If you have not noticed, naturally curly, coily, and kinky wigs are in! They provide a way for women to switch up their look and have a little fun during the process. Since more women are embracing their natural textures, wig and weave companies are finally getting it right. Long gone are the days of limited texture options. Thanks to YouTube more women are learning how to make their own naturally curly wigs, which are great for transitioning.

Transitioning can be tough, time-consuming, and sometimes emotionally frustrating. If you have found yourself at a crossroad with your natural hair journey, consider transitioning with a wig as a protective style to give yourself a break. But first, you must know how to do it the right way.

Choose Installation Type

Selecting the type of wig to install is just as important as choosing the type of hair you will buy. Let’s discuss full, half, and u-part wigs.

Full Wigs & Half-Wigs

Full and half wigs, usually accompanied with either a drawstring or wig clips, are quick and easy to install. Both pieces are great options if you have never worn a wig before. Don’t want to spend a ton of money? There are several great options at many local beauty supply stores for as little as $25. Full and half wigs are also perfect if you wish to have little or no natural hair left out while protective styling.

U-Part

U-part wigs allow for more natural hair to be exposed, which makes for better blending. They are highly customizable with the ability to hand select your texture and color. If you choose to make a U-part wig, the installation can be time-consuming even with the best YouTube tutorials. Luckily, some of the top naturally kinky and curly weave brands such as Heat Free Hair and Indique both offer pre-made U-part options. U-part wigs can be secured by wig clips or by sewing the perimeter of the wig to a braid, similar to a full sew-in style. Some women prefer the sewing option to ensure that the wig stays in place over a long period of time.

Synthetic vs. Virgin Human Hair 

While both synthetic and virgin human hair are great choices for transitioning with a wig, your desired time frame will be the deciding factor. Synthetic hair wigs are extremely low maintenance with an option to literally pop the wig on and go. They are less likely to last as long as wigs made from virgin human hair

If time is on your side, virgin human hair is the best choice. Virgin hair will need to be maintained and cared for in order to preserve the weave’s texture, softness, and manageability. Co-washing and deep conditioning virgin human hair allows the wig to stay in pristine shape and blend with your natural hair. If you are a novice to wearing a wig as a protective style while transitioning, my advice is to choose the less expensive synthetic option to get a feel for wearing a wig full time.

Continue Daily & Weekly Maintenance

Now that you have decided on the installation and texture, do not forget about your real hair, which is one of the biggest mistakes women make when wearing protective styles.

Protect Your Edges & Leave Out: The perimeter of your hair is the most fragile area, so you will still need to treat it with care. Keep your edges and leave out moisturized to prevent dryness and breakage. Twist or braid the leave out with a product like As I Am Twist Defining Cream or your favorite leave-in conditioner. Choose a wig with a curl pattern that closely resembles your own or will resemble the texture of your twist out to help with blending. If you choose to wear a straight style, only place heat to your natural hair while the hair clean. Ultimately, you want to make sure your real hair remains healthy to not reverse the purpose of this protective style.

Take Care of Your Scalp: Continue to shampoo and deep condition your hair as normal if you choose to remove the wig once a week. If you choose to install a u-part wig using the sewing method and will not remove the wig as frequent, a clarifying shampoo is necessary to remove product buildup. Also use anti-fungal oils such as tea tree oil or coconut oil when braiding the hair that will be under the wig. If your scalp begins to itch uncontrollably, that is a sign that it is dry and in need of moisture. The Alikay Naturals Lemongrass Leave In Conditioner is a great option to moisturize your scalp while the hair is still braided.

Read more: Top 5 Natural Hair Extension and Wig Brands

How has your wig experience been? Are you ready to try a wig?