How short on a hair system can you go on top?

irishdub

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I am trying to establish if I set out on a hair system journey can I manage it myself.

I want a simple short hair style, trying to keep it as simple as possible without having to use a pair of scissors.

I want to try just use a clippers.
I have read on this & other fora that generally on top 1/2 to 1 inch is shortest you could go.

A home clipper hair set generally has blades 1 to 8
#8 giving you a one inch length

Video below is a mannequin and the first clip is blade #5 so could the experienced folk on here tell me if they think a #8 would work on a system and if so, what would be the best system to use?


Thanks
 

BaldBearded

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A hair system won't react to clippers as a mannequin does. I tried it, the results were... horrible.

Here is an example of the shortest I have seen.


You will notice the hair tends to lie flat.

I would not go shorter than that.
 

irishdub

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A hair system won't react to clippers as a mannequin does. I tried it, the results were... horrible.

Here is an example of the shortest I have seen.


You will notice the hair tends to lie flat.

I would not go shorter than that.

First of all thanks very much for the reply and that video is the best example of a short cut look I have ever seen.

Secondly can I ask you as you seem very experienced Baldbearded from reading this forum, if I understand you right on the clippers aspect.

If you had two people with an out of the box hair system and one you cut their hair down to one inch with a scissors and the other you could their hair down to one inch but with a clipper blade, would they not produce the same result?
 

BaldBearded

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First of all thanks very much for the reply and that video is the best example of a short cut look I have ever seen.

Secondly can I ask you as you seem very experienced Baldbearded from reading this forum, if I understand you right on the clippers aspect.

If you had two people with an out of the box hair system and one you cut their hair down to one inch with a scissors and the other you could their hair down to one inch but with a clipper blade, would they not produce the same result?
Hi, and. thanks.

No, scissors and clippers cut much differently and will give a totally different look.
 

HairlessWhisper

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Yeah, I've done this a bunch of times.

You want an injected skin system, preferably with an opaque base. For most applications, a translucent base is going to be more desirable. In this case, however, it's going to reveal a pluggy, 'doll hair' -like pattern, whereas an opaque base will give the appearance of hair growing right out of the scalp with no visible weaving. With a transparent base, you can still go very short, but not quite as short because you can't expose too much of the base (an inch is fine). With a good quality opaque injected thin skin, you can expose the base and only have to leave the hair long enough to conceal the edge along the front and petimeter.

Any other kind of base is going to look like s**t if you try to buzz cut it, honestly. See for example John Travolta's terrible lace full cap with buzz cut in the wrong color.

1" is considerably more forgiving than 1/2". The shorter you go, the more the following info applies:

The template design needs to be damn near perfect, which may be a concern for a first-timer. Perfecting your template is step one.

The other concern is going to be the direction of the hair, especially when there's not enough length to style it effectively. It has to match the growth pattern of your remaining hair quite closely, or the perimiter will show. There are two ways to acheive this: you either indicate it on your template with arrows and hope for the best, or you perm the growth pattern into the wig yourself with a formula for hi-lift/tinted/double processed hair. Otherwise, the generic ventilation out of the box is going to look funny (see again John Travolta).

The nuclear option if you have enough hair left to style it somewhat, is to force it into the direction you want with a heavy, matte product like sumo clay (which i do not recommend).

If you've fabricated a buzz cut out of concealers every day for years, then chances are you know where to place every little crevice in your hairline, every cowlick etc. That would be a huge advantage in designing your template and executing the style. (My advice: keep it natural. If you go for a very stylized, geometric hairline with a system, it's more likely to look fake.)

As noted, the hair will tend to lay very flat unless it's ventilated to stick up and out (which, trust me, you do not want).

You are still going to need a good blend, so that it lays into your hair somewhat, and you'll need to use other tools besides clippers to acheive that, even if it's just a pair of tweezers.

You'll also need to trim your growing hair constantly (like 2x a week) to keep it the same length as the system hair at the join.

Hopefully you're getting the impression that this might not be the easiest, low-maintenance style option. It's certainly possible if you're committed to it.

Also, if you keep it a bit tighter on the back and sides than on top, it will help disguise disparities between your growing hair and the system hair (texture, density, lift etc). If you go 1" on top take the sides down to at least 6/8" or so.

This one is a 'covid-era' stock translucent .08mm injected thin skin base cut down to 5/8" (16mm) with clippers. I use it as a backup currently, on days when I can't be bothered to expose the hairline. It's just resting on my head in the photo, not bonded down:

IMG-20210807-141307875-3.jpg
 
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TooBad

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Hi, and. thanks.

No, scissors and clippers cut much differently and will give a totally different look.
You mean doing something differently, produces a differet outcome. Who'd have know? Haha

BB -you have much more patience than I :)
 
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HairlessWhisper

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Actually, I think a good indication of how short you can go with injected skin would be, if you have/had a front cowlick as I did, or a section at your hairline where the hair grows in a backward direction, away from your face: How long does the hair in that section have to be to fall forward just enough to cover your hairline? That's the shortest you should go.
 

