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What are the Different Types of Human Hair Wigs?

By S. Reynolds
Updated May 21, 2024
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Human hair wigs are popular among men and women alike. Although they are popular in the African-American community, people of all ethnicities use these wigs. Most types on the market come from Asian or East Asian countries like China, Malaysia, and India, where there is a thriving wig industry. Some popular types of human hair wigs include lace front, curly wigs, African American wigs, hair extensions, and hairpieces for men.

Many human hair wigs are made from hair that has been imported from Asian countries. These pieces are usually applied in a beauty shop, where they can cost a great deal of money. Women often have their hair braided against their heads in a coil pattern, and strips of hair are then sewn into the braids. These types of wigs are usually called "weaves" because they are woven into the natural hair.

Some people may choose this type of wig because they have difficulty in growing their own hair. African hair, for example, is often dry and coarse, and can be difficult to grow without the strands breaking or curling too much. Human hair wigs are easier to style and change whenever the wearer desires a new look. Also, European or Asian hair can usually better handle frequent shampooing, brushing, and styling.

Lace front wigs offer full-cap coverage. The hair is attached to a monofilament cloth, which lets the wearer's scalp show through for a natural look. This cap is normally soft and blends into the scalp. Natural wigs with a lace front can be curly, wavy, or straight, depending on the type of hair used and whether it has been styled with permanent solutions.

Hair extensions are an alternative to a full wig. Extensions, which are small clumps of synthetic or human hair, are glued onto a person's scalp or clipped to real pieces of hair close to the scalp. They make a person's hair appear fuller or longer, and can last until the wearer has them professionally removed or cut out. The extensions can add a streak of temporary color for a wild look, or they can blend into a person's natural hair.

Men also use human hair, especially if balding is a problem. Men who have a thick head of hair are often envied by other men, and many women find the look attractive as well. Men usually call these wigs toupees or hair pieces. They attach to the scalp with tape or glue, and are usually only worn in public. These can be made of human or synthetic hair.

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