Microlink hair extensions are transforming the way you can wear extensions. They offer a more natural-looking alternative to traditional sew-ins and crochets.
Instead of using braids, threads, tapes, or glues, microlinks are attached by securing tiny sections of your hair with a micro-ring or micro-bead using a hair plier. This seamless attachment creates a comfortable and lightweight way to achieve longer and fuller hair. It also minimizes damage to your natural hair.
One of the key reasons to consider microlink extensions is versatility. Your hair will blend effortlessly with the extensions. This allows you to style it as you please and even experiment with various colors without the commitment.
Understanding Microlink Hair Extensions
What are Microlink Hair Extensions?
Microlink hair extensions are a versatile and lightweight option for adding length and volume to your natural hair. Unlike traditional sew-in weaves or glued full wigs, these extensions are attached to individual hair strands using small silicone beads called microbeads. This allows for full access to your scalp, making it easier to shampoo and treat your hair. It also provides greater styling flexibility and free movement of the hair.
The Microlink Method
The MicroLink Method involves:
- Separating your hair into small sections
- Threading a microbead onto a special application tool
- Inserting a strand of your hair into the bead
- Attaching a pre-tipped hair extension (I-tip or weft) to the bead
- Clamping the bead securely to your hair with the application tool
The process is repeated until the desired coverage and volume are achieved. Microlink hair extensions typically last for several weeks, after which they may need to be removed or re-fitted.
Types of Microlinks: I-Tips and Wefts
There are two main types of microlink hair extensions: I-tips and wefts.
- I-Tips: These extensions consist of small strands of hair pre-tipped with keratin. They weigh between 0.7g and 1g. They’re attached individually using microbeads to small clusters of your own hair. I-tips are particularly popular due to their flexibility, allowing for a more natural hair movement and easier styling.
- Wefts: Weft extensions are rows of hair attached to a strip or band. They can be cut into smaller sections to fit your head shape. Unlike I-tips, wefts are applied to larger sections of hair and secured with microbeads. This method can provide more coverage and volume but may be slightly less flexible compared to I-tips.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Pros of Microlink Extensions
Microlinks are a popular type of extension that offer a bunch of benefits. One of their main advantages is their natural look. These extensions blend seamlessly with your real hair, making it difficult to distinguish between the two.
Another benefit of microlink extensions is they’re low maintenance. You can shampoo and treat your scalp without any hindrance, unlike sewn-in weaves or glued wigs, which can be more challenging to care for. Moreover, microlink extensions provide:
- Styling flexibility: You can style your hair in various ways, including updos and braids, without any limitations.
- No heat or glue required: The installation process does not involve heat, glue, or chemicals, which can damage your hair.
- Less tension on the scalp: Microlink extensions are lightweight, reducing the strain on your scalp and preventing tension headaches.
Cons of Microlink Extensions
While microlink hair extensions have many benefits, they also come with some drawbacks. First and foremost, they can be damaging to your hair if not installed, maintained, or removed correctly. In some cases, hair may thin or break due to the weight of the extensions, especially on weak or thin strands.
Additionally, microlink extensions are not suitable for all hair types. They work best on medium to fine textures, as the small beads can get lost or tangled in thick or dense hair. Other cons include:
- Cost: Microlink extensions can be expensive, with prices ranging from $300 to $1000, depending on the quality, location, and stylist.
- Installation time: The process of installing microlink extensions can be time-consuming, sometimes taking several hours to complete.
- Frequent touch-ups: You may need to visit your stylist every four to six weeks for maintenance, tightening, or repositioning.
Ultimately, it’s up to you to weigh the pros and cons and decide if microlink extensions are the right choice for your hair needs and preferences.
Before you dive into microlink hair extensions, you’ll want to have a thorough consultation with your hairstylist. During this meeting, you’ll discuss various factors such as your hair condition, desired length, style, and hair color. The stylist will assess your hair’s current state and determine whether microlinks are the right solution for you.
