I wore weaves for several yrs and I think they're a great protective style as long as the hair underneath is being taken care of.
I say that I've been natural for almost 2 yrs b/c I stopped perming my hair almost 3 yrs ago but I don't count the time that I was still weaving. That being said, my hair was in very good condition when I was weaving. I wore very curly weaves most of the time and left some of my hair out (front, sides, and back aka the crown). Since I was not putting any heat on my hair, it was fine.
Like someone else mentioned, never use glue or bond, only do sewn in weaves. I would suggest getting a word of mouth recommendation about a stylist as well. I was never able to do that, as none of my friends/fam wear weaves. However, I did end up finding ppl through trial and error since I wore weaves for about 6 yrs.
There are so many ways in which weaves are done- even just in the sewin in category. If you are a hot person or have a hot head, I wouldn't recommend a closed weave or a net weave (net is sewn on top of braids) b/c you will be sweating!
Another thing to be aware of is that a small amount of ppl are very sensitive to synthetic hair (I'm one of them). I was allergic to it and it made my scalp itch like crazy. I used to wear synthetic in the braids (not in my actual weave) but after developing this reaction, I had to stop. I would suggest using human hair as well but its extremely expensive. FYI, many ppl are not aware, but if its sold in a package, it is not human hair. If you do go this route, I would suggest getting a word of mouth rec about where to buy the hair, unless you live in a city where there is only one custom hair place.
The good thing about spending a lot of money on the hair, is that you can wash and re-use it several times. It also won't scream "weave" if you have hair that is better quality and matches your hair well.
Besides getting a weave that looks good and won't damage your hair, its imp to get a rec b/c you want the braids to be done in a way that will make your weave last so it is cost effective. The longest I have ever been able to wear a weave is 6 weeks. However, other clients at the salon I went to were able to go 2 months. My hair does not hold braids well and my hair gets oily, but everyone is different. I personally wouldn't want it in much longer than a month b/c I would want to take it out and treat my hair.
Sorry this is so long, I hope this helps!