Medically Related Hair Replacement
Hair is an important part of your appearance. The thought of suddenly losing your hair can be very difficult. Questions and concerns will cross your mind when searching for answers about hair loss such as:
- Where do I go?
- Who can I talk to?
- What are my options?
Whether you are experiencing temporary hair loss, there are numerous options available that can help you restore your image. Being given the facts and opportunity to study them, you can make the decisions that are right for you.
What is a Cranial Prosthesis?
A cranial hair prosthesis is a hair system designed specifically for those suffering from hair loss due to medical conditions. Prostheses contain a combination of fabrics and compounds that are used to re-create natural hair growth patterns and the look of the scalp. All materials in the prosthesis are treated to resist dirt, oils and body acids while providing maximum comfort.
Cranial hair prostheses are different than department store wigs in quality, performance and service.
Prostheses are made with specialized material sensitive to the needs of the individual. They come in a variety of styles and colors. The fit is adjustable to each person’s size and is also custom cut and styled. A department store wig has a set style what you see is what you get. Often, they don’t fit correctly and have a heavy, fuller appearance.
Service plays an important role when selecting a hair prosthesis.
Wigs ordered through the mail can sometimes be a guessing game in dealing with color. Styling it yourself may also be difficult. A studio that specializes in hair loss and offers hair replacements has professional technicians who have been trained and educated in working with prostheses. They can design the perfect cranial prosthesis for an individual and have the knowledge and skills for cutting and styling a hair system as well.
When looking for hair loss options, you need to decide what will best fit your needs. Whether you decide on wearing hats or turbans, integrations or a hair prosthesis, consulting with a professional will give you the most answers to your questions.
The goal in selecting a hair style is to create the illusion of the perfect shape…the oval. Here are examples of different facial shapes and the types of hair styles that are best for those shapes:
Eyebrows and Facial Hair
Hair loss can occur on the face as well as on the head. Facial hair and eyebrows can be added by using make-up or cosmetically enhanced with facial prostheses. These options are generally available at studios where cranial prostheses are sold.
After a decision is made on the type of system, it must then be properly secured. Most wigs and prostheses come with an adjustable elastic band. For more security, there is a liquid medical adhesive and specialized tapes or clips. When working one-on-one with a professional you decide which to use – a combination of these attachments, or none at all. It just depends on your preference, hair loss, and security needs.
How long will a hair prosthesis last? This depends on a number of variables: a person’s lifestyle, occupation, their activities and proper care. A hair professional will provide instructions on how to get the most wear and the very best look possible from your hair prosthesis, as well as recommend the proper hair care products to use. Hand-tied prostheses are usually more durable than machine-made wefts.
Then there is the question of cost which is determined by the specifications of the system: size, attachment methods, materials used in the design, service, etc. The price range depends on how personalized the prosthesis…the more customized, the more the cost. Once an individual’s needs are discussed, the correct system can be suggested and other additions to the prosthesis can be added.
A Machine Made prosthesis is a cap constructed of smooth elastic wefting or woven material, on which the hair is sewn into. This type of pros thesis can accommodate those with existing hair whether thin, fine, or patchy, because of its overall coverage and the ability of the cap to stretch to fit one’s head. But with this cost effective prosthesis, there are limitations in quality. (Many department stores and mail-order wigs are machine made.)
Pre Designed systems have a durable, comfortable base with 3-5 strands of hair per knot, hand tied very close together. With hand tied prostheses, the style of the hair is more controlled and less bulky. This creates the natural look of the hair and provides for a better and more comfortable fit. Its construction also allows for a variety of styles, and the choice of colors offers a more blended appearance.
A prosthesis that is Full Custom is made from specific measurements taken by a hair professional. A custom mold can be made of the head to duplicate one’s shape and contour for a precise fit. These systems allow for many options including: size, color, and materials which can all be altered to fit a specific need. Because of its overall versatility, there are many styling alternatives.
It’s not just a cover-up any longer, now there are many different ways to show one’s style. Turbans, hats, scarves and headbands with or without bangs offer many looks. Most are made with comfortable material for sensitive scalps and come in a variety of colors and designs.
If you want a quick change to your look, headbands with hair attached can be worn. Constructed like the machine-made weft, they offer the comfort of a pre-designed system. This alternative has an an attached band that replaces the hairline area for a snug fit. It offers you comfort, convenience and a fashionable look at the lower end of the price range.
Another option to utilize with headwear is bangs. Some are designed as frontal bangs while others can be adjusted and worn around the nape area of the neck. The use of bangs helps to soften facial features. Also available is a hair fringe which extends around the perimeter of the head. It offers more hair to be seen when wearing a turban or hat.
Partials are for those that have extreme hair loss in a specific area – such as from cranial surgery or burns. They are designed in various sizes and are offered in many base materials and colors just as top-of-head hair systems. High quality partials are available through hair replacement salons, while lower quality wiglets are found in department stores and mail-order catalogs.
A hair integration blends an individual’s own hair with a system to create fullness, volume or length. It is for individuals with thinning hair or hair loss who want to make the most of their natural hair. An integration is constructed with a cabling system that provides durability and security, while providing a comfortable fit. The system is placed on the head, and your own hair is brushed through the openings in the base – combining the hair integration with your natural growing hair, securing it on the head. If added security is desired, clips or tape adhesives can be used.