Hair Integration System: Everything you Need to Know (Beginner’s Guide)
A hair integration system is a non-surgical noninvasive and pain-free method to remedy hair loss. This can help a person affected by hair loss to gain a fuller head and to disguise their baldness. Hair salons may present a ‘hair integration system’ as the Holy Grail to your hair loss problem by dressing up the term in different words like hair piece, toupees, strand-by-strand insertion system, and hair system.
As said in an article by the American hair loss association (AHLA)
“A hairpiece, is a hair piece, is a hair piece regardless of what they may be called.”
Why should a person choose Hair integration over surgical methods?
Because even after all the shenanigans of saloons and comments of AHLA hair integration is a quick solution for affected people because let’s face it.
Hair loss is a communal problem according to the Hair Loss Society 35 million men and 21 million women suffer from hair loss. So, it’s not only men who get affected by it, women are the equal sufferer. The cause of hair loss involves several factors including genetics, stress, eating habits as well as environmental factors.
It is not only a physical change, but it can emotionally affect a person in form of altered self-image, depression, and low confidence.
Nowadays men’s baldness is accepted, but women have to face social pressure as well. Forty percent of women suffering from hair loss indicated marital problems while 60% of women said it affects their self-esteem in the workplace. Although hair integration is a quick fix, society must acknowledge it as a women’s disease and should support them.
Now if you are here, you must have a lot of questions about hair integration, its processes, and its durability. So, let’s talk about hair integration.
What is hair integration?
Hair integration is composed of three parts
- Hair integration base
- Attachment tool
Hair Integration Base :
The base for hair integration is made of many materials and sometimes these materials are mixed to get better qualities. For a newbie, it is difficult to choose from all the options available in the market. Knowing about these materials and their qualities can be helpful to decide which material is more suitable.
Polymer hair integration base
Polymer bases are polyurethane or silicone-based and sometimes they are made of mixed material. These materials made the base look like skin which is why they are also called skin bases. Mostly in polymer bases, the hairline is made of mesh lace to make it look more natural.
Polymer bases are durable, less expensive, and easy to manage during installation and removal. Their only problem is that they are less breathable and become hot after some time, that’s why these bases may affect the growth of hair under them.
Mesh hair integration base
Mesh bases are made of nylon or polyester which are also used to form laces. These bases are natural looking which is the reason they are used on exposed areas. Mesh bases can also be used throughout the system. They are comfortable, and breathable and do not affect the growth of hair under them.
After talking about their qualities let’s talk about their negative points which all revolve around their being delicate. Because of their delicacy, they are not as durable as polymer bases can be and need to be handled with care. They are also more expensive than polymer bases.
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A hairpiece or toupee is a bunch of natural or synthetic hair that is used to cover partial baldness on the human head. Hair used in hairpieces can be of various kinds depending on the cost.
Custom-made hairpieces are the most expensive and of the best kind because the hair used in these hairpieces matches the hair color, type (straight, wavy, curls), and texture of the client’s hair. This hair is free of dye and that is why have a natural shine as well.
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Less expensive hair pieces
Less expensive hair pieces are mostly made of animal hairs or human hairs which have been dyed. Dyed hairs become brittle over time due to the chemical treatment and tend to easily break.
Expensive or not this hair dries up over time even after proper care there is an expiry date after which they need replacement.
Synthetic hairpieces are made up of polymer or synthetic fibers which look artificial.
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Attachment Tool :
The attachment tool is part of the hair integration system which attaches the hairpiece to the hair integration base. Their selection depends upon the need of the client.
Semi-permanently attached hairpieces are specially fixed by hair technicians or salon stylists. In this attachment process weaving or liquid adhesives are used. This attachment method is dependable and needs maintenance once in 6 weeks by the hairstylist. This method has one drawback and that is its non-hygienic condition.
