How to Make Worn Out Wigs Into New Wigs

by Sarah Nyako

Wigs can give you a completely different look for a special occasion, or be worn every day. Unfortunately, wigs, unlike human hair, all eventually start looking old. Buying new wigs every time your current wig starts looking worn out can be extremely expensive. Luckily, there are many ways to take care of your wig at home to completely refresh the look and quality of the wig. Properly taking care of your wig can increase its longevity.

Step 1

Wash your wig when it first shows signs of dinginess or oiliness, no more than once every several weeks. Debris, oil and other kinds of build-up can make your wig look dull and stiff, and your wig can become harder to style. Some wigs can have very different washing instructions, so check with the manufacturer. In general, wigs should not be rubbed vigorously. Instead, fill a small container with lukewarm water and add a gentle shampoo or specially formulated wig shampoo to the water. Gently swish the wig around in the water without rubbing. Rinse thoroughly and place the wig on towels. Gently pat the wig, and allow it to air dry thoroughly.

Step 2

Find the right kind of comb to use after your wig has completely dried. Using the wrong type of brush can damage your wig. Some types of curly wigs should not be brushed at all. For most wigs, you should use a wide-toothed comb to very gently untangle the wig. Vigorous brushing from the base to the ends of the hair can damage even the highest-quality wig. Use a finer comb for short wigs or for the short bangs at the front of the wig.

Step 3

Find the right product for your wig type, which will be applied when styling or after washing and brushing. If you have a style of wig that is “wet and wavy,” all you need to do to get it looking more like it did when you bought it is make it a little damp. Add shine products to a wig that has lost its luster and/or untangling lotions before combing to wigs that have formed unruly tangles. Specially formulated wig sprays made for both synthetic and human hair wigs remove frizz, add bounce and volume, or make styling easier.

Step 4

Use heat-styling equipment after washing, drying, combing and applying product. Heat can get rid of frizz, which contributes to the wig's looking worn out. The overall effect will be that of a smoother, newer-looking wig.

Step 5

Cut the wig if you notice frizz and roughness at its tips. Much like real hair, wig hair, whether synthetic or made of human hair, can become frayed at the edges. Giving the wig a trim can make it look newer.

Step 6

Store the wig properly and only wear it occasionally. A wig should be stored on a wig form or gently tucked back into its original plastic bag. Wearing the wig occasionally will help keep it looking new.

Warnings

  • You can only use curling irons and flat irons on wigs that are made of 100-percent human hair, so be sure to find out the composition of wigs when you buy them, or call and ask the store you bought them for more information. If you have the original packaging, the composition should be listed there. Wigs made partially or completely of synthetic hair will burn or melt when you use heat.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

About the Author

Based in the Washington, D.C. metro area, Sarah Nyako has been writing professionally since 2008. Her area of expertise is health, fitness and the pharmaceutical industry. She is currently working towards a master's degree in medical writing.