Once the decision has been made to proceed with microlinks, the application process can begin. Unlike the sew-in method, microlink extensions do not require braiding. Your hairstylist will start by dividing your hair into small sections.
For the I-tip method, a special application clamping tool is used to attach a the pre-tipped keratin I-tip strand of hair
With the weft method, your hairstylist will apply a row of hair extensions across your hair’s width using microbeads. This creates a more voluminous look compared to individual strand-by-strand installation.
Hair Extension Options
Microlink extensions come in various types, textures, and colors. You can choose from human hair, synthetic hair, or a blend of the two. It’s crucial to select a high-quality hair extension to achieve a natural look and prevent damage to your own hair. Your stylist can help you pick the right option based on your budget, preference, and desired outcome.
Cost and Maintenance
How Much Do Microlink Extensions Cost?
The cost of microlink hair extensions depends on several factors. Typically, they range from $200 – $900. Some of the factors contributing to the cost include:
- Type of hair (human or synthetic)
- Length and volume of extensions
- Stylist’s experience
- Geographic location
Note that some stylists might charge separately for the installation process, which can range between $800-$2000, not including the extensions themselves.
The Importance of Maintenance
Proper maintenance plays a crucial role in the longevity of your microlink extensions. With good care, they can last as long as 2-3 months or even more. Taking care of your extensions involves regular washing, conditioning, detangling, and protecting your hair from heat damage.
Caring for Your Microlink Extensions
To ensure your extensions look and feel their best, follow these hair care tips:
- Shampoo: Use a sulfate-free shampoo to gently cleanse your hair without stripping it of natural oils. Make sure to massage the shampoo into your scalp and work it through your hair, down to the ends of the extensions. Rinse thoroughly after.
- Conditioner: Apply a nourishing conditioner to keep your hair and extensions soft and moisturized. Avoid applying the conditioner on the roots or near the microlinks, as this can cause them to loosen. Rinse well after the recommended time.
- Detangle: Before styling, detangle your hair gently starting from the ends and working your way up to the roots. Using a wide-toothed comb or soft bristle brush can help to prevent snagging and pulling on the extensions.
- Heat protection: If using heat styling tools, be sure to apply a heat protectant to minimize damage and protect both your natural hair and the extensions. Also, try to keep the heat setting to a minimum to prolong the life of your extensions.
- Nighttime care: Protect your hair while you sleep by either wrapping it in a silk or satin scarf or using a silk or satin pillowcase.
By following these tips, you can enhance the appearance and longevity of your microlink hair extensions, essentially making the most out of your investment.
Achieving the Desired Look
Hair Texture and Density
To achieve the desired look with microlink hair extensions, first consider your natural hair texture. Microlinks work well for a variety of hair types, including curly and kinky textures. To match your hair texture, select extensions that closely resemble your natural hair. This helps create a seamless blend and enhances the overall appearance.
Another essential factor is your hair’s density. If you have thin or fine hair, microlinks may not be the best option, as the weight of the extensions can cause stress on your natural hair. In contrast, if you have a medium to high density, microlinks can be an excellent choice for adding volume and length without causing too much strain.
Length and Volume
When choosing microlink hair extensions, consider the desired length and volume. The extensions come in various lengths, allowing you to customize your look, whether you want to add a few inches or create a dramatic change. Keep in mind that adding too much length can cause tension on your natural hair. So, it’s essential to choose a reasonable amount that complements your hair.
For volume, the number of extensions you need may vary depending on the thickness of the individual strands and your natural hair density. Start with a modest number of microlinks and assess the results. If needed, you can add more extensions to achieve the desired volume.
Remember that proper maintenance is crucial for maintaining your microlink hair extensions. Be gentle when handling your hair to prevent breakage and damage to the extensions and your natural hair. Using appropriate hair care products and techniques, such as wide-tooth combs, can also help keep both your natural hair and microlink extensions in good condition.
By considering your hair texture, density, desired length, and volume, you can successfully achieve the desired look with microlink hair extensions and enjoy a natural, beautiful appearance.