Q: What is your styling routine and do you have a favorite heat tool to use on your hair?

A: After towel drying my freshly washed and conditioned hair, I combine a pump of leave-in hair oil and a pump of a smoothing/styling product in my palm and finger comb it throughout my hair before combing it through with a wide-toothed comb. I usually plan on having the time to allow my hair to air dry. After wards, I use my InStyler Pro, a combination curling iron and flat iron in one (see My Favorite Things) to style my hair on the Styro mannequin which is suctioned to my counter. The style holds up nicely until it is time for a wash again – unless I get caught in the rain in which case, a touch-up styling might be necessary.

Q: How often and what should I use to wash the inside of my cap?

A: Daily cleaning of the inside of our silicone cap is important for several reasons. One is to keep the “pores” of silicone open so that vapor (coming off a heated scalp) can pass through freely. Naturally occurring scalp oil, perspiration and makeup can clog the pores thereby preventing vapor from escaping and small bubbles may form. (This is not harmful to the hairpiece, but could become an annoyance – your agent will tell you how to get rid of them safely.) Having a strong suction requires a clean, dry and non-oily scalp along with direct skin-to-silicone contact (no stubble hair regrowth).  When a cap accumulates scalp oil/perspiration/makeup it will feel slippery when you run your finger inside and will not grip the scalp as well as it was designed to do. This could cause you to keep “checking” your fit which can eventually lead to premature hair breakage – something we all want to avoid. Freedom Wigs recommends cleaning with a simple dish washing liquid such as Dawn to dissolve these impurities. Using Dawn gave me the idea of going all the way with the easily found dish scrubber.  The handle holds the liquid soap which is dispensed with a push and the soft yellow foam scrubber is the perfect size and softness to get the job done thoroughly and gently. Be sure to rinse well and pat dry before wearing.  If you can’t use Dawn for some reason, find an alternative home-made cap cleanser solution in My Favorite Things!

Q: How often should I wash my hair and what kinds of products are best suited for our hair?

A: If you are wearing your hairpiece every day, expect to wash and condition your hair once a week on average. If you’re lucky enough to have a second vacuum (an exercise piece for example) then you could expect to double the time between shampooing. You will be cleaning the inside of the cap every day (see next Q), but the hair itself will not be getting that dirty. It doesn’t come into contact with scalp oil or perspiration but will pick up dust, smoke or odors in the air. We really only need to heat style our hair once after washing. Since we don’t sleep in our hair, the style holds up beautifully!  You can extend the time between washings by using a little dry shampoo on the hair touching the oily forehead area. As far as products go, our main concern is preventing the hair from drying out since it doesn’t get the conditioning oils that are normally combed through growing hair. Regular styling with heat tools and unavoidable environmental factors need to be counterbalanced with good moisture-restoring products. Look for salon quality products formulated for “dry or chemically-treated” hair as these will contain these additional moisturizing agents. Check my Recommended Products in the Hair and Makeup Techniques section of my site. You will be receiving handouts on How To Wear, Care and Maintenance and Helpful Hints with your first hairpiece order.