What is equally important as using the proper products for hair extensions, is what products to avoid.  Many products will destroy hair extensions, some will damage and others will slowly degrade their quality.  Below is a list as to what to avoid and why.  This applies to all types of hair extensions from keratin bond, tape hair extensions, hand-tied wefts, and Veila Pull-Thru.

What Products To Avoid On Hair Extensions?

Protein Products

There are protein products (in small doses) that are okay to use on hair extensions, but in general, it is best to avoid products that contain the ingredients below.  In some cases, a keratin hair treatment applied once on the extensions will render good results.  The problem is the consistent use of protein products found in shampoos, conditioners, and leave-in products.  Hair extensions c go through a decolorization process since they are most likely from a dark hair origin, which creates color consistency.  Once decolorized, they are dyed to the subtle tones which match our hair perfectly.  Conventional hair dye is not utilized, instead, they are colored with textile dye.  Therefore, products that work well on natural hair do not necessarily work well on hair extensions, and often will damage them.  Look for these ingredients in your products, I prescribe the perfect home-care products for my hair extension clients, feel free to leave a question on our comment section if you have questions.

The below products are "hydrolyzed" which means they are broken down to a concentrate that binds to water and allows for deep penetration into hair strands.  These products work very well on natural hair, but will often have adverse effects on hair extensions.

1) hydrolyzed wheat protein

2) hydrolyzed milk protein

3) hydrolyzed collagen

4) Casein

Formaldehyde

Formaldehyde can be hidden in keratin treatments (most likely from outside the U.S.) and some hair care products.  Formaldehyde will slowly damage natural hair, but will immediately destroy hair extensions.  It is essential to have a keratin treatment service at a professional salon, demand an ingredient list, and a website for the product they are using.  Do your research.

Sunscreens Containing Avobenzone 

Have you seen blonde hair extensions with orange ends or strands running through them?  Most likely the culprit is Avobenzone contained in sunscreen.  The combination of the elements and Avobenzone causes a bleaching reaction to the hair extensions, after a few shampoos minerals found in water such as; copper, magnesium, and iron attach to the hair extensions resulting in orange hues and discoloration.  We often use MalibuC treatment to remove mineral build-up, this should help. 

There may be another reason for orange ends, the sun can bleach hair extensions revealing the underlying pigment through the oxidation process.  The cure for this is to use a violet based toner to counteract the orange hue.

What May Be Obvious

Avoid the below products and chemicals:

1) parabens

2) sulfates

3) alcohol

4) hair bleach

5) chlorine

The above products will break down the bonds of the extensions rendering dry, matted, even broken hair extensions.  

In conclusion, always consult with your hairstylists for extension-safe products and services. read label ingredients, check in with your stylist, as often as necessary, to ask questions about products you are considering.  

I hope this helps, as previously stated, feel free to comment below with any questions you may have!

Hair Extensions Background

At Noelle Salon, we evaluate your natural hair, listen to our client's wishes on styling, color match, and look. We use human hair extensions like 100% Remy human hair, or Virgin Hair (unlike Bellami hair). Hair extensions can be used for short hair or 24 inches of a full head of hair, and have worked with different methods like tape-in extensions, clip-in hair extensions, Keratin and enjoy using our Pull-thru Veila Hair Extensions for ease of hair care. Styling can vary from flat iron, natural curl, or curly hair. Whether you are looking for a change of style or look for a day such as a Clip-in ponytail, having a high-quality ponytail extension can mix it up for you. Your natural hair journey with your hair growth can be enhanced with Hair extensions when protective styling is applied, and regular maintenance is used. You can change your hair in one day - feel free to reach out to us and explore the possibilities.

Noelle Spinosa

Written by Noelle Spinosa

Noelle Spinosa has been hair stylist for over 25 years. She has been featured on television in Chronicle Magazine, Channel 7 News and the WB morning Show. Noelle has also been highlighted in both the Boston Globe and the Boston Herald for her in depth knowledge of hair extensions.