HairlessWhisper

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Or: If you have very straight/fine hair that sticks straight up and out when cut short with clippers (which I don't), the shortest you can go may be the length at which it will lie flatter against your scalp. Lift injection would be not as flat, so that would be a better option in this case. But IME the flatness is one of the reasons injected skin works better for this than other types.
 

Mystery411

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Yeah, I've done this a bunch of times.

You want an injected skin system, preferably with an opaque base. For most applications, a translucent base is going to be more desirable. In this case, however, it's going to reveal a pluggy, 'doll hair' -like pattern, whereas an opaque base will give the appearance of hair growing right out of the scalp with no visible weaving. With a transparent base, you can still go very short, but not quite as short because you can't expose too much of the base (an inch is fine). With a good quality opaque injected thin skin, you can expose the base and only have to leave the hair long enough to conceal the edge along the front and petimeter.

Any other kind of base is going to look like s**t if you try to buzz cut it, honestly. See for example John Travolta's terrible lace full cap with buzz cut in the wrong color.

1" is considerably more forgiving than 1/2". The shorter you go, the more the following info applies:

The template design needs to be damn near perfect, which may be a concern for a first-timer. Perfecting your template is step one.

The other concern is going to be the direction of the hair, especially when there's not enough length to style it effectively. It has to match the growth pattern of your remaining hair quite closely, or the perimiter will show. There are two ways to acheive this: you either indicate it on your template with arrows and hope for the best, or you perm the growth pattern into the wig yourself with a formula for hi-lift/tinted/double processed hair. Otherwise, the generic ventilation out of the box is going to look funny (see again John Travolta).

The nuclear option if you have enough hair left to style it somewhat, is to force it into the direction you want with a heavy, matte product like sumo clay (which i do not recommend).

If you've fabricated a buzz cut out of concealers every day for years, then chances are you know where to place every little crevice in your hairline, every cowlick etc. That would be a huge advantage in designing your template and executing the style. (My advice: keep it natural. If you go for a very stylized, geometric hairline with a system, it's more likely to look fake.)

As noted, the hair will tend to lay very flat unless it's ventilated to stick up and out (which, trust me, you do not want).

You are still going to need a good blend, so that it lays into your hair somewhat, and you'll need to use other tools besides clippers to acheive that, even if it's just a pair of tweezers.

You'll also need to trim your growing hair constantly (like 2x a week) to keep it the same length as the system hair at the join.

Hopefully you're getting the impression that this might not be the easiest, low-maintenance style option. It's certainly possible if you're committed to it.

Also, if you keep it a bit tighter on the back and sides than on top, it will help disguise disparities between your growing hair and the system hair (texture, density, lift etc). If you go 1" on top take the sides down to at least 6/8" or so.

This one is a 'covid-era' stock translucent .08mm injected thin skin base cut down to 5/8" (16mm) with clippers. I use it as a backup currently, on days when I can't be bothered to expose the hairline. It's just resting on my head in the photo, not bonded down:

View attachment 167037
Bro, that’s pretty impressive! It goes great with your temples too.
 

Jake1979

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Yeah, I've done this a bunch of times.

You want an injected skin system, preferably with an opaque base. For most applications, a translucent base is going to be more desirable. In this case, however, it's going to reveal a pluggy, 'doll hair' -like pattern, whereas an opaque base will give the appearance of hair growing right out of the scalp with no visible weaving. With a transparent base, you can still go very short, but not quite as short because you can't expose too much of the base (an inch is fine). With a good quality opaque injected thin skin, you can expose the base and only have to leave the hair long enough to conceal the edge along the front and petimeter.

Any other kind of base is going to look like s**t if you try to buzz cut it, honestly. See for example John Travolta's terrible lace full cap with buzz cut in the wrong color.

1" is considerably more forgiving than 1/2". The shorter you go, the more the following info applies:

The template design needs to be damn near perfect, which may be a concern for a first-timer. Perfecting your template is step one.

The other concern is going to be the direction of the hair, especially when there's not enough length to style it effectively. It has to match the growth pattern of your remaining hair quite closely, or the perimiter will show. There are two ways to acheive this: you either indicate it on your template with arrows and hope for the best, or you perm the growth pattern into the wig yourself with a formula for hi-lift/tinted/double processed hair. Otherwise, the generic ventilation out of the box is going to look funny (see again John Travolta).

The nuclear option if you have enough hair left to style it somewhat, is to force it into the direction you want with a heavy, matte product like sumo clay (which i do not recommend).

If you've fabricated a buzz cut out of concealers every day for years, then chances are you know where to place every little crevice in your hairline, every cowlick etc. That would be a huge advantage in designing your template and executing the style. (My advice: keep it natural. If you go for a very stylized, geometric hairline with a system, it's more likely to look fake.)

As noted, the hair will tend to lay very flat unless it's ventilated to stick up and out (which, trust me, you do not want).

You are still going to need a good blend, so that it lays into your hair somewhat, and you'll need to use other tools besides clippers to acheive that, even if it's just a pair of tweezers.

