Extensionless WorldHave you ever asked yourself how your life would be if you didn’t have extensions anymore? Think about that for a second. No extensions, no summer braids, no wigs. If you’re a business owner in the hair industry, have you thought about that same question as well? Do you think your business would flop? The evolution of hair has grown so much and has become a part of many people’s lives. So much that some of us literally would not know what to do if we didn’t have it anymore. We haven’t even begun to imagine how it could affect us. Continue reading as I discuss the negative aspect that most likely would occur if we lived a life without extensions.
No VersatilityOne of the greatest benefits that most extensions provide is versatility. If you wanted to have a long-lasting hairstyle, then you could have someone create a style with extensions. The style would stay in until you had it removed. But remember, a life without extensions would not allow for that. You would be forced to be creative and figure out styles. Not being versatile may be a weakness for you, which was why you always resorted to extensions. Creativity isn’t always something that comes naturally either.
Investment of TimeIf you were not someone that’s creative, that would limit you greatly. Essentially you would be forced to be average unless you get creative. If your natural hair is short, and you always wear long extensions you now have to get to know your natural hair. You will have to take a seat in front of the mirror and invest time in your hair. Learning what type of texture you have and what products will work best. You have to invest money in hair products as well. With extensions, there’s no need to have a lot of product use except maybe hairspray. Don’t forget you still have to learn how to style your hair. You will have to experiment with different styles and techniques until you found some that worked. Also, if you can’t figure all of this out on your own, you would have to invest time in watching videos that show tutorials on styling. Investing in hair books and magazines could be another option for you. I’m sure the beginning of the transition would be tough, but once you found a routine and what works for you, all should be well.
Struggle With BeautifulBack in 2006, India Arie released a song titled “I am Not My Hair” which discussed how her skin and hair does not define who she truly is. Our hair is just a part of us, but it’s not our makeup or identity. So many women believe that if they were to cut all their hair tomorrow that they would go crazy. I say that believe I have a low haircut and I get crazy looks and questions all the time. People wonder why someone would do something like that as if it’s breaking the law. What many don’t realize is that what’s inside of you matters most. Your soul, how you think, how you love, etc., that defines you. Whether you have long hair or short hair, those attributes will still apply.
Low Self- EsteemIf you’re someone that struggles with low self-esteem, getting through to the other side may be a struggle. Especially, since many people hide behind their hair extensions because that’s all they know to do. As mentioned earlier, although many believe hair isn’t a part of who they are, what about the ones who don’t believe that? The ones who can’t leave the house without having extensions installed and curled just right? The ones who are ashamed of their natural born hair? They would have a much harder transition not having extensions. They would be forced to do soul searching to understand who they are and detach themselves from their hair, mentally. That’s right! It’s only a mindset that leads people to believe they aren’t beautiful. It’s mostly society that tells us what beauty is anyway, instead of ourselves. Most celebrities subconsciously tell us that long hair is what you should be wearing. Not short natural hair or Afros. A life without extensions for these people would mean they would have to get a sense of self-awareness. If people struggle with how they view their selves, then they would struggle with how the world sees’ them. They wouldn’t be able to hide behind their hair anymore. No longer would their hair be a haven for them.
Dealing With IllnessIn today’s world, so many diseases are on the rise; especially cancer. One of the biggest downfalls of cancer is when someone has to go through chemotherapy. Chemotherapy is a type of treatment that uses different medications to try and treat cancer. One of the biggest side effects is hair loss. Cancer patients who have chemo have no choice but to go down this journey, and many resorts to extensions and wigs to cover their heads. But life without hair extensions may be a struggle for them. For some, cancer puts you on an emotional roller coaster. Mixing in the loss of hair and struggling with their appearance can cause major stress. A life without extensions for someone who is dealing with an illness may be difficult. There are even people who don’t share their illness with the world because they haven’t even accepted it. So they resort to extensions or wigs, which gives them a sense of beauty. It also allows them to forget what they go through temporarily. Without extensions, they wouldn’t have many options to suppress their emotions. They would, unfortunately, have to accept it and know they are still beautiful despite their situation.
Hair DisordersA common hair disorder is Alopecia. Alopecia is described to be the absence of hair on the body by either partial or full. Some people experience alopecia only on their heads, and it’s something that can bring down someone’s self-esteem if they let it. Typically people, who have full alopecia, are seen wearing baldheads. They have accepted the fact they have no hair and aren’t afraid to show it. However, the ones who have partial alopecia doesn’t always have the same experience. They experience patches in their hair, and sometimes their hair can just fall out. To cover up the loss of hair, most people will just wear extensions to either cover up everything or maybe get sections of hair installed to even it out. But without any extensions, they wouldn’t have this option available to them. They may struggle with feeling insecure and not beautiful. Depending on the severity of their hair loss, they may struggle with trying to cover it up on their own. They may even struggle with finding another alternative other than extensions. If you begin to experiment, it will cost money to go through trial and error phases. There are also different all natural remedies that you could try that will enhance hair growth. However, it wouldn’t happen overnight. They may experience that it may take a long time and lots of money before they find the right concoction.
Loss of JobsLife without hair extensions would result in job loss for those who work directly in businesses related to hair. The hair market is a $400 million industry. There are many different jobs and people involved in keeping the hair market afloat. It’s constantly been changing over the last 20 years, and if all of that gone, many would lose out.
Factory ClosureThe factories are the ones who put together the majority of the wefts. There would be no point in them if hair extensions were to go away. Millions of people all over the world would suffer from job loss that would also cause high-unemployment rates. Those people would be forced to find new jobs and start over.
Hair StoresOnce the wefts are complete, they are sent to distributions and then to local hair stores. But without hair extensions that process would stop. Hair extensions make up about 70% of hair stores. They would have to find a way to not only redesign stores but also think of what product they could sell that would hold as much value as hair extensions. Without hair extensions, the hair store would be selling all the same products as general stores. Hair products, jewelry, and scarfs, etc., can all be found in household stores. Hair stores were famous just for the name since the most they sell is hair. To bring in heavy traffic or keep sales the same, they would have to get a popular and needed product that no other store carries.
Hair SalonsNow, hair salons would suffer without hair extensions but not a great deal. The only possible job loss that could happen would be someone who only specializes in hair extension installation. Without the hair market, they would suffer since they would be limited in what they could do. However, if they decided to stay within the hair salon, they would have to invest time and money in learning how to do natural hair and styles. As for the regular hairstylist, they would suffer because they will be losing money. Hair extensions and hair color is their biggest service since it brings in the most money. If all of their customers started coming in requesting wash and sets, haircuts, etc., that might hurt their pockets. Those services typically run about $40. Compare that to a full weave or vixen installation, which are about $200, and up depending on who’s doing it.
ModelsNot having hair extensions anymore would be a great loss to the beauty industry as well. For those who are in fashion and modeling, they would have to become even more creative than they are. Models have many ways they express themselves and hair extensions are the biggest way. Having different types of wigs or hair extensions could make or break a photo or gig. With models, it's all about their appearance and how well they pull it off. They would have to rely on something else that will still give them the pop they need.
A New PerspectiveSo, how does a life without hair extensions sound to you? Do you think you could handle it? It’s clear that it would bring a much different approach to how we currently live and view life. The biggest downfall that it would bring is low self-esteem. Just like anything else, too much of something is never a good thing. Hair extensions are a great thing, but a lot of us adopt it into what we call beauty. But we must understand that beauty is much deeper than what is on the outside. Just like India Arie said, she is not her hair. So a life without hair extensions may very well be tough for some, but hopefully not that much. I would love to hear from you in the comment section below on how your life would be if there were no hair extensions!
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