As lolitas, especially the girls who are sweet lolitas, we’ve amassed a pretty large collective group of wigs in the past few years as they rose to popularity (What is the collective known for wigs? Perhaps a tangle of wigs?) Whether you’re in love with candy colors, unique blends, fades, and splits, or simply soft natural tones, there’s nothing like a wig to instantly transform your appearance. Girls sick of long hair can have bobs to avoid the big chop; girls with cute pixie cuts can play Rapunzel for the day. I myself own plenty of wigs – long, brunette, lilac, curly, wavy, short, you name it. In lolita, wearing wigs is common, among some groups considered almost necessary, if you’re looking for a place to pin all of your hairclips, bows, and kitschy 80s toys. But how do you take the wig – often associated with costumes – from the meetup and runway to the classroom or office?
Some days when I get ready in the morning, my hair is throwing a protest. Won’t be straight, or curly, or sit flat. Rather than fight it, I simply tame it under a wig for the day, ready to negotiate with terrorist hair (and conditioner) later that evening. But how do you wear a wig for school or work? Won’t it be… like, weird?
Not so! There are plenty of ways to make your simple wig look like the best head of hair on the block.
After you have the wig cap on, put on the wig, front to back. Pull the wig down so that the edge of the wig’s ribbing, for lack of a better word, is where you real hairline is. If you’re concerned the wig may slip, there are usually a pair of elastics that hook together, kind of like on a bra. I usually clip these together for extra security, though they can be uncomfortably tight, so use at your own discretion.
If you are wearing a wig with bangs, get yourself some scissors (I use nail scissors to trim a wig and my real bangs) and start trimming the bangs until they fit your face. I leave mine about eyebrow level, useful if your eyebrows are nowhere near the wig’s color. The front of the wig’s base should be at the same level as your hairline, and the bangs trimmed to fit that position. Even if you’re planning to sweep the bangs to the side, you gotta trim ‘em. Trust me. I went to a meetup once without the bangs trimmed and looked like a doof; wish I knew then what I know now…
If you want to wear this wig often for daily use and don’t trust yourself not to be Edward Scissorhands, get yourself to a salon and ask the stylist to trim it best to suit you. Wigs, layers, the whole nine yards. This will make a huge difference in the way your wig looks.
Step III: Complimenting Your Wig
Keep in mind that you can wear an unnaturally colored wig ‘naturally’ by complimenting it well with the rest of your look. A bright pink wig (styled and accessorized) can look very darling with a more simple coordinate (lolita or not). A simple blonde bob however might appreciate a more outrageous hair accessory or some dramatic eyeliner. Like any coordinate, try to keep your look in balance – perhaps only one or two focal points. Your wig can definitely by a ‘focal point’!
Step IV: Aftercare for Your Wig
Don’t Want To Wig Out?
If you want some of the ease and great look you get through a wig but don’t want to wear the whole deal, there are plenty of options for you! I’m fascinated with half wigs, extensions and pieces right now. Japanese and Korean companies make plenty of hairpieces as wig alternatives, but they are best if your hair is natural and a fairly common color. If you’re a very light blonde, you might do better looking at American hairpieces. Some of the pieces that are popular include half-wigs (worn just behind your bangs), clip-in bangs, clip-in ponytails/pigtails (also called phony ponies) and faux updos and buns.
Here’s a basic collection of illustrations from wig company Prisila that explain:
Does it Pass the Natural Test?
Here’s the test. Grab a friend or family member, without telling them you’ve decided to don a wig, and ask if they like your new ‘do. Do they think you really went to the salon? People at school often remark ‘oh, you changed your hair!’ and I simply smile and say, ‘For today.’ You don’t have to tell everyone it’s a wig, but don’t be ashamed or secretive about it either. You’re just fashion-forward after all!
Here are some of my favorite wig shops! I’ve worn many of these companies’ wigs both with a editorial lolita style and for a casual school or work appropriate lolita style.
Cyperous – full and half wigs *ships overseas*
Prisila – bangs, half wigs, rope wigs (basically a long boa of curly hair), scrunchies, volumizers…
Gabalnara – full, half wigs; extensions, scrunchies, bun covers, bangs
Pretty and Cute - a limited selection of wigs and extensions, but cheap and heat-friendly; I just ordered a scrunchie bun from them for $5! *ships overseas*
Yumetenbo – sometimes a few limited styles of gyaru stretchy wigs or bun covers *ships overseas*
MintyMix – A personal favorite for unnaturally colored wigs; my pink and lavender fade wig is wonderful quality, and so ‘natural’ in style if not color that it passed the natural test at school! *ships overseas*
Cosplay Wigs USA – Typically lolita wigs; very full bases. I wore my light brown wig to school last week with wonderful results. *ships overseas*
Don’t be afraid to try something out, to stand apart, and show off your style! Keep on being fashionable!