Human Hair Clip On Extensions

Tangled hair extensions
Photo: Koy Jung/Shutterstock
Q: I have purchased some human hair clip on extensions and am disappointed at how tangled they get, even when in a pony tail. Can you suggest a product to make the extensions softer and more pliable?
They seem to be great when they are new but just get drier and drier. I'm using Wella products on them now but it doesn't seem to help. Thanks so much for any info you can give me.

A: Human hair extensions typically need the same kinds of care and maintenance as your natural hair needs. In fact, treating the extensions is much the same as treating your own hair. You don't usually resolve an issue from a single application of a "miracle conditioner" or product. It's about the routine.
Part of the problem may stem from the quality of the extension. While human hair extensions are the better quality of extensions, there are varying levels of quality in human hair extensions. Some companies take hair from many sources and chemically treat them to artificially create a uniform texture and color.
Some companies go so far as to strip the hair's cuticle layer which makes the hair very porous and easily damaged by styling and environment. Because of this, you need to make sure you at least understand the quality of the product you are using.
What I recommend is that you shampoo your extensions very gently in lukewarm water using a mild shampoo (such as baby shampoo) whenever they become soiled with styling product. And use a rinse-through conditioner on them in the same way you would your own hair after every shampoo.
Allow the extensions to air dry naturally as often as possible, and between shampoos, mist the extensions with a leave-in conditioner/detangling spray and gently comb them to be free of tangles. Avoid heat styling appliances as much as possible, instead choose extensions with the wave pattern you want to have in your style rather than trying to curl or straighten the extensions repeatedly.
See also:
Hair extensions
Getting hair extensions
Tangled hair extensions
Hair extensions buying guide