All the dried and flaky skin, sebum, and oil secreted by the skin as well as dead cells accumulate under the glue or weaving system and cannot be washed by shampoo. These conditions are not suitable for hair growth under the adhesive or weaving as well.
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Temporarily attached hairpieces that are easy to remove, and a person can remove them on their own. Double-sided tape functions as a temporary adhesive. You cannot use this kind of attachment if you want to go for a swim or do other physical activities involving sweat or moisture.
Any kind of moisture can loosen the adhesive. Double-sided tapes also leave residue after the removal which needs cleaning from the scalp and underside of the hairpiece.
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This method is the most valid. Clips do not cause regression in hair growth and are easily removed to take care of scalp hygiene, unlike semi-permanent attachments. They can be used easily during any physical activity without fearing them coming off.
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Process of installing hair integration system:
Installing a hair integration system by a professional can take a minimum of 6 hours. It is a hectic process and can result in a beautiful transformation when done correctly and carefully.
- Mesh is attached to the head by pulling the available hair through the holes and then this hair is secured by microbeads but if there is no hair to be pulled through the mesh holes then the mesh is attached to the bald scalp by adhesion. Mesh is fitted on the area in the most natural way possible.
- After attaching the mesh to the scalp, the attachment tool is selected and secured to the mesh. A clip attachment tool is the best form of adhesion.
- Lastly, a hairpiece is attached to the mesh. If the attachment tool is a clip or temporary adhesive attachment, then it is a straightforward process but, if the hairpiece is sewn into the mesh, then the process is a little longer and mostly has a very natural finish if done correctly and carefully.
A hair integration system has its cons, but its pros have more weight. A person can have instant and satisfying results if they choose a well-reputed salon. Before making an appointment to get hair integration.
I would recommend that you have a consultation appointment because now that you know the entire process it would be easy for you to judge the sincerity of a salon and the process they recommend.
Salon’s role is not limited to their services, but they are also responsible for helping you make a compatible choice for yourself, and let’s not forget the future regular visits for the maintenance of the hair integration system.
So, choosing the right saloon for you is an especially crucial decision.
How long does a hair integration system last?
A hair integration system can last for 1+ years if we follow the instructions and take proper care. Otherwise, on every maintenance visit, you mostly replace a thing or two like a part of a hairpiece, or partings, mesh is the only part that lasts for 5 to 6 months or sometimes for a year or two.
Who can have an integration system?
Women and men, both genders can have a hair integration system. The best way is to get it custom-made according to their problem. They can have an integration system in form of a patch or can have it made for the coverage of the whole scalp.
How long after the installation of the hair integration system, it would need maintenance?
The hair integration system needs maintenance after every 4-6 weeks depending on your level of care. During the maintenance, hygiene of the scalp is taken care of, repairing the integration system is done in case the hairpiece requires adding a few wefts, and last, the sewing or adhesion procedure is done.
How much does it cost?
It costs from $1400 to $2200 depending on the coverage area of hair integration. Turkey is known to be providing the cheapest hair integration services while the UK has expensive packages. Add to that the maintenance cost after every 4 to 6 weeks for a year or more. So, before you physically or mentally attach yourself to the idea of having a hair integration system, always check your budget.
Is it feel awkward to wear a hair integration system?
Does it look weird?
In the initial stages of any physical change, a person can feel a little awkward. Even feeling uncomfortable or silly is normal. Because let’s face it there is a whole hair integration system on your head and getting accustomed to it will take time. Mostly for the first 2 or 3 days, it can feel tight but with time its tightness, as well as any feeling of awkwardness, will pass, and you would only feel confident, beautiful, and full of positive energy.
Can people tell or indicate that we are wearing a hair integration system?
If installed properly it would look natural and boosts your self-esteem. People who have seen you without hair will obviously be able to tell that, now you have new hair. As for strangers, natural looks will not give away your secret.
Can I sleep in wet hair integration?
No, hair integration should be fully dried before you sleep or put your head on a pillow. Wet hairs are prone to friction and become damaged.