Tapes are a type of permanent hair extension consisting of a 4cm wide weft of hair secured at the top with a sticky tab that is attached to the hair.

Tape extensions are one of the most popular hair extension methods on the market due to them being so quick and easy to apply, lightweight and virtually invisible as they lay flat to the head. The biggest advantage of tapes is that as they are the lightest and least damaging type of permanent extension meaning they are suitable for all hair types from very fine hair to thick. Here at Cliphair we have a huge variety of colours and lengths in Tape extensions including our brand new gorgeous Balayage shades! In today’s blog we are going to explain how tapes are applied, removed and re-used. We will also explain the advantages and disadvantages of this extension type including in depth information of how they should be maintained.

Already purchased your tape in but looking for advice on applying, removing and caring for them? Then check out our tape hair care tips and common mistakes guide

How Do Tape In Hair Extensions Work?

Tapes are a type of permanent hair extension consisting of a 4cm wide weft of hair secured at the top with a sticky tab that is attached to the hair. The adhesive used on tape extensions is a gentle medical glue the same as what is used in plasters and other medical forms.

The sticky part of the tape is covered by a paper tab that is easily peeled away when you are ready to use them, the sticky tab can be removed and re-taped with each use making this method not only super quick and easy but cost effective too. Tape in hair extensions come in all different lengths and colours, they are also able to be cut to create smaller pieces for a subtle highlight effected. 

How To Apply Tape In Extensions?

Tapes are applied to the hair using 2 of the wefts sandwiched together with your own hair in-between. It is advised that the slice of hair in-between the tapes is very slightly smaller in width so that stray hairs do not hang out of the tab. The hair in-between the tape should also be of the same thickness as the tape itself to ensure the hair is able to hold the weight of the extension.

Applying any permanent hair extension to a too small amount of hair can cause damage and hair pull, it is always advised to mimic the weight of the weft/strand that you are applying. The placement of the tapes will totally depend on the look you are trying to achieve and will be decided by your hair stylist, the brickwork pattern is usually preferred for a natural finish.

tape hair in head

Check out our how to apply tape in hair extensions video guide below. 

Advantages & Disadvantages Of Tapes

When buying any type of hair extension there is always a list of pros and cons you should consider before taking the plunge. Tape Ins are one of the most popular type of hair extensions and therefore tend to have more advantages than some extension types, check out table below for an easy summary of things you should consider. Explore more what the differences is between temporary and permanent hair extensions in our Clip in vs Permanent Hair Extenions blog. 

Advantages Of Tape Hair Extensions

Disadvantages Of Tape Hair Extensions

Lightweight, no hair damage

Not ideal for wearing hair up

Suitable for all hair types

Can be trick to re-use

Quick and easy application


Check out our Tape In Extensions Before & After video guide below.

Common Tape In Hair Extensions Q & A (FAQS)

How Many Tape In Extensions Packs Do You Need For A Full Head? (How Many Packs Of Hair Do I Need)

Talk to a hair extensions specialist before choosing your extensions – they’ll be able to tell you how much hair you need to achieve the results you’re looking for. We’d typically recommend 100g of hair for a full head, but depending on how thick your hair is, you may need more.

As with all hair extensions, the amount of tape in hair you need depends on two factors: how thick your own hair is and how much volume you want. Understanding your own hair type is the key to deciding what kind of extensions are best for you and tells you how much volume your hair can handle for a natural appearance. We’d generally say that you need 100g of hair for a full head of extension, but there are factors that might mean this isn’t the case.

If you have thick hair, you may need as much as 250g to 300g of hair. For that reason, it’s best to have a consultation with a certified hair extensions expert before choosing your extensions. They can examine your hair and give you a realistic idea of how much hair you’ll need for the look you want.

Find out more tricks and tips in our 10 Tricks To Add Volume and Thickness Guide. 

Are Tape In Extensions Suitable For All Hair Types?

Tape ins are very adaptable and especially good for fine hair. They’re not ideal for naturally oily hair as the oils from your scalp may cause the tapes to slip. There are so many different types of hair extensions out there that it can be difficult to figure out which one is best for you.

Tape in hair extensions work well for all hair types but do have their limitations. They are ideal for thin hair as they lie flat, giving you a seamless, natural appearance. But if you have naturally oily hair, the oils from your scalp may cause the tapes to slip. Talk to an expert before you invest in your extensions – they will be able to advise you properly and you’ll get the best results.

How Do I Sleep With Tape In Extensions?

Take a little time to care for your hair before bed and you’ll reap the rewards. Loosely braid your hair and use a silk pillowcase and you’ll be rewarded with happier, healthier hair extensions. How you treat your hair when you sleep has more impact on your hair than you might have thought. You need to be especially careful when you have hair extensions as they tend to knot and tangle more easily than your own hair. You can prevent night-time tangles with two simple steps. 

