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Wig Terms and What They Mean

Posted on September 23 2019

In the world of wigs, there is a lot of industry-specific jargon. Knowing some of these terms can make wig shopping easier. Be sure to watch the video at the end for visual examples of each term.

 

Mono or Monofilament

A monofilament is a fine mesh fabric that is incorporate into a wig cap's construction. The transparency of the mesh allows the color of your own scalp to show through the fibers tied to the top of the wig. This feature makes a wig look more natural.

Mono Top Wig

Denier

A denier is a unit of measurement that determines the thickness of a single strand of hair. A higher denier means heavier hair. For example, Asian human hair has more denier than European human hair.

Weft

A single curtain of hair that, if multiple are sewn together, can be used to quickly construct a wig a lower cost than a 100% hand-tied piece. The easiest way to visualize a weft is to consider extensions. In a normal extensions kit, you receive multiple wefts. Sewing these small curtains together can make wigs affordable more affordable than their hand-tied counterpart.

Returns

Shorter hairs tied throughout a wig to represent the natural look of flyaways or to lessen the density of the underside of a wig. Do not confuse returns with breakage or damage! 

Fringe

Fringe is just another word for bangs. More specifically, a fringe is the area of hair that hangs over the forehead. From straight-across to side-swept, bangs are something we’re all familiar with.

Permatease

A permatease is a layer of densely compact hair with a teased look. This helps add body and volume to a wig with a basic cap. It can also conceals the wefts of basic cap wigs.

Nape

The nape is the area of the wig that lays on the back of your neck. 

Density

Density refers to how closely strands of hair are sewn together. It also describes the quantity of strands in a single wig. This may be easily confused with the term “denier” mentioned above.

Open Cap/Wefted

This is a method of cap construction. You may also see such a wig listed as a capless wig or a basic cap construction. In an open cap, the wefts of hair are sewn into the piece so that there is space in between them, creating a lesser density wig.

 Remy

This term describes the way human hair was collected for a wig. If a wig is designated a Remy, that means 100% of the human hair in the wig was collected in such a way that all the cuticles of the hair fiber are all facing the same direction. This may sound insignificant, but Remy is the highest quality. The fibers all facing the same direction create a soft and luxurious feel. Plus, it’s less likely to tangle.

Swatch

You have probably compared paint swatches once or twice in your lifetime. A swatch in terms of wigs is similar. It’s a sample image of what color the wig will be. On our site, you will either see a full photo featuring the wig color or just a small square showing a close up of the shade. 

Ear Tabs

A feature of a wig that lays in front of the ear and rests near the temple. Ear tabs are used to adjust the placement of your wig and can help you ensure a secure fit. For a more natural look, ensure your tabs are tucked in and not winging outward.

Piecey

Piecey is a term that describes the style of a wig. Specifically, this is when the fibers are grouped together and slightly separated to create a style with a textured or tousled effect. Basically, it’s your “I woke up like this” look.

 

6 comments

  • The Wig Experts: September 20, 2021

    Hi Faith,

    A frontal wig generally provides a lace panel in the front for a more natural appearing hairline. When shopping online there a number of terms and varied definitions within the Wig Industry. In order to better assist you with your question please give us a call. We would love to answer any questions and provide any guidance to better assist you.

    We are pleased to offer you the benefit of licensed cosmetologists on staff ready to assist you and provide expert advice on color and style. If you would like to speak to us directly, please call toll-free 1-800-581-2001 (outside the U.S., please call 1-214-443-4848). Licensed cosmetologists are available to take your call Monday through Friday, 8:00AM to 6:30PM CST.

    Best Regards,
    The Wig Experts

  • Faith: September 20, 2021

    What is a compact frontal wig?

  • The Wig Experts: April 09, 2021

    Dear Sheryl,

    Thank you for contacting Beauty and Hair!

    A lace front is a thin, nearly invisible lace material to which hairs are tied in one by one. The result is a very natural-looking hairline and the illusion that the wig hairs grow from your scalp.

    Hand-tied is when each hair is individually hand-tied to the cap to create the most natural movement. This allows the hair to move freely, and you get the added bonus of styling versatility which allows you to comb the hair in any direction. It has the softest and smoothest base which contours to the scalp, giving a near-custom fit; ideal for sensitive scalps or hair loss

    The “rubbery type strip” on wigs is called a polyurethane strip. It is a thermoplastic polymer used as a base material in hair systems and wigs, either fully or partially throughout the base, allowing the base to be bonded (adhered) to the scalp for a long period of time.

    We hope this helps to answer your questions and if you need further assistance, please feel free to contact us Monday – Friday, 8:00 am to 6:30 pm CST. Call TOLL-FREE 1-800-581-2001 or email customerservice@beautyandhair.com.

  • Sheryl: April 08, 2021

    I would like to hear a clear description of, “Lace Front” and “Hand Tied.” Also, some wigs have a rubbery type strip in the top near forehead. What is that for?

  • Dream: February 15, 2021

    Hello. Can you tell me what TX means in wig colors? Ex: TXGOLD, TXHONEY, TXBLONDE, etc.

    Thank you very much

  • Kristi Pennebaker : January 04, 2021

    I love the reviews left!! Nothing tells you the truth like people leaving reviews that are verified buyers! Thank you for this!

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