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Hairstylist styling hair of customer in salon

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Thanks to the ever-growing world of hair extensions, there are plenty of ways to rock long locks. The possibilities are truly endless, from tape-in extensions, lace front wigs, headband wigs, sew-ins, and more. Now, a new method on the beauty block has piqued the interest of extensions lovers: micro-links.

Micro-link extensions are in a league of their own. This innovative install is nearly undetectable and doesn’t require the use of glue, braids, or weaving thread. Plus, there are two main types of micro-link extensions to try: i-tips and beaded wefts. Micro-links with i-tips consist of tiny tubes of copper or aluminum with or without non-slip rubber silicone. These links are then attached to a small section of your natural hair just before the roots with a clamping tool.

According to published hairstylist Jachelle Whiting, beaded wefts are slightly different from the micro-link family. “Instead of utilizing the strand-by-strand method, this variation uses weft hair and is attached with microbeads that are smaller than the traditional tubes.” With so much misinformation about micro-link hair extensions, it’s easy to fall victim to the advice of self-proclaimed “social media stylists.” So, Jachelle is here to share all the details on what to expect before jumping on the trend.

From learning about the required length for micro-link extensions to the proper haircare routine to keep your natural hair safe, Jachelle is ready to give a full rundown. So, if you’re on the fence about micro-links, you’ve come to the right place. Before stepping into micro-link extensions territory, keep reading for seven things you should know.

1. Fine, thin, and permed hair should avoid micro-link extensions.

It’s easy to believe that all hair types are suitable for trendy hairstyles, and unfortunately, that’s not the case. Jachelle shares that relaxed and perm manes should avoid micro-link extensions at all costs since the added tension can cause breakage to become a factor. “For relaxed hair, I recommend waiting 2-3 months for new growth then apply I-Tips,” Jachelle says.

2. Improper installation can take a toll on your mane.

As with any hair extensions install, it’s important to entrust your mane with a licensed hairstylist that specializes in micro-links. If not, you run the risk of compromising the overall health of your hair. “Improper installation and lack of care for extensions will also result in damaged, tangled, matted hair,” Jachelle shares.

3. There is a length requirement for micro-links. 

Super-short strands and micro-links do not mix. After all, the micro-link i-tips need some length to hold on to for a successful install. “If someone’s hair is shorter than four inches long, I would recommend an alternative extension method or revisit when hair has grown,” Jachelle says.

4. Micro-links should only be worn between 4 to 8 weeks at a time.

Most stylists would tell you that time between touch-ups can vary. However, it’s never a great idea to keep your extensions in for too long. Jachelle shares that “micro-links should be worn between 4 to 8 weeks in between maintenance visits to avoid breakage.”

5. Skipping out on maintenance sessions is a no-no.

Regularly, it’s normal to shed between 50 to 100 hairs a day, per the American Academy of Dermatology. Since your hair is bonded while in micro-links, it’s essential to follow through with regular maintenance sessions so your stylist can remove these strands to prevent unnecessary breakage.

“Your maintenance visit will include the stylist opening the links and brushing out all of the shedded hair and re-tightening extensions to a new clean section which will prevent breakage,” Jachelle says.

6. A strict haircare routine is needed to maintain your micro-links.

One of the worst things you can do is neglect your hair under the micro-links. Maintaining a regular hair care routine will help keep your tresses healthy and help your extensions look and feel like new. “Keep your roots clean by gently massaging the scalp with sulfate- and paraben-free shampoos,” Jachelle says. “Conditioning hair mid-shaft to the ends will help keep hair moisturized and healthy.”

7. Brush your micro-links from the ends up.

Like traditional hair extensions and wigs, tangles and knots can become a factor with improper brushing. Jachelle recommends “brushing daily from the ends up to avoid tangles with any soft bristle brush or attachment combs.” Keep in mind curly and wavy textures should be brushed when damp or wet to help maintain texture.

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7 Things You Need To Know Before Getting Micro-Link Extensions  was originally published on hellobeautiful.com