Feather Hair Extensions Get Classy, Learn How To Wear Them


Sure, we thought as soon as ombr hair color and tie-dye tips hit the mainstream that those ubiquitous feather hair extensions we started seeing last winter would quickly become a bygone trend, like frosted lipstick or crystal arm tattoos.

However, feather hair accessories now have a new lease on life thanks to the the Fall 2011 couture collections. Dramatic, theatrical feather hairpieces were seen on Jean Paul Gaultier’s runway, and Karl Lagerfeld’s hats were decorated with plumage at Chanel. Alexis Mabille’s models had a variety of feathers placed directly in their hair, pefectly complementing the designer’s elaborately luxurious collection.

Thus, the feather hair extension trend has found new wind beneath its wings, (sorry for that clich, but I just couldn’t help myself.)

Feel free to keep rocking those long, skinny rooster feathers, but just make sure you’re wearing them the right way. On most people, they look great tucked somewhere behind your ear so that they peek out between layers of hair. If your hair is really thick, chances are you can pull it off placed on the side of your head, letting the feathers cascade down the length of your hair.

Do not–I repeat, do not–place them anywhere near your hairline. You’ll be able to see the small plastic band or the glue used to hold them in place, and the feathers won’t blend with your hair like they’re supposed to, making them look like sloppy, feathery flyaways. Believe me, I have seen way, way too many girls on the subway with this problem–don’t make the same mistake!

Since longer feathers mean that the bird they came from lived a long, healthy life, try to buy longer extensions.

Now that the feather trend has fully integrated itself into the mainstream, many salons and boutiques are offering extension bundles adorned with beads and larger feathers. This can look pretty chic, as it’s on-trend with this bolder feather trend–however, it can also look a little, well, cheap. Keep in mind that bigger feathers will look better when placed between the ear lobe and the nape of the neck–the effect you’re going for is that of a single feather earring. Stay away from feathers that look obviously synthetic, as they won’t hold up well against regular shampooing.

The feather trend doesn’t have to be semi-permanent, either. For a runway-inspired chignon, simply make a bun and arrange feathers directly into your hair. Try a cluster of small ones for a demure nod to the trend, or an assortment of sizes and colors for something bolder.

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