The heat is on, and it’s time to start making the tough decisions, like whether or not you’re going to take the plunge on a new summer haircut, where to snag your chic summer outfits and whether you’re going to switch things up with a new hair color or cheat by diving into this post. Yup, I said cheat, AKA hack. The pastel hair trend is here to stay, and we are aaallll about it. Not everyone has the guts (or the time, TBH) to make that kind of commitment, so we’re bringing the seemingly unattainable to a very attainable level. Scroll below to see how to make your very own colorful hair extensions that are totally customizable for any hair type, color and length. This is a slightly more advanced DIY, but still totally doable. We suggest inviting over your lady loves for a DIY makeover party.
— plastic mixing bowl
— color application brush
— duckbill clips
— wig clips
— semi-permanent hair color of your choice + clear (to make it lighter)
— human hair extensions in the lightest blonde possible (choose a texture similar to your hair type)
— extension thread + needle
— aluminum foil
— blow dryer
— round brush
How to Make Your Extensions
First, cut your extensions to your preferred length. You can do several large pieces to clip into your entire head, or small panels to add in for a subtler, peek-a-boo look. Next, thread your needle with the extension thread, which is more durable than your sewing thread. Sew the wig clips onto the panel, leaving around 1½ inches between each one.
You can see that I’ve made a bunch so I can share with my girlfriends!
How to Color Your Hair Extensions
First, anchor a panel of extensions to the foil using the duckbill clips. To achieve the perfect color, you can add clear to whatever hue you choose to make it lighter. I ran out of clear, so these didn’t come out as pastel as I intended, but it’s all good because the color will fade after a few washes. Mix your color well using the hair color application brush, then begin to paint onto the hair. Make sure you really saturate the hair so all the color absorbs evenly. Flip it over and do the same on the back side of the panel. Finally, once the hair is completely colored, close the foil up and allow it to process for a good 45 minutes to an hour.
After processing, rinse the color using warm water. Gently shampoo and condition.
How to Dry Your Extensions
Air Dry Partially
Lay your extensions out until they’re almost completely dry.
Blow Dry + Round Brush
The easiest way to blow dry and round brush the extensions is to clip them onto your head. The reason this part is important is because the heat and round brush will smooth out the hair, making it look softer and more natural.
How to Apply Your Extensions
1. Part your hair. Part your hair a few inches below where the extensions will clip on. This way, your hair falls on top of them so they blend more naturally.
2. Create your anchor. Use a fine tooth comb to backcomb your hair at the roots where you want your extension. This creates sort of a knotted, nest-like foundation for the clip to anchor itself onto. You don’t want them to go flying out!
3. Clip em’. Finally, clip the first extension into your hair.
4. Repeat. Depending on how many panels you have, you can repeat this last process as many times as you need until they are all in.
How to Cut Your Extensions
Take small sections of the extensions and twist them around your finger — be VERY sure your hair is not included in this step. Then take a straight-edge hair-cutting razor and gently slide it along the mid-shaft to the ends of your twisted section to create a natural finish that will blend into the length of your hair.
Extra Step to Blend
You can either leave your hair in its natural state if the extensions blend well, or you can use your flat iron or curling iron to add a few waves. This is human hair, so you can curl just like you would your own hair for a more playful and seamless finish. Add a little styling cream of your choice on the ends of your hair for that piecey, unkempt finish.
Also, how cute is this dress? You can swoop it up here: Canyon River Blues Women’s Chambray Shirt Dress-Ikat Print ($48).
And now for my most favorite moment… time to bring in my ladies!
Girl band, maybe?
I. Can’t. Even.
Clearly, we didn’t have any fun with this ;) What’s so rad is that you can literally do any color combo, any style you choose. Also, another great thing to know is that you can wash these every few times you wear them — just be sure to dry them the same way as when you made them.
Follow us on Pinterest for more beauty hacks!
Art Direction/Styling/DIY/Hair + Makeup: Misty Spinney
Photography: Kurt Andre
Models: Anita Yung, Brit Griffin, Misty Spinney
Brit + Co may at times use affiliate links to promote products sold by others, but always offers genuine editorial recommendations.