If You Dare...Steamed & Trimmed Into An Everyday Wig

November 22, 2019

If You Dare...Steamed & Trimmed Into An Everyday Wig

Hi, folks Kathleen here with a cautionary tale with a triumphant ending. Sounds like the beginning of a Grimm brothers fairy tale, doesn't it? So here is my If You Dare by Raquel Welch in the only color it comes in Iced Lavender. If you're thinking isn't that a mid length curly style? You would be correct. So here’s the back story. I love the style of the original IYD but one side had a section that was straight. I tried all my tricks to no avail. This is a heat friendly wig so I got my Jon Renau thermal spray ( you're supposed to spray it on the area you want to modify) & my “old” curling iron out. Well, my curling iron doesn't have temperature number settings so to be on the safe side I set it on its coolest setting. I proceeded to scorch/fry a section of hair. Ugh, I was heartbroken. I did everything I was supposed to do. My theory is my old curling iron was faulty. I looked at this as an opportunity. Hmm let’s see what this baby looks like steamed straight..would it fix the fried section of hair? It did somewhat but not good enough for me so I trimmed that section of hair off.

Image 2 illustrates some tools of the trade if you're interested in modifying your wigs. I also have a round brush similar to my hot air brush but bigger that works well when steaming a wig. I have been wearing wigs for over three years now and it took me quite a while to get up the courage to “ play” with them.


So after I steamed her straight I thought yikes!…well there’s no turning back now. TIP: Make sure all the hair gets steamed ( wet) to ensure you don't get “ any “bumps” especially at the crown. TIP: Use silicone spray made for wigs to help protect the hair and it makes the fibers smooth and silky. TIP: Make long slow continuous movements for sleek straight hair TIP: Use a fine comb ( only when steaming) for the ends TIP: Don't be afraid to use your fingers to smooth out the hair especially the ends. TIP: Steam in layers. I work on the bottom layers first ( using the duckbill clips to keep the other hair out of the way. TIP: Take your time. Don't be afraid to take two or more passes to get sleek straight smooth results.


Image 4 illustrates IYD after a couple of passes with my Jon Renau steamer and after I trimmed her. At this point, I was pretty happy. The hair was sleek and super smooth. And dang look at that lace front and part. This was a good time to step back and see if there is anything else I needed to do. I did trim her front to make both sides even and neaten up the ends so it had a clean line.


Image 5 is my set up for trimming a wig. I am not a professional so I need help when cutting a straight line. I love this wig head because my wigs fit snug on it. ( I do use t-pins at the nape and sideburns for added security) The face length is close to mine so it helps visualize how things might look. See that lip at the base of the wig head? I use that as my guide when trimming. It helps as I trim and I use my measuring tape to see if the space between the ends and the bottom of the wig head lip are the same from side to side. After I was happy with the trim I wanted to soften up the edges. In image 5 I am taking my thinning shears and taking about a two-inch snip just shy of a vertical cut.


In image 6 I take those same thinning shears and take little snips out of the very ends. This softens up the blunt cut without losing it.



Now in image 7 I take sections of hair and at a diagonal take snip randomly though out the wig where ever it looked a big heavy..just to soften the look.



The collage in image 8 illustrates how IYD looked at this point. I was happy..enough to put on lashes and take photos. I totally thought I was done. TIP: Take photos when customizing a wig. It helps to see any flaws. I realized two things after looking at my photos. Since I had to trim IYD shorter than I had originally thought I now felt it wasn't long enough to have the super straight flat iron look. For my face shape, I need a bit of roundness to soften my jawline.


Image 9 exaggerates what I mean but you get the point lol. If the length was at least grazing my shoulders I would have left IYD as is.



Image 10 illustrates how I gave her some curve/bend/roundness etc. without losing the straight updated bob look. I could have used steam but a hot airbrush was going to give a gentler shape. I use a little Envy Renu & Repair (a light silicone spray formulated for wigs) on each section of hair I work on. Starting at the bottom I loosely wrap the hair around the HAB. Once you have a nice curve let the hot air from the HAB just warm up those fibers a bit. You have to experiment but I find about 15-20 seconds on high works well. Then I turn off my brush.


I cup my hand being careful to keep a nice rounded shape until the fibers cool off. I find 20- 30 seconds or so works well before taking my hand away.



I work in sections so the shape is even and gradual. I was careful not to curl the ends under. I wanted to give an ever so slight curve about midface/cheek level.



Image 13 again illustrates holding the shape in place until the fibers cool off.



The finished look. I tried If You Dare on to see if I needed to soften the shape here and there. I did go back and use the HAB in a couple of areas I thought needed a little more roundness.






 Image 17 illustrates how much I had to trim the hair in the front. In the end I was happy with the cut. As much as I love a graduated bob If You Dare didn't give me enough length and hair to do that. ☺



The added benefit of not ending up being a graduated bob is If You Dare isn't a face flopper. I can work all day in front of my Ipad and eat without hair getting in my face or mouth..lol.



Image 19 illustrates how If You Dare looked after steaming her straight and trimming her. I used the bottom lip of my wig head as a guide since I am in no way a professional hairstylist. After trying her back on I realized I had to trim the front so they were even. I hated doing it because I was happy with the length of the longer side. IYDs' initial style was uneven which when curly wasn’t noticeable but stuck out like a sore thumb once steamed straight.



Image 20 illustrates If You Dare after I trimmed her even and used my thinning shears to soften the ends and style a bit. I thought I was done..put on my super pretty lashes and dressed up for my photoshoot. Well, I came to realize for me anyway IYD was too short for this super straight style. I needed to add some softly rounded shape to her.



The final reimagined If You Dare by Raquel Welch in Iced Lavender. I am so happy with the results. The. The difference is subtle but works better for me. TIP: Take your time... it's not a race.



Image 22 illustrates the small but significant changes made to my IYD.



Image 23 illustrates best how this small change made a significant difference in the final version of my reimagined IYD.



Both versions are beautiful in my opinion.



My If You Dare went from an oops I can’t wear it now wig to an everyday chic realistic low-density wig. Don't worry that everything didn't come out perfectly it’s the overall effect that counts. Have fun folks!


Kathleen Ryan B.F.A. CysterWigs Ambassador 




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