A Beginner’s Guide to the Quick Weave

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– Jacqueline Williams, Contributor

Installing a hair weave can be a long and tedious process and when you’re a woman on-the-go, spending 4+ hours at the hair salon isn’t a viable option. Enter: the quick weave.

For some, quick weaves have earned a bad reputation. Mainly due to horror stories of hair damage from installing and removing the weave. However, if done right, quick weaves can be a trendy, simple way to attain vivacious, glamorous hair in a short amount of time.

Here’s everything you need to know.

[Oh by the way 👋🏾, if you’re thinking about getting a protective style, our short film, Pretty Shouldn’t Hurt, is a must-watch. Also learn all about safe protective styling here.]

What Is a Quick Weave?

A quick weave is a weaving method where hair wefts are glued directly to a protective weave cap placed on your head before bonding. This style can be done at home or by a professional stylist.

Similar to a sew-in weave, hair is braided down in cornrows or plaits. A hardening gel can also be used to hold down the hair, instead of braiding it. The protective cap is placed over the hair, providing coverage from the glue, and hair extensions are then cut and glued to the cap. Once placed on the protective cap, each weft needs to be blow-dried or air-dried to ensure a successful application. Wefts are attached until the desired look is complete.

What’s Great About Quick Weaves?

Quick weaves have become a growing trend. It’s commonly known as the cheaper, faster option to the sew-in weave. Let’s break this down.

Quick weaves have a lot of advantages, but one of its main highlights is the style’s affordability. They can range from $60-$150, depending on if you DIY at home or have it done by a professional. This price range is significantly lower than other hair extension styles like sew-ins or box braids, which can cost upwards of $250.

This weaving technique is usually finished in 1.5 hours, half the time it usually takes to install a sew-in. Whether you’re a working professional, a busy mom, or both, quick weaves are a great alternative for a flattering, stunning look in a relatively short time.

Quick weaves are simple DIY hairstyles. All of the materials needed to do a quick weave are available at your local beauty supply store or online at a reasonable price. This lower barrier to entry allows you to experiment with new looks without breaking the bank and wasting a ton of time.

Quick weaves may also put less tension on your natural hair. Unlike sew-in weaving, where your natural hair needs to be tightly cornrowed and directly threaded with hair extensions, quick weaves can use gel or a non-traditional loose braiding pattern that may work better for those looking for a less strenuous hairstyle.

Finally, quick weaves are low maintenance. Aside from a daily nighttime wrapping method, quick weaves can be conveniently maintained without a lot of upkeep. More on this below.

Photo credit: Luvme Hair 

What’s Not to Love?

Hair glue. Quick weaves require hair glue. This can cause hair breakage, especially if the quick weave is kept in for too long or not carefully removed. To prevent hair damage, be sure to properly install and remove your weave. Take a look at the Maintaining and Removing A Quick Weave section below for more details.

Each person’s hair also responds to gel and molding products in different ways. If you’re using gel to slick down your hair instead of braiding, some hardening gels, particularly ones that contain large amounts of alcohol may cause hair dryness and breakage.  Make sure to use alcohol-free gel if using this option.

A quick weave typically requires cutting hair wefts or tracks and that can cause hair shedding. Depending on the cost and quality of your extensions, it may not be the right choice.

Lastly, quick weaves do not last as long compared to sew-in weaves. Quick weaves only last up to one month, a month less than a sew-in installation if properly cared for.

How to Install a Quick Weave

In a nutshell, here’s what you’ll need to install a quick weave:

  1. Weave extensions, human or synthetic
  2. Hair glue
  3. Protective wig cap (either the color of your natural hair or hair wefts)
  4. Scissors
  5. Blow-dryer (optional)
  6. Molding gel (optional)

Here’s a Quick Step-by-Step:

  1. Braid natural hair, leaving either a side or center part out if desired. The cornrows or plaits do not need to be perfect.
    Uncomfortable with braiding? Use molding gel to slick down and wrap hair, instead.
  2. Place the protective cap on your head and cover hair completely.
    Tip: If you have a part or leave out, use a lip or concealer pencil to outline your part on to the weave cap. This will prevent from gluing a track too close to your leave out area.
  3. Glue on hair wefts, working from the back of the head to the front: Wefts are cut by measuring from left to right of the area where you want to place the weft. Either blow dry or air dries each weft once it has bonded to the wig cap. If you are leaving hair out for a center or side part, cut the protective cap around the area where you have your part, following your lip or concealer pencil outline. Glue the weft into a U-shape to outline the part.
  4. Cut and style extensions!

There are so many YouTube videos and tutorials on installing a quick weave at home. Check out these videos to get you started!

Quick Weave Install with Leave Out

Leave outs are for all textures! Find out the tips and tricks of a seamless blend with 4c hair!

Quick Weave Install with Invisible Part

Go heat-free with blogger, Kenny Sweets!

Maintaining and Removing a Quick Weave

Quick weaves usually last between 4-5 weeks.

Covering extensions at night using a silk scarf or satin bonnet helps reduce hair tangling and matting. If you have a curly weave, adding rollers or pinning the hair while you sleep can also preserve the curl.

You can wash and use products on your quick weave, but be careful when using oil based products as oil generally loosens the glue and causes tracks to slip out.

Quick weaves are relatively easy to take out. Start by massaging oil and/or an oil-based conditioner into your hair, leaving the mixture in for a few minutes. The oil will cause the glue bonds to loosen allowing you to easily remove the tracks. Rinse your hair out afterward.

Favorite Quick Weave Hairstyles

Quick weaves are great for changing up your day-to-day hairstyle. Here’s a round-up of versatile, fabulous quick weaves that do just that.

Photo credit: Pinterest 

Quick Tips You’ll Need to Nail This Hairstyle!

  1. If you’re feeling nervous about using and removing this hairstyle, consider going to a professional first before DIY-ing.
  2. Do not extend past the 4-5 recommended weeks of having a quick weave. Your natural hair needs to be washed and conditioned, and leaving your quick weave installed past this time will have negative effects on your natural hair, including scalp irritation, hair breakage, and hair loss.
  3. Quick weaves are all about beauty and fun. Don’t be afraid to add some color or try something new!
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Team Unruly
Team Unruly
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