How to make your thin skin poly base last longer
Posted by Superhairpieces on Aug 31, 2022
Thin skin hair systems are one of the most popular types of hairpieces for men. Because they are so light and thin — with a base thickness as low as 3 mils like the HD111 — they provide an extremely natural look for the wearer. If you want an easy-to-install and convenient toupee hair system with an undetectable front hairline and just an all-round natural look, a thin skin poly system is exactly what you are looking for.
With that said, they have their downfalls as well. Poly skin systems are not very breathable while the thinner models lack durability because of how thin they are. Remember, the more natural-looking, the less durable and vice-versa. Because of this, the ultra thin skin systems, in particular, are disposable pieces that only last around four to six weeks as a general estimate. However, some hair wearers are able to get more life out of their thin skin hairpieces. It’s definitely possible and in this blog, we’ll provide some tips to help your poly skin base last longer.
When you receive the unit
Prolonging the life of your thin skin system starts right when you receive it. Why? It’s possible that you may find some stickiness with the skin unit due to the plastic cap from the packaging. This usually happens if the poly skin unit is exposed to heat during the delivery process.
In this case, you will need to remove the unit slowly. But even if there is no stickiness, don’t pull with force or yank it as this can cause the poly skin to tear which is something nobody wants. If you’re finding it hard to remove, you can try using a dampened cotton swab and adhesive solvent. Dab the swab with solvent before inserting it below the unit and moving it around the edges of the perimeter. This should loosen it up and allow you to remove it. You can also use this procedure when removing the system off your head.
“If you’re pulling it out of the box, I recommend pulling it from the back,” says Superhairpieces stylist Christina. “From the back, forward. Because the front is a lot more fragile than the back because of less density and less hair. I’ve seen people where they pull out a hairpiece from a box and it rips. Be very gentle. “Even when removing a hairpiece off the head, sometimes it could tear because some parts could be still on really well so you have to be really gentle with using the proper solvents and what not.”
Avoid brushing the hair at the roots
Something to keep in mind is that thin skin poly units usually have a lower hair density because they can only carry so much. This contributes to the system achieving a natural look for the wearer. However, this also means you need to be careful that the hair doesn’t shed as much compared to a monofilament hair system.
One way to prevent this is making sure you clean the unit correctly. Keep in mind that poly material is stretchy and can expand particularly when wet. When you’re washing the system, avoid brushing or combing the hair at the roots. In fact, we always recommend not combing your poly skin base’s hair when it’s wet at all. This can cause the knots to loosen because the base is expanding, which results in the hair shedding quickly. If you really need to comb your hair, apply wig conditioner only to the ends and comb those areas once you’re done with your shower. Alternatively, once you have towel-dried your hair following your shower, make sure to mist your dry hair before combing it.
But remember that you can’t just use any regular conditioner — for example, some conditioners have silicone which can only accelerate the loosening of your system’s knots and cause hair shedding. Instead, make sure to use conditioners that are specifically designed for hairpieces or at the very least, are free of harsh chemicals, sulfates and parabens.
Tape could prolong the life
One way to potentially prolong the life of your poly skin unit is to use tape instead of liquid adhesive. This coupled with daily wear rather than weekly or monthly wear could increase the lifespan of your system since there is less wear and tear on it.
“There are a few clients I know that use wig tape instead of glue and they remove it more often,” says Christina. “It might [prolong the lifespan] because it’s less wear and tear rather than trying to rub the glue off. Because in that case, you’re just peeling the tape off the perimeter and it’s less damaging. But at the same time, when you’re removing the tape, you have to be very careful you don’t rip the poly as well.”
However, this also comes at the cost of a natural-looking appearance. In general, glue provides a more realistic appearance than tape since it is smoother, flatter and comes with no potential shine. So, you will have to ultimately decide on the trade-off.
“It’s not as natural-looking,” she added. “It doesn’t feel as natural because it has that air bubble in the middle because it’s not fully secure. So when you’re brushing the hair, it has that weird plasticky noise.”
Maintenance is key
If there’s one thing you should take away from this blog is that maintenance is key for prolonging the lifespan of your hair systems. That’s the case for any type of base, but especially thin skin systems. If you’re wondering how YouTubers and experienced hairpiece wearers are able to get two to three months out of their thin skin units, it’s because they are maintaining it well.
“A lot of people know how to take care of it and are a lot more gentle with it than some of the other clients where they’re not familiar with it, so they’re a little more rough,” Christina said. “It all depends on the client and how well they take care of it. For an HD111, three months is pretty good.”
However, don’t overdo it when it comes to the maintenance either. “A lot of brushing can make it shed and tear,” Christina adds. “Too much maintenance means wear and tear on the hair system and it won’t last as long.
Send your poly base for repair
Lastly, something that can happen to your poly skin system is the base hardening. This is unavoidable as when the adhesive starts to dry out, the poly could potentially crack. Regular maintenance will prevent this from happening, but otherwise, it’s a surefire sign that it’s time to dispose of the system.
With that said, you can always send the system back to Superhairpieces for repairing. If the tear or crack is minor or not too severe, we will be able to reseal the poly skin material and send it back to you. The best part? We do it free of charge! This is particularly ideal if you’re strapped for cash or need a unit to last a little bit longer. Simply ship the system back to our location and we’ll get in touch with you to check whether you’re interested in repairing the system. Alternatively, you can call our customer support team at 1-866-814-7879.
Interested in learning more about getting started with hair systems? Browse through our website at www.superhairpieces.com (US & International) or superhairpieces.ca (CAN)
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