Category Archives: Hair Gossip

Shedding Hair

shedding hair

It’s time to put another myth to rest: “Hair extensions are breaking off my hair.”

Let’s first define “breakage”. Broken hair means that the bead, bond, or tape has completely been ripped off of your scalp, leaving you with an extremely short or bald patch of hair with nothing attached to it. It would look like someone cut off the strand along with the extension bond. These situations rarely happen and it’s pretty hard to do unless you take a pair of scissors or rip them off yourself.

The truth: Hair extensions DO NOT break off your hair. Shedding, however, is very common.

You will know if you are experiencing normal shedding when you have a few stray hairs that aren’t connected to your scalp but are still in the bead, bond, or tape. If you’re human, you shed hair daily whether you wear hair extensions or not. The average woman loses between 50 and 100 strands of her natural hair per day, and can lose up to 150 strands. You tend to notice it more when wearing hair extensions because you can see the stray hairs that are loose. Of course, there’s a chance you’re experiencing more than average, if you’re not gentle on your extensions.

Things such as not brushing with a hair extensions brush can lead you to ripping your own hair out. Hair extension brushes are made especially for this reason. The teeth from a regular comb, will in fact, snag on the roots of your hair where the extension was placed. Keeping your extensions pulled back tightly is another reason you may experience “more than average” shedding. Your natural hair is being place tightly secured into the extension bond so it’s best to keep all hair styles loose.

To recap; if you’re experiencing breakage, the hair along with the bead, bond, or tape would not be attached to your head. If you’re experiencing shedding; a few stray hairs aren’t connected to your head but are still connected to the bond, bead, or tape. In that case, you have nothing to worry about it as it is completely normal.

Thanks for reading! Have a question or concern? Leave it in the comment  box below.

Stylist Nightmares: Hot Hot Heat!

db_blog_hot_heatWe like to talk to stylists to get into the nitty gritty of the hair extensions biz. We often hear funny and heartwarming stories about how women have been empowered and transformed by their hair extensions, but occasionally we hear some horror stories too! Don’t worry, these anecdotes aren’t meant to freak you out, merely to inform. Someone far more intelligent than me once said (and I read this on the internet, so you know it’s true) “Smart people learn from their mistakes. Really smart people learn from the mistakes of others.” Here’s a few of the mistakes we’ve seen, and some commentary following.

Anyway, here’s a few of the worst things our stylists and stylist representatives have seen involving heat and heat tools.

“Once I saw someone who’d used the melting connector to re-melt the Kera-Link Extensions to try and get them out. This is especially ineffective and dangerous, especially after the bond-remover, which is alcohol based, has already been applied!”

Yikes! Very true though. Alcohol and heat aren’t a good mix, especially when you’re working around hair…unless of course you’re going for that “scorched earth” look made most famous by Patrick Stewart and Mr. Clean in which case, carry on! Just kidding. We don’t condone any form of hair-based pyrotechnics.

The melting connector is used only to apply the Kera-Link extensions and not to remove them. The alcohol-based bond remover should be enough to remove the extensions if the bonds have been completely saturated and broken up.

“I once worked on someone who’d used Kera-Link Rebonds to “re-tip” I-Link Extensions. Then, they didn’t inform the client to keep ALL heat away from the bonds so that they don’t re-melt around  the beads, especially since the melting connector temperature is often lower than many newer tools out there that can heat up twice as hot!”

Uh-oh. All Donna Bella tools are specifically designed to service the specific method listed in their packaging and we can’t guarantee any tools efficacy if it’s not used correctly. I-Link extensions are for beads and Kera-Link extensions are for Keratin bonds, and we won’t recommend mixing and matching here. It’s especially dangerous here because the client didn’t know any alternative method had been used.

“It doesn’t happen much, but I have seen clients who’ve used an oil product to make their hair softer BEFORE they apply heat tools like blow dryers and flat irons.”