Number one – loosely braid your hair before bed. A loose braid will stop the individual strands of hair rubbing against each other and tangling while you sleep. Number two – sleep on a real silk pillow. Unlike cotton or cotton blend fabrics, silk provides a very low friction surface on which to sleep and prevents pulling, tugging and breakage for longer-lasting and healthier-looking extensions. As you can see, there’s no mystery to good-looking tape in hair extensions – just good care and professional support.

If you still need more steps check out our How To Take Care Of Tangled Hair Guide. Which inlcudes everything you'll need to know. 

Can Roots Be Touched Up With Tape In Extensions In Place?

It’s totally fine to colour roots as long as the colour doesn’t touch the extensions. Usually, the tapes won’t be placed anywhere near the parting or hairline where the greys need to be dyed so this should be ok.

Every 3 months when the tape is taken out and replaced its advised to have a full head colour then and in between whilst tapes are in just touch up the areas that you can see and that won’t disturb the tapes

Do Tape In Hair Extensions Ruin Your Hair?

Tape in extensions won’t damage your hair so long as you care for them well, have them professionally fitted and removed carefully. Tape in extensions won’t cause you any problems if you do things properly. And by that, we mean getting them applied professionally, removed carefully and cared for well while they’re in your hair. The biggest problem with tape-ins is when they’re not taken out properly.

You MUST use a recommended tape in remover. If you don’t then the bonds won’t break properly, causing problems when you try to remove your extensions. You’ll stress your hair and may damage it by using excessive force to remove the tape in bonds. Use a good quality tape remover; apply it, leave it to work and then gently peel the extensions out.

Can Tape In Extensions Help Hair Grow?

Tape in extensions don’t affect hair growth in any way at all and cannot help your hair grow at a faster rate. Although many people believe their hair grows faster when they have tape in extensions fitted, there is zero link between your tape in extensions and better hair growth. It’s pretty much a placebo effect; we don’t normally have a way to measure hair growth and typically just eyeball it.

But when you have a piece of tape at your roots, it’s much easier to see how much your hair has grown; the rate of your hair growth might just surprise you! The truth is that we just notice it more when we’re wearing tape in extensions. Some people think their tape ins have slipped when in fact it’s actually their hair growing! How quickly your hair grows depends on your diet, your genes (thanks mum & dad!) and your lifestyle; some people will find it difficult to grow their hair, no matter how well they eat and how well they care for their locks – genes play a huge part!

Will My Hair Grow With Tape In Hair Extensions?

Your hair will continue to grow at its regular rate when you have tape-in hair extensions fitted. They don’t affect your hair growth in any way at all. The rate at which your hair grows depends on the way you care for your hair, your health and lifestyle, and your genes; tape in extensions will not affect your hair growth.

Tape in extensions are applied close to the roots; as your hair grows, the extensions move down in the same way that hair colour grows out. Some people think their extensions have slipped, but it’s your hair growing and your extension bonds acting as a level to show you how much your hair has grown in that time.

Can You Feel Tape In Hair Extensions?

You’ll be able to feel your tape in extensions when you first have them fitted, but after a few days you’ll grow used to them and stop noticing them. If they feel awkward or painful then they’re probably fitted incorrectly – go back to your professional to have them reapplied.

Let’s be honest here. You’re always going to be aware of having something new applied to your body. Just like contact lenses, false eyelashes and even piercings – you’ll feel them for the first few days but as you get used to them, you’ll forget they’re there. It’s the same with tape in hair extensions.

But, just as with contact lenses or eyelashes, if your tape ins feel awkward for longer than a few days or feel uncomfortable then something is wrong, and they probably haven’t been applied properly. So, if your extensions are not laying flat and you feel pain or tugging at your scalp then call up your salon and book in another appointment asap as the discomfort will be down to incorrect application.

Perfect application is the key to having tape in extensions you love, which is why we 100% recommend you go to a qualified professional to get them fitted. That way your extensions will look as beautiful as you want them to and you’ll feel comfortable day-in, day-out.

How Long Does Your Hair Have To Be For Tape In Extensions?

Your natural hair should be a minimum of 4 – 5 inches long. Any shorter and it will be difficult to blend your extensions into your own hair naturally. Ideally, the longer your hair, the better your tape extensions will blend in.

You’ll get best results if your hair is at least 4 to 5 inches long, so your extensions can be fitted and blended in with your natural hair. Tape in installation is quite technical and if your extensions are fitted poorly, you may find the weaves slip or that they don’t blend with your natural hair, leaving you with visible bonds or an uneven finish. Fitting tape ins into short hair is even trickier, which is why we always recommend you visit a qualified extensions expert for a perfect result.

If you want to know how you can exercise then read our article on working out in tape ins.

How To Remove Tape In Hair Extensions? 

Cliphair tape remover

Tape extensions are removed with a liquid solution, Here at Cliphair we have a gentle oil based citrus tape hair remover that easily loosens tapes and removes them. A lot of removers are alcohol based and can have a very strong acetone smell which is not very pleasant and can be irritating to your scalp.

