Hair extensions are a life-changing invention and there’s no better way to add length and volume to your real hair quickly and realistically. The best part about hair extensions is that they’re ideal for everyone and are available for every type of hair length, texture, and color. However, there have been reports of allergic reactions to certain types of hair extensions. If you’ve experienced one of those reactions and feel that you are allergic to hair extensions, you’re at the right place. Read on to find out what causes these allergic reactions and how you can avoid them.

What Are Hair Extensions?

Hair extensions can be described as wefts of hair that help you achieve a fuller and longer look without having to change your natural hair. A simple way to categorize hair extensions is by the type of installation method you can see at the top of the wefts or strands. A few common ones are clip-in hair extensions, tape-in hair extensions, and weave-in hair extensions which are installed in wefts while micro-loop hair extensions, nano-ring hair extensions, and fusion hair extensions are installed strand-by-strand. Another way to categorize hair extensions is by synthetic hair or human hair. Now let’s talk a little about the allergic reactions that have been reported about certain hair extensions. 

Hair Extensions’ Allergic Reactions:

Although allergies to hair extensions are very rare, they still exist and are caused by several different reasons. A few of the most common types of hair extensions that can cause allergic reactions are synthetic hair extensions, tape in hair extensions, and fusion hair extensions. 

Symptoms of Allergic Reaction To Hair Extensions:

The first step to minimizing an allergic reaction is determining where it’s stemming from. It is possible that the reaction isn’t because of the hair extensions at all. Figure out whether you’re allergic to the hair extensions by looking for any of these symptoms, which can vary from person to person and type of hair extension:

  • Itching and irritation on the scalp.
  • Redness and inflammation on the nape of your neck or wherever the hair extensions are touching your skin.
  • Swelling and redness of the skin.
  • Small bumps where skin comes in contact with hair extensions frequently. 
  • Worse reactions may show symptoms such as headache, nausea, and vomiting.

Allergic To Synthetic Hair Extensions:

The reason most professional hairdressers and hair extension technicians recommend human hair extensions over synthetic hair extensions isn’t because they cost more. It’s because the quality of synthetic hair isn’t as dependable as human hair and can cause allergic reactions as well as look unrealistic and plasticky. The synthetic fragrances, preservatives, hair dyes, bleaches, and other chemicals that are used on synthetic hair extensions to help achieve a more realistic and healthier look can cause these allergic reactions, which can show up in the form of itchiness, redness, swelling, and rashes on the scalp and anywhere the hair touches your skin.

Allergic To Micro-Ring Hair Extensions:

Micro-loop hair extensions and nano-ring hair extensions are another two common mentions when it comes to allergic reactions to hair extensions. These two types of hair extensions are installed by fastening metal rings of different sizes near your roots strand by strand, which can cause issues for those that have metal allergies. Yes, that’s a real allergy! However, metal allergies are usually very mild and only result in symptoms like temporary redness or itching as long as the metal is touching your skin. This can be easily avoided by getting your micro-loop or nano-ring hair extensions installed by a professional who will make sure the metal rings aren’t too close to your hair.

Allergic To Fusion Hair Extensions: 

Fusion hair extensions are another type of hair extensions that are installed strand by strand and they are attached to your hair using keratin glue which is on the tip of each strand. That glue is then melted and attached to your hair. The reason you may be experiencing a reaction could be that you’re allergic to the keratin glue used for fusion hair extensions. This type of allergy can cause itchiness, swelling, redness, and rashes for a long time, which is why it’s simply best to avoid fusion hair extensions in that situation. 

If you’ve experienced an allergic reaction to human hair extensions or any of the other types of hair extensions mentioned above, consult your hair extension technician to figure out which type of hair extensions is best for you to avoid any kind of allergic reaction.