Wig Terms & Cap Construction Types

Below are definitions for commonly used Terms and Wig Cap Constructions types:

Hand-Tied Construction
Wigs with a Hand-Tied Construction are very lightweight. The hairs (fibers) are actually hand sewn into the cap, allowing for ease of styling and parting.

Monofilament
Monofilament construction gives the appearance that the hair is actually growing from the scalp. Thin, breathable fabric is placed at the hairline or the front of the head toward the crown section.  The top portion of the cap is specially woven to allow for comfort and excellent ventilation. This helps to prevent irritation and itchiness. It will "Breathe" while being worn, thereby preventing heat and moisture build up.  Monofilament is considered to be one of the most desirable of wig types. Most women, especially those who wear wigs every day, feel that its superior wearability and natural look more than justify the additional cost. 

Open Ear Tabs
These are perfect if you wear eye glasses, as the flexible material allows for the ear tabs to adjust and contour to the face, around the temple area.

Reverse Wefting
Imitates a more natural look by adding short hairs around your ears and along your natural hairline.

Stretch Lace/Lycra
Allows the wig to conform to the shape of your head. Therefore, you achieve a more comfortable, secure fit.

Thin Wefting
Allows better distribution of fibers by adding more wefts with less fiber on each strand, giving the same mobility of a hand tied wig.

Velcro Sizing Adjustments
Allows you to adjust your wig (at the nape section) up to 1 inch larger or smaller for a better fit.

Machine-Made Wigs - Wigs that are made from wefts of hair that are sewn on by machine.

Hairpiece - Hairpieces are worn in place of growing hair. They are partial pieces or add-ons used to create additional volume or length to existing hair.

Custom Wig - A custom wig is made to your particular specifications. The manufacturer will use any combination of hair fiber, cap, styles, color to get you exactly what you want in a wig that looks and feels like you.

Standard Cap - A standard cap is the most common and most affordable cap design. The layers of hair are open-wefted in the back and sides to allow for ventilation and have a closed lace layer at the crown. The hair at the crown is often lightly teased or crimped so you can not see down through the cap. This type of cap often gives the hair a natural lift at the crown for volume. However this cap can be a bit heavier and get warmer to wear this being less comfortable than a cap with a monofilament top.

Capless Wig - is very similar to the standard cap design. However, it does not have the closed lace layer at the crown. It is open-wefted in the back, sides, and crown. This allows for maximum ventilation and for the ability to pull your own hair through. It is also the lightest weight cap you can purchase.

Adjustable Cap - A wig cap construction with adjustable tabs that extend from the crown to the nape of the wig cap. Average wig cap can either be adjusted to a smaller or larger cap size.

Memory Cap - A wig cap that replaces the wide stretch lace used in most of today's wigs with a thinner, more resilient stretch material that actually molds to the shape of the head for a lighter, more secure fit.

Petite Cap Size
The petite cap size is generally the following measurements:
Circumference: Around the Head - 20"
Front to Back - 12 1/8"
Ear to Ear - 10 1/2"

Petite/Average Cap Size
The petite/average cap size is generally the following measurements:
Circumference: Around the Head - 21 1/4 "
Front to Back - 13 3/4
Ear to Ear - 13 1/4 "

Average Cap Size
The average cap size is generally the following measurements:
Around the Head - 21 1/2 - 22"
Front to Back - 14 1/4 - 14 1/2"
Ear to Ear - 13 1/2 "

Average/Large Cap Size
The average/large cap size is generally the following measurements:
Around the Head - 22 1/2" - 23"
Front to Back - 14 3/4 - 15"
Ear to Ear - 13 3/4 - 14"

Large Cap Size
The large cap size is generally the following measurements:
Around the Head - 23 1/4" - 24'
Front to Back - 15 1/4 - 15 1/2"
Ear to Ear - 14"

Monofilament/Mono-Top Wig - A Monofilament/Mono-Top Wig refers to fine, breathable nylon or silk mesh with hairs individually hand-knotted into the mesh. Disappears against the scalp allowing natural skin tone and appears as a natural looking part giving it more versatility in styling. It is recommended for hair loss patients, and allows comfort and excellent ventilation.

