Today's blog post is going to be a little different from our usual ones. Today you'll be reading the direct thoughts and comments from the founder of Hey Stacey herself, Sharna.
I wanted to create this blog and share my experience and truths of wearing invisi-tape hair extensions. No one talks about the aftermath - when you take them out and the toll it can take on your mental health and self esteem. Now, if you're thinking I'm vain or overdramatic, I'd stop reading now because I'm someone that preaches self love and being able to express yourself however you wish and that's what I'm going to do today. So let's get right into it, shall we?
Hair, fashion and beauty all play a very important role in my life because they are some of the sole reasons I get up every morning, they're what puts the pep in my step and keeps me going. I've always been big on feeling beautiful because when I feel beautiful in my day-to-day life I feel good, it's normal. We all feel like this. If we feel daggy or dorky, we naturally put ourselves down and we feel glum whereas if we put in the effort, whether that's putting on make-up and doing your hair, you're going to feel confident and you're going to feel good!
When I wear hair extensions I feel like my best self! I have all this volume and length but you take that away after having all this beautiful hair and I'm left with really fine, thin hair. It's incredibly disheartening, to be totally honest you will find me crying on the days I have to take out my tape hair extensions for my hair to be redone by my hairdresser. A lot of people will laugh and say I'm being silly but this is what I mean when I say no one talks about the aftermath of taking your hair extensions out, the toll it can take on your mental health and personal perception. Especially when you're a hair health junkie like myself. Just ask my hairdresser, I'm always listening to her advice, always taking hair vitamins, ALWAYS using heat protectant and using the right shampoo's & conditioners + products to ensure the integrity of my hair remains strong. But doing all the right things doesn't always mean your natural hair will be the best it can be.
I have quite dark brown hair naturally and I've been lifting it to blonde for over 5 years now with the latest couple sessions attempting to lift even further so naturally this will take a HUGE toll on my natural hair. My hair has become really thin and fragile, thankfully I still have hair on my head and no balding but I'm dreading the day Alyce (my hairdresser) tells me the time has come to stop lifting and start going back to my natural hair colour or reducing the blonde goodness. That's when a real breakdown will occur - my hair is my security blanket. I put so much effort, love and time into my hair and being blonde is something I never felt possible or that I'd actually suit it and feel good about myself with blonde hair. Blondes really do have more fun!
Anyway, back on topic... I just think in this day and age, mental health is very important. Especially around the topic of how we view ourselves and our self confidence. I'll be another person to blame social media but it is true, what we see on social media makes us believe that perfection is real and everyone has to be so, but that's really not the case. You look at me with hair extensions in, would you have known, like really known my hair was that perfect? That all that thickness and length was real?
I fooled you, didn't I? I'll put myself out there and I'll post a picture of my actual hair so you can see the difference and maybe then you'll see how my self confidence could go way down after I take out my hair extensions - to the point where I'm crying and left having my hair pulled back everyday until my hair extensions are back in. Yep, I hide my hair when I don't have hair extensions. But I justify to myself that I'm doing the best by my hair by not putting my hair extensions back in by telling myself I'm not applying any heat to my hair, it's two birds with one stone... protecting my hair from heated tools as well as letting my natural hair recover from the hair extensions. Justifying your actions to yourself sometimes is need, you'll see what I mean.
When I took my hair extensions out for the first time, I was glad to be alone because even I felt silly for being so upset, for getting to the point of tears. But as I mentioned, I'm someone who isn't afraid to admit that they feel their best when they look their best. Hair extensions are an incredible source of self confidence which means in return, removing them can be detrimental to your self confidence. Majorly, so.
The good news is that I have found things I can do to make myself not only feel beautiful without my hair extensions but also to improve the health of my hair because the healthiness of your natural hair is extremely important when it comes to hair extensions. You need strong hair to be able to hold your hair extensions without further damaging your hair if it's already damaged.
First things first - you need to find something or some things that make you feel beautiful and make you feel better. For example, I feel beautiful during the times I don't have my hair extensions in, when I'm wearing make-up paired with a well thought out outfit. Remember how I said fashion and beauty play an important role in my life and self-esteem... this is what I mean. Wearing clothes and putting on make-up is a great way to boost my self confidence around the times my hair is healing from taking out tape hair extensions, this is when I really need the two the most. The two being fashion & beauty.