While we stand behind many oil-based hair products to rehydrate  hair, using them BEFORE you use heat isn’t a great recipe (unless we’re talking “original recipe KFC” or a deep fried corn-dog) if it’s moisturization you’re looking for. Save the oil for AFTER the heat (or without it entirelyl) because mixing them together is only going to make your hair crispy and lead to more damage. Looking for perfectly formed curls? Consult with a stylist on how to most properly utilize heat.

Are you a stylist with a hair extension nightmare story? How about a client with a question? Don’t hesitate to send them my way at

The New Hair Feather Fashion

You may have noticed celebrities wearing the latest trend in hair extensions. Hillary Duff, Miley Cyrus, and Jennifer Love Hewitt name just a few of the celebrities that have recently been seen rocking this new hot trend on the red carpet!

So how do we keep up with the current trend? Will the current trend even be our best look? Thankfully in times like these, something so simple as one strand of a feather extensions in your hair can make you look so current, and be so affordable. Very similar to the micro-beaded single strand hair extensions, this light weight comfortable feather extension adds class, personality, and sexiness to any hair style. It also can work really well on any hair color. It is as temporary or as permanent as you want it to be. You can change it as often as you would like, and there are many different styles and colors, so coordinating your feather with your outfit is fun and easy!

Feathers probably remind you most of our Native Americans, because they used them so much to express themselves in head pieces and wardrobes. Today feathers represent so many different concepts! So many different cultures use them to symbolize so many different and unique beliefs. This is the perfect opportunity for you to express yourself through your very own feather extension!

So what will your feather mean to you?

My Twin Wants Length

March 25, 2011


My twin sister and I currently have short hair and have spent our entire lives with identical hair styles, except for one night at our junior prom. She tells me that she wants hair extensions now, but I really like our short hair going into summer.

We are 24 years old. Don’t you agree that short hair is more practical for warm weather and if she insists on extensions, do you think I should play along or dig in my heels?

Ilene & Irene, S. – Kissimmee, Florida


It is hard for most of us who have no twin to understand the need to be so much like another person. Most adult twins that we know, have found their personal preferences and gone their separate ways with hair styles. You ought to consider that as your first option. Unless you plan on living together the rest of your life.

But if your genes and heredity are so powerful that doing your own thing becomes impossible, then suggest clip-in hair extensions for your sister. When you are together she keeps the extensions in the drawer and after you head to work, she breaks out the clips and becomes whoever she wants to be.

By the way, extensions are terrific during any season of the year.

Hair styling is fun and expresses how you feel about yourself. We think you that both you and your sister ought to continue to share your love but find your own hair identity.

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Why We Don’t Have Green Hair

In public school art classes we learn that with just three primary colors – Red, Green, Blue – most any other color can be created. That being true, why don’t we have people all over the globe being born with one of those three unusual hair colors?

Primary Colors And Why

Our brains are programmed to see color based upon various light and wavelength that is detected by the human eye. Not everyone sees the same color in exactly the same way. Normally, we use cone receptors in the eyes to see the full 3-D range of color. Color combinations are based upon three main colors? Red, Green, and Blue. Cone receptors are also known as TRI-(three)chromats.

Few people on earth are natural red heads, and no large populations of green heads or blue heads have been found to my knowledge. Even though Red, Green, and Blue are the primary colors, hair color is determined by two pigments found in all human hair called Eumelanin and Pheomelanin. The quantity of these pigments provided by our DNA is dictated by heredity.

Sometimes pigment strength jumps from generation to generation. That is why you may be born blonde but your children have brown hair from birth. Also, hair color is often dominated by the other parent. When it comes down to it, natural hair color can be basic brown, black, blonde, or red.

Pigments Make The Difference

It is the quantity and strength of Pheomelanin and Eumelanin that formulates the combination of natural hair colors that we see. Each person has more or less of these pigments and therefore more or less of one basic hair color than another. For example, Pheomelanin colors hair red. Eumelanin colors hair black or brown. The Irish have much more Pheomelanin pigment in their genes than African-Americans.

Speaking of the Irish and Scottish population. It has been reported that 13 percent of their populations are redheads, while worldwide that number is only between 1% and 2%.

