Category Archives: Hair Product Reviews

Finding Your Signature Style

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Hair extensions are a great way to experiment with your look, but they’re also perfect for cultivating a “signature” style. Whether you’re preppy, sporty, glamorous, edgy, or down-to-earth, you want your hair to match your lifestyle, your fashion sense, and your attitude, producing that unmistakeable aura that is uniquely you. We’ve written several blog posts in the past aiming to help you uncover your signature hairstyle, covering topics like: how to choose a cut for your face shape and hair texture, where to go for hairstyle tips, and how to choose the perfect Donna Bella extension method for your needs. But that last topic needs some updating, as we’ve introduced a variety of new extension options to our product list. That’s why today we’ll be going over the details of our various extension methods, including their relative benefits for your particular look.

Tape-In
Tape-In is one of our professional (semi-permanent) extension methods, and it is installed by sandwiching sections of the natural hair between two hair extension wefts (or a single weft and a piece of Single Sided Tape, for finer-haired clients). This type of professional extension is the quickest to install, taking only 30-60 minutes, and needs to be moved up every 6-8 weeks. Tape-In extensions can be reused 1-3 times for a total lifespan of hair is about 3-6 months.

People love Tape-In for its easy installation, its natural and comfortable feel, and its exceptionally lightweight, making it great for fine-haired clients, first time extension wearers, and practical, on-the-go women alike. So if you’re interested in permanent length, fullness, or color change, prioritize flexibility and comfort, and/or have fine, thin, sensitive hair, Tape-In may be the option for you.

Watch this video to learn more about Tape-In.

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Kera-Link
Kera-Link is our oldest, longest-lasting professional (semi-permanent) extension method, and it is installed by fusing the extension and natural hair together with melted keratin bonds. This type of extension installs in 2-3 hours, and needs to be moved up every 8-16 weeks. They can be reused 1-2 times for a total lifespan of hair is about 3-6 months.

People love Kera-Link for its durability, its natural 360 degree movement, and its virtually invisible bonds, making it the top pick for experienced extension clients who need a method they can rely on, no matter what. If you are committed to professional extensions, have medium-thick, healthy hair, and want a sturdy, classic extension option, then Kera-Link is your go-to!

Watch this video to learn more about Kera-Link.

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I-Link
I-Link is a professional (semi-permanent) extension method that applies with only beads—no glue, tape, or heat required. This type of extension installs in 1-2 hours, and needs to be moved up every 8-10 weeks. They can be reused 1-3 times for a total lifespan of hair is about 3-6 months.

People love I-Link for its super safe installation, easy removal and readjustment, and natural 360 degree movement, making it a winner among newer and more cautious hair extension clients. If you’re interested in permanent length, volume, and/or color change, but want a flexible, non-invasive method, I-Link is the way to go.

Watch this video to learn more about I-Link.

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Flat-Tip
Flat-Tip is our newest professional (semi-permanent) hair extension method, and it is a hybrid of our Tape-In and I-Link methods. The extension installs with beads—like I-Link—but lays flat against the hair in mini-wefts—like Tape-In. This type of extension installs in 1-2 hours, and needs to be moved up every 8-10 weeks. They can be reused 1-3 times for a total lifespan of hair is about 3-6 months.

People love Flat-Tip for its safe installation (which utilizes no glue, tape, or heat), easy removal and readjustment, natural 360 degree movement, and exceedingly comfortable feel, making it the perfect option for clients who have difficulty choosing between our other professional methods. If you want long-lasting hair extensions and value flexibility, non-invasiveness, and comfort equally, Flat-Tip is your best bet.

Watch this video to learn more about Flat-Tip.

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Clip-In
Clip-In is an at-home (removable) extension method that is clipped to the hair. This type of extension installs in 5-15 minutes, and removes in under 2 minutes. They can be reused as many times as the user sees fit, and typically reach a total lifespan of about 6-12 months.

People love Clip-Ins because they give them options. Since the hair is removable, it can be put in and taken out at the user’s convenience, and used to achieve a range of different, customizable looks. And, unlike other Ready-to-Wear extension options, Clip-In placement is totally up to the client—each set comes with a series of wefts of various sizes that can be used individually or in unison for varying effects. Beyond that, Clip-Ins are loved for their low-maintenance and quick installation time. Choose this method if you’re new to hair extensions, value flexibility and control over your extension placement, enjoy change, and/or have fine hair.

Watch this video to learn more about Clip-In.

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Solo
Solo is another at-home (removable) crown-style extension method that is applied to the hair by pulling the wire around the crown of the head—like a head wrap—and brushing the top layer of natural hair over the wire. This type of extension installs in seconds, and removes in seconds, too. They can be reused as many times as the user sees fit, and typically reach a total lifespan of about 6-12 months.

