All About Wigs: Frequently Asked Questions
There are often many questions when purchasing a wig, especially for first time wig wearers. Here we address the most common questions and concerns about wigs:
Head size has very little to do with the overall size of a person. It is best not to make any assumptions about fit, and to take measurements. To measure your head, find a flexible seamstress measuring tape. Start at your forehead, just above your eyebrows; proceed toward one side of your head, following the hairline. When you reach the ear area, take the tape behind the ears. Follow the tape all the way around the head, meeting up at your forehead in the front. When you have that measurement, this is your head circumference. For a detailed video and instructions on measuring your head, see our Wig Buying Guide. We offer the following guideline to wig sizes:
Ultra Petite/Children - Fits heads smaller than 20 inches.
Petites - Fits heads 21 inches or smaller.
Average - Fits heads 21.5 - 22.5 inches.
Large Cap - Fits heads 22.5 inches and larger.
Approximately 90% of women will wear an average sized cap. Among the remaining 10%, the majority of these will have petite sized caps. Wig manufacturers are in business to make money. It is more economical for them to offer styles that 90% of people can wear instead of stocking a large selection of wigs that will fit less than 10% of the population. Therefore, most companies make very few wigs in petite caps, and even fewer companies offer large caps. This is why the selection is so poor - the manufacturers simply don't offer many styles.
Sometimes, if the wig is only slightly too large, you can take a regular needle and thread, and take it in slightly. Do not cut the inside of the wig, but create a tuck, as you would on a pair of pants that are too large in the waist. Sometimes wearing a wig cap underneath your wig can help. Sometimes the use of a comfy grip underneath the wig can be helpful as well. With all this stated, it is much better to purchase a wig that fits you.
While we go to every length to ensure that our online swatches are as accurate as possible, individual monitor settings make it impossible to provide a color swatch on your screen that looks exactly like the true color. Our color scans will give you an impression of the overall color but the written descriptions are a more accurate indicator of what the actual color will look like in real life. We offer the following picture from Stressless Tresses to illustrate our point. This picture shows the same person's hair in 3 different lighting settings. It illustrates how the same color can look very different, depending on your individual computer monitor or the scanning method used.
|If you have never worn a wig before, or if you are unsure of your color, please consider taking the extra steps described on this page to ensure that you will be happy with your purchase.|
We have prepared a guide that walks you through the steps. Please visit our Color Information Page for complete instructions.
Please see our guide on Caring For Your Wig for complete instructions.
No. You will need to purchase products specifically designed for synthetic wigs. See our page on Caring For Your Wig for more information. Don't forget to visit our Wig Care Products page to see our comprehensive selection of affordable wig care products.
A monofilament wig is constructed with hairs that are more evenly dispersed on the cap than they are with a standard wig. This gives the appearance of individual hairs growing from the scalp, which is very natural looking. With a standard cap, the hairs are dispersed in rows or lines. Monofilament wigs offer the most styling versatility. The part can be moved or changed because the hair is evenly dispersed on the wig. Monofilament wigs are more expensive because the construction process makes them more costly to make. At Headcovers Unlimited, you will find an assortment of monofilament wigs, as well as quality wigs that do not have the monofilament construction but are still good choices.
We have prepared an informational page so that you may educate yourself on the basic types of wig cap construction. Please view our How Wigs Are Made page for complete details.
When other sites advertise wigs as being "uniquely designed for medical hair loss," they are referring to wigs designed with monofilament construction. Monofilament caps are desirable for any wig wearer. They can be purchased in almost any wig salon, and most major wig companies offer them. Do not be deceived into thinking that you can only purchase these "medical" wigs from one place. No one wig site or manufacturer has a monopoly on this type of wig construction.
Please see our question and answer section on monofilament wigs for more information. At Headcovers Unlimited, we do offer an assortment of quality monofilament wigs, which we always recommend to our clients who can afford them.
