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Image: @simonekendle

Wigs are a go-to style any season, any weather and any matter. They’re especially helpful when our curls may feel worn out or we’re in need of a wash day. And some of us simply find joy in changing our hair as often as the weather does. If you’re a fire sign, you’ll especially understand that pull.

For those of us on a budget, we may not always be able to afford expensive lace fronts and have to make what we have work. Synthetics are your best friend, they’re cheap and with the right styling, they can look just as good as human hair. However, they only last so long, even with the proper amount of care. Human hair is much more resilient and long lasting, but more expensive and often achieved unethically.

When your wig, human or synthetic, looks like it’s at the end of it’s rope, don’t toss it yet! Even when you’ve trimmed the ends, hit it with a flat iron and have tried anything you could. Follow these steps when you feel like there is no coming back for your wig. I promise, she’ll feel like royalty.

To get started, you’ll need to gather a few materials. You’ll need a bin or bowl large enough to submerge your wigs in, your favorite shampoo and conditioner, a wide tooth comb, two towels and a few gallons of water.

First, find a clean and spacious area in your home. I recommend doing this process on the floor or a low table especially if your wigs are long. That will give you enough room to really work with them. Lay down a towel and place the wigs you plan to wash on top.

Once you have your area set up, lay down the other towel and place the bin on top. Depending on the amount of wigs you’ll be washing, squirt a generous amount of shampoo into the empty bin. I’d recommend about a dime size amount per wig.

Next, boil about 6 cups of water. This process is easiest with an electric kettle but any method works. Once the water is boiling, poor it into your bin (be careful not to set a fire alarm off!). Then, pour about 6 cups of warm/hot water from the sink. Alternate and repeat this process one more time, so you’ll have about 24 cups of water in total. This ensures that the water stays hot, but not enough to burn your hands.

Swirl the water so the shampoo is mixed evenly throughout. Fully submerge your wig into the bin and massage the scalp of the wig. Slowly work your way down through the ends, being very gentle. This is no the part of the process where you want to brush your wig out, that step will come next with the slip of the conditioner!

Once you’ve done this to every wig, empty out your bin (the water looks gross we know). Rinse your bin out and repeat this same exact process, but this time with conditioner. Use more conditioner than you did for shampoo, about a nickel sized amount per wig.

After massaging your wig in the conditioner/water mixture, take your wide tooth comb and start to gently brush through it. There may be some shedding, but this is normal! Brush through the wig until it’s completely untangled. Once you’ve achieved that desired look, gently ring your wig out and hang it to dry.

It’ll still look a little wild, but as it dries you’ll easily see the difference! Human hair dries much quicker than synthetic, so take that time difference into account. Add your final touches with a flat iron. If your wig is heat safe, this will seal in the smoothness and the silkiness that the conditioner added. Your wig will be thanking you, along with your bank account!

Check out this article for more tips on wig care.