How to Apply Tape‐In Hair Extensions: 12 Steps (with Pictures) (2024)

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1Sectioning Your Hair

2Applying Your Extensions

3Caring for Your Hair Afterwards

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Article Summary

Co-authored byMadeleine Johnson

Last Updated: September 1, 2023Approved

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Tape-in extensions are great if you want to temporarily lengthen your hair, add volume, or add in some faux-highlights, as they aren’t permanent and are relatively simple to put in. They do not require special heat tools, so they can be applied at home without the assistance of a stylist.[1] You will first need to section off the top portion of your hair. Then, slowly tape in the extension one by one. You will have to be careful while wearing the extensions, as they're very prone to tangling. Brush your hair more frequently and take extra time in the shower.

Part 1

Part 1 of 3:

Sectioning Your Hair

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  1. 1

    Wash your hair. Hair Stylist Madeline Johnson explains, "I don't suggest [applying tape-in extensions] on greasy hair. They should always be applied on clean hair and [with] no products in it." Before applying your extensions, wash and dry your hair as you normally would.[2]

  2. 2

    Make a part across your scalp. About an inch from the nape of your neck, use your finger or a comb to make a horizontal part. You will apply the extensions near the line made by the part. This way, your upper hair will hide the clips.[3] Hair Stylist Madeline Johnson emphasizes the importance of parting your hair away from the hairline: "Never install tape-in extensions too close to your hairline. You always need to have enough hair in the front to cover the tape-in extensions."

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  3. 3

    Section off the top hair. You can use a hair tie or hair clips to secure all the hair above the part line. Just make sure it's completely secured. You do not want any hair falling down and getting in the way while you're securing your extensions.[4]

  4. 4

    Remove a thin portion of your hair from the non-clipped part. The idea is to sandwich a thin strand of hair below your part line between top and bottom extensions. The strand of hair you're sandwiching needs to be very thin, about 18 inch (0.32cm). This is so the adhesive tape on both extensions can stick together through the hair. Grab a very thin strand of hair from the hair below your part line about the length of one extension. Make sure the hair is thin enough your fingers can feel one another through the hair.[5]

  5. 5

    Measure the section. Before attaching the extension, use a cloth tape measurer to measure the section of hair that you parted. This way, you can determine how many pieces of the extension you'll need to add along that section of hair. Do this for every section.

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  1. 1

    Attach the bottom extension under the thin portion of hair. Take your strand of hair and lift it up a little. Remove the strip covering the adhesive on the bottom extension. Press on the bottom extension underneath the thin strand of hair you're lifting.[6]

  2. 2

    Secure the top extension. Take the top extension. After removing the adhesive tape covering that extension, press on top of your strand of hair. The top and bottom extension should stick together. Then press them together with pliers for a few seconds to secure them.[7]

    • If the extensions are not sticking, you used too much hair in your strand. Gently brush some hair off the bottom extension.
  3. 3

    Repeat the process. Move across your side part, repeating this process until you have added all the extensions. The precise number of extensions you are adding depends on the size of your head. You will likely use about 5 rows of hair extensions or more, depending on how voluminous you want your hairstyle to be.[8]

    • If you plan to add extensions on the sides of your head, leave 1 inch (2.5cm) of hair out horizontally, closest to the ear, and then continue applying the extensions.
    • If you have a thin hairline, leave about 1 inch (2.5cm) of hair out across your entire hairline before adding extensions, just to make sure that your hair has enough density to cover the tape-ins without making them noticeable.
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Part 3

Part 3 of 3:

Caring for Your Hair Afterwards

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  1. 1

    Take extra time for hair care. Hair Stylist Madeline Johnson explains, "I always advise my clients to put their hair into braids so the hair doesn't get tangled. [...] And definitely brush it daily." She goes on to say that extensions "create a lot of weight on your scalp and the hair [can get] tangled [more easily than your natural hair]." Make sure to account for having more hair in the morning. Give yourself an extra 10 to 15 minutes to get ready every day.[9]

  2. 2

    Wash your extensions thoroughly and carefully. Hair Stylist Madeline Johnson shares, "I put some shampoo on my fingertips and then I go through the [extension] rows with the shampoo. That way, I make sure I get the debris in between the rows too. I always use a conditioner after, mid-shaft to ends, and definitely don't [apply conditioner to the roots]."