I'm a hair health junkie, I like to think of my hairs future. It sounds silly but you should really think of it too. I already bleach my hair to be bright and blonde when it's naturally a dark brown, putting tape hair extensions on top of that, no matter how healthy the application method is, will still cause my natural hair to need recovery time. If your hair is healthy and doesn't have much or any damage at all, go for gold in having your tape hair extensions reapplied on the same day they're taken out. I don't have that luxury without running the risk of really ruining my hairs future and leading myself to a place where my hair cannot be fixed and it'll be so thin that hair extensions won't even fix my hair qualms - meaning I couldn't wear hair extensions without royally ruining my hair beyond reach that it'll never be able to recover. That can happen. This is why, if you're like me and having thin hair that's fragile, you should really allow yourself a break in-between getting your tape in and getting them taken out. The longer the break the better of course, but try to leave your hair with the recovery time of two weeks.
During those two weeks, really pump your hair full nutrients and vitamins to help cure it. For me personally, I am a big advocate for the JS Health vitamins. You see them all over social media, every influencer is promoting them and that's for good reason - they're amazing! I have been using their Hair & Energy for well over 6 months now and I can notice a difference in my hairs health. I know for a fact if I didn't take these vitamins, my hair would be in a WAY worse state than it is now. If you bleach your hair every 6-10 weeks like me, you really need these vitamins too. Your hair may not grow as quick as other customers using their products but you'll find solace in the fact that your hair is receiving the nutrients it needs to heal and stay healthy.
Something that I learnt only through my hairdresser is that you should change your hair routine such as shampoo and conditioner every so often because extended use of the same product will result in your hair becoming used to it. So mixing up your products means your hair will receive nutrients in other forms and absorb them instead of becoming prone to the same thing over and over again and no longer benefiting from that particular product. I'm currently using the nourishing range from 18 in 1 and I found that my hair is so silky smooth and soft after using it. The beauty of 18 in 1 is that it is packed full of nutrients your hair needs regularly and during the process of making the formula you can be satisfied in knowing the health and integrity of your hair was priority in every decision made when it came to ingredients and formula. I will rotate my washes with Olaplex to really pump my hair full of goodness. Before I switched to 18 in 1 and Olaplex I was using Fanola nutricare mixed with Lo'real's biotin enforcer range. So remember it's good to swap your products around but make sure you do your research and ask your hairdresser the nitty gritty questions so you can determine what products are best for you. If you're a little worries about the honesty behind your hairdressers words, as I know sometimes you feel like people are just trying to sell a product to you, the staff at AMR Hair and Beauty supplies are extremely helpful or you can reach out to one of us and we're always here to help, doesn't always have to be a question about hair extensions. Ask for me, I'll help you - us hair health junkies have to stick together!
I really wanted to write this blog because A, it's important to know it's okay to feel down and sad about losing your hair in the sense of hair extensions but most importantly you are not alone in feeling this way. Many women turn to hair extensions because their hair is already thin and fine but for someone like me who was used to their thin and fine hair and didn't see a problem with it to turn to hair extensions for added thickness and length to then taking them out and having to spend a couple weeks without the security blanket of hair extensions, is tough and disheartening. I'll be the one who openly admits the vainness behind my words but don't be ashamed about the things that make you feel good, the things that make you feel beautiful. Don't be discouraged by my honesty when it comes to hair extensions but I have always been an advocate for transparency for Hey Stacey and I think honesty is the best policy. Hair extensions as I said are an excellent tool to use in the self confidence department but my message in this blog is to try and not be discouraged and disheartened when you lose your hair extensions security blanket. It's important you find ways to make yourself feel beautiful without the help of beauty to help you get through the times when you can't have them. Like me during the times I'm not wearing my hair extensions, I work hard to make myself good by sticking to things that make me feel beautiful until I have my hair extensions in.
Remember, it's okay to feel sad and down after removing your hair extensions and remember to take care of your mental health and do things that make you feel good and make you feel happy. Don't be ashamed in finding joy, self confidence and happiness in materialistic items. As the ever so wise and legendary Blair Waldorf once said "whoever said money can't buy you happiness, doesn't know where to shop". We'll leave that there and end the blog post here...
Have a lovely day and we hope all your dreams and your hair dreams, come true. Stay beautiful!
Lots of love,