Taking Care of Your NBR Extensions at Home

Extension-wearers know that the investment in their dream hair means regular salon appointments, using only high-quality professional products, and being religious about brushing. I like to think of this as being high-maintenance in order to be low-maintenance day-to-day. Think of it like getting lash extensions. You spend an hour on your back with your eyes closed while a lash tech touches up your eyelashes every few weeks... but then you don't have to wear mascara and basically look amazing and fresh-faced rolling out of bed every morning. #worthit

For those of you out there considering Natural Beaded Rows who have never worn extensions before, I KNOW you have questions about how to take care of your hair at home. What am I getting myself into? Is it going to be harder to style? With NBR, can I swim/shampoo/workout/fill in the blank? Find your answers below, and feel free to reach out if you have other questions that aren't covered here! (FYI, all products and tools recommended are available for purchase at the salon!)


You'll need to take a little extra care before, during, and after your shower if you're going to be washing your hair, so plan accordingly. The great thing about NBR is that the extension hair holds a style really well, so I recommend investing in a high-quality dry shampoo to prolong time between shampoos. When you ARE ready to wash your hair, follow these steps:

Before getting your hair wet, brush out your extensions with a Wet Brush to help prevent tangles and matting.

Be sure to use a professional quality, sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner (I recommend Unite 7Seconds) to prolong your hair color and the extension color as well. Shampoo gently between the rows, there's no need for vigorous scrubbing here. Sometimes clients prefer to tie the extension hair back in a low pony/bun and only wash their own hair (on top) under the tub faucet to prolong time between full-head washes. This is totally fine and acceptable!

Gently towel-dry your hair and be sure to use a leave-in + oil combo (I love 7Seconds detangler + UOil) right after your shower and before you brush out your hair with the Wet Brush (yes, again).

When brushing your hair, start from your ends and work your way up to the scalp. Hold the hair in one hand (pinched in a ponytail) and brush down.


When blowdrying, rough-dry your hair 80% of the way (meaning, no tugging at the extensions with a brush or comb just yet - just use your hands/fingers.) We go over this in the salon at your appointment - you'll see me do it every time I blow your hair out! If you are a frequent flyer at blow-dry bars or styling salons, be sure to communicate to your stylist that you have extensions and instruct them NOT to round brush your hair from start to finish! This will pull at the extensions, reduce your time between tightening appointments, and increase risk of damage. So don't be shy - speak up to protect your investment!

You CAN use a round brush and a small amount of tension to smooth your hair and the extension hair, but keep it to a minimum and only use the brush for the last few minutes of blow-drying your hair, when the hair is almost dry.

If you're curling your extensions (highly recommended for those Pinterest-worthy waves!), run the extension hair through the curling iron to smooth the hair once or twice before curling. This will give your extensions a more polished look, close the cuticle and reduce fuzziness, and prolong the life of your extension hair. Feel free to use a spray such as 7Seconds Glossing for extra thermal protection when heat-styling, and a smooth, glossy finish.


Before you get in bed, brush your hair gently with a Wet Brush to remove any tangles, then place in a loose ponytail(s) or braid(s) to sleep in. This simply prevents tangles while you sleep - trust me, you'll thank me in the morning! Though it's not totally necessary, some clients swear by a 100% silk pillowcase to further reduce tangling (bonus: it's good for preventing wrinkles, too!).


After a few washes, the extension hair will expand and take on a more realistic hair texture.

If you notice any excess tangling or hair shedding, please contact me - both of these are quick fixes when addressed right away.

Important to note now that summer is in full swing, NEVER let sunscreen or suntan oil touch the extension hair - especially those blondes! The hair will turn a peach color and the only resolution is to replace the hair entirely.

Yes, you CAN live a normal, active lifestyle with NBR. Just treat the extensions with a little extra TLC and gentleness to prolong them looking their best! If you have any questions or if you feel like you're ready to take the plunge and finally experience NBR extensions for yourself, click here to fill out an application!


© 2020 erin frazee

photos by This Lovely Light