    • If you plan to spend time in the pool or in the ocean, Hair Stylist Madeline Johnson notes, "I advise my clients to take a shower first so that the hair gets absorbed with clean water, and use a conditioner on your hair to protect it from the chemicals in the water or the salt so the hair doesn't dry out fast or [get] discolored from the chlorine."
  3. 3

    Brush your hair regularly. Extensions are prone to tangling. To keep your hair looking fresh and natural, brush your hair at least twice a day while your extensions are in place.[10] Hair Stylist Madeline Johnson advises, "Take care of [the extensions] like it's your own hair."

    • Remember, hair care may take extra time when you're wearing extensions.
    • Synthetic extensions are more prone to tangling than human hair extensions.
  4. 4

    Secure your hair overnight. As hair tangles easier, Hair Stylist Madeline Johnson recommends that you "put your hair into a ponytail or into braids." It can also help to sleep on silk pillows.[11]As Hair Stylist Madeline Johnson explains, "the texture of silk is so soft and slippery that it doesn't grab onto your hair like other products can do. [...] It causes less breakage."

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  • Question

    How long will tape-in hair extensions last?

    Laura Martin
    Licensed Cosmetologist

    Laura Martin is a Licensed Cosmetologist in Georgia. She has been a hair stylist since 2007 and a cosmetology teacher since 2013.

    Laura Martin

    Licensed Cosmetologist

    Expert Answer

    Tape-in extensions can last for up to two months. They may come out sooner if you wash your hair frequently.

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  • Question

    Are tape extensions bad for your hair?

    Laura Martin
    Licensed Cosmetologist

    Laura Martin is a Licensed Cosmetologist in Georgia. She has been a hair stylist since 2007 and a cosmetology teacher since 2013.

    Laura Martin

    Licensed Cosmetologist

    Expert Answer

    They can be. All extensions add weight to your hair that can lead to breakage. Tape-ins should be removed by a stylist who can dissolve the adhesive and carefully remove them.

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    Thank you for your feedback.
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  • Question

    Can tape-in hair extensions be reused?

    Laura Martin
    Licensed Cosmetologist

    Laura Martin is a Licensed Cosmetologist in Georgia. She has been a hair stylist since 2007 and a cosmetology teacher since 2013.

    Laura Martin

    Licensed Cosmetologist

    Expert Answer

    Yes, but only up to three times. After this, the hair will start to look dry.

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    Thank you for your feedback.
    As a small thank you, we’d like to offer you a $30 gift card (valid at GoNift.com). Use it to try out great new products and services nationwide without paying full price—wine, food delivery, clothing and more. Enjoy!Claim Your GiftIf wikiHow has helped you, please consider a small contribution to support us in helping more readers like you. We’re committed to providing the world with free how-to resources, and even $1 helps us in our mission.Support wikiHow

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      Things You'll Need

      • Tape-in hair extensions
      • Comb
      • Hair ties or clips
      • Cloth tape measurer
      • Pliers

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      About This Article

      How to Apply Tape‐In Hair Extensions: 12 Steps (with Pictures) (37)

      Co-authored by:

      Madeleine Johnson

      Hair Stylist & Hair Extensions Specialist

      This article was co-authored by Madeleine Johnson. Madeleine Johnson is a Hair Stylist and Hair Extensions Specialist based in Beverly Hills, California. She is affiliated with Hair by Violet Salon in Beverly Hills. Madeleine has over six years of hairstyling experience as a licensed cosmetologist. She specializes in microbead extensions and tape-in extensions. She trained under celebrity extension artist Violet Teriti (Chaviv Hair) and earned her cosmetology license from Santa Monica College. This article has been viewed 187,959 times.

      2 votes - 100%

      Co-authors: 8

      Updated: September 1, 2023

      Views:187,959

      Categories: Hair Extensions

      Article SummaryX

      Tape-in hair extensions are a good solution if you want to temporarily lengthen your hair without doing a ton of work. They can last up to 2 months. To start, wash and dry your hair since the extensions will last longer on clean hair. When your hair is ready, make a horizontal part across your scalp about an inch from the nape of your neck. Put the top of your hair into a clip to secure it. Then pick up a small section of your hair and lift it up a little. Remove the strip covering the adhesive on the bottom of the extension and press it underneath the strand of hair. Then, remove the tape covering on the top extension and press it to the top of the strand of hair. If the extensions aren’t sticking together, simply use smaller strands of hair. Repeat this process until you’ve added all of the extensions. You’ll likely need at least 5 extensions to create the look of a full head of hair. To learn how to care for your new extensions, read on!

