Hair extensions allow you to forgo the growth process and change your style on the fly, but attempting to get the glue out without knowing the basics can quickly turn in to a sticky situation. Weaves, metal rings, tape and all manner of other methods serve to keep extensions in place, but few can match the strength and staying power of glue. When the time comes -- which may be months after you've applied the extensions -- the key to defeating that staying power lies in simple oils.
Apply an ample coating of oil -- either almond, olive or baby oil -- to the bead-like glued parts of your hair extension. Allow the oil to rest for a minimum of 15 minutes, then comb through your hair. Repeat as necessary until all of the extensions come loose.
Rinse your hair in the shower thoroughly, then work in a very generous coating of hair conditioner. Leave the conditioner in, and wrap your head in a towel, letting the conditioner break down the glue for about 20 minutes. Comb through your hair to free the extensions, and repeat the process as needed.
Clip your hair up to expose the extensions, then equip yourself with a pair of disposable gloves and apply a dollop of commercial hair extension glue remover, available at beauty supply stores, to each pebble of glue. Work the glue between your gloved fingers to break it down, then remove each extension. Repeat the application on stubborn bonds. You can also enlist a buddy to help you with this method.
If you're in a pinch, use peanut butter instead of oil. You may need to let it sit a while longer -- about 30 minutes or so -- but the natural oils in the peanut butter serve the same purpose as almond, olive or baby oil when it comes to breaking down your extensions' glue. You can also turn to your stylist to remove your hair extensions if you'd rather not do it at home.
If you're using a commercial hair extension glue remover, always read and follow any instructions or warnings provided by the manufacturer.
Dan combines his decade-long experience as a freelance writer and small business owner with hands-on experience in fashion, mixology, media production and more. Previously, he's published with Chron.com, Charlotte's Book, LIVESTRONG, Civilized Life, Hunker, Fortune, Salon.com, Out East Rose, Samsung, USA Today and others.