When it comes to wigs, there are 4 types- machine, integration, lace and high definition. We will explore and compare each below.
These are the ones that most businesses retail, that everyone knows and are pretty much familiar with. They're also referred to in the theatrical community as "hard-front" wigs. The problem with them is that most do not look natural for various reasons, the main one of which, the hair is overly dense, especially around the face. For this reason, these wigs also have the tendency to look more like a solid object on someone's head rather than light, thin and airy like real natural hair. In addition, they cannot be parted unless a monofilament scalp is put into them. Even then, this scalp is very unnatural looking as it almost never matches the skin complexion of the wearer and usually sits up at least ¼ - ½ inch from the person's head. With the aid of a good hairdresser, these wigs can be worn undetected behind a person's hairline with that person's hair blended back into it, though styling will be very limited.
Integration Wigs allow one to pull through their own natural hair through a grid of small squares or holes that are built into the wig to integrate the person's hair into the hair of the wig. They can look quite natural for full or voluminous hairstyles. However, they do not allow for much versatility as when the hair is parted, the base is quite noticeable.
Originally developed for TV, film and theatre, lace wigs are only custom made to fit an individual head. So usually, once a wig is built for someone, it only looks right on that one person. Non-stretch, they are made with very fine lace where the hair is weaved into the lace in very small amounts, creating a much more natural look than regular wigs. But they only fit and hug the face properly when seen in person by a professional wig builder for molding & measurements. It is extremely difficult, if not impossible, for someone to build one of these wigs to follow and cover someone's hairline properly with that person sight unseen.
Although lace wigs are cheaper than our high definition systems, ordering from vendors online can be costly. Usually vendors instruct buyers to use a thick, epoxy type of adhesive to "install" the wig because its not custom made to fit the customers head or hug their face. This adhesive keeps lace wigs on for weeks at a time. The follicles of the fine or baby hair that frames the face are extremely delicate. Every time a lace wig is removed that has been applied with adhesive, it rips out follicles. Customers usually don't notice it in the beginning, but usually would after the 4th or 5th time the wig is removed. People have been know to lose their hairlines in as little as 4-6 months after wearing lace wigs with adhesive.
The lace material used is very transparent. So lace wigs can look reasonably well when the client is bald, as their own scalp shows through the lace when the system is parted. However when their hair starts to grow back in, that feature is lost as you can then see the client's actual hair showing through the lace when the system is parted. Hence, the lace wig parted no longer looks as natural as it did when the client was actually bald. Plus, the hair in lace wigs is ventilated 4-5 strands at a time, which makes the knots at the hair roots look noticeably thick and unnatural. So while bleaching of the knots is a common practice, upon close examination, the roots can still appear a bit unusual.
If you do your research, most lace wigs sold by online can look just as "wiggy" as traditional machine made wigs. Because these wigs are seen worn by certain celebrities, businesses are taking advantage of people not knowing that they can't just buy and wear a lace wig like they would with a store brought machine made wig, and look as good as the celebrity they saw. The hair is usually too dense, the wig doesn't follow and cover the hairline properly while the lace can be seen against the person's hair. Perhaps wigs from these websites look great at a distance, but are not good for close ups.
The high definition systems offer clients the ability to treat their hair without the worry of losing the scalp feature as their hair grows back in. The difference with the high definition systems is when someone parts through the hair, people think they're actually seeing the person's scalp, when they're really just seeing the base of the wig. And this feature does not require the person to be bald, or the wig to be glued on.
Because of the increasing popularity of HDTV, along with the increasing resolution of film and digital photography, lace wigs needed to be taken a step further, which brings us to High Definition Wigs.
What separates the high definition systems from the other types of wigs is the great amount intricate detail that goes into their construction. For instance, grain direction, the direction the hair is ventilated into the base, is very important for the hair to fall and move naturally. Matching the color of the base to client's skin tone and complexion is crucial for styling versatility, which gives the client freedom to part the system anyway desired without the worry of anything appearing unnatural. We're the only business that does this. Following the client's natural hairline with a transitional hair density around the face is also just as crucial for the wig base to disappear into the client's skin. Transitional Hair Density refers to a gradual thinning of the hair into the client's face. Following the client's natural hairline also helps to avoid significant change in their appearance which facilitates a smoother transition back to everyday life without others noticing the hair replacement system.
One of the best features of our wigs is the hairline surrounding the face. This is something that can be better illustrated than explained if you observe the photos.
The end result is a hair replacement system so realistic and convincing, they go virtually undetected and unnoticed, even to the "trained" eye, what we refer to as "high definition". As far as we have observed, no other builder puts this much intricate detail into building wigs or hair systems, except when done for the few celebrities that wear them, which can cost upwards of $6k – $25k. We build these types of systems at affordable prices ranging from $350 - $3500.
To get away from the wigs, a lot of women recovering from medical hair loss resort to wearing hair extensions as soon as they feel they have enough hair to do so. However, extensions are twice as damaging for when worn, the tension from the weight of the extension hair damages the follicles of what little hair the person has, in addition to it making it next to impossible to track hair growth and properly care for their own hair.
In addition to the tension on the follicles, when removing extensions, the hair breaks at almost three times the rate because the hair is usually dry and brittle. As a result, everyone either returns to wigs as they go from having an "ok" head of hair, to having almost no hair at all, and what little is left is extremely damaged. It is very difficult, if not impossible, for one to properly care for and grow out their hair wearing extensions for all the reasons mentioned above.