Making lace front wigs for black women has extended from medical and entertainment purposes to fashion. Originally, lace-front wigs were made for victims of cancer, who had lost their hair as a result of chemotherapy, and for professionals in the theater and movie industries. They have however become more fashionable and trendy in recent times because of their natural appearance. They can be fashioned into various styles, sizes, and lengths. Lace-front wigs have been used by many top black female celebrities, but are now available to everyone who suffers from hair loss or who just wants to have a new look. You can make a lace-front wig by hand using French or Swiss lace, both of which are lightweight and very popular.
Part your natural hair, and make cornrows going straight back. This will enable you to measure the head properly and create the right-size lace front wig.
Take a measurement from the front of the forehead toward the top of the head about four inches, and from ear to ear across the top of the head.
Create a pattern, covering the whole head with cellophane and twisting it by both ears to keep it in place.
Draw lines around the perimeter of your head with a grease pencil or permanent marker. Trace around the hairline from the back of the ear toward the front of the head to behind the other ear. Measure the drawing to make sure it corresponds with your hand-drawn measurements.
Put tape across the cellophane from the front of the head to the back, and from ear to ear, so that the pieces of tape overlap one another. Repeat this process four times to create a pattern with your cellophane in place.
Trace out your previous drawings on the tape with the grease pencil or permanent marker to enable you cut appropriately. Remove your pattern, and cut to size around the drawing.
Place your pattern on a wig block to block it, adding a little stuffing inside of it to prevent it from caving in and keeping it down with straight pins.
Place your lace around the blocked pattern and cut to size, leaving an excess of two to three inches for trimming at the end of the job. Block the lace onto the pattern starting from the front. Use your finger to gently place the lace around the back, pinning at the center. Fold the excess lace at the back and pin in place, using about three pins on the fold.
Comb your wig hair with a brush or wig hackle (a metal plate with rows of pointed needles used to blend or straighten hair) to keep it from tangling.
Place the hair on a drawing board (a two-piece rectangle of leather inserted with short wires used in weaving or knotting hair) to keep it in place. Leave the tips of the hair out for pulling during ventilation.
Pinch a small portion of hair and fold into a loop with your two front fingers. Push the ventilating needle (a needle that curves like fish hook) through the lace, and slide the looped hair one strand at a time into the needle. Pull the hair with the needle back through the lace and tie into place once you have enough hair. This process is called ventilating. It is like rug hooking.
Ventilate the front hairline one strand at a time to ensure the quality of your lace-front wig. Take the lace-front wig off of the wig block and trim the excess lace from the front hairline.
Measure the head with the lace-front wig on, and mark the place where it reaches the top of the head. Sew a weave with the needle, using black crochet thread at the back of the head.
Rub the 99-percent isopropyl alcohol on your head in front of your hairline, and apply scalp protector. Apply Mity Tite glue to place the lace-front wig on the head, following the front hairline, and press it down for about five seconds. Comb the wigs into your desired style.
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