How to Wash Hair Extensions

How to Wash Hair Extensions

Best Shampoo for Hair Extensions

Whether you’ve chosen clip-in, weave, or micro bead hair extensions, putting them in your hair isn’t always the most challenging part. While with a weave or micro bead hair extensions, you wash and style them with your natural hair, removable hair extensions require something a little different.

If you want your hair extensions to last, allowing you to reapply them after you take them out, you need to learn how to wash your hair extensions so they stay smooth and shiny. With the right care, your clip-in extensions can last up to a year! Learn the basic steps of extension washing, as well as the best shampoo for hair extensions and what not to use on hair extensions.

General Tips for Washing Extensions

Before you learn how to wash your hair extensions, we have some quick tips for you to keep in mind. Here are our top dos and don’ts for washing hair care:

  • Wash your extensions 2-3 times a week at most
  • Wash extensions once product builds up excessively
  • Brush your hair regularly using a brush with wide-set bristles
  • Don’t go to bed with wet hair to avoid tangles
  • Avoid using too many heat styling tools – they can melt pre-taped pieces right off
  • Shop hair care products without harsh chemicals
  • Take a break from hair extensions to rejuvenate your scalp and natural hair

Time for a Wash!

You might have just removed your micro bead extensions or clip-ins, and you want to rinse them out before putting them back in. Clear your day and take your time with our step-by-step guide on how to wash hair extensions. 

  • Brush Them Out

Don’t go getting out your best shampoo for hair extensions just yet. Before you even get your extensions wet, you need to brush them out to minimize tangles while washing. As you brush, start from the bottom and work your way up.

We recommend a soft bristle brush or a wide-tooth comb for brushing, as they’re gentle on extensions and prevent damage. Never start brushing from the top of the extensions because working through tough knots will apply a ton of pressure to the roots and may rip out strands of hair that would otherwise stay put. This technique also applies to brushing your extensions once they’re attached to your hair.

  • Shampoo & Conditioner

You have some flexibility for how you wash your hair extensions, but we like to take the wefts and pile them one on top of the other to prep them for the wash. Make sure your washing space, whether it’s the sink or a basin, is clean. Run the faucet until the water is lukewarm, and place your extensions under the running water to soak them all the way through.

Apply a few pumps of shampoo to the extensions and gently massage from root to tip. Rinse the extensions under the lukewarm water again before applying the conditioner in a similar manner. Let the conditioner sit for up to ten minutes before rinsing it out with cool water.

  • Hair Mask

Your extensions need a lot of hydration and moisturizing care to ensure they look healthy and soft. Once or twice a month, you can add this step to your hair-washing routine. You can leave the wefts in a shower cap overnight to allow the mask enough time to revitalize the hair. Avoid residue by washing thoroughly with the steps above. 

  • Drying Your Hair

We’re almost at the final step of how you wash your hair extensions: drying. If your extensions are on your head, blow drying is an option, but we don’t recommend this for loose wefts. Instead, squeeze the excess water from the extensions and set them to dry flat on a towel. We like to place a microfiber towel in a cool place out of direct sunlight.

  • Final Brush

You started with brushing, and now we’re ending with brushing. Once the hair is completely dry, detangle it with a comb from the bottom up. At this point, you can also clip your extensions in and style them with tools and product. If you don’t plan on using your extensions right away, make sure you store them appropriately in a bag, box, or on an extension hanger.

The Best Shampoo for Hair Extensions

Choosing a great shampoo is important and it will affect how well you can wash your hair extensions and how long your extensions will last. The best quality products will generally be oil-based, with argan oil, coconut oil, and Moroccan oil being the most popular. Other ingredients that will have amazing effects on your extensions include seaweed extract, keratin, proteins, vitamin E, and castor oil. All of these ingredients either hydrate, protect, or repair extensions made of natural hair.

While you need to know about the good ingredients, it’s also important to know what not to put in your hair extensions. Some of the most important ingredients to avoid include parabens, triclosan, sodium lauryl sulfate, drying alcohols, and dimethicone. Check your hair care products for these ingredients, along with PEGs, propanol and isopropyl alcohol, colors, artificial fragrances, and quaternium-15.

Discover More and Start Washing


getting hair extensions put in at a salon


Now that you know how to wash your hair extensions, what not to put in your hair extensions, and the best products for your hair extensions, you can create a comprehensive hair care routine with confidence. Every time you buy new extensions or experiment with a different type of product, take notes on how it affects your hair to ensure your routine is constantly evolving for the better!

If you still have questions about how to wash your hair extensions, we’re happy to help! Reach out to our team today at Posh Hair Company for more guidance.