Lace Front - A wig made with a mesh insert in the front into which individual hairs are hand-tied. It creates a realistic looking hairline. When properly worn with special adhesive, it is almost undectable that it is not the wearer's own growing hair. They are more expensive and difficult to manage, and do not last as long as other wigs.

Velvet Front - A small piece of soft, velvety material inserted into the front of a wig to create a more comfortable fit at the hairline.

Human Hair Wigs -Wigs made of human hair primarily cut in India, China, and parts of Europe which are obtained and contracted through a factory for the specific purpose of making wigs/hairpieces.  Wigs made with Human Hair are very durable, however they require more upkeep than synthetic wigs and must be styled on a regular basis. Generally speaking, although Human Hair wigs are much heavier than their Synthetic counterparts and more expensive, they can actually look and feel more authentic and are worth the money.

Unprocessed Hair - Human hair that has not been chemically treated.

100% European Human Hair - Is differentiated by genetics rather than geography. It actually refers to Caucasion hair. This is Human Hair that has retained the cuticle and has undergone a special process to prevent tangling and retain the quality of this extremely fine Caucasian hair. The structure of European hair is a bit finer, flatter and smoother, and more desirable. It has a silky texture and is usually available with a wave and very rarely curly. It comes in all colors from a very pale blond to jet-black. Because it is less plentiful it is more expensive.

Virgin Russian Hair - Due to its fine hair strands, easy movement, and amazing durability these qualities make this hair the most expensive and sough after hair in the world. This is hair that can cost up to $10,000 for a wig 16 inches long. It has finer strands. This is an excellent choice for those with thin hair.

Virgin Unprocessed - Very fine quality human hair in its original state which has not been chemically treated in anyway, (processing removes the cuticle ) only sanitized and blended. It has not been permed, colored or altered in any way. The cuticle goes in the same direction and is preserved to maximize it's special quality. Therefore, it is strong and natural in appearance.  Virgin human hair wigs are the most natural looking and the most comfortable but just like human hair they tend to tangle. This is a good but expensive choice if you want the very finest human hair wig. Virgin European hair wigs are high in demand. It comes in short, medium and long styles, and is also used in Hairpieces and Extensions. Italian Hair - A less expensive choice is Italian hair. On the average Italian hair has a medium texture with a lot of body with the end of the hair being full and blunt. It varies from a slight body wave to a wavy texture. It comes in all colors from a very light almost white to jet-black.

Human Hair Blend - A combination of human hair and synthetic fiber. The synthetic fiber tends to hold it's shape after washing and the human hair looks natural and is more durable. The combination gives the wig more versatility and flexibility in styling. It is usually used in 25%, 35%, and 50% ratios to synthetic fibers.

Remi/Remy Human Hair - Refers to Human Hair (usually Indian in origin) Remy which is less expensive than European, Italian or Russian hair. The hair has been harvested from root to end with the cuticle all going in the same direction that prevents the hair from tangling and is very easy to care for. It may be colored or permed. It is soft and silky and is used for making higher quality wigs, extensions and hairpieces. This quality of hair is often used in a cranial prosthesis (wig). It looks very real, however, sometimes can frizz from its texture. Using an ionic straightening iron on the piece will smooth out the frizz.

Synthetic Hair - Kanekalon Fiber - The Kanekalon Fiber is a modacrylic fiber that closely resembles human hair composed of a combination of two monomers: acrylonitrile and vinyl chloride which are joined together in a process called Co-polymerization. Co-polymerization produces a dry resin which is in turn dissolved into a liquid state, or dope. This solution is forced through a multi-hole metal disk called an aspinnerette, then into a water bath where it coagulates to form continuous strands. These strands or filaments called "tow" are then dried and stretched and finally become fiber as we know it.

It's especially formulated to produce an irregular shaped cross-section that is similar to human hair allowing the look, feel and performance characteristics of the real thing. It is also lighter in weight and more consistent than other synthetic fibers.