All of our wigs come pre-styled. They may need a gentle shake or some slight adjustments with a pick or wig comb once they are removed from their shipping box (Remember that they come to you packed in a hair net). When the wig arrives, some clients like to take their wigs to their local hair stylist while they are wearing them to have them cut and customized to fit their tastes. It is not necessary but it is a nice touch that many clients enjoy. See our Wig Care Information Page for further information.
Many people make the mistake of thinking that human hair wigs are better than synthetics. This is a common misconception, and we would like to explain why this is not necessarily the case. We offer the following points to compare and contrast human hair vs. synthetic hair.
1) Human hair wigs are expensive. A decent quality human hair wig starts at $350, and goes up to the thousands of dollars. A good quality synthetic wig can be purchased for approximately $100, and a fabulous, high-end synthetic wig can be purchased for about $250. A good quality synthetic wig will look extremely natural.
2) Human hair wigs require a great deal of care. They must be styled daily, washed more often, and are generally higher maintenance than a synthetic wig.
3) Human hair wigs usually require trimming and styling by a hair stylist before they can be worn. Synthetics come pre-styled and pre-cut and will hold their shape even when washed. Much easier for the average consumer.
4) Since synthetics are more economical, you can afford to change your style when you get tired of your current look.
5) For the medical patient who chooses a synthetic wig, the time and effort saved in caring for the wig is an important consideration. Medical patients are often sick and do not have the strength or energy to care for a high maintenance human hair wig.
6) We do offer an assortment of quality human hair wigs to meet the needs of experienced wig wearers who have worn human hair wigs before.
While we make every effort to offer lower cost products, we hesitate to offer products that we would not be happy wearing ourselves. With wigs, unfortunately the old saying is true - "You get what you pay for." With a budget product, the feel of the wig, the construction of the wig, the longevity of the wig, and the comfort of the wig are all compromised. To achieve a quality that we would consider wearing, you can expect to pay a minimum of $85 for a short wig.
To put things into perspective, consider a costume clown wig that you can purchase in any discount store around Halloween. Now imagine that you could purchase a wig of this quality, but in your everyday hairstyle and in your own hair color. Would you want to wear a wig of that caliber for anything besides Halloween? We don't think so... which is why we do not offer them.
We recommend a nonprofit organization called Wigs for Kids. They will use your hair donation to help provide wigs for needy children. If you have some extra hair that you don't need, consider donating it instead of selling it. By giving this gift, you can help a child who is coping with total hair loss.
You love and care for someone and they are losing their hair. Therefore, you want to give them YOUR hair. It's a beautiful sentiment and while it's possible, there are many factors involved in making a custom wig:
1) Human hair wigs are not practical for chemotherapy patients (see above).
2) Custom wigs are expensive (they start in the $2000 range and go up from there).
3) Custom wigs can take months to make. Most cancer patients don't have time to wait.
4) It takes several heads of hair to make a custom wig. Your hair would have to be combined with the hair of several others to create a wig.
5) Your loved one would be better off with a high quality synthetic wig. We cannot stress enough the importance of buying quality. See our Wig Buying Guide for more information.
A cushion band, also known as a comfy grip, is a therapeutic gel filled headband that can make wearing wigs more comfortable and secure. Comfy grips can be worn by individuals with varying degrees of hair loss, but work best for those with little or no hair. Please see our comfy grip product description in our wig care products section for more information.
We started selling wigs on the Internet back in 1996, when most people had never even heard of the Internet. Back then, we were one of only a small handful of Internet wig retailers. Since then, the Internet has taken on a life of its own, and there are wig sites at every corner. Not all of them are created equal, so we have come up with the following tips to help you with your decisions:
Established Retailer: No matter where you purchase your wig (even if it isn't from us) seek out a retailer that also maintains a retail location. You are looking for a retailer who has years of experience selling wigs. You want someone that handles the wigs daily and deals with real people and real wigs in real situations. Internet or catalog only companies do not have the hands-on experience to guide you in your purchasing decisions.
Expert Assistance: Find a site that offers professional help in making your selection. At Headcovers Unlimited, our experienced licensed cosmetologist is here to assist you by phone, email or in person.
