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Hair Extensions 101

Hair Extensions 101

Hairpiece and Hair Extension Terms You Should Know

When it comes to hairpieces and hair extensions, there are dozens of materials, brands, styles, and technological terms to know. Welcome to Hair Extensions 101. Here our experts outline the most important definitions that will help you become an informed hair extension and hairpiece shopper. Be sure to check out our Wigs 101 terms as well!

Hair Extensions

Extensions: Lengths of human hair or synthetic hair that are sewn to heavy cords called wefts. These wefts come in various widths. Generally, a wider weft will have three locking combs equally spaced across the top of the wefts.

Hair extensions add length and thickness to your own natural hair and may also be used to add highlights or low-lights to your natural hair color. Extensions come in a variety of colors, textures, lengths, and styles. Our extensions securely attach to your hair at the scalp using locking combs.

Note:  Another form of extensions is an individual group of hair strands that are chemically bonded individually to strands of your own natural hair. This procedure is usually performed by a licensed professional stylist. TWC does not sell this type of 'integrated' extension product.


Hairpieces:  Commonly worn at the top or crown area of your head for the purpose of adding volume or length to blend with your own natural hair.

Hairpieces are also utilized to cover thinning or bald areas at the top or crown area of the head. They are ideal additions used for creating a new hairdo and available in different base shapes and sizes.

Base:  The base of a hairpiece is the foundation upon which human hair or synthetic fiber is attached. The shape of the base is determined by the designer to fit the intended coverage area.

Note:  Many hairpieces have a solid base, some are made with total capless construction, while others may be constructed with a monofilament top area. Specialty hairpieces are designed with a lace front hairline.

Total capless construction:  An all-over open wefted base with practically no closed fabric sections, resulting in a cooler lightweight hairpiece.

Inside weft hairline:  The most economical alternative to a hand-tied or lace front hairline. This technique of machine-sewn fiber weft softens the front and/or side hairlines of the hairpiece.

Hand-tied hairline:  An intricate hand stitching of individual fibers at the front and/or side hairline of the hairpiece for a natural-looking appearance. Costlier than inside wefts, but less costly than a lace front hairline.

Lace front hairline:  TWC's hand-sewn monofilament front extends from temple to temple. It emulates the precise and expected look of a real hairline. It also allows for natural, off-the-face styling and the flexibility of parting in the center or either side, just as you would your own hair.

Velvet Comfort Band:  1" to 1½" of soft velvet-like fabric at the inside front of the hairpiece to increase comfort and security.

Velvet-lined front:  An economical alternative to the Velvet Comfort Band. The ¼"  to ½"  velvet-like fabric is sewn to the underside of the hairpiece.

Stretch Ribbon Lace:  The foundational ribbon frame of a hairpiece with added stretch and security.

Locking combs:  Sewn-in security combs designed to ensure a comfortable fit. The exclusive combs grasp your hair without pressure for all-day wear. They feature rubber tips and a rubber-lined base for comfort. Most hairpieces have one or more locking combs. Additional combs can be purchased. Item A1012

Monofilament:  A gauze-like, nearly transparent, fine-grade nylon material. Synthetic fiber or human hair strands are attached to it by hand knotting two to three strands at a time. This allows strands to move freely just like a natural head of hair. Monofilament is usually located at the top area of a hairpiece. It takes on your skin tone and duplicates the look of a human scalp

Add-On Hair Attachments

Add-on:  a term used by TWC®  for butterfly clip add-on hair attachments. Butterfly clip add-ons are lengths of synthetic hair sewn to a wefted base and attached to the claws of a butterfly clip. Butterfly clip add-ons are available in various lengths and curl patterns. Note:  to attach a butterfly clip to you own natural hair pinch the clip open and position over your own hair and release.