Wigs can be an essential part of a person’s daily routine. They are designed to increase confidence and self-esteem and create a new look.
Wigs are most popular in people undergoing cancer treatment that removes hair, as they can help to create a sense of normality and femininity in women who feel lost without their hair.
They can also be a source of privacy for unwanted questions or stares about a diagnosis. To some people, hair is just hair, but to others it can change their confidence completely.
Due to the quality of different wig types, the cost of wigs can change dramatically. As with most products, cheaper materials means cheaper cost, and the more expensive materials means more money is spent.
Synthetic wigs are the most cost efficient wigs, and are generally the more popular option for wig-wearers. A common misconception about synthetic wigs is that they are tacky and cheap looking, but this isn’t always the case.
Costing anywhere between $30-$500, synthetic wigs are designed to maintain the style and color. This is regardless of washing and weather types, which would normally change the texture and style of human hair, as synthetic hair literally goes back to the style it was made for.
Of course, synthetic wigs have the reflective shine that may look unnatural, but this will gradually fade overtime and can be muted by dry shampoo.
This means that they can look realistic without breaking the bank. Synthetic wigs are also light to wear and maintain the dyed color to its complete vibrancy without fading.
Unfortunately, synthetic wigs do not have the longest service life. They tend to last anywhere between 4 to 6 months of daily wear with washing and good maintenance. This means that, whilst cost effective, you will have to prepare for regular replacements.
Human hair wigs
Wigs made of human hair are the most realistic of the wigs. As with normal human hair, they require the most maintenance. This includes regular washing, drying, and styling.
These are visually and literally the most natural wig material, so they will not withstand different weather types in the same way that synthetic wigs do. If it’s humid, your wig will frizz up.
If it’s windy, be prepared for the windswept look. Whilst this may seem like an unnecessary disadvantage, this could create a sense of normality for those wanting to replicate the hair they once had.
As the human hair wigs have already been colored, it is not recommended to recolor them until the dye fades. Unlike synthetic wigs, wigs made from human hair last longer.
Human hair wigs are the more expensive option, ranging anywhere between $700 to $3000, or even more. This figure does not include the maintenance of the hair, including washing and styling products.
Where to buy a wig
The most popular place to buy a wig is online. Shopping online has the added benefits of convenience, a range of design choices, and the ultimate privacy.
This does require a higher level of research, however, as some wigs may come in different conditions to what they look like on the website.
It’s important to read the reviews and call the company or site themselves to ask deeper questions. Also, make sure to look at the returns policy. You don’t want to buy a moderately priced wig that looks unrealistic and is non-returnable.
For the best expert advice, go to a wig store. Wig stores aren’t always the stereotypical dress up shop with tacky neon hair pieces that refuse to style or brush properly.
There are tons of professional wig stores, and some can be recommended locally by cancer organizations who also have the expert advice.
Shopping in a store means that not only can you see and try on wigs in real life, but you have access to a professional who will give advice on washing, styling, and tips.
For those looking to buy a first wig, this is the best option. Some charity programs offer financial support also, so it is always worth asking for their professional advice to get the right wig for you (whilst potentially saving some money).
So, what wig is right for me?
This really depends on personal preference and your intentions for wearing a wig. Everyone’s reasons for choosing to wear a wig are different and valid - whether they are a breast cancer patient or a drag queen.
Make sure to know your budget as the best quality wigs are costly, and understand how much you intend to wear your wig.
If you intend on wearing a wig daily as a substitute for real hair, you need a wig with more longevity such as a human hair wig. If you want a wig for occasional use and to spruce up a look, then a synthetic wig may be more appropriate as they don’t last as long.
Of course, you need to have an idea of what style and color you would like.
Most people tend to opt for the natural browns and blondes with a straight style as they are the most straightforward to maintain - this is because they won’t require constant color dyes or styling (if they are a synthetic wig, remember human hair wigs work like human hair).
A lot of people buy multiple wigs at a time to achieve different looks, so you absolutely can get a natural wig and a bright pink one too.
It isn’t easy to suggest an average price for a wig due to the range of wig designs on the market. As with most products, the higher quality means the higher price, and this is certainly the case for wigs.
This price is certainly worth it for a wig with daily use, because the whole point of a wig is to make up for lost or disliked hair.
It is recommended to purchase the higher quality wigs because of their longer service life and realism, however synthetic wigs are very convenient and cost effective also.