Common Sense: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Many of our customers have reported ordering wigs from big name, high profile internet wig retailers, only to find that when they received their products, they received inferior product substitutions, look-alikes, or imitations instead of the brand name that was advertised. Other have reported purchasing wigs directly from China because they believed they were receiving the designer wig advertised in the photo, only to find that they had purchased an inferior product that they could not use.
Bait and Switch: Do not let price be your only guiding factor. If you find a company whose merchandise is significantly less than the competition, consider why this might be so. It is better to pay slightly more for a product, and purchase from a reputable company that services what they sell. Find a trusted company who sells authentic, unused merchandise for competitive prices. Purchasing from the retailer with the lowest price may turn out to be an expensive lesson.
Avoid Upfront Fees: Don't pay an extra fee to have the Internet company style your wig for you. The wigs come pre-styled from the manufacturers. Upon receipt of the wig (assuming you are unhappy with the style), hire a local hair stylist to style your wig for you after you receive it.
Contact Information: If you cannot easily find a phone number and physical address (besides a post office box) be wary of the company. In wigs, as in all Internet shopping, if you cannot easily find the contact information when you are ready to make a sale, you also cannot expect to be able to contact them in case of a problem.
The tools necessary in maintaining a wig really depends on the type of wig a woman purchases. However, there are several key points to keep in mind for all wigs. Only use products that are specifically designed for wigs. Other shampoos and styling agents can cause build up that can damage the hair fibers and shorten the wig's life span. Only use a brush or comb that is specifically designed for wigs as regular hair brushes can be harsh or damaging. Visit our Wig Care Tutorial for more information.
Many wig shops will tell you that you need one wig to wash and another to wear. This is not bad advice, but only after you are certain that you are happy your wig selection. We actually discourage our customers from buying more than one wig upfront. It's important to see how your wig works for you before you purchase another one. Once you decide that you like it, it is up to your discretion if you choose to purchase another to rotate. Some women find that they don't wear their wig at all. Still others only wear them for special occasions. Some of our customers end up abandoning their wig and choose to exclusively wear hats and turbans instead. Everyone is different, so it's important to figure out what works best for you before you spend money needlessly. We recommend having one wig on hand before hair loss begins and then giving yourself time to decide what works best for you before deciding to purchase another. Women who decide that they enjoy wearing wigs will often find that it can be fun to have multiple style and color selections. Having fun with hair styles can be a bright spot in a sad situation when faced with hair loss. This of course is a matter of personal preference.
1. Plan Ahead: Our first advice would be to plan ahead. Being prepared for hair loss can give you back a feeling of control and makes the process less traumatic. As soon as your doctor tells you that you may experience hair loss with your treatments, you should begin planning. You will want to cut a hair swatch that includes a representative sample of your hair color for safe keeping. This will make matching your hair color much easier later. Begin shopping and purchase your wig as soon as you possibly can.
2. Determine Your Head Size: Most women will wear an average cap, but there are also petite or large cap options. You will want to measure your head. We have many videos and tutorials available on our website to help you though this process. Another rule of thumb is that if you find that most hats are too big or too small when you put them on, this is another hint that you may fall outside of the average range.
3. Choose Your Hair Type: The most popular choices are synthetic hair or real human hair. Each type of hair has it's own set of pros and cons. Many cancer patients come to us insisting that they want a human hair wig because they want the most natural look possible. We then show them a human hair wig and a synthetic wig and ask them to tell us which one is which. It's very difficult for them to tell the difference. A high quality synthetic wig is incredibly natural looking. It's amazing how far they've come. The key is to select a high quality product. We encourage our cancer patients to select a synthetic wig because they are so easy to care for. They maintain their shape and require minimal styling or skill. You can virtually just shake it, put it on and go. Many women in treatments find that the last thing they want to concern themselves with is spending hours maintaining a human hair wig, especially when they aren't feeling well. Another benefit to synthetic wigs is that they are much more affordable.
4. Select Your Cap Type: Women will want to educate themselves on the types of wig caps that are available in order to make an informed decision. Traditional caps are made by machine and feature wefted rows of hair that are sewn together and teased at the root to disguise the cap underneath. A quality machine made cap can look very natural. Monofilament and hand tied caps feature hair that is individually hand tied to a soft mesh base. This is the more expensive option, but it is also the most natural looking and provides the most styling options.