You'll also need to trim your growing hair constantly (like 2x a week) to keep it the same length as the system hair at the join.

Hopefully you're getting the impression that this might not be the easiest, low-maintenance style option. It's certainly possible if you're committed to it.

Also, if you keep it a bit tighter on the back and sides than on top, it will help disguise disparities between your growing hair and the system hair (texture, density, lift etc). If you go 1" on top take the sides down to at least 6/8" or so.

This one is a 'covid-era' stock translucent .08mm injected thin skin base cut down to 5/8" (16mm) with clippers. I use it as a backup currently, on days when I can't be bothered to expose the hairline. It's just resting on my head in the photo, not bonded down:

View attachment 167037
What density # is that piece bro?
 

HairlessWhisper

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Bro, that’s pretty impressive! It goes great with your temples too.

Thank you so much! I have retrograde alopecia, so usually wear a little dermmatch in my temples, sideburns and nape area. 'Au natural' in that photo though.

What density # is that piece bro?

I'm honestly not sure, it's a stock "medium light" but looks to me to be at least 110%

I haven't seen a lot of variation in density between injected skin units tbh. I used to drop the density on each custom order because they had so much hair, and it didn't really make any noticeable difference. I think they're more limited in that they have to use a certain amount if hair to achieve decent coverage with this technique, they can tweak the density a little maybe but not a lot.

For the record, this is actually the worst injected skin piece I've ever had. After i missed the return window I almost threw it in the garbage, but figured I might as well practice my perm technique on it.
 

irishdub

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Yeah, I've done this a bunch of times.

You want an injected skin system, preferably with an opaque base. For most applications, a translucent base is going to be more desirable. In this case, however, it's going to reveal a pluggy, 'doll hair' -like pattern, whereas an opaque base will give the appearance of hair growing right out of the scalp with no visible weaving. With a transparent base, you can still go very short, but not quite as short because you can't expose too much of the base (an inch is fine). With a good quality opaque injected thin skin, you can expose the base and only have to leave the hair long enough to conceal the edge along the front and petimeter.

Any other kind of base is going to look like s**t if you try to buzz cut it, honestly. See for example John Travolta's terrible lace full cap with buzz cut in the wrong color.

1" is considerably more forgiving than 1/2". The shorter you go, the more the following info applies:

The template design needs to be damn near perfect, which may be a concern for a first-timer. Perfecting your template is step one.

The other concern is going to be the direction of the hair, especially when there's not enough length to style it effectively. It has to match the growth pattern of your remaining hair quite closely, or the perimiter will show. There are two ways to acheive this: you either indicate it on your template with arrows and hope for the best, or you perm the growth pattern into the wig yourself with a formula for hi-lift/tinted/double processed hair. Otherwise, the generic ventilation out of the box is going to look funny (see again John Travolta).

The nuclear option if you have enough hair left to style it somewhat, is to force it into the direction you want with a heavy, matte product like sumo clay (which i do not recommend).

If you've fabricated a buzz cut out of concealers every day for years, then chances are you know where to place every little crevice in your hairline, every cowlick etc. That would be a huge advantage in designing your template and executing the style. (My advice: keep it natural. If you go for a very stylized, geometric hairline with a system, it's more likely to look fake.)

As noted, the hair will tend to lay very flat unless it's ventilated to stick up and out (which, trust me, you do not want).

You are still going to need a good blend, so that it lays into your hair somewhat, and you'll need to use other tools besides clippers to acheive that, even if it's just a pair of tweezers.

You'll also need to trim your growing hair constantly (like 2x a week) to keep it the same length as the system hair at the join.

Hopefully you're getting the impression that this might not be the easiest, low-maintenance style option. It's certainly possible if you're committed to it.

Also, if you keep it a bit tighter on the back and sides than on top, it will help disguise disparities between your growing hair and the system hair (texture, density, lift etc). If you go 1" on top take the sides down to at least 6/8" or so.

This one is a 'covid-era' stock translucent .08mm injected thin skin base cut down to 5/8" (16mm) with clippers. I use it as a backup currently, on days when I can't be bothered to expose the hairline. It's just resting on my head in the photo, not bonded down:

View attachment 167037


Such an informative reply, thank you.

I had parked the idea of trying a hair system but now looking into it again after reading your post.

Is the sides and back blade #4 to blend in to the top?
 

HairlessWhisper

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Is the sides and back blade #4 to blend in to the top?

It's #3½

But the sides can be as short as you want, as long as it blends into the top.

Keep in mind that piece has a chemical perm to set the hair in the direction of my natural growth pattern.

I usually go #3½ on top and #2 on the sides with these. This particular piece can not go any shorter tho - there are too many hairs per injection, and the spacing of the injections is too uniform, plus it's a transparent base so you would see all that if the "scalp" (base) was exposed too much. It was all I could get during the pandemic. I'll update if i find a better piece and where to get it.

It really depends on the system and your own growing hair, as i said in earlier posts. You need to pay attention to the behavior of your own hair at very short lengths and how it correlates to the limitations of the hairpiece you have in front of you, to determine how short you can take it.
 
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