.

Prices

When it comes to prices, overall, extensions are cheaper than wigs. It all comes down to the amount of hair. With extensions, you are mixing natural strands with artificial ones which means you don’t need as much of them to get a nice, full look. Wigs don’t include any of your strands which makes them more expensive. They are also much harder to make because the strands need to be attached to the cap. But the prices can vary depending on the wig or extension type.

In Conclusion

In the end, the choice is up to you and it depends on your preferences and condition. While hairpieces and extensions give similar results when it comes to length, volume, longevity, and realistic look, wigs are much better for conditions like hair loss, very thin or damaged hair.

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Wigs vs. Hair Extensions – Which One to Choose?

by Sam Fisher time to read: 8 min
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