How to Wear Lace Front Wigs
Ladies, please take a look at the picture of Ciara above. That is how NOT to wear a lace front wig. Let me start by explaining what inspired this post. Quite frankly I’m scared. Scared for my Kenyan sisters who are notorious for copying trends without researching the trend. I went to my hairdresser this past weekend. She had on what she thought was a lace front. It looked like 10 dead racoons piled on top of her head. This same atrocious looking lady, tried to convince me to get my hair done just like hers. In her defence, she’s really good at what she does. So I chose to assume that she was not responsible for the mess on her head. I politely declined her offer and insisted on sticking to my same old comfortable style, which looks amazing if I may say so myself.
As with most things, it’s better to start with definitions. Simply put, lace front wigs are full wigs with mesh lace attached in front and beyond the “hair line” of the wig, which is custom fitted, trimmed, and temporarily glued to ones skin around the hairline. You can’t see where the lace starts or ends. The mesh lace also provides for natural looking partings in the hair. The difference between a full lace wig and a lace front wig is that full lace wigs can be parted anywhere throughout the wig, while lace front wigs can only be parted in a limited portion of the front.
Lace wigs are popular because you can style them just like you would your natural hair. You can braid it, curl it, wear it in a pony tail or let it fall loose. Therein lies their beauty. There are many Hollywood stars who love to wear lace front wigs as they are easy to maintain. Besides, you can swim and shower in them and be as active as you would like to in them. You can wear them up to three months before you have to take them off and take care of them unless they get very grimy or greasy before that.
There are basically two kinds of lace that are used to make lace wigs; one is Swiss lace which is very delicate and so thin that it cannot even be noticed. French lace on the other hand is fine and cannot be detected too but is much stronger than the Swiss lace. As a general rule of thumb however, Swiss lace is less visible than French lace. The lace can be dyed to match your exact skin tone so that the lace front wigs appear and blend even more naturally. Please make sure you try to get lace that blends with your skin tone as much as possible. There is only so much that makeup can do and the pic of Ciara above and the pic of Mary J. Blige below are a perfect testament to that.
Also make sure that the cap is a good fit. When getting a custom made lace wig it is designed to fit the person it is for. It will fit far better than a ready-made one, and thus give off a more natural look. Make sure that when you are choosing a wig you keep in mind the shape of your face. It is kind of like picking a hairstyle that will look right on you.
Applying the glue is another tricky part of the process. Attach the adhesive strips to the back side of the wig. Some people may choose to use adhesive glue. When the adhesive dries it should not be noticeable. A clear demonstration of how things can go wrong is Beyonce:
Please note that lace wigs are not meant to be worn full time. They should primarily be used to give your natural hair a break. Constant wearing of lace wigs will give you the “Naomi Campbell” hair line:
A few tips to protect your hairline while wearing lace wigs:
Try the wig on before cutting off the additional lace at the front. You need to leave a little extra lace on the front to catch the glue. Cutting the lace too short creates a bad fit and excessive pull.
Use hair gel, corn rows or a wig stocking to slick hair back. Using an unbreathable fabric to hold your hair under the wig causes damage to your existing hair.
Prevent damage to existing hair and scalp by applying the adhesive directly on the skin and not on existing hair.
Apply only approved glue for the wig and scalp. Using other types of adhesives may cause damage to the hair, scalp and wig.
Remove the glue first with lace release remover. If you pull the unit from the scalp before you clean away the glue, your hair may pull out.
Allow the adhesive remover to sit for a while prior to attempting to remove the wig. It takes a few minutes for the glue to soften. If you attempt to remove the wig too soon, it will tug natural hairs out of the scalp.
Keep your hair and wig clean. Wash the wig as often as the manufacturer recommends to deter any possibility of bacterial of fungal infection. Infection is infrequent but can occur.