Dec 26 , 2019
The boom in the human hair industry has attracted a lot of brands and vendors, thus increasing the number of fake human hair on the market. While some hair manufacturers are so crafty with the production process that they make fake hair look and feel like a real one, others use marketing gimmicks to deceive customers into believing that they are buying a real human hair, only to end up with a fake hair.
I’ve seen a lot of people complain about the low quality of the human hair they purchased, both from online and offline stores. These customers end up losing their hard-earned money, and they become scared of buying from other vendors next time.
The best way to avoid being cheated or falling for the dishonest marketing tactics of vendors that sell fake hair is to equip yourself with the right information; as the popular saying goes - information is power. To ensure that you don’t make any costly mistakes when purchasing human hair, I have taken the time to write this guide on how to spot fake virgin human hair like a pro. The information presented here is a combination of personal experience, research, expert opinions, and the experiences of some of my friends and online customers.
What is real virgin human hair?
A real virgin human hair or natural human hair is the hair that grows out of the human’s scalp and does not undergo chemical processing. Virgin hair is gotten from a single individual who donates their hair. This person could be a Brazilian, Indian, or any other country. Virgin hair is unique to its donor because natural hair differs among people.
How To Spot Fake Virgin Human Hair
The following tests and tips are some of the best ways to tell the difference between a fake virgin human hair and a real one.
#1. Can you get sample packs?
Since the Federal law prohibits hair vendors from accepting used hair returned by customers, it's wise to request for a sample from the vendor or brand before doing the actual buying. Sample packs are usually cheap and can cost as low as $5 depending on the brand. Some brands like Dessy Adoye Hair even offer special samples for you to test, so try to leverage such offers.
Avoid vendors that don't offer samples for testing; they may be shady, if not, why would they not offer samples for tests if they are truly genuine and sell real human hair? Aside from saving money, sample hair gives you the freedom to conduct two or more tests discussed in this guide to verify the quality of what you intend to buy.
#2. Are there chemical residues?
One way to spot a fake human hair is to check for chemical left-overs. Why? It's simple! Real human hair is natural and does not undergo chemical processing, but the same cannot be said of fake or synthetic human hair. Chemical processing involves anything aside from water and heating processing. So once you notice any dyeing, bleaching, perming, etc., then it is most likely a fake human hair.
But how does one check for chemical processing? That's easy! First of all, try to do a sniff test on the hair to see if there is any fragrance of perms and relaxers. If you perceive any chemical odor, then the hair has been exposed to chemicals, and it is probably not real human hair.
To confirm the results of the sniff test, move on to the next test. You will need a neutralizing shampoo for this.
How to check for chemical leftovers in human hair
- Wet the hair bundle
- Add a small amount of neutralizing shampoo
- Massage into the hair and watch the shampoo foam closely.
Outcome: If the foam turns to pink, then you are holding a chemically processed hair.
Like I said earlier, some manufacturers are very crafty, and they ensure that they remove all the chemical leftovers in the hairs before pushing them into the market. This test might not work for such hair, so it's best to conduct other tests on the hair just to be sure.
#3. Are there hair cuticles?
Cuticles are always present in natural virgin hair, so once you noticed that there are no cuticles in the hair bundle, then some chemical processing has happened, and the cuticles were stripped from the hair.
What are hair cuticles? The hair strand is made up of three major portions, and the cuticle is one of them. The hair cuticle is the outermost layer of the shaft, and it protests the innermost layers (cortex and medulla).
How to do a hair cuticle feel test
- Pick up the hair bundle and run your fingers up and down through the shaft.
- How does the hair strand feel downwards? How does it feel upward?
Outcome: If you feel a smooth flow downwards and a small resistance upward, then there are cuticles present in the hair. However, if you don't feel any resistance upwards, then the cuticles have been stripped. The resistance indicates the presence of cuticles in the hair.
#4. The smoke test
I call this the ultimate test to spot a fake virgin human hair. If you're not satisfied with the results of the other tests, then you need to perform a smoke test on the hair. Virgin hair usually burns with white smoke and produce ash; Synthetic hair, on the other hand, produces sticky texture when set on fire, and becomes strong after cooling.
How to do a smoke test on virgin hair
- You need a source of fire. I recommend using a lighter or a match
- Light up the tips of the hair sample and closely watch as they burn.
Outcome: If the hair turns into sticky texture and hardens when it cools, then you've got yourself a low-quality human hair. If, on the other hand, it burns with white smoke and turns to ash, then you have a high-quality human hair bundle.
#5. Is the hair too perfect and uniform?
You might expect high-quality virgin hair to be perfect with a uniform texture, but NO, that's a red flag telling you it's a synthetic hair. Real human hairs are unprocessed hair that grows naturally on people's scalp, which makes it difficult to find virgin hair with the perfect tips. So when trying to spot fake virgin human hair, look out for irregularity and non-uniformity. If the hair is perfect, then there is a high chance that it is not a real virgin hair.
#6. Eyes on the color
Any hair that has been dyed either by the hair vendor or the hair donor is not a real virgin hair. The color of a virgin hair ought to be natural, and that's one of the reasons it is called natural human hair. It's hard to find two bundles of natural hair with exact features because every bundle is unique to its donor. Even if two donors are from the same region, say Brazil, both hair bundles will hardly be the same because they are two different individuals donating the hair; there must be a slight variation. Since real virgin hair is versatile, you should be able to dye it or tweak it to match your hair needs.
#7. The cost
It is tempting to want to buy human hair extensions at very low prices, but keep in mind that cheap does always go well with high quality. Avoid buying the cheapest virgin hair you see on the market, even if the vendor claims they are on special promo. Real virgin hairs are slightly expensive, and a high-quality one will cost you some money. However, this does not mean you have to break the bank just to buy it. There is a fine line between affordable and cheap.
#8. Buy from a reliable vendor
The best way to ensure that you get high-quality virgin hair is to buy from a reliable vendor. However, with the increasing number of vendors and brands in the market today, finding a trustworthy vendor is a herculean task. Nonetheless, you can get your 100% real virgin hair at affordable prices at Dessy Adoye Hair. You can also request our special samples to conduct the tests discussed in the guide.
#9. Stay informed
Information, indeed, is power, so be sure to use this power to identify fake human hair the next time you want to shop for virgin human hair. To get the best out of your human hair investment, I recommend you read these golden rules before buying human hair extensions.
How do you test your virgin hair to know if its fake or not? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.