Wig styling can feel like the great beyond when it comes to hair care. There are so many elements to consider, from how you wear your natural hair, to whether or not you can use styling products on a wig – and even the type of hair that’s best for you. To help alleviate your wig woes and provide some clarity on this celeb mane trompe l’oeil of choice, we consulted Luki and Barney, the founders of drag-friendly and always fun Truffle Pig Wigs, for seasoned advice on how to wear it with style.
1. Blend With Baby Hair
The first question we always have when trying on wigs is about blending – even if you’re clearly wearing an outrageous wig, you don’t want to look like you’re wearing a wig. “All of the wigs we use are full head synthetic lace fronts, so the whole head is fully covered,” explain Luki and Barney. While you don’t need to spend a million dollars for a convincing wig, there are certain tips and tricks that will make your full head wig more realistic. Among them, Luki recommends “hairline plucking to create subtle baby hairs, and also painting your hairline with foundation.”
2. You Need a Wig Cap
To conceal your natural hair, you want to get it as flat as possible against your scalp, think bathing cap. “The best thing to do is braid your hair if it’s long or pin it flat against the head under a nylon wig cap. If you have particularly unruly sideburns or neck hair (like I do!) then you can glue down your edges with a glue stick. Many queens also use heavy-duty tape around the head to scrape back and snatch the face and also provide better grip for adhering their wig,” says Luki.
3. Get Theatrical Glue
While bobby pins sometimes function as our wig insurance policy, if you’re on stage or plan to dance the night away, you’re going to need greater security. “Our wigs are high-quality Swiss lace fronts, so the best way to attach the lace to your forehead is using Ben Nye Spirit Gum (a professional theatrical glue) or using strips of wig/toupee tape. Once the front is secured you can go to town with bobby pins, especially if you expect to be flipping your hair a lot!” Luki and Barney explain.
While it can be particularly challenging to get a really heavy wig to stay put – think of your approach to wig styling as a layered cake. “With a particularly heavy unit, you would definitely need to apply all of the above steps, and a strong layer of spirit gum around the entire lace hairline. Some Queens also use the clear weave bonding glue for this too, which is very heavy duty but perfect if you are a hardcore dancing queen,” add Barney and Luki.
4, Style With Product – But Steam It Out
While there is some controversy around using products on synthetic wigs, hairspray can help mold your hairpiece and make the style your own – and contrary to some schools of thought, you can get the products out. “Hairspray works fantastically on wigs to hold the style, and can be washed or steamed out afterward. We are diehard users of the Schwarzkopf Silhouette Invisible Hold: $25.99 for creating volume and texture. We also use the famous Yellow Got2Be Glue: $4.69 for the final setting. We liberally use Suavecita Pomade: $11.99 for smoothing down flyaways and a good Olive Oil Sheen Spray: $8.21 really helps lubricate a dry wig when styling, particularly for smooth vintage styles. Batiste Tropical Dry Shampoo: $8.99 can be good on lighter colored wigs to get rid of too much synthetic shine and to make the hair less silky sleek. Mainly though, as the wigs are made of synthetic non-porous fibers, most products will just slide right off!”
5. Wash Your Wig Like a Baby
Next up – to wash or not to wash? The answer depends on the wigs and what you plan to do with it. “As Truffle Pig Wigs are styled drag wigs, we obviously don’t recommend washing your set wigs until you are done with the style,” Luki and Barney share. However, “for standard lace front wigs, you can purchase specialist wig shampoo and conditioner which will rejuvenate the hair and remove all products, such as the Synovation Wig products. We recommend a gentle but copious lather of shampoo, followed by a good conditioning in warm water,” they say – noting that the don’ts of washing are as important as the do’s.
“Avoid harsh brushing and stretching the wig when wet. Softly and carefully detangle With a Wet Brush, steam and straighten on a low heat to completely refresh and smooth all the fibers. To get ultimate longevity out of your lace front wig, always fully clean the spirit gum out of your lace, detangle whenever possible and when not in use keep your wigs safely secured in duckbill clips and hairnets,” they continue.
Drag Owned and Operated
Drag performers and lovers, Luki and Barney founded London based Truffle Pig Wigs in April 2019. “We create both Ready to Wear and Custom high-quality lace front wig fantasies for drag, theatre, and burlesque,” they explain. The duo also offers restyling services if your beloved wigs are in need of some pro loving.