How To Remove Tape In Hair Extensions at Home

Don’t you just love how easy it is to get tape-in hair extensions? In an instant, your hair can be thicker and fuller. The major problem with tape-in extensions is removing them without professional help or damaging your own natural locks.

Allow me to show you how easy it is to remove your hair extensions at home!

My name is Lori, and I have been wearing different types of hair extensions for over six years. From tape ins, clip ins, i-tips, to sewn in extensions. Tape in Hair extensions has been one of my all-time favorites.

As I love to travel, it hasn’t always been possible to get to see my stylist for a refit. So I have tried dozens of different methods and removers on how to take my tape-in extensions out.

In this article, I want to share my two best methods of removing tape-ins that come with minimal fuss or damage to my hair, a list of tools needed, and answers for commonly asked questions.

Sound good? Keep reading to get to the “mane” event!

2 Best Ways to Remove Tape In Hair Extensions at Home

For every single method listed below, you will need the same basic setup.

Tools Needed

  • A tail comb
  • Gloves (if you don’t mind getting your hands oily, this isn’t necessary however if you have long nails you may want to prioritize getting a pair)
  • Cotton wool balls
  • A plastic spray bottle
  • Hairbands or sectioning clips

Method 1: Tape-In Hair Remover Solution (Alcohol Based)

Using an alcohol-based solution to remove tape-in hair extensions is the fastest and most commonly used method. You can purchase this type of remover from a hair supply store or online.

Tape-In Hair Remover usually comes in a spray bottle for easy application and I recommend saving the spray bottle when it is finished. You can save a lot of money if you are purchasing refills instead of buying a new bottle every time you run out of remover.

An alcohol-based solution is a little more costly than the other items on this list, but it is by far the quickest. So if you are in a hurry it is worth spending those extra pennies!

Step 1: Section the top part of your hair that has no extensions into a neat bun on the top of your head.

Step 2: Section the rest of your hair into 3 ponytails. I like to do the hair around each ear and then one at the back.

Step 3: Start at one ear and take your first tape-in into your less dominant hand. Take your long-tail comb in your dominant hand and gently work the edges of the tape to separate the sandwich slightly.

Step 4: Spray the remover generously in and on the tape sandwich.

Step 5: Working methodically from the top tapes down to the bottom tapes of each ponytail, repeat the above steps and make sure to tie the ponytail loosely before starting on the next one.

Step 6: This should take around 20 minutes to complete a full head of tape-ins, which is around 30 tape sandwiches. Once you have finished the last ponytail, circle around to the first ponytail again and check the bonds.

Step 7: Depending on the strength of your tape-in glue they will either slide right out of your hair with just the tiniest tug or will need you to repeat the process again.

Step 8: Once the bonds are weak, the sandwiches should slide straight out of your hair. Most of the time your hair will have only a bit of residue, but sometimes there will be a glue clump left behind.

To get rid of a glue clump, spray the remover directly onto the clump, leave for 5 minutes then gently try to separate the glue from the hair. Repeat the process until the glue slides out.

Step 9: Wash your hair with a clarifying shampoo and a high-protein hair mask to clear out any remaining residue and restore shine and softness.

Your hair is now shiny, healthy, and extension-free!

Method 2: Alternatives You Already Have in the House

Now, what happens if you need to take your tape-in extensions out but don’t have access to store-bought Tape-In Hair Remover? Never fear, you have a long list of alternatives with one or two guaranteed to be in your pantry.

Alternatives: Acetone-free nail polish remover, apple cider vinegar, hand sanitizer, coconut oil, olive oil, palm oil, baby oil, hair conditioner, and even peanut butter.

Let me let you in on a little secret. You can use pretty much anything oil-based to remove tape-in extensions. Coconut oil, conditioner, and even hand sanitizer – all work well.

The difference between these oils and store-bought Tape-In Hair Remover is time. These alternatives will take a little longer to break the glue down, so have patience.

For preference out of these alternatives, I would recommend acetone-free nail polish remover, followed by apple cider vinegar, and my third favorite is coconut oil.

Step 1: Section the top part of your hair that has no extensions into a neat bun on the top of your head.

Step 2: Section the rest of your hair into three ponytails. I like to do the hair around each ear and then one at the back.

Step 3: Decide on the best method of application for your remover. For the items that can go in a spray bottle (acetone-free nail polish remover, apple cider vinegar, any of the oils) put those in the bottle. For others (peanut butter and hand sanitizer) get your cotton wool balls or fingers ready.

Step 4: Start at one ear and take your first tape in your less dominant hand. Take your long-tail comb in your dominant hand and very gently work the edges of the tape to separate the sandwich slightly.

Step 5: Now, spray the oil or place the alternative remover generously in and on the tape sandwich, coating the area.

Step 6: Working methodically from the top tapes down to the bottom tapes of each ponytail, repeat the above steps and tie the ponytail loosely before starting on the next one.

Step 6: This should take around 20 minutes to complete a full head of tape-ins, which is around 30 tape sandwiches. Once you have finished the last ponytail, circle around to the first ponytail again and check the bonds. 

You may have to leave an extra 30-45 minutes to see the bonds start to break down.

Step 7: Depending on the strength of your tape-in glue they will either slide right out of your hair with just the tiniest tug or will need you to repeat the process again. Allow resting for 30 minutes between applications.

Step 8: Once the bonds are weak, the sandwiches should slide straight out of your hair. To get rid of any glue clumps, spray the remover directly onto the clump, leave for 5 minutes then gently try to separate the glue from the hair. 

Repeat the process until the glue slides out.

Step 9: Wash your hair with a clarifying shampoo and a high-protein hair mask to clear out any remaining residue and restore shine and softness.

Your fabulous hair is now glue and extension-free!

FAQs

How Much Does it Cost to Remove Tape In Hair Extensions?

Salons across North America can charge anywhere between $60-$75 per hour to remove, retape and refit your extensions. Depending on how quickly your extensionist works, it should be roughly $100 – $150 for the removal.

How Long Does it Take to Remove Tape In Extensions?

The short answer is about an hour. The longer answer is, it depends on the condition of your extensions and the type of remover your extensionist uses on your scalp. 

A little tip from personal experience, always removes your extensions a day or two after washing your hair as it gives your scalp a little more protection.

Are Tape In Extensions Damaging to Your Natural Hair?

No, not if they are installed and removed correctly. Personally, I found tape ins are not damaging my natural hair at all, probably because no glue was used. However, excessive weight on too little hair or excessive tugging and yanking will definitely damage your hair and scalp. 

Always be gentle with your hair and speak up if your extensionist is tugging uncomfortably on your scalp. I recommend putting hair oils and treatment regularly to protect your natural hair.

Wrapping Up

Removing your tape-in extensions at home doesn’t have to be expensive or damage your hair. Which method did you try? Tell us in the comments below!

We have also wrote a detailed about how to wash tape in hair extensions, if you are interested, please click here to access it.

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