Nowadays, hair and bundles are very easy to come by. However, quality hair seems to miss most consumers. Many people sell hair! From personal connections, beauticians and salons, to social media influencers and celebrities, hair is easily available. Over the past decade, the hair extension market has been flooded and heavily saturated.
This can be partly attributed to Chinese hair vendors who market aggressively and partake in unconventional business practices to sell in US markets.
GUERRILLA MARKETING OR UNETHICAL?
In addition to aggressive marketing tactics, Chinese vendors sit on an economic platform with few limitations and the advantage of not following the same business ethics laws as US business vendors. For example, in the US market, it is illegal to use someone’s image without their permission to make a profit. However, Chinese vendors regularly steal images from unknowing women and girls, to sell their bundles and wigs. They use these images on their social pages, What’s App accounts, Amazon accounts and websites without ramifications. Large US-owned companies such as Amazon and Instagram have done nothing to address the issue, despite many complaints from victims.
WHY DID I GET A BAD BUNDLE?
These unethical practices only sit at the forefront of scams in the hair market. It’s not only the old switcharoo technique where you’re not getting the same hair they promote in the images. If you dig deeper, you’ll find out why you’ve purchased hair that tangles, sheds or is dry. Not all hair vendors have quality hair and that hair reaches the US market. According to Hair Market News in China, 90 percent of hair factories use a mix of protein filament (synthetic hair) into bundles and wigs because it cuts their costs down. This technique also allows vendors to produce longer lengths such as 30 to 40-inch bundles and wigs.
Hair from China is imported from India and often is scrap hair, versus hair directly from a donor’s scalp. Many YouTube videos show Chinese vendors processing scrap hair sent from India. If you’re buying hair from China (Virgin hair), it is coated with a silicone mix for texture and appearance. After several washes, the silicone mix washes off and the hair becomes dry and brittle. While this type of hair looks pretty when you first buy it, over time it tends to look dull and begins to break off. It is, however, a more affordable option compared to raw Indian hair. If purchase from a good source, virgin hair can be a good selection for some people.
Raw Indian Hair is the best hair on the market and does not have a silicone mix or synthetic additives. This is why when you wash raw Indian hair, it reverts to its natural state and does not lose its texture or appearance over time. The only time raw hair is treated for texture is through a water steaming process to generate curls (no chemicals involved). Raw Indian hair will last years and should be looked at as an investment.
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
Here is the confusing part. Indian hair is identified through many different monikers. Virgin hair is hair that has been chemically processed for texture, despite the actual meaning of virgin. Raw hair refers to unprocessed hair that is chemical-free. Also, the monikers that have been attached to hair include Cambodian, Burmese, Russian, Filipino, Peruvian, Brazilian, etc. These names are often applied based on their appearance or texture and have nothing to do with the origins of the hair. You can trust that 95 percent of the hair on the market is Indian hair, rather raw or processed. Stitch Virgin Hair Boutique sells raw and virgin hair. They have identified their raw Indian bundles as Burmese which refers to the people of what is now Myanmar, India, formally known as Burma. Virgin hair sold at Stitch Virgin Hair Boutique is called Brazilian hair which is Indian hair that has been processed for texture. Companies must be transparent when selling hair so consumers can have a better understanding of what they are purchasing.
Purchasing Quality Hair & Bundles
- First decide rather you are going to purchase raw Indian hair, which will last you two to three years but cost more money. Or, will you go the less expensive route and purchase virgin hair from China that won’t last as long.
- Good raw Indian and virgin hair should have a thick dense feel, that is smooth and free from tiny stick-up hairs throughout the bundles.
- Quality hair holds a nice curl when styling. Hair that has been processed with protein filament does not hold a curl, and when coloring the hair it dyes unevenly. So do some research and find out if the hair you are going to purchase can be colored nicely and holds nice curls.
- Beware of purchasing from Chinese vendors who pose as US sellers, because they are using stolen images. Also, know that Instagram images and website images are marketing materials. Just like a Big Mac in a McDonald’s ad, you will not get the same product. When the bundle is promoted already styled, flat ironed, curled or product applied, it tends to look different from the actual bundle. Look at the actual bundle versus the styled product.
- Purchase from a reputable source that has an owner you can talk to. Most legit business owners small or large have people in place that you can consult with before making a purchase so large. Spending $300 – $700 is a large purchase decision and you should be able to buy with peace of mind.
Stay tuned to our next blog on how to purchase a quality wig!!!.