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How I Care for my NBR Extensions

(Photos by Kelsey Malicote)

I can’t believe I have had my NBR extensions for almost a year! I got them last June and it has truly been life changing you all! I have done several posts about them with all the info here and here if you want to read back for a refresher. But basically they are hand tied extensions that are custom colored and moved up every 6 weeks. I love them!

I go to Mane Alley in New Albany, IN (about an hour and 15 away from me) and see Diana Hylton!

It is really important to make sure you are caring for them correctly. They are an investment so I always want to make sure that I am doing everything I can to keep them as fresh as possible! I got my first set of extensions in June of 2018, and I didn’t need new hair until January of 2019, so I was able to use the same hair for about 7 months. I got new hair in January, and chose to do her new luxury line of hand tied hair. It has a finer texture and some natural beautiful wave to it. I think this hair is actually a better fit for me because my hair is naturally more fine and soft, so it blends better maybe? I did 14 inch this time, it is a little more manageable for me.

So how do I care for them? I am so glad you asked. I broke it down into categories for ya to make it easier to navigate!


The best part about NBR extensions is that you can basically live a normal life (that sounds so ridiculous) but it is true! Yes I am gentle with them, but you don’t have to baby them like crazy. I wash my hair and shower like normal! I try to wash my hair twice a week. My hair is naturally dry, so this is all I really need to do. The extensions magically help me to go longer in between washes somehow. I have been using Biologe Raw Color Care shampoo and conditioner, and then once a week I use the Formula 18 mask, which make my extensions SO soft. It really is a game changer.

I have also added Olaplex No. 3 into the mix once a week to help my natural hair grow and strengthen. I do think it is helping. I have these short pieces in the front that have been refusing to grow, but I truly have noticed some growth recently and credit the Olaplex, and not putting my hair up as much. Diana sells both the F18 and the Olaplex in her salon, so if you are local swipe them up from her!!


You can blow dry or air dry, but I prefer to blow dry my hair. It helps it style and blend better. When I get out of the shower, I towel dry and then apply a very liberal amount of the F18 leave in conditioner. I go to town with that stuff, the more the merrier.

I clip up my extension hair on top of my head, and use a large round brush to first dry my natural hair on the bottom. This has helped a lot with getting those baby hairs to blend in. Next I dry my natural hair on top, with the same round brush. If i don’t do this pretty quickly it lays all kinds of crazy. After I do that, I typically use a wet brush and dry my extension hair, using a round brush to smooth out the ends when it’s mostly dry. It takes me about 8 minutes total, so not bad at all! I use a 3 inch round brush like this one. I prefer the handle to not be grippy, I think those grab my hair too much.

In-between washes

In between washes I just make sure I am always brushing through it with a wet brush morning and night, and I also use this oil every night before I go to bed. I have ben sleeping with my hair down recently, or in a silk scrunchie on top of my head. I usually don’t use dry shampoo until day 3. I find if I use too much of it is feels so super dry, and funky. But I do like to start using on day 3 or after I work out, just on top of my head and on front pieces. My fav dry shampoo is this one!

Can you work out with NBR Extensions?

If I couldn’t work out, we would have a serious problem. YES! I work out pretty hard about 4 times a week, and I definitely get sweaty. The best way I have found to wear my hair is in a big messy bun or a ponytail on top of my head. I like to use a scrunchie to keep it from kinking so much. After I get done, I just use some dry shampoo, and blow dry out the sweat (sorry if that sounds gross, lol!) but that is the system that I have found that works the best. Please know I am showering, I just don’t wash my hair every time!!

If you have any other questions regarding NBR hair care, drop them below, and I would be happy to answer! If you have been on the fence about wanting to start your NRB hair journey, I highly recommend a consult with a stylist at Mane Alley. They are all so talented, and you can find out more info here!

  1. Rachel says:

    Hi! This is sort of a random question and I just wanted to get your opinion on how you handle your appointment. I never know if I should tip my stylist on the total cost (including the actual extensions when it’s time to get new hair) or just on the cost of the service to install, color, etc. thanks in advance for your insight!

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