The complete guide to Natural Hair Extensions Care - Make them last

The complete guide to Natural Hair Extensions Care - Make them last

You have spent good money on your natural hair extensions, don’t you want them to last a long time looking lustrous and beautiful?

I would… and that’s why I have written this hair extensions care guide. Follow up and in no time you will know everything there is to maintaining your weaves looking awesome.

The hair extensions care routine explained in this blog has easy techniques that can be implemented at home for newcomers to the extensions world and people that have been using them forever. You will quickly familiarize with them and you will say bye to matted, tangled hair extensions and welcome flawless and vibrant hair extensions that last for a long time.

Cost Of Hair Extensions Care

This is especially important if you can’t keep up with regular maintenance appointments in your salon. 

I can’t tell you how many customers come to my salon with their hair extensions looking like a mess asking if there is anything I can do for them. They were good quality natural hair extensions in the beginning that, over time, because they haven’t been cared for, became matted, tangled and I am sure the customers have been suffering them a while before they came to our store. 

Natural hair extensions are not cheap so if you want them in good shape for a long time, keep reading!

If your hair extensions are synthetic… go somewhere else

I would like to highlight that this guide is only for natural hair extensions, not for synthetic ones. We don’t recommend the latter ones because they look artificial, they tend to tangle and knot more and you can’t really use products in them that you would use in your natural hair. Also, they do not accept heat so no playing with textures using your iron. 

I know, I know, the natural ones are more expensive… but they do last way longer and with the proper hair extensions care routine and tips that we are going to explain in this article they will also look like you are not wearing them. 

Enough introduction, let’s get into the caring routine for your extensions

Install your extensions correctly

You might consider yourself the queen of DIY when it comes to hair, you have done a few different styles, changed your hair color yourself etc. But let me tell you, for most hair extensions installations you will get in trouble sooner than later. 

Hairdresser Installing Hair Extensions

Go to your professional hair extensions technician because they have the tools and know how to install them. It is a long process and it will become increasingly difficult to maintain concentration to the end if you do it yourself. It can be frustrating if you don’t have the proper training because the extensions might look out of place right from the start, you might cause damage to them and overall chances are that you will end up making an appointment to your hair extensions specialist because you are not happy with the results.

Other problems that might arise if you do it yourself is that the extensions might not blend with your natural hair, the extensions bonds are too far from the roots or your natural hair becomes a casualty of this process, experiencing shedding, tangling etc. 

The hair extensions care starts with a professional installation, keep that in mind.

How to wash your hair extensions

First you will have to pick a good shampoo and conditioner to avoid losing natural oils that protect your scalp and natural hair. Take into account that your hair extensions are not attached to your scalp but to the root of your hair so they don’t get the benefits of the natural oils generated in your scalp. The shampoo and conditioner will have to supply the vitamins and hydration your hair extensions need to stay healthy.

Use products with no sulfates or alcohol as, over time, they will remove the natural oils and make your locks look matted and more prone to tangling. Another great complement is argan oil, coconut oil or macadamia oil, they act like the natural oils from your scalp.

Woman In Shower With Hair Extensions

Ok, now you have your shampoo and conditioner, how do you wash your hair? Start using lukewarm water, definitely don’t use very hot water as it will strip off your hair those precious natural oils. 

Take a shower when possible and let the water run down your scalp and hair, apply the shampoo on the hair making sure the application is gentle on the roots of the scalp to eliminate excess of natural oils. Hair extensions come in different techniques and they all have a bond system, be careful not to put much shampoo on them to avoid slipping. 

Once you rinse the shampoo you will apply the conditioner as if you didn’t have any hair extensions. Make sure though, that it is not applied on the roots or near the extensions bonds as this will make the bonds slip and you will end up with no hair extensions installed in your hair over time. Not that you will get to that scenario, but, hey! Every strand counts!

Shower and condition your hair once a week, that will be enough.

Never sleep with wet hair

This is important, gals, don’t do it.

Woman Sleeping With Wet Hair Extensions 

The hair is way weaker when it is damp or wet so it will break, get matted and tangled if you go to bed with damp hair. All the rolling and tossing during sleep will get your hair in a bad state and you will also have to fix it in the morning if you don’t want to look like a hairball at work. 

This means that you will have to detangle it real hard which will also put more pressure on your extensions and the bonds attachments. Keep this one in mind in your hair extensions care routine or you will remember these paragraphs at some point.

How to brush your hair extensions

How you brush your hair is as important for your natural hair as for your extensions

The rule of thumb when brushing is to minimize pressure on the scalp and extension bonds, always be gentle and don’t pull too much. We know, sometimes you have to put some pressure and pull to resolve some tangling. In that case, with one hand gently grab the upper hair area while brushing the lower part, that way you don’t pull the roots and bonds.

Woman Brushing Hair Extensions

Once the tangling is gone start brushing or combing the end of the hair and work your way up. Be patient and gentle while doing it, you are paving the way to awesome and healthy hair.

Invest in a good brush, for instance a paddle brush for straight hair, a wide-tooth comb for curly hair and a detangler brush. You will definitely need the last one because it is expected to be some level of tangling in your hair extensions.

How to avoid tangling while you sleep

In my studio I get the question ‘How do you sleep with hair extensions?’ a lot. Let me explain to you here.

During sleep you roll and toss around your hair which can create matting and knotting of the hair extensions. Use a silk pillowcase or tie around your head a silk scarf to avoid the friction your hair suffers when you move during sleep. 

This simple technique will increase the life of your hair extensions and save you an immense amount of time during your morning routine. Your hair will look better, with less knots and frizz and you will get to work in time.