People love Solos because they’re incomparably easy and super quick to put on. Solo extensions make for basically instantaneous transformations, adding length, thickness, and/or color without applying any weight to the root area of the client’s natural hair. Change-lovers, new extension wearers, and fine or thin-haired clients all choose Solo for its ease and comfort, and its minimal maintenance regimen. If you’re just getting into the world of hair extensions, have fine or thin hair or a sensitive scalp, and/or prefer to have a removable hair extension option, Solo is where it’s at.

Watch this video to learn more about Solo.

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Bangs
Bangs are yet another at-home (removable) type of extension that are not designed to add length or fullness to a head of hair, but rather to add the appearance of bangs to the front of the hair. Our Ready-to-Wear Bangs come in Side Swept and Straight Across style options, and are installed with 3 clips that grip easily and comfortably to the natural hair. This type of extension installs in less than a minute, and removes in under a minute, too. They can be reused as many times as the user sees fit, and typically reach a total lifespan of about 6-12 months.

People love Bangs because they’re a quick and subtle way to revamp their entire look. Bangs have the ability to change the way a person’s face looks, with relatively little change to the appearance of the hair itself. Bangs extensions are also great for quelling the indecision and commitment issues people face when contemplating regular bangs. Rather than cut your hair into a face frame that you’ll later regret, throw on some Bangs extensions that you can simply take off at the end of the day! Choose Bangs extensions if you’re after a new way to complement your current hairstyle.

Watch this video to learn more about Bangs.

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Still undecided about which extension method is right for you? Leave us a comment in the space below, or schedule an appointment with your stylist for a consultation! If you’re interested in Ready-to-Wear hair, specifically, you can even take this quiz to find your best match.

 

Donna Bella’s Summer Favorites!

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Ready to hit the sun, sand, and surf? Not without your hair-protective products, you’re not! Summer is just a month away, so now’s the time to get preparing. Here are our top picks for beautiful and healthy hair and hair extensions–all season long!

UV Protection. Always, always, always a must. We’re liking the feel of Aveda’s Sun Care Protective Hair Veil, which boasts 16 hours of water-resistant sun protection. No need to reapply throughout the day (like your sunscreen!), and no need to worry about your silky strands frizzing up. Just keep swimming without a care in the world.

Texturizing Spray. For those hat-wearing days, spritz some Living Proof Instant Texture Mist to your roots, then enjoy up to 48 hours of non-stop volume. This stuff is also great for recreating that classic beachy wave, whether you heat the beach or not.

Anti-Frizz. For you curly-types who need a little flyaway maintenance, try something like Bumble and bumble Defrizz–a frizz-fighting hair softener with a refreshingly short ingredients list. We especially love that whole “works in any weather” thing.

Hair Oil. Your summer hair can never get enough moisture, so help yourself to this super nourishing and gentle Donna Bella Argan Oil, made to correct dryness for smooth, silky hair.

Conditioning Mask. Kick the deep-conditioning up a notch with a luxurious conditioning mask like our Donna Bella KeraExtend™ Mask. Designed to add moisture back to sun-dried locks, it’s kind of like hitting the reset button after a long day outdoors.

What are your summer hair care picks? Have you stumbled upon any noteworthy hair mask recipes lately? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Olaplex for Donna Bella Hair

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If you haven’t heard of Olaplex by now, you’ve been living under a rock. Since the product hit shelves, it’s been a big hit with stylists and their clients,  forever changing the industry. Lifting color from natural hair is no longer a worry. Yet there’s been a lot of confusion about the product, involving questions like, does it lift color? And, is it a conditioner? We spoke to Donna Bella Hair educator Ruben Martinez to get some answers to these questions, and to figure out how this product can benefit your Donna Bella extensions.

What is Olaplex and why are stylists becoming such big fans?

Olaplex is a tool used during and after a chemical service. Hair is made up of bonds that break every day with chemicals like color or with brushing. Olaplex is a chemical that links those bonds back together to strengthen them. It is NOT a conditioner. Conditioners merely hydrate while coating the hair. Once you wash out the conditioner, the true grit is exposed again. Olaplex works inside the hair cuticle to link the bonds that the hair is made out of to accomplish that smooth, healthy look of hair. Olaplex is also NOT a lifting agent. Another misconception is that Olaplex is a chemical that helps lift color since it’s used with developer. Again, Olaplex does not lift, nor does it condition; it’s simply an added tool. Look at it as a protector that gets activated while the hair undergoes chemical treatments to minimize damage.