5. Select Your Style: Once a woman has determined the size, hair type and cap type, choosing a style is an important next step. For women who had long hair before hair loss, it is often best to go a bit shorter with the wig length, as it will be easier to manage. From layers, to shags, to bobs, there are so many choices! When shopping online, women should be sure to look for the measurements given for the lengths of the strands of each wig. These measurements will give the wearer a good idea of where the strands will fall on their particular frame.
6. Select Your Color: Each wig comes in a multitude of colors. Selecting a color is the final step and is often the most difficult. However, we have been assisting cancer patients online for over 20 years and we have many tricks up our sleeve to determine the best color. Sending in a hair swatch is the best way to get an accurate match. We encourage our customers to take advantage of our expert wig consultation services so that we can assist them through this process. Our Wig Buying Guide will provide even more details for purchasing your wig online.
There are many different types of wig liners, caps, and grips available. Which one to choose all depends on personal preference and the fit of the wig. Some women even find that no liner is necessary. However, if a particular wig seems uncomfortable, or the fit is not right, there is often a solution to be found in the way of a wig accessory.
Mesh wig caps are probably the most basic type of wig cap. They offer a barrier between the scalp and the wig, but are very thin. These are often used by women who still have some hair that simply want to keep it out of the way when wearing a wig.
A bamboo wig cap or cotton wig cap is a very popular option for women who need more protection between their scalp and the inside of their wig. They're soft and comfortable and can also help absorb sweat and moisture under your wig. They are easily washed when needed.
A wig gripper is a band of velour fabric that helps to keep a wig in place. It prevents slipping and gives a bit of padding to secure looser wigs. It also provides a comfortable barrier between the scalp and the interior of the wig.
Cushion Gel headbands are a great way to help relieve pressure that a wig may place on the scalp. They keep the wig secure and provide comfort. They're lightweight and durable and clean easily with disinfectant. They're non-allergenic and designed to help prevent pressure sores.
1) Free consultations. When your order is placed, upon your request, our cosmetologist will contact you for a free color and style consultation. For more information, see our Color Consultation Guide.
2) First Quality Merchandise. We only send out first quality, unused merchandise by the designers represented. We do NOT sell seconds, returned merchandise, used merchandise, or substandard knock-offs.
3) Fair Prices. Our prices are highly competitive. Nobody else on the Internet offers the type of service we offer, at such competitive prices.
4) Experience. We do not sell wigs out of our home. We are not just an Internet drop shipper. We are a brick and mortar retail establishment, and we do offer in-salon wig consultations with our licensed cosmetologist by appointment.
5) Special Orders. We will special order any wig in any line we carry. The same low prices apply to our special orders as they do to the featured wigs on our web site.
6) Easy Reorders. We keep your wig information on file for easy reorders. You no longer need to keep track of wig names and color numbers. Just contact us for reorders, and we'll take care of the rest!
7) Accessibility. If you have a problem, you can call us toll free! We are easy to contact; you can easily access real human people in Texas who are here to provide personalized service and walk you through the process.
8) Privacy. We respect your privacy, and never give out any of your information to anyone for any reason.
9) Fast Service. In most cases, with express shipping, we can get your wig to you (even special orders) as soon as tomorrow morning!
10) One Stop Shopping. We specialize in hair loss. We can walk you through the process and supply everything you need to get you through your hair loss in one easy stop.
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- Mrs. Suzanne Sanderson retired Autism Consultant Review by Sue ZQ
Great answers to all of my pressing questions about purchasing a wig! It is my first time purchasing a wig and I feel more confident in knowing the facts about my purchase. Lupus and skin cancer took my most of my hair, so a wig and some fun is on order. Happy days ahead! (Posted on 04/15/2015)
- What a Great Resource!!! Review by Kaley
Thanks for this great resource on selecting wigs. I am new to wigs and this was really helpful to me.(Posted on 12/31/2014)