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The Ultimate Sew In Hair Extensions Guide : Everything You Need To Know

A Sew In Hair Extensions Can Be A Beauty Accessories

Hair extensions have become an essential beauty accessory, allowing individuals to experiment with their look, add volume, or address hair loss. Among the various methods available, sew-in hair extensions stand out for their durability and natural appearance. This comprehensive guide will explore everything you need to know about sew-in hair extensions, from their benefits and types to the installation process and aftercare.

What Are Sew-In Hair Extensions?

Sew-in hair extensions, also known as weaves, involve sewing tracks of hair extensions into braids made from the client’s natural hair. This technique is particularly popular in African American communities due to its ability to add length and volume while protecting natural hair. However, with advancements in hair extension methods, sew-ins have become accessible and suitable for various hair types.

Benefits of Sew-In Hair Extensions

  1. Long-Lasting: Sew-in extensions can last for several weeks, making them a cost-effective and time-saving option for those who don’t want to frequently reapply extensions.

  2. Natural Appearance: When done correctly, sew-ins offer a seamless blend with natural hair, providing a natural and voluminous look.

  3. Versatility: Sew-in extensions come in various textures and lengths, allowing for numerous styling possibilities. Whether you prefer straight, curly, or wavy hair, there’s an option for you.

  4. Protection: Sew-ins can protect natural hair from daily styling damage and environmental stressors. The braiding technique helps keep natural hair tucked away, promoting healthier hair growth.

Types of Sew-In Hair Extensions

  1. Partial Sew-In: In a partial sew-in, only a portion of the client’s natural hair is braided, and extensions are sewn into those braids. This method leaves some natural hair out, allowing for a more blended and natural look. It’s ideal for those looking to add volume rather than full coverage.

  2. Full Sew-In: A full sew-in involves braiding all the natural hair and sewing extensions across the entire scalp. This method is perfect for those seeking a dramatic transformation or for those with hair that needs extra protection.

  3. Lace Closure Sew-In: This technique incorporates a lace closure, a small hairpiece with a lace base, sewn into the braids along with the hair extensions. The lace closure mimics a natural scalp, providing a seamless finish and allowing for versatile parting options.

  4. Lace Front Sew-In: Similar to the lace closure, a lace front sew-in uses a larger lace piece that covers the front portion of the scalp. This method is great for achieving a natural hairline and versatile styling.

Choosing the Right Hair for Sew-Ins

Selecting the right type of hair for your sew-in is crucial for achieving the desired look and longevity. Here are some popular options:

  1. Virgin Hair: Virgin hair is unprocessed and has not been chemically treated. It retains its natural texture and cuticle alignment, making it the most durable and high-quality option for sew-ins.

  2. Remy Hair: Remy hair is a high-quality type of human hair with the cuticles intact and aligned in the same direction. This ensures minimal tangling and a natural appearance.

  3. Brazilian Hair: Known for its thickness and durability, Brazilian hair is a popular choice for sew-ins. It blends well with various hair types and can be styled with heat tools.

  4. Peruvian Hair: Peruvian hair is lightweight yet voluminous, making it ideal for those who want a full look without the weight. It’s soft, versatile, and holds styles well.

  5. Synthetic Hair: Synthetic hair is a budget-friendly option but lacks the natural look and feel of human hair. It’s best for temporary styles or for those on a tight budget.

The Sew-In Process: Step-by-Step

  1. Consultation: Before the installation, a consultation with a professional stylist is essential. Discuss your desired look, hair type, and any concerns you may have. This is also the time to choose the type of hair extensions and method that suits you best.

  2. Preparation: The stylist will start by washing and conditioning your natural hair to ensure it’s clean and free of any product buildup. This step is crucial for a secure and long-lasting sew-in.

  3. Braiding: Your natural hair is braided into cornrows. The pattern of the braids will depend on the desired style and the method chosen. The braids need to be tight but not too tight to avoid discomfort and hair damage.

  4. Sewing: The hair extensions are sewn into the braids using a needle and thread. The stylist will carefully sew the wefts (tracks of hair) onto the braids, ensuring they are secure and evenly distributed.

  5. Styling: Once all the extensions are sewn in, the stylist will cut and style the hair to blend seamlessly with your natural hair. This step is crucial for achieving a natural look.

  6. Final Touches: The stylist will provide you with aftercare instructions and recommend products to maintain your sew-in.

Aftercare for Sew-In Hair Extensions

Proper aftercare is essential to prolong the life of your sew-in and maintain the health of your natural hair.

  1. Washing: Wash your sew-in every 1-2 weeks using a sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. Gently massage the scalp and avoid rough handling of the extensions. Make sure to thoroughly rinse out all the products to prevent buildup.

  2. Drying: Pat your hair dry with a towel and avoid rubbing. Use a hooded dryer or allow your hair to air dry. Ensure your braids are completely dry to prevent mold or mildew.

  3. Moisturizing: Keep your scalp and natural hair moisturized by applying a lightweight leave-in conditioner or hair oil. Focus on the roots and avoid applying too much product to the extensions to prevent them from becoming greasy.

  4. Styling: Use heat protectant products when using heat styling tools. Avoid excessive heat to prevent damage to both your natural hair and the extensions.

  5. Sleeping: Wrap your hair in a silk or satin scarf or use a silk/satin pillowcase to minimize friction and prevent tangling.

  6. Maintenance: Regularly visit your stylist for touch-ups and maintenance. This includes tightening any loose wefts and ensuring your natural hair is in good condition.

Common Myths About Sew-In Hair Extensions

  1. Myth: Sew-Ins Damage Natural Hair: When installed and maintained correctly, sew-ins do not damage natural hair. In fact, they can protect your hair by minimizing daily styling and exposure to environmental stressors.

  2. Myth: Sew-Ins Are Uncomfortable: While there may be some initial tightness, sew-ins should not be painful. If you experience discomfort, it’s important to communicate with your stylist to adjust the braids or extensions.

  3. Myth: Sew-Ins Are Only for Certain Hair Types: Sew-ins can be adapted for various hair types, not just coarse or curly hair. With the right method and hair type, anyone can enjoy the benefits of sew-in extensions.

  4. Myth: Sew-Ins Look Fake: High-quality hair extensions and professional installation can result in a natural and seamless look. Choosing the right type of hair and method is key to achieving a flawless finish.


Sew-in hair extensions offer a versatile and long-lasting solution for those looking to enhance their hair. Whether you want to add length, volume, or try a new style, sew-ins provide a natural and durable option. By understanding the different types of sew-ins, the installation process, and proper aftercare, you can enjoy beautiful, healthy hair extensions. Always consult with a professional stylist to ensure the best results and maintain the health of your natural hair. With the right care and maintenance, sew-in hair extensions can be a fantastic addition to your beauty routine.

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