Synthetic Fiber - There are three types of synthetic fiber used to manufacture wigs, which are polyester, acrylic, and polyvinyl chloride (PVC). They are not resistant to heat or styling products, and are available in many different lengths and styles.

Synthetic Hair Blend - A specially made synthetic fiber that is just like your own hair that you can curl or blow dry. All synthetic wigs are made with this fiber. It reflects the look of human hair and dries quickly. They are less expensive than human hair and are lifelike and durable.

Synthetic Wigs - Wigs made primarily of modacrylic fibers that have the look and feel of real hair. The fibers have style memory which allows the original styling to be restored in most cases by simply spraying with a water bottle and drying from underneath. They don't fade in color like human hair does. An additional advantage is that synthetic fibers are not porous and cannot absorb oders.

Skin Part - Refers to a strip of fabric, usually silk, along the part where the hair is threaded. It gives the appearance of the hair growing directly from the scalp. The part cannot be changed. Wigs with a skin part are more affordable than a full monofilament and still give you a very natural look.

Skin Top - These wigs, sometimes referred to as having a Monofilament Top, have a piece of thin latex of polyurethane inserted into the top of the wig with hair implanted to give a natural look.

Simulated Part - A part that is not clearly defined and usually at the center or side of the cap.

Multi-directional/Multi-directional Part - Higher quality skin top wigs which can be combed or parted in any direction, much like your own hair. It allows you to change the part to right, left or center as desired by wearer.

Hand-Tied - A term for individual hair fiber that is tied by hand onto the wig cap/base using a single knot. Offers styling flexibility and resembles the movement of natural hair.

Honeycomb Wefting - Can be found in either a full or partial hairpiece. Often referred to as an "Integration" piece it is made with large open holes designed to pull your own hair through.

Add-Ons - A partial hair piece - not a full wig. Hairpiece that temporarily attaches either by interlocking combs or butterfly clip to your own hair to add instant length, volume and texture.

Wiglet - A spot enhancer that is designed to work with your own hair to add volume or length in a specific area.

Top of the Head - 'Toppers' as they are often referred to is a partial piece that fits on the crown to be used to add volume for a fuller look. They come in many lengths and base sizes.

Hair Enhancer - Often referred to as "Top Piece", Topper, or Halo. May or may not be a full cap size. It's designed to work with your own hair to add volume.

Fall - is a partial wig most often used to add length to a style and almost full coverage of the head while allowing plenty of ventilation and the guarantee of a secure fit. Unlike the heavy solid hard dome-like foundation of traditional Falls of the 60s and 70s that were positioned at the top and crown area of the head. There are three basic types: Full Falls, Headband Falls, Hat Falls: Full falls allow the wearer's own hair to show at the front and be blended into the hairpiece. Headband falls or 3/4 wigs are positioned 1" to 1 1/2"just behind the front and side hairlines allowing the blending of the front and sides of your hair in with the Fall to create a more voluminous natural looking head of hair; it usually connects easily to your own hair with a series of flex combs. It gives a realistic appearance of hair growing directly from the wearer's scalp.

Hat Falls - Often referred to as "Chemo Cap" or as 1/2 wigs", they have a bare cap on top held together by pieces of elastic in a crisscross design that fit securely on the head where the hair or wefts are attached from the temple down giving the "perfect elusion". This is suggested specifically worn by those with sensitive scalps or seek a lighter feel while wearing a cap or scarf.

Integration System - An integration hair system refers to the type of base material used and is ideal for women (or men) with thinning hair or diffused hair loss like that in Female Pattern Hairloss. An Integration System allows you to pull your existing, growing hair directly through the unit. This allows you to wear a custom hair replacement system without shaving your head. Your own natural, growing hair is combined with the hair in the system to create a more voluminous and complete head of hair. Depending on the thickness and fullness of your growing hair, there are a variety of different integration hair systems all with varying sizes and shapes of holes in the mesh.