Grey hair comes about because of lack of pigmentation and the way light is reflected on the hair. In some light, hair appears to be grey while in other light there is a sense that a person has blonde hair.

Most hair extensions are harvested from women who have high amounts of black Eumelanin pigment. The pigment is extracted from the hair and colored to suit the preferences of the stylists and their customers.

Luckily for us, hair color usually looks much the same for each individual. It would be concerning if I thought that some people saw my hair as brown and others thought it was purple. Thank heavens for our trichromats.

It is also wonderful that with modern technology, we can experience any length and color of hair that we wish to have. Even the natural colors produced by Pheomelanin and Eumelanin.

Logan is founder of Donna Bella Milan hair extensions and lashes and author of the Donna Bella weblog.

What & Where Is The Knap?

February 22, 2011


I hear the word “knap” used all of the time in my local salon and I don’t want to feel stupid by asking what it means or where it is. It seems to be used in a variety of ways. Some stylists refer to the knap as part of the hair while others talk about the neck. Which is it?

Justi, B. – Bullhead City, Arizona


The word Knap originates from Old English and refers to the crest of a hill. So, over time, we have added a definition to describe the location of the area connecting the back of the neck to the skull.

Just run you hand upward from the bottom of your neck to the bony projection at the base of the skull. That area is considered to be the knap (spelled knap not knapp).

Another way to say it is the knap of the neck is the slight projection at the back of the head above the neck. So when someone states that some stressful event makes their hair raise-up on the knap of their neck, you’ll know exactly where they are talking about.

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Inspire Yourself

As a student at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City long before shows about makeovers, fashion, and celebrity styles appeared on television, I was taught to stretch my imagination by using all that I saw around me as a source of creative inspiration.  Walking down a city street could reveal the perfect shade of “putty grey” in a piece of gum stuck to the sidewalk or the next silhouette for a ball gown in the oddly shaped shadow against a building.   People-watching was  great for spotting reverse trends, and of course, the reading of magazines and industry trade publications was also encouraged as a way of keeping up with what was going down the runways as well as going on in the business.

Years later as a student of cosmetology, I learned that the same techniques I used to inspire myself as a student of fashion also applied to hair design.  Hair is after all, a huge part of the fashion landscape.

Ideas, talent and hard-work go hand- in hand- in hand with creating beautiful and interesting designs.  But transforming those designs, whether they are fashion related or hair & beauty related into profits, requires a working knowledge of what is currently happening in your market and a feeling of what is going to be happening next.  And, in my opinion, it has never been easier to follow fashion than it is today with all of the new outlets of information available.

Take television for example.  Shows like “What Not To Wear”, or “Fashion Police” are a great sources of fashion reporting.  These shows not only report- they critique as well.  But remember, you don’t have to agree with the critics.  As you’re listening to what the reporters have to say, form your own opinions as well.  Do you really like Anne Hathaway’s dress?  What about Angelina’s hair, or Nicole Kidman’s jewelry?  Think about why you did, and think about why you didn’t.  Then, try to articulate your positions either way.  Don’t just form an opinion, practice backing it up with substantial comments that add to your case for or against something.

My friends and I actually talk back to the hosts while watching these types of shows.  Or I may actually elaborate on a comment that has been made as though I am actually a part of their conversation.  Such as what Kelly Osbourne said about Christina Aguilara’s hair on a recent episode of   “Fashion Police”.

Kelly said that she really liked Christina’s new hair extensions because Christina didn’t usually have the best ones and that it was nice to see her with good hair for a change. To which I replied, “Ouch!  What a backhanded compliment.”  Aside from that however, I the stylist, thought, “when I do hair extensions on a client, my goal is to make the extensions look exactly like natural hair.”  Most of the clients in my practice don’t want anyone to know that they are wearing extensions.  If someone could tell they are extensions, then I believe that I have failed as a stylist, no matter how high quality the hair used may be.  This was information that I could take back to the salon.

