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Men's Health > Hair Loss > Hairpiece


Whether they’re woven, glued, clipped or taped, hairpieces are the easiest manner of hair replacement.

You’re bald one day, hirsute the next.

The main thing about hairpieces though... is the quality varies--a lot--and upkeep can be expensive.

Paul Sciortino of Sciortino’s Hair Styling in Perth Amboy, N.J., suggests that follicle shoppers keep the following in mind...

Hairpiece Quality

Spend some money; spring for a custom job. Inexpensive toupees often start with rigid foundations that don’t fit the head properly, and they can be stitched with stiff, artificial hair. And cheap nylon hair can deflect light rather than absorbing it.

Hairpiece Style

Don’t forget who you are. Make sure that your new hair is appropriate for your age and facial contours, and that the color and texture match what’s left of your real hair to prevent a telltale line of demarcation.

Hair ain’t heavy. But replacement hair can be, in which case it won’t fall naturally. When the wind blows, it could stay in a salute, rather than flopping back down where it belongs.

Human hair is only human. That means it sheds, and more hair will have to be added from time to time at an additional cost. Human hair also tends to oxidize, so it requires regular tinting by a professional colorist. Keep in mind that synthetic hair has come a long way, and you can even get a combination real-hair/synthetic-hair piece.

Nothing’s perfect. Despite the commercials, things like swimming, skiing, running, and being out in the sun can have detrimental effects on some hair replacements and their attachment systems.

Do you like bangs? With several attachment systems, your hair must be styled to conceal the front hairline or base. This precludes certain hairstyles that may flatter your face. With other systems, like the hair-weave approach, you’ve got greater flexibility.

Remember the maintenance. Some systems may include “hidden” monthly costs. Ask whether your replacement will require special products or upkeep by the seller’s “stylists.”

Drew Voight

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