The last thing you should worry about when you’ve lost your hair due to a medical condition, or side effect, is a wig. However, increasing the likelihood of getting a medical wig you’ll actually want to wear, feel comfortable in, and suits you, will make your life easier. And the less you can worry about your hair, or replacement hair, the better.
Here’s a quick guide to look over before you make your first investment in a medical wig.
Matching your current look or branching out?
Women often start off wanting to match their biological hair as closely as possible. If your hair loss persists, you may find you’d like to branch out beyond that. The three main factors to consider are length, color, and texture. It helps your consultant if you have photos either of yourself or a photo of someone else who has hair you’d like to match.
Some people prefer to have a slightly different color, length, or change like highlights. This kind of minimal change is just noticeable enough that extended friends and family will say, “Did you change your hair?” And not think twice about it. But for others, that might be a better second wig choice. It’s important, regardless of how much you choose to match, that you manage your expectations. A wig will not ever be your biological hair. But it can get pretty close, and many women find that wearing a wig comes with a lot of perks-- much less time spent on styling (you just pop it on and go!), comfort (medical wigs are particularly comfortable and secure when you have the right fit), and imperceptibility (people won’t notice that you’re wearing a wig.)
It is easy and common to become overwhelmed by the many bells, whistles, and various options available. To further confuse things, every brand has their own terminology for these additions. So, take a deep breath, and know that a medical wig from a reputable brand and a reputable seller is the highest quality wig construction. Here are a few decisions you might make:
Hair Type: human hair, synthetic hair, human hair blend
Human hair will last the longest and look most authentic, but synthetic hair is more cost effective and requires less care. You might hear about European hair, Cambodian or Brazillian hair, and this hair can be procured but it generally costs substantially more for genuine authenticity, and you will most likely need a wig custom made by one of our local traditional wig makers. This type of truly custom wig is especially appreciated by those who have worn wigs and will wear them for an extended period of time. It is an investment that will last.
The foundation of a wig is the inside of the wig. It is how a wig is constructed, and although it’s not typically the first thing you think about. In fact, many people overlook the inside of a wig completely, which is actually a good sign. But, to make the most informed decision, you’ll want a basic understanding of what your options are.
Lace and other Details
Lace wigs are popular for a good reason. Whether part of a wig is lace such as a lace front, where the front of the wig is lace, or the entire wig is lace, you’ll want to consider first how you most often wear your hair. If you tend to wear your hair down and parted one specific way, you may not need a full lace cap.
However, if you like to change it up, or wear your hair up in any way and want your wig to look and feel as much like your hair as possible, a full lace wig is the way to go!
Beyond the choice of lace, part lace, or no lace, your consultant can dial down between the differences of a silk top, a mono top, mesh, stretch, and other materials. A lot of these choices come down to preference. The important thing is that the lace matches your complexion to blend into your skin.
Whether minimal such as a trim or styling, or major involving adding lace or changing the general fit or construction, your consultant can work with you and/or consult with a trusted local wig maker to make your wig even more custom for you. Some times, if you have a wig purchased elsewhere, you may wind up deciding to start fresh with a new wig. However, there are always alterations that can be made to bring a wig closer to your goal.
If you will be undergoing medical treatments that require you to have no metal, it’s good to let your consultant know. Some wigs use small metal pieces within the foundation that you don’t see that help to keep the ear tabs and nape of the wig down. These can be removed, or plastic ones can be used instead. If you have any sensitivities to smell or styling products, this is also useful to let your consultant know ahead of your appointment.
Stay tuned for more tips and tricks, as well as useful general information on medical wigs. The first wig can feel overwhelming, but many women feel empowered enough and appreciate the opportunity to make these decisions for themselves during their time of uncertainty. We hope this will get you started on the right path, but as always, please reach out with any questions you might have. We are here to support you on this journey!