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How to Revive Your Synthetic Wig for Natural-Looking Style

How to Revive Your Synthetic Wig for Natural-Looking Style

Anyone who’s ever owned a synthetic wig will probably be familiar with the fact that they can get unruly and start to look less than fresh after several uses. You may be wondering if you should throw out the wig at this point, but there’s no need to cut your losses just yet. With some time and effort, it is possible to revive your synthetic wig.

In this article, we will be discussing the best way to revamp your synthetic wig and bring it back to life for continued wear. You’ll also be learning some important troubleshooting tips for fixing issues, such as a stiff wig or re-curling a wig to give it that extra boost of style.

Why Do Synthetic Wigs Need Special Care?

Synthetic wigs are created from man-made fibers, most commonly plastic or acrylic fibers, that are super-heated and then strung out into a thin shape. The fibers are then woven or sewn together to form all types and styles of wigs and synthetic hair extensions.

Because your synthetic wig is made from such fibers, it must be treated with special care to avoid melting the fibers, tangling the wig, creating frizz, or causing hair strands to fall out of the wig.

In most cases, this involves keeping your heat styling tools far away from your synthetic wigs (unless the wig is designed to resist heat) and caring for the wig with dedicated synthetic hair products.

Steps for Reviving Your Synthetic Wig

If your synthetic wig has seen better days, you can follow the steps below to revive it and make it worth wearing outside again.

Brush It Out

The first step in revamping your wig is to brush out any knots or tangles that may have appeared in it. You should be using a wig brush, not a comb, and should start brushing from the very bottom of the wig, working your way up.

It is important not to brush the wig when it is wet, as doing this will ruin the fibers and cause the wig to become very frizzy.

Wash It

Once your wig is brushed out, you will need to wash it to clean the fibers and freshen it up. To do this, fill a bowl that’s large enough to submerge your wig in with lukewarm water – do not use hot or boiling water, as this can melt the fibers of your wig and may cause it to lose its shape.

To clean the wig, you can either use a small amount of laundry detergent or a shampoo specifically designed for cleaning synthetic wigs. You should not use regular hair care products as these will not clean the fibers properly and run the risk of damaging your wig.

Combine a small amount of your cleaning agent and your wig in the water. Swirl it around and move it up and down lightly, but do not scrub at it, as this will break the wig fibers.

Leave it to soak for approximately 30 minutes before washing off the cleaning agent with cool water. As soon as the wig is completely rinsed, hang it up on a hook or place it on a mannequin head to completely air dry.

Alternatively, you can blow-dry the wig using the cool setting and lowest fan speed of your hairdryer.

Soften the Wig

For wigs that are especially messy or need a little extra help, you can use a fabric softener or a dedicated wig conditioner spray to soften your wig.

To use the fabric softener method, add half a capful of softener into the bowl during the wig washing step, allowing the wig to soak in both the cleaning and softening agent before you rinse it off.

Alternatively, you can soak the wig separately with half a capful of fabric softener and some lukewarm water at any time. This is a good way to soften up your wig without giving it a full cleaning.

If you would prefer to use a wig conditioner spray, wash your wig and then lightly spritz on the spray immediately after you hang the wig up to dry. This will allow the fibers to dry with the conditioner on them, preventing tangles and frizziness.

How to Re-Curl Your Synthetic Wig

wigs hanging together outside

If you notice that your once-curly wig has lost its bounce, you can try out this method for putting the curls back into it.

Brush out your wig and then curl the hair in perm rods of whichever size you desire.

After the wig has been completely curled, place it into a bowl of hot water that has been boiled and then cooled slightly – this is the only time that you should be introducing your synthetic wig into such heat. It is acceptable here because you are trying to mold the fibers back into their original curly pattern.

Let your wig sit in the hot water for approximately 10 minutes before removing it and allowing it to completely air dry, and then remove the rollers and fluff out the curls.

Fixing a Stiff Synthetic Wig

You may find that your wig is particularly stiff before or after washing and that no amount of soaking it in softener seems to fix the issue. There are a couple of options available to you to fix this issue, but keep in mind that since they both use heat, you may want to use them as a last resort.

Use a Steamer

Believe it or not, a steamer could be the answer to your stiff wig problems. For this method, make sure your wig is completely brushed out (as much as possible) and dry, and then spray it with a hair heat protectant.

Take the steamer and move it gently over the wig, being careful not to rest the steamer in one place for too long or hold it too close to the hair.

The hot steam should dislodge any gunk that is holding the wig together and free up the fibers to be thoroughly washed, softened, and eventually become silky smooth.

Try a Hot Air Brush

Similar to a steamer, a hot air brush can remove the stiffness from your wig because it can gently heat and separate the fibers of the wig.

Simply brush the hot air brush gently through your wig, starting at the bottom and working your way to the top of the wig until you can easily brush through the fibers at length without issue.

Again, you should be careful not to keep the hot air brush in one place for too long as this may damage the fibers; use the lowest heat setting on the brush possible that still gives you results to minimize the risk of heat damage.

How Often Should You Wash Your Synthetic Wig?

In general, you should be aiming to wash your wig every 4 to 6 weeks, or after every 30 wears. This allows you to get the most life out of your wig and keeps it looking its best.

You should also keep in mind that if you smoke, wear lots of perfume, or frequently wear your wig in windy conditions, you may need to wash it more often to remove any unwanted odors and frizziness from it.

How Long Can You Use a Synthetic Wig?

How long you are able to use your synthetic wig depends entirely on the quality of the wig, how often you wear it, and how well you take care of it. Most wigs, with typical care and with every day use, will last between 3 and 6 months.

On the other hand, if you take expert care of your wig and don’t wear it all that often, it is possible for your wig to last you anywhere between 6 months and a year.

If you’re not sure whether or not you are due to replace your wig, look out for signs of hair shedding, unmanageable frizziness, shapelessness, dullness, or a loose fit of the wig cap. These are all signs that your wig has seen better days and is past the point of reviving or repairing.

Can You Put a Synthetic Wig Into the Washing Machine?

You should not, under any circumstances, put your synthetic wig into a washing machine and try to clean it this way. This will completely ruin the fibers of your wig, as both the water and the wash cycle will be too rough on your wig.

In a similar vein, do not ever place your synthetic wig into a dryer, as this will melt it and leave it looking an irreparable mess. The only way you should dry your wig is by letting it air dry or blow-drying it on a cool air setting.

Revamping Your Synthetic Wig’s Style

Synthetic wigs can be a stylish and convenient tool in any beauty enthusiast’s arsenal. However,  when your wig starts to look less than fresh, you may be concerned that it’s time to get rid of it.

Fortunately, there are ways to revive your synthetic wig and bring back its former glory for a few more wears. As long as you wash and care for your wig on a regular basis and avoid exposing your wig to too much heat, you are sure to revamp your wig’s style in no time at all.