Difference between weave and extensions (Guide)

Do you agree with the idea that “Life is too short to have boring hair”? 

Yes, I do too!

Hair weaves, and extension techniques have been common among fashion divas to enhance their looks and style their hair differently. If you have short or thin hair or are looking forward to enjoying different types of weave hairstyles to change your hair appearance, you should have a clear idea of what wigs, weaves, and hair extensions have to offer to make a perfect choice for yourself.

difference between weave and extensions

Wigs, hair extensions, and weaves all lay under the same category but serve different purposes. Here is a guide to help you understand the difference between weave and extensions, the common techniques among women to enjoy an organic hair look and make your hair look thicker and more voluminous. 

Hair weaves

The hair weave technique dates back to roughly 5000 B.C. in Egypt; it is a way to change your hairdo by giving your real hair more volume with synthetic or real human hair.  In this method, the natural hairs are braided professionally, and then the extension is carefully sewn into it. The hair weaves are available as a single hairpiece to cover your entire head and give it a natural appearance.

hair weaves

Because the hair weaving procedure is a little complicated, it is a good idea to plan to have a professional stylist complete it. Popular weave varieties include Brazilian, Peruvian, and Eurasian hair weaves. These weaves come in a variety of designs, including straight, wavy, or curly hair, to let you select the one you want.

From adding length and volume to thin, short hairs, the hair weave technique offers the flexibility to style your hair without waiting for your hair to grow. It also comes in trending hair colors, preventing the color chemicals from directly contacting natural hairs. 

Hair extension 

hair extensions

In the hair extension technique, synthetic or natural hairs are clipped to the raw hairs using adhesive or other techniques. Women with short hair admire the popular hair extension technique in which the hair extensions are installed strand by strand to the natural human hair, giving a more secure feel. 

Unlike hair weaves, the hair extensions come in separate wefts to which the hair strands are attached. The weft size also differs to help you pick the most suitable weft according to your desired length.

The extension made of natural hair gives the most natural style to your hair and is more durable. Getting a hair extension may sound a little expensive because of the time taking installation process on the hair. You may need prior practice if you are interested in doing it yourself to have a more clean look. 

The hair extension is the most economical way to give your hair a classy, voluminous look and boost your personality.  

Difference between weave and extensions

The following factors can help you get a better idea about what hair extensions vs. weave have to offer: 

Installation process 

The main difference between weave and extensions is the installation process. 

Beginners frequently mix up the terms “wigs”, “hair weaves,” and “hair extensions,” but they are not the same. Wigs are covering made of natural or synthetic hairs, and people suffering from baldness usually try to conceal their hair using wigs. While hair is directly sewn into cornrows when weaving, glue is used to install extensions to natural hair.

Weaves and extension installation

The decision to pick a wig, hair weave, or extension can be based on your preferences. For fashion enthusiasts, women who want to add length and volume to their thin hair, hair weave techniques like weaving and braider perform better.

The extension method, like the trending fusion and clip-in hair extension, is the perfect choice if you want to get a more flowy and bouncy style with more volume than hair weaving. 

Contact with harmful chemicals 

Unlike wigs, the other extension techniques can cause your natural hair to come into contact with chemicals directly. This may result in poor hair quality and scalp issues. 

Hair weaves are best to avoid contact with adhesives or chemicals since the hairs are sewn into cornrows. 

While the most common methods for attaching hair extensions are tape or adhesive. To prevent the adhesives from damaging the hair shaft, it is crucial to utilize adhesives or tapes that have been specifically created for this reason.

Lifestyle preference

In comparison to extensions, hair weaves are great for women who spend a lot of time exercising throughout the day, such as dancing, running, etc. 

The tightly sewn hair weaves makes it easy to engage in physical activity without worrying that the hair weaves will get loose and fall out. 

Installation cost

The cost of hair weaves and extensions are determined by a variety of criteria, including the type of weaving chosen, synthetic or natural hairs, length, quality, and the professional stylist who performs the work.

The usual cost of installing hair weaves ranges from $100 to $600, with $100 for synthetic hair extensions and $600 for high-grade hair extensions that offer the most natural and enduring look.

best hair maintenance

Maintenance required

Both hair weaves and extensions require adequate maintenance after they are installed. Look for a sulfate-free shampoo to wash your hair with if you want your extension to last longer.

Avoid hair tangling and oil accumulation on the scalp by keeping it clean and brushing the hair gently. Visiting your hairstylist is a better option for proper aftercare of your hair extension to make it offer you a more durable and perfect result.

Side effects

However, hair weaves and extension techniques both offer women with thin hair an option to change their hair look and style differently, but they both have potential drawbacks.

The hairs are tightly braided for the weave installation process, which in extreme circumstances, can lead to hair loss, stress on the scalp skin, and root hair damage.

Although there is a relatively little possibility that the hair extension will harm your hair, getting the extension applied to very thin or unhealthily growing hairs or utilizing a subpar product to place the extension can seriously harm the natural hairs.

📌 Recommended Read: Top 6 types of hair weaves and their names


Hair weaving vs extension – which one is for you?

Your preference determines whether you should use hair weaves or extensions. Before deciding between two, consider your hair texture, lifestyle, and budget.

Suppose you are women who spend hours doing vigorous activities. In that case, it is essential to consider hair weaves as the ideal alternative to enjoy your day without worrying about the hair extension becoming loose and falling down.

How to choose the right one?

There are several aspects to consider while selecting the proper hair extension to add volume to your hair. Because extension lifespans range from short to long, consider how long you want to keep the extension and how much time you can devote to its after-installation care.

A professional stylist’s advice on the ideal hair extension type for your personality, lifestyle, and budget would be a good idea to make the proper choice.


Hair weaves and extensions are in demand among women with thin hair because of the easy way it offers to style your hair, avoiding any damage to the hair. 

I hope you now have a better understanding of the difference between weave and extensions to assist you in making a perfect decision about which of these extensions will work the best for your hair type.