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Unread 04-12-2012, 10:34 PM   #1
why_00
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Using your own hair and extentions?

I've heard "don't use your own hair! it always looks horrible!" over and over again. However that's always for just your own hair. I'm planning on using a combination of my hair and hair extensions for my cosplay. I'm going as Katara from Avatar the Last Airbender. I have really dark brown hair just like hers, and with hair extensions for beefing up the pony tail a bit, and creating the hair-loopies and bun do you think it would look that bad?

I did a preliminary run so see(roughly) what it would look like. It's my first time putting extensions in, and I know I'll want to go get a few things to make sure they stay in tight and secure, and that I'll need to make the braid tighter(and add the bun). But is it really all that bad?
The braid looks much shorter in the picture here because it's pulled around to the front, it's quite a bit longer when strait on my back.

If you've got your character's hairstyle and color why shouldn't you use your own hair?

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Unread 04-12-2012, 10:41 PM   #2
ELunamoon
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Personally I think that looks great and honestly much better than what I've seen in most wigs. It looks natural and you made a great choice with whatever extensions you used because they blend right in! Of course having a wig is a bit more predictable as for how they will act (real hair is unpredictable in that sense) but seriously that looks great! I'd say just do what you're doing and maybe work on making that hair-loops a bit more pronounced. Other wise again; great job!
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Unread 04-12-2012, 10:42 PM   #3
Noose
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There is always the argument that your hair will look crappy if you don't use a wig. But obviously not everyone has thin or stringy hair, so thats really not a fair argument. The argument that I hear AND that makes the most sense to me is that if you use your own hair for a costume and don't invest in a wig, then you can't wear that costume again if you change your hair. For instance, my hair is purple right now. In a few weeks it'll be pure white. Maybe it'll be brown again in the fall. Maybe it'll be pink. It is never the same, and if I decided to use my own hair for a costume then I'd be SOL if I decided to go back and use that costume last minute.

That said, your hair looks good! After a day of sweating and whatnot, it might get frizzy and greasy looking, and you'll have to redo the style every time you want to wear the costume. If you get a wig, you style it before hand, and then you can just pull it off of the mannequin head and wear it on a whim. Even long after you've gone grey, or purple. So, go ahead and use your own hair if it works. But, if you end up liking this costume and also end up chopping your locks off and dyeing them fuschia, you'll need a wig if you ever want to accurately portray the character ever again.
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Unread 04-12-2012, 11:05 PM   #4
why_00
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I'm glad that you guys think it looks okay too. I was preying to the gods that the wefts I got would be the right color, and miraculously they were. and after making the extensions, putting them in took maybe 15 minutes? The longest part of it was straightening my real hair. i think that the hair-loopies will look better once they have the bead at the top in them and the bottoms are attached to the bun.

My hair is really great in that I can go 4 or 5 days without my hair looking greasy. My hair in this picture is actually this is the greasiest I ever let my hair get to, and it's been 4 days without shampooing. I guess there is a chance of cutting it sometime in the future, but I really love my long hair and I've always loved the color, I'd never change it.
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Unread 04-12-2012, 11:13 PM   #5
zandratirith
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I would recommend toupee clips to help keep the extensions secure. Looks good so far :-)

Last edited by zandratirith : 04-12-2012 at 11:17 PM.
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Unread 04-12-2012, 11:24 PM   #6
why_00
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Thanks zandratirith! Those are exactly what I was looking for.

I guess I'm just more perplexed on why using your own hair seem like such a cosplay taboo. There's got to be great cosplayer's out there that do this, right?

I've gotten a couple of wigs previous to this and they always made my head look really bulky, there was too much volume there. maybe it's because of my long hair, but so far I haven't found a wig that looks anything close to natural on me. I'm kind of hesitant to go out and buy another one if I'm just going to get the same effect.
On the other hand, I'm really liking the extensions.
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Unread 04-15-2012, 12:07 AM   #7
harmonyisarine
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I also did Katara with my real hair. The hardest part is keeping the frizz down throughout the day, but if you can do that, go for it! Also (this may be a bit hard to break the habit), try and keep from tucking the hair under your ear. The tops of her ears are usually covered and it helps to round out the shape. To keep the frizz down, I just wet my brush with hot water and then sprinkled powdered gelatin (for cooking, yes) onto the brush or my hair and brushed it through till everything was damp and vaguely sticky, and then styled. It dries fairly quickly, and the gelatin goes from being slightly sticky (when it's melting) to strong and stiff and holding your hair in total lockdown. It kept my Katara hair for all three days at Otakon the first time I did it, even the bun. Only the loopies had to be touched up. I have pics from a photoshoot in my gallery, and I used the same gelatin trick there.
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