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      In other languages

      Français:poser des extensions capillaires adhésives

      Nederlands:Tape‐hairextensions aanbrengen

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      Reader Success Stories

      • How to Apply Tape‐In Hair Extensions: 12 Steps (with Pictures) (38)

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        Jul 6, 2017

        "I've lost a large amount of my own hair due to illness. I'm trying to find the easiest way to fill in the..." more

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      How to Apply Tape‐In Hair Extensions: 12 Steps (with Pictures) (2024)

      FAQs

      How do you apply tape extensions yourself? ›

      How to Put in Tape in Hair Extensions at Home
      1. Tools you will need: Outside of the tape in hair extensions themselves, there's not a lot of things that you're going to need in. ...
      2. Step 1 : Wash and brush your hair. ...
      3. Step 2: Section your hair. ...
      4. Step 3: Pull your hair up. ...
      5. Step 4: Put tape in hair extensions on.
      Aug 30, 2021

      How many tape ins do I need for a full head? ›

      Use 20 to 40 tape-ins (single-sided) or 40-60 tape-ins (double-sided) for medium-density hair. Take note that thicker hair usually needs more to maintain a balanced look. For thick-density hair, use 40 to 60 tape-ins for single-sided and 60 to 80 for double-sided.

      What are the easiest hair extensions to apply yourself? ›

      Clip-ins are the easiest type of hair extension to apply and remove. They are made of synthetic fibres that are glued onto a band with clips. These types of hair extensions are great for everyday wear since they can be removed and replaced easily.

      Is it easy to install tape in extensions by yourself? ›

      Yes, I can install tape in hair extensions myself. I find that it is a relatively easy process and does not require a lot of time or effort. I am able to do it in under an hour and have had great results.

      Is it hard to put in your own tape in extensions? ›

      They're relatively easy to put in and do not require special heat tools. Tape ins can be applied at home without the assistance of a stylist.

      How close should tape ins be to the scalp? ›

      Leave a little bit of space between the tape-in extension and your scalp: about 1,5cm so you have some movement and doesn't create discomfort. you should apply the tape-in extensions in the same direction as your hair growth, from the roots to the ends to avoid any pulling of the hair.

      How long does a full head of tape ins take? ›

      Tape-In extensions are different as they are sandwiched together with adhesive tape on each weft. This requires a small section of hair that goes in between the two tape-in wefts. Simple & Quick. A full head of tape-in hair extensions can be achieved in 1 hour.

      How long does a full head of tapes take? ›

      Another reason why I love Tape-Ins...they're SO quick. Putting the extensions in depends on how much hair you're using, but the actual "install" typically takes about 30 minutes for a full head.

      What is the fastest hair extension method? ›

      Tape Weft Hair Extensions:

      HE tape Tape-in systems are a lightweight adhesive weft that is applied without the need of tools or heat. This makes it the fastest system on the market to apply.

      What type of hair extensions look the most natural? ›

      Human hair extensions tend to look more authentic than synthetic hair extensions. From the colour to the texture, they look and feel exactly like real hair. You can also use heat styling on human hair extensions in the same way you would your own hair, which helps to achieve a natural style.

      What are the best hair extensions for natural look? ›

      Micro-ring or I-Tip styles are probably your best option for the most natural look. Using a clamping or heat bonding process, these types of extensions are attached directly to the natural hair in segments called strands.

      How far up should tape in extensions go? ›

      Take a strand of hair from your tape-in extensions set and stick it to the top side of your own parted hair. The distance to the scalp should be about 2 millimeters. Make sure that the tapes are only attached to the hairs directly adjacent to each other.

      Can I wear my hair up with tape in extensions? ›

      Yes, you can wear your hair up with tape in extensions. If expertly installed, the tape ins should be no trouble to wear up. Tape in wefts are designed to lay flat and be invisible and flexible and if expertly installed, you'll have not problems wearing them up.

      Do you have to sandwich tape in extensions? ›

      If your client has fine hair, single sided tape application is best because it allows for one piece of hair to be added rather than two pieces. This method is used by replacing the bottom tape-in hair extension weft with a piece of single sided tape.

      How do you hide tape extensions in thin hair? ›

      Using dry shampoo or hairspray for root grip

      Above the hair extensions, you gradually and constantly use the shampoo to make your hair puffier for more voluminous hair, and then massage the sprayed positions to make them more natural. This act is very simple and easy to use, but the result is very attractive.

      What products do you need for tape in extensions? ›

      Use sulfate free shampoo and conditioner as well as 100% natural hair products to keep hair extensions in good condition. It is best to use a hair mask once a week to revive your hair extensions. We recommend using a conditioning treatment on the mid-length to ends of your hair extensions.

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