If you want to change up your look for the long-term, then a sew-in weave might be right up your alley. With this option, you can secure extensions to your natural hair for up to 10 weeks instead of having to take them out at the end of the night. The installation and upkeep process is still a bit demanding, however, so it is important to understand what it takes before you commit to this option. To help you see if a sew-in weave is right for you, here’s a primer on how to place these extensions (and a look at just why many find it best to call a stylist).
Get Your Tools and Supplies
Putting in your own sew-in weave is a difficult job, but you can make it easier by gathering all your tools and supplies ahead of time.
You will need:
- Sew-in extensions
- Weaving net
- Weaving thread
- Soft paddle brush
- Duckbill hair clips
- Bobby pins
- Leave-in conditioner
- Scalp oil
Place all these times within reach to avoid having to move around much once you get started.
Detangle and Section Your Hair
Since the sew-in weave goes over your natural hair, you will want to give it some tender loving care before you place the wefts. So, take the time to brush out your locks and apply a moisturizing leave-in conditioner.
After that, figure out if you want your leave out to go down the middle or along the sides. Think about how you will part and style your hair when you are done to find the best leave out placement. Then, section out either the center or sides and pin the hair back with duckbill clips to keep it out of the way.
Create Two Anchors and Braid the Rest
Whether you decided to go with your leave out along the center or the sides, you will need to create two small braids along that area. The braids will act as anchors for the sew-in weave to keep it in place and create a seamless appearance. With that done, you can focus on braiding the rest of your hair in cornrows. To achieve a natural look, braid your locks in a beehive shape that goes in a circle around your crown to create precise mounting points for the weave.
Apply a High-Quality Scalp Oil
With your hair braided just right, you can apply a high-quality oil to your scalp. This will help keep your scalp moisturized and in good health through the coming weeks. Only use a little bit and let the oil soak into your scalp for 10 to 15 minutes before continuing on.
Sew In the Weaving Net Over the Braids
Unless you have many tight rows of braids to secure the weave to, plan to use a weaving net. You will need to sew the net to the braids using a c-needle and weaving thread. This net will provide you with ample anchor points to precisely set and sew in the wefts.
Clip in the Wefts and Sew to Secure
Once the weaving net feels secure, take your first weft and run it around the perimeter of your crown. Trim it to fit, making sure to leave a couple extra inches on the end. Then, hold it there using bobby pins. With that done, you will need to:
- Cut about two feet of weaving thread off the roll
- Run one end of the thread through the eye of the c-needle
- Match the ends back up and tie a knot at the end of the thread
- Starting at the front of your head, run the c-needle between the netting under a braid
- Wrap thread around the weave, about ½ inch from the end and start to pull tight
- Put the needle through the loop at the end of the thread and pull it tight
- Remove the bobby pin keeping the weft in place before moving onto the next stitch
- Repeat the stitches every ½ inch all the way down the remainder of the weft
You will need to repeat this process for each weft, as you work along all your braids. Take the time to pull the wefts tight without tugging too much on the roots of your hair. You should feel the extensions are secure without any pain or discomfort.
Blend with the Leave Out and Style
With all the wefts installed with weaving thread, you remove the clips from your leave out and brush it into place with your fingers. Create your normal part, then style your hair any way you wish to create your final look. You can then enjoy your sew-in weave for the next 10 weeks without having to remove and replace the wefts at the beginning and end of each day.
Your stylist can help you make quick work of this process — and remain by your side for all the upkeep a sew-in weave requires. You will need to go in once a month to have the extensions tightened to keep them looking their best. You may also want to go in every couple of weeks for a shampoo and other hair treatments. At the end of the 10 weeks, your stylist can expertly remove the sew-in weave without damaging your natural hair.
If you prefer something a little less time intensive, consider Invisible Glory Extensions by Chic Magnifique. Instead of the salon appointments, you can just place the wire over the crown of your head and blend your natural hair in with the extensions. Then, at the end of the night, you can just gently pull the extra locks off your head and put them to the side for another day. If that sounds right for you, all that’s left to do is choose between synthetic and natural hair in a variety of colors and styles to achieve your desired look.