How does it work for Donna Bella Hair Extensions?

Olaplex is perfect for both coloring new Donna Bella Hair Extensions and for treating uncolored extensions that are on their last run. For those that are worn out but you’re hoping to revive them for one last install. As a stand alone treatment, Olaplex can help connect the bonds of the hair together again. It’s something that Ruben recommends for this type of hair. “You can never get enough of Olaplex,” says Ruben. He recommends you use it as a stand-alone treatment every second or third application. He also recommends classes from Olaplex that will help you utilize this tool to its full potential. If you decide to use it on Donna Bella Hair extensions with color, take advantage of the copious educational resources and tutorials we have available at the Color Takeover Portal. This educational initiative exists in collaboration with Joico Color Intensities and Framar International to equip stylists with all the color info they need to achieve beautiful color transformations. Just as with any product, you’ll get better use once you’re educated in how to use it. So if you’re thinking of coloring your extensions—with or without Olaplex—visit the Color Takeover Portal today.

To learn more about Olaplex, specifically, visit their website: www.olaplex.com.

Are you using Olaplex? What are your thoughts? How have you used it? Leave it in the comments below. We’re curious to know!

Hair Extensions Tailored to Fit Your Budget

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Since the demand for hair extensions has increased, manufacturers have made it possible for more women to afford them. By offering a variety of installation methods and hair quality, women everywhere can have longer, fuller hair, without it costing them an arm and a leg. Whether you’re shopping for hair extensions for yourself or for your salon, here are things to consider when shopping for hair extensions to help you stay within your budget.

Tape-Ins. These are the easiest and fastest to install for a hair stylist. The installation time can range from 30 minutes to an hour and a half. Because it’s such a quick installation, Tape-Ins aren’t as expensive when it comes to the application time. As of now, Tape-Ins are the latest trend because of their seamless, natural finish. Their high quality will also last you up to three months with proper care, before your next move up appointment.

I-Links. You still get the same amount of hair in grams as any other hair method. However, you will be spending a little more on installation because this method involves installing each strand by connecting them to your natural hair with micro-beads. The minimal time for installation is 2 hours but it can surely take longer depending on the thickness of your hair. It’s a client favorite because it requires no heat, glue, bonds, or chemicals. Because the beads are so tiny, they are easily hidden in your hair. If properly cared for, they can last you 3 to 4 months before your move-up appointment.

Kera-Links. These, like the I-Link method, are installed strand by strand. Instead of using a bead like the I-Links, Kera-Link extensions use keratin bonds that are fused into each strand of your natural hair. This method is also known as Fusion. It is the oldest method of installation because of the ultimate styling potential—no beads or tape to hide! If cared for properly, these will last you as long as I-Link hair extensions before your next move-up appointment. Again, these will be more costly due to the time spent for installation.

Clip-Ins. If your budget is super tight, Clip-Ins are always a great option. They are a combination of long and single wefts that you install yourself by using the clips that are attached on the weft to your natural hair. Because they are only attached by a clip like a hair barrette, they will need to be taken out at the end of the day. If you don’t mind taking the time to place and take these in and out of your hair each day, then this method will be perfect for you.

All three hair methods come in 100% human remy hair which means you can reuse them for up to a year. Clip-Ins come in synthetic and remy. The price of hair extensions are based on the method of installation (time it takes to install), length (the longer in inches, the more pricey they get), and the hair quality (synthetic versus human remy). Since human remy is the highest quality of hair extensions, they will be more expensive than synthetic hair. You cannot apply heat styling tools to synthetic hair like you can to human remy.

If you’d like more information on how to shop for hair or hair stylists, drop us a line! We’re always here to help!

 

Style Profile: The Beachwaver

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We’re excited about putting the spotlight on this new tool that is becoming a big hit for those of us wanting the perfect beach wave. Turn your straight I-Link, Kera-Link, or Tape-In hair extensions into perfectly textured waves and keep your wavy extensions looking like the first day you got them. So what’s this magical new tool called? The Beachwaver. Created by celebrity hairstylist, Sarah Potempa, this styling too is favored by stars such as Heidi Klum and Mindy Kaling. Before you go rushing out the door to get one, here are all the details you’ll need to know about this wave-making tool:

-The barrel is extra long, making it possible to curl really long hair.

-The rod automatically rotates in two directions (left and right). Just clamp your hair to the barrel and press the left button or the right button to move it in the direction of your choice. It stops as soon as you let go of the buttons. This saves you the time and effort of manually wrapping your hair toward or away from your face. It also creates evenly sized and evenly spaced curls.

-It does take some getting used to but once you’ve got it down, it can cut your styling time in half.