Personally, I think Christina was wearing a wig, and I hate when people call wigs or “clip-ins” extensions.  Wigs are wigs, clip-ins are hair pieces, and wefts are weaves.  In my opinion, because of the intensity of the labor and the technical skill required, only strand- by- strand methods of hair application should be called extensions. (I don’t mean to take away from the skills required to perform the other methods of hair supplementation, because they are valid methods, just not the same as strand-by-strand.)   But that’s neither here nor there.  The point is that Christina was “ousted” on national television for having fake hair, yet almost every other celebrity on the red carpet also had hair extensions (good ones) yet no mention was made of that.

Note to self:  During consultations, make sure to point out all the celebrity extensions to my clients when the pictures appear in magazines.  The “natural” look of these hairstyles should close many deals for me. If I did my homework correctly… Ka-ching!   Ka-ching!

Most clients will ask for hairstyles that are currently “in” and will expect their stylists to know what they are.   By using available resources you can cite examples of those styles, thereby reassuring your client that you know what they want.  What will set you apart from your peers in the salon is to be able to tell clients about what they will want next.  And that will come from your knowledge of what is going on in your industry.  The confidence you exude as a trend spotter will raise your status in the eyes of the clients, to that of a fashion insider.  And everyone wants to know someone on “the inside”.

“Sectioning” Makes For Easy Applications

January 13, 2011


I am getting good at applying the actual hair extensions but struggle organizing the hair in orderly sections at the beginning of the process. I really don’t understand how to get the hair out of the way for easier handling and how to divide the work area on the back of the head.

Jafra, T. – Madison, Wisconsin


You are asking about “sectioning the hair”. To section properly, all you need is a rat tail comb an some large clips.

Diagonally, divide the clients hair into two equal halves right down the middle of the head. Then use a rat tail comb to part the hair from ear to ear, just below the oxcipital bone. Using the large clips, clip the sectioned hair on one side of the head, onto the top of the head. Then section the other side of the head and clip the hair up-top.

Make sure that the clipped hair is secure and the horizontal part is as straight as possible.

So that your client can wear her hair up or in a ponytail, do not apply extensions to the nap area or lower back of the head, below the horizontal part. Extensions are never applied in that part of the head. Check out our YouTube video titled “Install Donna Bella Milan Hair Extensions” to see how sectioning is made easy.

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Donating Your Long Locks


December 31, 2010


For almost fifteen years, I have had long hair but to be honest with you, I’m bored with my hairstyle.  I’m going to cut it and use extensions from time-to-time so that I have more variety.

An organization called Locks Of Love will apparently use my hair to help children who have lost their own hair because of medical issues.  Can you tell me how to go about donating my hair to this or another worthy cause?

Linda P – Aberdeen, Washington


Great idea!  With Locks Of Love you’ve found the perfect home for your long hair.

When donating to Locks Of Love there are FOUR GUIDELINES.

  • Hair must be 10 inches long measured tip to tip as the minimum length.
  • Hair must be in a ponytail or braid before it is cut.
  • Hair must be clean and completely dry before it is mailed to Locks Of Love.
  • Ponytail or braid must be placed inside a plastic bag and then inside a padded envelope.

Hair donations are mailed to Locks Of Love at

234 Southern Blvd.

West Palm Beach, FL  33405-2701

Have A Question?  Submit Your Question (less than 200 words) to

Removing My Extensions


December 30, 2010


My hair extensions were put in by a stylist in Nevada, but I have since moved to Ohio.  It’s time for new extensions.  Will any stylist be able to remove my micro bead extensions?  Because of airfare costs, I don’t want to fly back to Reno.

Karen G – Sandusky, Ohio


One of the great advantages of having micro bead hair extensions is the ease in removing the extensions.  Ideally, any extension specialist would own a uniquely designed Bead Tool and could quickly remove the your extensions.

And there is one other possibility.  Just order a bead tool from Donna Bella at and have a friend help you remove your extensions.  It’s simple.  Just open the micro beads with the tool by squeezing the bent bead, back to its original rounded shape.  The beads and the hair extensions will slip right off.  You can use the tool for future extension removal and save a lot of time and money.

Have A Question?  Submit Your Question (less than 200 words) to