How To Choose The Best Hair Extensions (And Why Ethical Weaves Never Come Cheap)

How To Choose The Best Hair Extensions (And Why Ethical Weaves Never Come Cheap)

How much will hair extensions price, in terms of financial as well as ethically?

Nowadays fake hair is all over the place. From the ponytails with clip-ins that are found in shops selling accessories on the high street to the expensive extensions sold by whoever did the best in the last episode on Love Island, fake hair's demand and supply are greater than ever before.

It's easy to understand why when celebrities and stylists began to open up about their use of extensions, weaves, and hair wigs, in the age beauty tutorials, ordinary women began to realize that the images they'd been transferring to hairdressers for 'inspiration' were not as realistic as they thought. But, there was an added bonus, they were possible.

Instead of being limited in volume, length or fashion, fake hair was a way that women could get whatever they desired.

We were able to do it. Hair extensions have not just become an insidious weapon in everyday beauty arsenal ( case in point) however, they are also an industry that is growing with estimated annual revenue of $250 million to $1 billion.


Based on a report from 2018 Research and Markets report, the hair wigs and extensions market is projected to earn upwards of $10 billion by 2023.

Unfortunately, every hair type isn't made equal.

Some customers choose synthetic hair (typically composed of fibre blends made from plastic that are similar to natural hair, but aren't recyclable, nor biodegradable) the most popular choice is hair that's human. It can be styled as regular hair. You can dye it just like natural hair, cleaned as normal hair, and wore for a long time if taken care of.


However, the business of human hair is not regulated.

What we know is that the majority of human hair originates out of Russia, Ukraine, China, Peru, and India. Women in these countries could make more money than their salary through selling hair to cash-rich Westerners. But this isn't often the case.

A lot of companies - and in actual many American hair extensions companies I've encountered procure their hair directly from Indian temples where devotees of the religion engage in rituals of shaving their heads. The act, known as "tonsuring", can result in a floor of the temple full of hair that is loose. The hair is generally collected by temple sweepers (hired in direct contact with human hair buyers) or auctioned off.

Some hair extensions firms such as Woven Hair, even tout their $239 temple hair as an ethically source' benefit. Remy, at that.

It's a bit of explanation.

"Bad hair has gone through so many processes in a short space of time that it often barely resembles how it was when it was first donated," says Sarah McKenna, founder of hair extension salon Vixen & Blush. "In fact, when packaged, bad hair is most likely from thousands of people rather than just one."

She says that some of the hair from humans being offered to consumers is sourced from salon floors as well as brushes. Hair that, more importantly, is of poor quality. The majority of hair that is collected gets collected in a huge tank of bleach, ripped of its cuticle and then colored to an attractive shade.

"This hair now classified as non-remy, which means that the cuticle is distorted and is not in its original direction from root to tip and requires a heavy machine to remove it.

"Often the final color can fade because cheap industrial dyes spill out of the cuticle. Hair will eventually turn an odd shade of orange or perhaps even green - the colour of the dye that is cheap."

Certain brands even add synthetic hair clumps in with silicone-coated collected hair in order to boost their profits but they still claim that the hair is real human hair.

To run her own salon McKenna was looking to find the finest quality natural (unprocessed) hair she could and made extreme efforts to find the right places and individuals who were able to do this ethically.

8 years on, she still not only places the most beautiful hair extensions that are true to colour in her salons but also supplies the hair to specially selected specialists such like Ouxun Hairs.

In fact, she's the only UK customer that works with her one-source Russian supplier. "We have visited them every year. The team that collects hair visits remote regions to collect hair donated and we are familiar with the routes and places.

"The hair is purchased and is an essential part to the economic activity of the community. Younger people are able to sell their hair and earn money to support their families."

With Vixen & Blush, Ouxun Hairs's organically-sourced hair extensions are the best

Ouxun Hairs

Human hair sourcing is a micro-economy all its own. This is precisely why ethically sourced hair will never be cheap. Excellent suppliers - even excellent suppliers should be seeking out hair from those who would like to sell it, and paying these people fairly and treating their contributions as if they were gold.

According to McKenna the salon that is selling a full head of micro-ring hair extensions at under PS450 ($580) and it's most likely because the hair used is of low quality.

"In a high street salon the cost you see is a total for both the product and the service," she explains. "The cost of hair does not change between cities, but the labor cost will.

"For a full head of 18-inch micro ring hair extensions, you can expect prices to go to PS600 ($780) in high hair of good quality. In London the price is more likely to cost PS750 ($970)."

To pick the best hair extensions for you as a customer, McKenna believes the safest option is to always go to a professional who has expertise to impart. That's why she established Ouxun Hairs a only salon-based brand for extensions.

In fact, partner salons must have at least three stylists who are skilled and offering extensions at the salon before they is willing to share the hair. "These salons spend their time and money to train their staff, and they also have a significant number of clients who frequent them, so they can develop their techniques. Making hair extensions only every month at an ordinary salon isn't enough to be a professional."

In addition, as a benefit, it does not put any pressure on her ethically-sourced products.

Along with the Central as well as Shoreditch-based Vixen & Blush salons, Ouxun Hairs's hair is made by hair experts and the most prestigious salonsSamantha Cusick, Daniel Granger, Hari's Hershesons as well as Leo Bancroft, to name just a few.

"I do feel the throwaway culture that pervades culture is something that should be tackled," McKenna says and her words set the bar.

Post time: Sep-26-2023