-The temperature control goes up to 450 degrees (though we don’t recommend using that kind of heat on hair extensions as it could fry the ends.)

-Once you’ve unclamped the hair from the rod, wait for your hair to cool then finger-comb it for loose, natural waves.

The only down side to it is the cost—$199.00—but for some of you it may be worth it! You can check out The Beachwaver in action on YouTube: http://bit.ly/1zJLoXl.

Will you be putting The Beachwaver to the test? Let us know what you think!

 

How to Take a Great Before & After Photo

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We’ve been receiving lots of amazing before and after photos lately, but some people have been asking how to improve their photos to really make them pop when sharing them with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. We recently spoke to a professional photographer (and hair extension enthusiast!) and asked her what stylists and their clients can do to take the perfect before and after shot.

1. Remember to take the “before” photo! In all the excitement leading up to the installation, it can be easy to forget to take a photo before you start. You can’t put your before and after shot together without it, so make sure you remember! If you can, make a habit of taking this photo right when your extensions clients arrive.

2. Take your photos in the same place and from the same angles. Use the same location for your before and after photos to really make the hair stand out. It can be distracting if the background of one photo is different from the other. Also remember that if you take multiple “before” shots from several different angles (which we highly recommend), you should take your “after” shots from those same angles.

3. Make sure you have good lighting. Without good lighting, it can be hard to see the color and the beautiful blending work you’ve done. Lots of natural light is best, but if it’s nighttime or cloudy out, make sure there is ample lighting in your salon. It’s also a good idea to take photos with and without the flash to see which looks best.

4. Use a neutral background. Busy backgrounds with distracting wallpaper, lots of people, or a room full of clutter can really take the focus away from the hair. Using a background with a solid, neutral color keeps the eye on the hair so everyone can admire your work in full. Neutral colors are also less likely to reflect off of the hair. For example, if you just installed a full head of platinum blond extensions and take your photos against a red wall, the red will reflect off the hair, making it look pink! Always review your photos to make sure this hasn’t happened.

5. Use a neutral background, but still make sure it contrasts enough with the hair color. If you install a head of light brown extensions and take your photos against a light brown wall, the hair can blend in a bit with the wall because the colors are too similar.

6. Your client’s clothing should also help the hair stand out. In the same way a background can take focus away from hair, so to can the foreground. If a client is wearing a distracting print or a shirt that blends in too much with the hair, your photos won’t fully showcase your amazing hair extension work.

7. Don’t take selfies! We really can’t stress this one enough. We get it, selfies are all the rage right now, and if your client wants to take a quick one to share with their friends on Instagram, that’s fine. However, you’re very limited in the amount of angles you can get in a selfie and it’s extremely hard to showcase a new ‘do that way. If you spot your client taking one, just ask if they’d like you to take the picture for them so you can capture their new hair in all its glory!

See? It’s easy to improve your before and after photo skills. Now you can take great photos to share with your clients, friends, family, and the Donna Bella team! We can’t wait to see your looks!

Share your before and after pictures or write a review about your Donna Bella experience on our Donna Bella Hair page.

 

5 Quick Tips for Flare Beads

db_blog_flare_beadsIn our attempt to better familiarize you with our premium hair extension tools, here’s our next installment in our series of bead posts, specifically covering Flare Beads!

They’re Long and Thin 
Donna Bella flare beads are longer and thinner (3.5 mm) than Grooved or Silicone beads, making them functional for I-Link (or “beaded”) extensions, that conceal completely into the hair.

They’re made of Copper
Flare beads are made of copper (grooved beads are made of aluminum and silicone beads are aluminum with a silicone lining). This means they’re very malleable, lightweight and (as mentioned earlier) easy to conceal. They’re also heat resistant and won’t fade or rust.

Use them with the Loop Tool
Because of their shape, flare beads work ideally with the Donna Bella Loop Tool. Simply string the beads onto the tool (up to 50 at a time!) and then thread the client’s hair and pre-tipped extension weft inside the bead. The Loop Tool can also crimp the bead closed to hold the hair securely inside. To remove the bead and release the hair, just clamp the bead in the opposite direction.

Great for Fine or Thin Hair
Some clients may find that beaded extensions strain the individual strands of hair. Because of their lightweight construction, flare beads are handy to those clients with fine or thin hair. They won’t put as much weight on the individual strands, but they’ll still hold the hair in place safe and secure.

More Resources
For more information on beads, extensions and any of those pesky slippage issues, please consult our other helpful blogs on the subject, or contact us directly! We’re happy to help answer any questions!