We advise using oil based removers as they are kinder the the skin and hair. To remove the tapes using the remover solution generously spray the top of the tab a few times, leave for 30 seconds then you should feel the tab starting to loosen. Gently pull the tape away from the hair, if the tape is being stubborn and feels very secure you can use the end of a pin tail comb to carefully prise the tabs apart. Once you have removed one side of the sandwich, respray and repeat for the underneath section. 

How Do You Reuse Tape In Hair Extensions?

To re-tape tape hair extensions you will first need to remove the old sticky tab from the weft. Most of this will come off during the removal process however some of the residue may stick around, you need to remove this before re-taping. To remove any leftover residue, use a little more spray and using your nail you can peel the remaining adhesive away from the tab. This should peel off in one easy strip if the residue is being stubborn we find running the tab under water can help. Once you have removed all of the previous adhesive you now need to wash and dry the hair, we advise using a strong conditioning mask on the hair after any removal service to rehydrate the extensions.


Once the hair is clean, dry and smooth you can start to re-tape the extensions, to do this you will need a new pack of sticky tape tabs. Here at Cliphair we have a pack of perfectly sized Spare tape tabs to re-apply to your hair extensions. Simply peel a tab away from the plastic sheet and apply onto the side that used be the sticky before you removed the residue. Leave the paper seal intact until you are ready to apply the tapes again. The tabs are double sided so you will not need to apply them twice, one side will stick to the extension weft and the other to the hair. 

How Long Do Tape In Hair Extensions Last?

hair wash

All tape hair extensions should be removed and re-installed after 6-8 weeks of wear, sometimes sooner depending on your hairs growth cycle and overall condition of your extensions. 8 weeks is the maximum time the extensions should be left in without a re-position. After 8 weeks of having your extensions in, your own hair will have started to grow and the extensions move with it creating a larger gap between the tab and your scalp.

Its at this stage that the hair could start to matt and tangle as there is more room for the hair to get stuck between your extensions, this is why it is important to have them removed by 8 weeks of wear to prevent any damage occurring to your own hair. To keep your hair looking and feeling its best its strongly advised to have a maintenance check up a week after your application then every 4 weeks after this to check for any knotting/slippage.

Our standard Cliphair tape in hair extensions typically last 6-12 weeks but can last for longer if you look after them well. Neglect them and you’ll find they don’t last as long. The life of your hair extensions – clip in extensions or permanent extensions – always depends upon how well you care for them.

How To Care For Tape In Hair Extensions?

There are many things you can do to keep your hair extensions well maintained and fresh for as long as possible, we have some great blogs specifically focusing on this subject right here. The main 3 points to stick to are firstly using the correct products is an absolute must! Steer clear of any products that contain alcohol, oil or sulphate, these ingredients will not only dry out your extensions but also weaken the adhesive attaching the tapes to your hair. Regularly separating any knots or matting that is starting to form, this can be done by using your fingers to check between each tape and row to make sure no hair is getting caught up with a neighbour extension and brushing your hair morning and night. Lastly always use heat protection before styling your hair to prevent your hair from drying out or breaking, hair extensions have been removed from their natural source of hydration so are likely to dry out faster than our own hair.

Cliphair hair extensions need lots of added moisture and protection so don't skimp on the best quality hair extensions products. For this specific purpose, we have designed a specialised hair care line that never compromises when it comes to hydration!

Quench The Thirst: Deep Moisture Best Shampoo For Hair Extensions

quench the thirst deep moisture hair care for hair extensions

Don’t settle for less when it comes to washing your tape in hair extensions – revive your tresses with every wash and restore moisture levels in your hair fibres by using this product. In combination with the Deep Moisture Conditioner and Hair Mask, this shampoo for dry hair extensions – 100% sulphate-free and paraben-free – will gently cleanse your scalp with a non-sticky lather, whilst replenishing the hydration in dry, dull tresses from within. Enriched with Shea butter and rice proteins, the trio aims at taking care of your hair in the shower, making washing, detangling, and deep conditioning a luxurious experience for natural hair and human hair extensions alike.

If you’re looking for the best hair mask and shampoo and conditioner for hair extensions, look no further – the Quench The Thirst Deep Moisture trio can do it all.

The recipes in this set also include Baobab seed oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, fig extracts, and silk aminoacids – everything you need for a powerful formula that will soften your hair, make it more manageable, and lock the moisture in for hair that will look and feel visibly healthier since the first use.

They need lots of added moisture and protection so don't skimp on the best quality hair extensions products


Want to know more about aftercare? Then read our article on how to wash or dye you tape in hair extensions.

Now that your a whizz when it comes to Tape hair extensions why not have a browse through our collection here at Cliphair, we've got a wide range of lengths and over 40 shades to choose from including our New Balayage colours! Remember you can also use Tape extensions to add a pop of colour to your hair by going with a shade lighter for a gorgeous sun kissed look or maybe you want to be bold and try a funky shade to liven up your ends. Whatever your after you will find it our our selection, if you need any help choosing the right shade for you feel free to use our FREE colour matching service.


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