The Ultimate Guide to Wigs | Human Hair Wigs, Lace Front Wigs & More!

Gettin' Wiggy With It

Why do wigs differ in price so greatly?

When getting involved with the wig industry we all ask the big question. Why are the price differences so vast? 

We'll be digging into that and giving you some major reasons why wigs vary in price so greatly.

Prices can vary for a low of about $35.00 and well into thousands of dollars depending on many things.    

As with most purchases in life, the old adage "you get what you pay for” also applies to buying wigs.

The Client

First things first, you’re going to want to make sure you understand the differences in clientele that wigs can bring to your salon. 

Not all are experiencing hair loss of any form, as many like to wear wigs for fashion, and stock up on multiple wigs for whichever style they want to wear on a particular day or for a particular event. Think Moira Rose from ‘Schitt’s Creek!’

For the most part, however, your clients will have some medical hair loss like Androgenetic Alopecia or Trichotillomania. 

These are your most loyal and reliable clients as you become their wig expert. If you are able to give them the Five Star salon experience and “wow” them with the wigs you have to offer, they’ll tell their friends, the online communities they’re a part of, and importantly, they’ll tell Google Reviews about it too.

These tips don’t only apply to wigs, either. You can use this information and apply it to human hair systems vs. synthetic hair systems. The pros and cons will remain the same. The same feedback is also likely from your clients!

Human Hair Wigs

This is the most costly type of hair due to limited supply. However, a human hair wig requires more maintenance such as continuous use of heat tools and styling products to reduce frizzing. 

Hair types fall into the following categories:

  1. Chinese
  2. Indian
  3. Indonesia
  4. Malaysian
  5. European

There are different qualities of hair that starts with the gold standard of Remy Hair. 

This hair is processed in small batches and has most of the cuticle still in place. Non-Remy hair would be more of the basic method to process most of the hair used in the making of wigs. 

Take note when trying to lift any of your human hair wigs always do a test sample in the nape area to guarantee the results you want. 

Hair is lifted during processing and then a metallic dye is used to tone the hair to the correct natural color. 

Always use proper cleansing products and protective conditioners to keep the hair soft.

Human hair wigs can be hand tied versus using wefting, or a combination of the two, and there are less color choices than synthetic because of the processing it takes. 

The technique used for most human hair wigs can have an effect on the long-term quality of the wig itself, because of the chemicals used to produce certain colors and curl patterns.

The main difference between human hair and synthetic wigs is style memory. Synthetic wigs do not have to be re-styled after every wash because of its style memory, but just like real hair, you’ll have to restyle, curl and/or straighten after you’ve washed a human hair wig.

You will have to professionally style a human hair wig for your client, as opposed to the light work you’d have to do (if at all) for a synthetic wig, but many people prefer human hair because of the quality and the control that comes with it.

Some clients prefer the daily styling as it gives them a sense of normalcy that they had when they previously had a full head of hair.

Synthetic Wigs

Aderans Cyber / Vital hair is considered the gold standard of the synthetic world. These fibers are made of nylon chips that will be able to handle a high heat temperature of about 350* with a heat tool of your choice.

IHI's Akanu Collection, for example, uses a Cyberhair blend! 

Kanekalon is another type of synthetic fiber used widely as is fine denier. Heat for Kanekalon will be less and should stay at about 250*. 

Polyester fiber is another choice that can be found in wigs today and it has more body to it as it is a thicker denier.  It can handle heat up to about 350*. 

All synthetic are consistent as they all are extracted and made from a machine to manufacture it. There are 1,000's of colors available today that makes the choice endless.

All synthetics have built in style retention done at the factory level when making them. Synthetics will not require as much styling as human hair for the client.   

You can use a heat appliance as long as you follow heat directions of the hang tag that comes with your wig.   

Always use specific synthetic appropriate products to wash, detangle and condition it. Do not use human hair products on synthetics. 

Of the synthetic fibers on the market, Cyberhair is undoubtedly the leading fiber.

Cyberhair  is extremely close to natural growing hair.  It is this texture that gives hair its visual and tactile signature.  All of which adds up to a ‘created’ hair that looks and feels like strong healthy hair.

Cyberhair is a premium, high-temperature created fiber that features 1000’s of perfect colors, is heat-friendly, and can be styled to yours and your client’s content. There are a variety of synthetic hair options with different qualities and benefits.

For your clients who use and prefer synthetic wigs, you should give them these tips:

  1. Wash & condition about every 10 days
  2. Always use products made for synthetics
  3. Always use the correct temperature (no more than 350)
  4. Change curl with steam
  5. Make beach waves with water & curling or flat irons
  6. Do not sleep with wig on

Wigs using synthetic fibers can last up to 12 months, but it all depends on how the client takes care of them and the length of the wig. Longer hair usually wears quicker. The easiest way to think about it is comparing it to purchasing a pair of shoes.

If you wear a pair of shoes every single day and take them with you everywhere without care, they won’t last too long, but if you give those shoes a rest from time to time and take good care of them, they’ll be with you for a while! Expensive shoes, like expensive fibers, generally show wear slower.

Make sure your clients know this when they purchase wigs from you, and suggest that multiple wigs might be the best option for them. This way they can have multiple styles at the drop of a hat, and be able to give the best care possible to each one.

Wig Cap Construction

The cap affects the cost of all wigs made today.  Depending on how a wig is made and the materials used it may require more hands-on labor at the factory level resulting in a higher price. 

Basic caps will be very flimsy and fit ok but do not cost much.  Anytime a wig cap requires labor the prices go up. 

Working with a medical hair loss or alopecia client you’ll want to use and ultra-smooth cap on the inside against the skin. These clients will find all of the other caps itchy and scratchy as they do not have a lot of hair. 

Lace Front Wigs

This will provide a very realistic look with the appearance of natural growing coming from the hairline.  This will increase the cost of a wig.

Lace Front Wigs & Parts

This is the same as above except the handtied area will go back into the part area giving flexibility from the handtied area. This will increase the cost of a wig.

Monofilament Tops

This area of the top of the wig will be all handtied for maximum flexibility.

Double Monofilament Tops

This is simply double and gives a soft underneath area against the scalp preventing the knots to rub against the scalp. This will cost more than a single layer mono.

French Pull Top

This is double also but it has the hair knots caught in between the material with only the single hairs pulled through showing just like a natural root of hair.  Do not get color onto the material because it will stain very badly and never come out.   This adds a lot to the cost because of the extra labor. 

Wefted Backs & Tops

This is the method for a line of hair and it can be used in the back area mostly but you’ll find them on the tops of some wig brands. Usually with a wefted wig you’ll find “frizzy” at the root which helps cover up the weft. 

The “frizzy” can be taken out with some steam and a brush if you like. A weft is not very flexible and allows for a lower cost to manufacture.

The Takeaway

No matter what your client is looking for from a style prospective its already made in some form.  Wigs are so awesome to work with and they require very little hand on work to make them look of so fabulous! 

No matter what pricing your client may want you can find the right marriage of fiber and construction to satisfy their every whim. 

Get out there and get your WIG on!

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