Reviewing your Donna Bella Extensions Online

At this point, there’s really no debating social media’s staying power. It’s become a ubiquitous entity in our lives, one which fosters boundless communication and an unprecedented access to information in a matter of mouse-clicks. For this reason alone, many businesses have taken to social media as another avenue to connect with existing or potential customers. Companies of varying  sizes utilize social media to keep their followers in the proverbial “loop,”  alerting them to new products and offerings, advertising sales or by hosting promotions and giveaways.

However, we don’t all own businesses (or want to!). Some of us simply want to use our various social media platforms to read and share interesting news links and funny YouTube videos or chat with old friends and family members.  The user gets what they want from it. That’s the beauty of social media.

At Donna Bella, we recognize this versatility and we’ve also found that, regardless of their different social media proclivities, our customers love sharing their hair extensions experiences online! We welcome “before and after” pictures, or other testimonials regarding our products. These can be posted on our Facebook page, either on the wall or in a private message. We also welcome any of these submissions via Email, info@donnabellahair.com.

Besides these methods of sharing, we’re thrilled to offer a new way for our customers to review their favorite products directly on the Donna Bella Hair website! Here’s how it works:

1. Visit our Website

2. On the left-hand column of the home page, you’ll see a list of Donna Bella products. Click the product you’ve purchased that you wish to review.  For example, if you purchased 16” I-Link Pro Straight #4 Extensions, just click into the product.

3. Once the product page comes up, click the “What Customers are Saying” button, located between  the “Installation Tips” and “Product You May Like” buttons.

4. From here, you’ll be given the option to write a review or even to upload your own personal video review. Both of these can be done by following the prompts on the pop-up.

We recognize the tremendous power of online sharing and welcome all our customers to contribute their hair extensions experiences in any capacity. Your posted reviews help other hair extensions customers, and create an extensive and continuing dialogue among hair extensions fans and users worldwide!

Furthermore we read what is posted, and continually strive to cultivate the best and most user-friendly experience for all customers, whether it’s purchasing, installing or maintaining their hair extensions. So next time you’re on the site, why not post one of your own product reviews? It’s quick, easy and it makes a huge difference!

Staff Pick – Fun and Edgy Hair Extensions

Bianca is a graphic designer in our marketing department. Today she’s sharing her latest Donna Bella Hair Extension look.

Type of hair extension: Tape-In

Color: Dark Purple/Dark Fuchsia

Amount: About 26 wefts

Why did you pick these hair extensions? I really love my long bob and I wanted to update my look. I wanted something fun and edgy without committing to a drastic change.

What do you love about your hair? I love that the change seems so dramatic but it was really not. I love that I forget that I have them in until someone says how great and fun my hair looks.

How do you take care of your hair extensions? I don’t give it much thought actually, and that’s what I love about Tape-Ins.  But I do try to be more careful brushing my hair and making sure I use the right products and not go crazy with the heating tools.

What would you recommend to people thinking about getting hair extensions? If you’re worried about diving in, I would suggest to trying some fun highlights to see if you like them or try full head Clip-Ins.

Staff Pick – Low Maintenance Hair Extensions

This week’s featured staff pick is from Megan from our marketing department.

I’ve been wearing hair extensions on and off since I began working for Donna Bella. Even though I already have lots of hair naturally, I like extensions because I can add color and dimension without coloring my hair.

I’m wearing 18” Tape-Ins in colors #2 and #4 (2 packs of each). My own hair is naturally between #6 and #8 and I wanted to add some low lights/quasi-ombre.  After the extensions were installed, I almost had so much hair I that I wasn’t sure I would know what to do with it. My stylist gave me some layers to help thin it out.

Keeping my hair looking good is a priority to me, but I don’t let hair care eat up too much of my time. I have places to be and things to see! Here’s what I do to keep my hair from taking over my life.

I wash my hair about 3 times a week. I can get my hair to stay fresh that long if I don’t add a lot of styling product. I find that my hair extensions don’t really need much product to look good anyway. I also spruce up my hair with dry shampoo as needed, which only takes a few minutes. This might not work for all hair types, but it works for me.

My shower routine with hair extensions really isn’t much different than normal. I just use a non-lathering shampoo and leave conditioner in my hair for a few minutes before rinsing. When I’m done, I dry my hair in a tee shirt because it’s gentler on my hair.

Although I wish I could spend an hour each morning on my hair, I also love sleeping in. To compromise, I do as much as I can the night before. I brush my hair through and sleep with a silky scarf to keep my hair from getting frizzy. When I wake up, I usually just do a few finishing touches and I’m good to go.

My hair extensions are so fun — I love having more hair. They’re pretty easy to take care of and they make me feel great.

-Megan