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I’ve had a tumultuous relationship with hair extensions.
I experimented with clip-ins – both synthetic and natural – while at uni. I vividly recall walking into the bathrooms at Mooseheads to find my reflection staring back at me, my hair half a sweaty, curly mess and half synthetically smooth and poker straight. Or there was the time I was forced to suddenly drop on the dancefloor, faking a dance move but really retrieving a chunk of fallen hair from under someone’s stiletto. Yep – mortifying.
Like many girls from Canberra, I’d also made the trek to Sydney to get hair extensions tightly woven in. Months later I would cry as my best friend painstakingly removed the braids, leaving sections of frizzy, damaged hair.
You can image my hesitation when Rosa Sergi of Urban Hair Yarralumla suggested extensions.
At the time, I felt as though I was stuck in a rut with my hair. Despite years of trying, my fine, blonde hair seemed as though it just wouldn’t grow. Naturally, I was worried about damage to my already processed hair – but Rosa assured me that if I looked after them, the tape extensions would cause minimal damage and allow my natural hair to grow.
Eventually, I came around to the idea and agreed to give extensions another try. As soon as I left the salon, I knew I’d made the right decision. Rosa had cut the extensions in so naturally that you couldn’t tell where my own hair ended and the extensions began, and I felt a huge surge of confidence.
They took a little getting used to – in order to make sure they last as long as possible between visits, they’re taped in tight to your scalp. Mine is always a little itchy for a few days, and then feel like part of my scalp.
About a week after I first had the extensions in, I noticed that they were a slightly different colour to my hair. Although my friends couldn’t tell the difference, it bothered me. I messaged Rosa and the next day, she toned them for me and they were perfect and have remained that way for six months.
A few people have asked me if the extensions take longer to style. Obviously, there’s more here so it takes longer to dry, curl or straighten. That being said, I find that because of the extra weight and volume, my hair stays styled for longer and doesn’t need to be washed as often, so over the course of the week I probably spend the same amount of time doing my hair as I did sans extensions.
You do need to take care of them: obviously you can’t go raking a hairbrush willy nilly over your scalp as it will get caught on the tapes. For someone with fine hair like me, I also need to be careful when I wear my hair up that the tapes are covered, but this doesn’t take much effort and I tend to wear a low pony to the gym anyway so you never see them.
As your hair grows out, so do the extensions and you will need to go and get them retaped every six to eight weeks for $180. However, if you get your hair coloured (as most of us do) you can go in one visit and get the tapes removed, cleaned and retaped, your hair coloured and trimmed and the extensions applied again. It’s a pretty painless process and means that you don’t have to awkwardly explain to people why you’ve suddenly got shorter hair.
In terms of cost, it’s $800 for a full set of extensions. Provided you look after them, they should last you around 12 months. I’ve had mine for six months and they still look healthy and full. There are three different kinds of extensions that you can get at Urban: Russian, European or Remy hair. They’re all high quality but Russian hair tends to be quite fine, so generally Rosa and the team will recommend the European or Remy, however, this will depend on your hair and will be decided during your consultation.
It might sound silly, but my extensions have made quite a big difference to my confidence – even my friends have commented on the difference. For someone who’s always had shorted hair, I love how feminine thicker, longer hair makes me feel. People are always surprised when I tell them I have extensions, as the cut and colour always blend naturally. Sure enough, Rosa was right: every time I get my hair done my natural hair grows.
The only problem? I can’t see myself getting rid of my extensions anytime soon – I might be addicted…
What: Hair Extensions
Where: Urban Hair Yarralumla, 5 Bentham St, Yarralumla.
How much: $800 for a full set and $180 for refills.
Book: 02 6282 0718
This is not a sponsored post. The author covered the cost of the hair extensions from her personal finances.