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By Jouelzy

Virgin Brazilian, Malaysian, Peruvian, Cambodian. Exotic hair is all the rage. But the price tag doesn’t quite work for a lot of folks. Don’t be ashamed if you’re still purchasing your hair from the local beauty supply store and can’t get the silky looks of the stars.  No need to compensate by buying the most expensive hair in the store either. There are ways to achieve a great look without breaking the bank. Even synthetic weaves can look fabulous and cost you less than $50. Here are some tips on maintaining a weave that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. Whether it’s synthetic or human hair, it’s going to look real and real good on you.

1.  Cut the hair to shape your face.

Don’t just sew or glue in two packs of weave from the store and rock it, because it is going to look stiff and fake. You have to alter it to fit your features and the look you’re going for. The easiest trick to creating a more realistic look is by simply layering the hair and shaping it to your face. Rather then doing a blunt cut, shear the hair at an angle with a razor. Razor combs will do the trick and provide soft angles, even if you’re a novice at cutting your hair.

2. Be aware that your hair has a short(er) lifespan

Know that with a budget weave the longevity is short. Preferably, only keep in the weave for a month. With a little extra care you can stretch it out to about two months. You want to limit the product you put in it and wrap your hair with a silk scarf every night. The key word is ‘care,’ and that will largely determine the longevity of your weave. The less ‘care’ you put into maintaining it, the less time you can make that hair last.

3. Put down the product

Once again, the less products you put in your hair, the better. Product buildup is a sure-fire way to kill a weave. The most you want to do is condition the hair and oil your scalp. And you ONLY oil your scalp NOT the hair. When you’re wearing a synthetic weave, no product allowed. Put down the Let’s Jam! and ampro gel, and stick to light hair products.

4. Keep it short and sweet

Sorry to those who are dying to have hair down to their butts. At longer lengths, folks will already be searching extra hard for your tracks, but full, shoulder-length hair has a more realistic appeal, especially if you are using synthetic hair. The rule of thumb is bra-strap length, and remember to layer the hair.

5. Say no to flat top

All-in-one packs are very tempting, but they’re also too thin. We’re not even talking big hair, just make sure you have enough hair to make it look full and have body. The worst is when your weave is too flat on the top and you can see straight though the hair. You can do the all-in-one packs, just grab two. You should still be within budget.

6. To blend or to sew, that is the question

Understand that you are purchasing hair that is of a lesser quality. That’s not particularly a bad thing. But attempting to blend your hair with synthetic hair can go all types of wrong. You may be able to get away with certain brands of human hair, but check the luster of the hair and meter if you want to really go through the daily pains of blending your hair. Full weave is usually the way to go. Just add an invisible part for a bit more dimension, and enjoy a fly style that fits within your price range.

Jouelzy offers tutorials on all aspects of Black hair care via her YouTube channel, focusing on women with tight budgets. You can also find her daily hair tips and inspirations on Facebook.

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