Look at that girl with the long, thick, gorgeous hair. Maybe she is born with it? Or maybe, more believably, she is wearing extensions.
With so many extension options available nowadays it is sometimes hard to tell whose hair is real and whose hair is borrowed from someone else. I experienced this while having lunch with a friend recently. My friend, who will remain nameless, has model-good looks to begin with. She would be pretty bald - but fortunately, she has a mane of thick, long hair. Not only is it thick and long - it holds curl and I've never witnessed it frizz.
Because I am nosy and because we have an honest friendship I asked her: What is your hair secret? Extensions.
Her mane is the creation of Laura Beth Ray at the Beauty Boutique in Lebanon. Laura Beth has worked as a master cosmetologist and medical aesthetician for the past 5-years.
I visited the Beauty Boutique to interview Laura Beth and find out all the facts about extensions for my own knowledge and for our readers who might be interested in a new look or just want more hair.
Laura Beth said the process begins when a new client comes in for a complimentary consultation. During the consultation they decide on what length the client hopes to achieve. "Someone with a pixie cut trying to have waist-length hair isn't going to happen," she said, explaining that the extensions would look unnatural because of the two extremes.
After a decision is made and a color is matched, the client makes a deposit on the Hot Heads extensions - which start at $50 and goes up, depending on whether the client is getting accent colors, a few extensions or a full head of long hair. Once the ordered extensions arrive, the fun begins. Laura Beth said the extensions are taped in near the scalp.
"It takes about 45 minutes to do and then they are moved up every 10 to 12 weeks when they grow out," she said. "They can be re-used up to three times and you can style, curl and flatiron them just like you would your own hair. A lot of brides will get extensions because they hold curl so well."
Laura Beth added that clients cannot wash their hair for 48 hours after extensions are placed. When extensions grow out, they are gently removed, re-taped and placed higher.
"It isn't going to damage your hair unless you rip them out," she said. "Hair falls out on its own every day. If the cuticle is attached, you can see it is natural hair shed. I have a solution that dissolves the tape and leaves hair with little to no damage."
The Beauty Boutique has been owned by Necole Bell for the past two years. Bell is a former executive in the cosmetic industry who has worked for Estee Lauder, Chanel and Bobbi Brown. Necole said her staff is trained monthly on new trends and techniques.