This seems to be an ongoing question and debate that I intend to address here! A lot of women don’t have a clue how long they should hold onto such a large investment or when to let it go. Unfortunately, many stylists do not give their clients the necessary information for weave care or they simply don’t know the proper process.
Some people keep their weave in only until the appropriate halfway point, and that could be because they don’t know that there is a maintenance period midway through your installment that will buy them more time before the necessary removal. With this blog I am going to help you understand how long you should wear your install and why the timeframe not only makes sense, but it is important.
First of all, the one important detail that is outside of your hands or the technician’s hands is the natural way the hair grows. Whether your hair grows fast or slow, if you have hair, it grows. If you shampoo periodically, the weave is going to become loosened.
HOW HAIR GROWTH AFFECTS YOUR INSTALLMENT TIME
There are a few variables that fluctuate the time of hair growth and in turn, affects how many weeks a weave will stay firm. The most prominent ones are seasons, hormones, genetics, age and medication.
There is a 6-week time span before hair shifts a bit. For people that have a slower growth pattern, it may take a little longer than that, sometime between 6-8 weeks. Nonetheless, that is the natural timeframe when hair sprouts out and goes through its growth phase. What also affects the timeframe from 6 up to 8 weeks are the seasons.
Summer is naturally a growing season, and hair tends to shift a lot sooner. The moisture on top of the heat doesn’t help. Therefore, the summer season will be the shortest time frame that weaves will lay firm. The good news is that natural hair is growing faster than any other season.
For some people with certain genetics, hair may grow extremely fast or very slow. Medication, abnormal hormone levels, and age also impact hair growth, generally causing slower growth.
Since the hair shifts, the installation is generally good if you have maintenance to tighten the hair back up. This consists of 1 shifting period or growth phase before it needs to come out. In other words, the quarter of an inch of hair that grows every 6-week period or 6- to 8-week period depends on many factors. With experience, you and your stylist should be able to determine your ideal timeframe for maintenance that will reinforce the weft back to the place where it originally started.
If you don’t get the maintenance in 6- to 8-week timeframe, it still constitutes the halfway point. By that time, the hair shifts again, and after that, there will be no more support to tighten the hair again due to the amount of growth or shifting.
So many women remove their weaves at the halfway point when they could have worn it much longer. At the halfway point when it loosens up, they could simply get it tightened up and be good to go for several more weeks. A qualified stylist should always explain this process to their clients.
WHEN YOUR WEAVE SHOULD COME OUT PREMATURELY
The quality of the hair is an important factor to the longevity of the weave. No matter how expert the technique or the technician, if the batch of hair is bad, there is very little that can be done to salvage the weave. This applies to almost every weave and extension service, whether on white hair or black hair (straight, curly or kinky). The problem that occurs when you have a bad batch or poor quality of hair is that it causes a lot of added friction and pulling on your own hair.
If your installed hair is not manageable and you are struggling to keep it detangled, this is not a good sign, and the hair may need to be removed earlier than expected. Anything that adds extra pulling and tugging, especially to the hairline will more than likely need to come out to avoid damage to your own natural hair.
Do not make a habit of buying poor quality hair just because it’s cheap as it will tangle and/or mat. This can cause more damage and harm later. This doesn’t happen when you invest in quality Remy or virgin grades of hair. Blended hair, human hair, synthetic hair, virgin hair or Remy hair will all hold up differently. This is another thing that can cause the 3-month life of your weave to fluctuate. Here I am referring to the natural hair–not the installation. Virgin hair and Remy hair is going to give you the longest timeframe to wear your weave comfortably for 3 months with no added friction, and in most cases, the hair can be reused.
WHY SOME WOMEN WEAR THEIR WEAVES WAY TOO LONG
A high quality weave that is done with top grade hair and thread should hold up the best. In fact I have seen people keep the weave in for up to 6 months because everything was holding up so well. This is the worst thing you can do! This causes a terrible matting process and an extreme amount of natural hair loss. Even though an excellent weave install may seem like it never needs to come out, I don’t recommend leaving anything in your head longer than 3 ½ months ever! No matter what type or texture hair you have, after about 3 ½ months, most installed hair will begin to lock up with your natural hair, making the take out of the weave very difficult.
SHOULD YOU NEED TO WAIT BEFORE REINSTALLING?
Another misunderstanding is about how long you need to wait in-between installs. While this may vary based on individual needs and concerns, there is no real timeframe that you must wait in-between installs. I have literally worn my weave for 9 years straight! I would take my hair down after about 3 months, color, shampoo, and condition and then reinstall. I did this continuously for 9 years and my hair grew out wonderfully. In fact, during that period, my hair grew its longest ever. What allowed me to do this with so much ease is the fact that my hair is natural.
Natural hair is key to long term weave wearing. This is why 90% of my clientele have natural hair. They didn’t all start out that way, but relaxed hair breaks and gets extremely tangled when braided for long periods of time.
Some people believe you must give the hair a break in-between installs, but this is not necessarily the case. However, if you have color that needs to be touched up, a certain scalp condition, or any number of things that may need to be accomplished to prepare for the next install, it makes perfect sense to give your hair a few days or a week to prepare for your next install. There is no harm in giving your hair a break in-between installs, but also there is no harm in not giving your hair a break. The harm comes when the proper care isn’t met or again based on individual needs.
The most important thing in all is that the installer does a good foundation and has a gentle touch. Nothing should be too tight ever! When applying these techniques with my clients, as well as the grooming they need to do themselves at home, I see wonderful results in hair growth.
If you guys feel that this information is helpful, please let me know! If you would like for me to elaborate more, let me know that as well! I love hearing from you, so please give me more feedback on how I can serve you!