Guide - Buying and Working with Wigs

Wearing a Wig

Use a wig cap. You can buy these from most wig sellers, costume shops or from Katie Bair. Try to get a colour to match your wig, or a neutral blonde coloured one. It’ll hide your hair, secure the wig better and make it more comfortable to wear. You can make one yourself using the foot part of tights, and short stockings are ideal since you can use the foot part and have the thick elasticised top to grip tightly round your head. Whatever you do, your wig cap needs to fit your head tightly, and preferable have a tight band around the edge.

As for getting your hair underneath the wig, wetting your hair is helpful, as can be gel and hairspray, particularly for hiding stray hairs at the edge of your wig cap.

Try pinning or otherwise fixing your hair in position before putting on the wig cap since this will help prevent the wig from shifting while you wear it. How you put up your hair depends on its length and nature. Some ideas for longer hair:

Twisting your hair up at the back of your head is quick and easy. Wigs stretch most at the back, to the nape of the neck, so this is ideal.

Wrapping your hair around your head will keep it flatter and is less likely to affect the look of the wig once it’s on. Putting your hair into a couple of braids (or more if necessary) then wrapping them round your head is more secure. French braids are also suitable.

For particularly long hair, pincurls are ideal. Take a small strand of hair and twist it until it starts curling up, coil it against your head and pin it in place. Repeat until all your hair is up. Even if you have extremely long hair, it should still fit under a wig using a method such as that.

Once your hair is up, pull the wig cap on from the back. Pull it right down over your forehead, then shift it back to your hairline to catch any short strands. Hairspray and gel at your hairline is advisable to catch stray strands.

As an optional extra, you can pin your wig on. This will keep it in place, stop it sliding back, and make it a lot easier to wear – especially for heavier, strangely styled wigs. Hair pins (u-shaped pins) work better than kirby grips (bobby pins).

[Irby Grip (left) and Hairpin (right)]

( also explains how to use pins)

This is when using braids and so on for pinning up your hair is ideal, because you can easily stick pins into the braids and have them hold better.

Sticking pins into the wig at various angles before putting it on can allow better grip. Similarly, you can sew in combs around the hairline which will grip into your own hair.

When wearing a wig, especially a long one, carrying a comb and wig de-tangling spray with you can be useful. Whenever it’s windy, consider tying the hair back to prevent serious tangles.

This tutorial on putting on wigs illustrates much of what I mentioned:

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