Toupee Clip - For added security, this is a small clip with groves that is sewn into the base of a wig cap, add-on, fall, or partial. They come in several sizes and one must be careful when removing the wig from their head and not rush and carefully remove the hair that may still be in the clip or they will rip the hair. They are a wonderful adhesive - if you are careful and patient

Thin Wefting - A weft that has a single of layer of hair fiber spread apart which results in a lighter, cooler wig.

Inside Wefting - An cost effective alternative to a hand-tied ventilation. This machine-sewn fiber weft allows for softer napes and the ability for hair to lay flat in the back and nape.

Stretch Ribbon Lace - Used in the lining of a wig cap to add stretch and security.

Flexible, Open Ear Tabs - A soft piece of metal that allows to adjust the piece closer to the scalp for a more secure fit and to contour the face at your temple.

Adhesive - Available in either liquid roll-on or tape form, aids in securing wig to scalp.

Hair Enhancer - Often referred to as "Top Piece", Topper, or Halo. May or may not be a full cap size. It's designed to work with your own hair to add volume.

Heat Resistant Hair - A special blend of fiber that is heat resistant and will allow you to use heat appliances such as a blow dryer or hot rollers. However, keep in mind that hair that is not attached to the head has no natural oils nor breathes. Less heat is suggested to extend the shelf life of the piece. We suggest you use Carusso Steam Curlers more often than electric heated accessories.

Velcro Closures - Located at the nape of most of our wigs, these closures adjust easily for a custom fit.

Velvet Comfort Band - To enhance comfort and security, 1" to 1 1/2" of soft velvet-like fabric is placed at the inside front of wig cap.

Velcro Sizing Adjustments - Two Velcro® tabs placed at the nape allow you to adjust your wig for a more comfortable fit.

Wig Liner - A lightweight mesh or nylon cap worn underneath the wig to help keep hair in place.

Open Ear Tabs - Flexible material at the ears which allow you to adjust and contour the wig to your face around the temple area.

Comfy Grip - This is a product designed to wear under the wigs to keep them from shifting. I believe that if you can find a wig that can fit correctly on your head and you can secure it with clips or tape it will much more comfortable than wearing this around your head in addition to a wig.

Transparent Tape - A double sided transparent tape may be used to secure the wig to the head.

Polyurethane Tabs - An incredibly resilient, flexible, and durable manufactured material that can take the place of paint, cotton, rubber, metal, and wood in thousands of applications across all fields. Polyurethane might be hard, like fiberglass, squishy like upholstery foam, protective like varnish, bouncy like rubber wheels, or sticky like glue. It is used on the perimeter of a cap to adhere tape or glue to for stronger security.

Heat Sensitive Material - This is a material that is used in the construction of a wig cap to prevent the cap from slipping and shifting. The material adheres to the head due to the heat that is released from the scalp producing a suction-like effect.

Lace Tape - Lace tape can be used for daily wear and is placed in small amounts to secure the lace material to the cap. It is recommended to use a citrus removing solution to remove the residual adhesive from the tape as it protect the lace material from ripping or shredding.

Thin Skin - This is a material that is used in a specially designed cranial prosthesis. It has a very natural appearance and is extremely fine and thin. It produces an effect as if hair is naturally growing from the scalp. This is often used for bonding a wig onto the scalp with a specialized bonding glue that will hold it in place for six weeks before it will need to be taken off, cleaned and reattached with fresh glue.

Transparent Tape - This is a tape that is used to adhere to the poly-skin like material and scalp to provide extra security so that the wig will not shift. Few people are allergic. However, to be sure you will not have an adverse effect to the tape, take a small piece and place it on the top of your hand or arm for five (5) minutes. Make sure your skin is dry with no oils or moisturizer or the tape will not adhere correctly. If he area starts to itch, or burn, or when you remove the tape it is bright red, you are most likely allergic to the tape and should seek the advice of an experienced dermatologist for suggestions on another type of tape.

Root Colors - The synthetic fiber is darker at the root area and is lighter toward the ends.

Vacuum Base Wig - A wig designed to stay on by means of suction due to the customized fit.

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