Buying a wig for the first time can be an exciting yet overwhelming experience. There are so many options! Lace front, full lace, non-lace front, synthetic hair, human hair, Remy hair, virgin hair, where do you start?
Hi, my name is Lisa and I am one of many people that are seduced by the versatility that wigs provide. I have a growing collection, and I think I learn a little more about wigs and wig care with each new piece I gain.
While there are many questions that you should ask before you make your first purchase, one of the biggest questions should be: lace front or ‘regular’ wig?
There are pros and cons to each, but today I’ll be focusing primarily on what exactly a lace front wig is. Read on for more answers!
What is a Lace Front Wig?
A lace front wig is a wig made with lace in the front along the hairline. The lace can be transparent, mostly transparent, swiss, or HD lace, which is the highest quality and most natural looking. The hair at this portion of the wig is typically hand-tied strand by strand.
The rest of the wig cap is typically wefts of hair glued or sewn together horizontally to create the rest of the wig. Many hair manufacturers construct regular, or non-lace front, wigs in this manner, minus the lace along the hairline.
Pros of a Lace Front
The biggest advantage of lace front wigs is how natural they look. Manufacturers can make them with synthetic or human hair. While human hair is the most natural looking, when using virgin hair, it is typically of high quality.
Because the hair, synthetic or human, is hand-tied individually it lies like natural hair lies. This means it can be parted or pulled back in the front like natural hair. With a free part you can part the hair according to preference, instead of just where the manufacturer decides. One of my favorite wigs is a lace front wig with baby hair, it’s just so beautiful and natural.
This allows for different styling options. Regular wigs risk exposing the wefts if you try to change the style or pull it up. But lace front wigs we can pull up or back along the lace without the seams of the hair wefts showing.
You can tint the lace with makeup, if needed, to match your skin tone. Once you have plucked it to perfection and placed it securely, it will look like the hair is growing out of your scalp.
Cons of a Lace Front
Lace fronts, while they are more natural-looking than non-lace front wigs, do require more work and effort by the wearer before they’re worn for the first time. The lace most often extends a couple of inches past the hairline, so it needs a cut and customization.
This takes more time than a grab-and-go non-lace front wig, but it is necessary if you are aiming for the most natural-looking wig. Because each strand of hair is tied by hand, it is easy to pluck the hairline and part just the way you like it.
This may or may not be a con as far as the time it takes initially because the more you customize it the more natural it looks. Which ultimately is another advantage!
If you have a naturally thin or sparser hairline like me, lace front wigs are ideal because you can pluck them to closely mimic your actual hairline. I also like to pluck the part to widen it a little more. The part on wigs is typically thinner than what most people naturally have.
Lace front wigs are more delicate than regular wigs. The lace is thin, so it is easier to stretch out of shape or tear. Full lace wigs are going to be even more delicate than lace fronts.
Another downside of lace front wigs is the price. Lace fronts are going to be more expensive than regular wigs, and full lace wigs are going to be more expensive than lace fronts. You’re also more likely to find lace front wigs made with human hair, which will increase the cost.
Lace Front vs Full Lace
As I mentioned above, lace front wigs have lace just in the front along the hairline. Depending on the wig this lace may extend a couple to several inches back.
Full lace wigs, on the other hand, have the same lace design as the entire wig cap as opposed to just the front. This has even more styling options than the lace front as you can pull it up or back not only in the front but in the back as well. Hello, high ponytail!
Here are some commonly asked questions relating to the topic “what is a lace front wig?”.
How Do I Avoid Damaging My Own Hair?
Many people glue their lace front wigs down to secure them on the head. Because of this, there is a common concern that lace fronts damage your natural hairline. This can be true if you do not take the proper precautions.
If you are only wearing the wig for a short period, not extended wear, you can avoid using glue at all. Simply use elastic straps attached inside the wig cap to secure to the head. Attached combs and clips are often inside the wig cap as well, or you can use bobby pins.
If you do choose to use glue or adhesive, avoid putting it directly into the hair. Position the glue directly in front of your hairline so there is less likelihood of the hair being pulled out. Also use a more mild glue like Got2b Glued Freeze Spray and cover your hair with a wig cap.
Remove a glued on wig gently, don’t yank or tear it off.
Can I Sleep in My Lace Front Wig?
The short answer is yes, you can sleep in your wig. But you should do this with some considerations in mind. Sleeping in your wig will shorten its lifespan so do it with care.
I recommend wrapping the hair in a scarf or sleep cap. This will help keep the hair in place when moving your head around against your pillowcase. Finger comb it out gently in the morning and re-secure any edges that have lifted.
Also, keep in mind that your natural hair needs to be aired out and washed every few days to a week, and many people find it easier to wash their wig when they are not wearing it.
Lace front wigs are wigs with lace at the front of the wig cap with each hair strand tied by hand, as opposed to hair wefts sewn all the way around the cap.
That hand-tied lace at the front of the wig is going to give you the most snatched, natural, straight from your scalp look that you just can’t get with a regular wig. They take more time to prep at first, but after you customize it to your satisfaction, they are just as easy to wear as regular wigs.
While there is an undeniable convenience to being able to put on a regular wig right away, just the way it is, lace fronts are the way to go for the most natural appearance. If you are okay with the extra time needed to make them wearable, they will become your new best friend.
Comment below with your favorite lace front wig!