Are Wigs Bad For Your Hair?

Published By: Kennedy

Last Updated: June 23, 2022

Wigs are a very common hair accessory that helps give many people confidence. However, it may seem like wigs don’t benefit everybody when it comes to healthy natural hair. This article will bring clarity to the potential downfalls of wearing wigs and what you can do to prevent them. 

Are Wigs Bad For Your Hair?

Though in some cases wigs can seem like they are bad for your hair, they are actually not the cause of damage. 

People have experienced damaged hair from wearing wigs by not wearing them properly. Some people also think that wearing wigs stunts hair growth, but in reality, it is the opposite – wearing wigs can promote hair growth if worn correctly. 

Beginners are usually the ones who experience hair damage when wearing wigs because they do the things you should not do while wearing them. There are certain things you can avoid when wearing wigs that will keep your natural hair happy and healthy.

5 Ways Wigs Can Be Bad for Hair

1. The Wig Is Too Small

When wigs are too small they are too tight around the head. Small wigs pull on your natural hair, especially the edges around the hairline. Hair loss due to frequently pulling too tightly on the hair can lead to traction alopecia. This is a condition that causes hair loss on the scalp. 

Constantly pulling on the hair ultimately damages the root which can lead to permanent hair loss. It is a process that takes years, so usually, people are unaware of how constant tugging affects the hair until it is too late. 

You want to make sure you measure your head to purchase the right size wig. The wig should not be very hard to put on or keep on. Purchasing the right size wig can prevent excessive pulling to the scalp and minimize the chances of damage. 

2. Glue Removal

Hair glue is commonly used for lace wigs and is very effective for securing the wig and making it appear natural. However, if used incorrectly it can also damage your edges. When hair glue is applied it is applied close to the hairline, which can cause damage to that area. 

One way that wig glue can damage the hair is by improper removal. If you try to remove a wig while the glue is still sticky, then you risk pulling out the natural hair as well. It is important to let a wig glue remover sit on the glue for a while before attempting to remove the wig, it should not be hard to remove.

 Another mistake that people make is not covering their edges before applying glue. Using a wig cap is a common way to cover the natural hair before putting on a wig. It not only makes the hair flatter but also protects it from products. 

3. The Natural Hair is Neglected

People usually wear wigs to be able to leave their natural hair alone. However, many do not understand that natural hair still needs to be cared for while under a wig.

Washing, conditioning and avoiding putting products – like hairspray – on the natural hair while it’s  under a wig helps the hair stay healthy and strong. A leave-in conditioner is also helpful for keeping the hair moisturized. Moisturizing your scalp is also important because a dry scalp leads to breakage. 

4. Frequent Use

If you are frequently wearing a wig, you may experience irritation to the scalp. You may also be pulling too much on your edges, which are the most delicate parts of your hair. A wig should not be worn every day, you need to let your hair breathe and be loose for periods of time in order for it to remain healthy. 

If you are keeping a wig installed for a length of time, it should not be worn for longer than 6 weeks. After removing a wig that has been on for a while, it is always necessary to give lots of attention to cleaning and moisturizing the natural hair. 

5. Lack of Breathability

Some wigs can be damaging because they are not allowing air to circulate through to the scalp. If people work out or live in warm climates, then their sweat can become an issue underneath the wig. 

Water breeds bacteria, and it is important for the scalp and hair underneath to be able to air out. Some types of wigs are better for breathability such as full lace wigs and HD lace wigs. 

Using products, such as hairspray, and spraying it directly onto the lace can cause buildup which can trap moisture and bacteria. It is best to use minimal amounts of products when styling a wig, to avoid buildup blocking air to the scalp. 

Will Wigs Stop Hair Growth?

Wigs do not stop your hair from growing, however, there are ways that you can experience breakage if you wear a wig improperly. If you wear a wig improperly, the breakage can make it seem like your hair isn’t growing. Doing what is best for your natural hair is key to wearing a wig. The wig should not be too tight and should not be too heavy. You want to make sure your natural hair is strong and healthy before wearing wigs, because if it is weak then it is more prone to breaking off. 

Read more: Wig Regimen to Grow Hair

How Do You Protect Your Edges When Wearing A Wig?

One of the best ways to protect your edges when wearing a wig is to make sure that they do not come into contact with any adhesive. Using a wig cap is one of the best ways to cover the hair from product. Using a wig grip to keep your wig secure as an alternative to glue or combs also helps prevent your edges from being pulled on. 

The Final Word

Remember, taking care of your natural hair should be your top priority in any style. It is fine to wear a wig, as long as you do it in moderation and still work to keep your natural hair healthy. 


I have always had a love for writing and have been blogging for about 3 years now. I have a passion for teaching what I have learned over the years, especially about hair. I have had almost every hairstyle - typical of a cosmetologist’s daughter- including the big chop in 2015. With all the knowledge I have gained, I feel it is my duty to help others on their healthy hair journey. I believe education can be fun, and I strive to make it fun to learn about beautiful black hair.

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