Just today, several of my hair extension clients questioned where human hair for hair extensions come from. There are several countries that source hair extensions the largest being China, second is India, then South America and lastly Eastern Europe. Most extension factories are based in China because of low labor cost, there are a few left in Italy possibly two. There are tons of different hair quality available and price is the best way to gauge the quality. Some hair is cut directly from the donor in the same direction as it grew from the head, this is premier hair and called "remy". More inferior hair comes from the brushes and scattered pieces of hair since the hair is assembled in different directions it will matte and loose it luster within a week. This is because the hair is put through an acid wash to strip the cuticle, then loaded with silicone to keep it from tangling. Once the silicone washes off after a few weeks of shampooing, the hair will matte as well as impossible to brush! The key is to find out if the hair has been acid washed - if so - steer clear! One more pearl of wisdom, whether purchasing hair or having hair extensions applied in salon, ask for samples of the hair and in salon ask for a free consultation. You can then feel the hair, if it is too shiny then it is loaded with silicone. Virgin Hair is a label used to describe the origin of the hair, most virgin hair is on wefts and available in dark colors. It is rare to find light shades of virgin hair, therefore it is virtually non-existent as well as difficult to be consistent in color. You can also ask for references from suppliers and customers
Much of this inferior hair can be purchased on Amazon and China trade sites, the ends of the hair are stringy and does not give the luxurious weight line of high quality hair. Getting into the extension game is a crap shoot, as a extensions specialist and wholesaler, my biggest dream is to create a legitimate standard of hair with the origin available. In the meantime, you can always reach me and I will be more than happy to help with questions about human hair.