You can also use a loose french ponytail or two loose pigtail braids before going to bed. In the morning you will enjoy beautiful waves in your hair too. Two birds with one stone!

What products do you need for my hair extensions care routine?

The products you put in your hair are an important factor to determine the lifespan and healthiness of your natural hair and extensions. The natural oils from the scalp hydrates your natural hair but not your natural hair extensions because they are attached to the root of your hair. That is why it is so important to select products that will help your weaves stay radiant and shiny, not products that dry out your hair and therefore make them more brittle.

Hair Extensions Care Products

Always avoid sulfate products. They definitely dry out your extensions, making them matted, breaking often and therefore your hair will not look gorgeous as you would like. As an important side effect, you will have to replace your extensions after some time, way earlier than you would have hoped for.

Natural oils are good and you know it. I don’t have to explain much about the benefits of natural oils so I will just mention that you should test the amount of oils you need for your hair, it will depend on your length and amount of hair. Now, don apply them near the hair extensions bonds as it might help slipping to happen and you losing strands of extensions. Apply them once every other week.

The type of products will also depends on the hair texture you are wearing, so here is some professional advice:

Straight hair extensions usually stay in good shape with little work. Use dry shampoo (sparingly), heat protectant, shine spray or defrizzer if needed. Paddle brush is a good option to put your hair together.

Wavy hair extensions need some help to maintain those curls performing well. Use wave spray or curling mousse depending on your needs.

If you are rocking more curly than that, you will need to ponder between the curl definition you want. Curl definition mousse or a curl definition gel will do it. The former will give you more luster and less crunch, the latter will hold longer and give you more definition.

How to blow dry or heat style hair extensions

We explained in the intro that one of the benefits of natural hair extensions are their versatility and ability to stylize into different textures. Since you have spent the money on them you will want to apply heat and change maybe the straight texture to a curly one. Here we explain how you can do that safely so your natural hair extensions do not deteriorate and last longer.

 Woman Blow Drying Hair Extensions

Heat has the potential to damage your hair extensions and your natural hair, making it brittle and prone to shedding and splitting the tips. The problem is that the damage accumulates over time and you will want to throw the extensions at some point. So, how do I apply heat?

First, use low heat. Keep that one in mind when drying your hair or styling it. It will require some trial and error, you have to reach a balance between heat and the style you are trying to achieve. Heating tools are essential to styling but you want to keep your extensions looking lustrous for a long time so don’t allow heat damage to accumulate.

Second, apply a heat protectant. You will find a whole variety of them in your store but they all follow the same principle, serve as a layer over your hair that will protect your hair from the heat hit. I will make a difference over time.

Oh, don’t forget, when using an iron never pull too hard so the extensions remain in place. The bonds, where the extensions attach to your hair, is a point of failure so you don’t want to put strain on it.

Third, don’t use heat that often. Give it a break, try an overnight braid for a polished loose wavy hair in the morning or some other updo, be creative honey. 

Separate the bonds

The same way you can’t fight against the laws of the universe your hair will tend to tangle and get knots, it is just the way it is. Now, what are you going to do about it? Well, separating the bonds is another way to prevent it from happening. 

Woman Separating Hair Extensions Bonds

Pass your fingers through the extension bonds to make sure they are separated, carefully separate them if you detect any knots or tangling. Sometimes you will need a comb to remove any hair shedding to knot between your bonds. 

This hair extensions care instruction might seem too time expensive but if you do it every day it should take only a few minutes and you can do it from the comfort of your couch. 


Now you know everything there is to hair extensions caring. This knowledge will allow you to have your weaves and natural hair beautiful, healthy and living a long life. 

One take away from this blog: The cost of hair extensions care is way cheaper than the cost of buying them.

This guide packs a lot of info that you can implement at home but keep in mind that you will still need to go to your hair extensions technician for maintenance. 

When will I know I have to go for maintenance?

You will know, believe me, extensions are bound to your natural hair roots so after some time your hair will grow and the attachments will start showing. In a maintenance service session you will get your extensions removed, washed and reinstalled on your hair root or sometimes you just need a move-up. 

Of course, in our studio in Benalmadena we do offer hair extensions maintenance services, if you need an appointment or you have questions, don't hesitate and book a free consultation.

Adding the caring instructions explained in this guide might take some time in the beginning but once you master them, you, and the rest of the world, will see that the time was well spent because your hair will look shiny, silky and dazzling.

In the midst of uncertainty, maintain your serenity. We've meticulously prepared an FAQ section aimed specifically at addressing any lingering queries about how to care for your hair extensions. Our intent is to dispel any confusion and provide comprehensive answers to all your concerns.

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How should you wash natural hair extensions to maintain their quality?

Wash natural hair extensions with sulfate-free shampoo to minimize dryness. Use lukewarm water and handle them gently to prevent tangling and damage.

What is the recommended way to dry hair extensions?

After washing, pat the extensions dry with a soft towel and allow them to air dry. Use a hairdryer on a low heat setting if necessary, but air drying is preferable.

How can you prevent tangles in your hair extensions?

Regular brushing with a soft-bristle brush or wide-tooth comb, especially before washing, helps minimize tangles. Start from the ends and work your way up to avoid stress on the roots.

Is it important to use special products on hair extensions?

Yes, using high-quality hair care products specifically designed for extensions can help maintain their condition, prolong their lifespan, and keep them looking natural and healthy.

What's the best practice for sleeping with hair extensions?

To avoid tangling and friction damage, consider braiding your hair loosely or wrapping it in a silk scarf overnight. This helps protect the extensions and maintains their quality.