Hair Extension Length Guide

Your hairstyle is a wonderful form of self-expression. We can say a lot about ourselves and our distinct personal style by the way we wear our hair. Hair extensions give us the ability to change up our hairstyle without cutting or coloring our hair. They also allow us to add length or volume temporarily.

That being said, there's a lot to consider before buying extensions and adding extra length to your hair. After all, you'll want to pick the best hair extensions for your specific situation, and this will depend on several factors.

It will depend on how long your hair is currently, how long you'd like your hair length to be once you're wearing the extensions, and what kind of hair you have. It's also important to take your height into consideration. The taller you are, the shorter your extensions will look, and vice versa.

Whether you have wavy hair, thin hair, medium-length hair, or shoulder-length hair, this is the ultimate guide for understanding the right length of hair extensions for your specific hair. Getting the length right from the start is important as it will affect the final look and feel.

Hair Extension Length Chart

The photo below will help you determine the length of hair you'd like to have with your extensions.

When it comes to hair extensions length Sleek by Hailey has enough variety for everyone. With our extensions ranging from 18 to 30 inches, the length you choose will depend on of course the look you are trying to achieve.

The most common lengths are 14 inches, 16 inches, 18 inches, 20 inches, and 22 inches. However, keep in mind that longer extensions will require more maintenance and may feel heavier on your head depending on the amount of hair installed. 

To make it easier for you take a look at our hair chart below to help you choose. 

hair extension length chart

How to Measure Hair Extensions

You're going to need a mirror and a measuring tape for this step to measure accurately. 

Measuring your current hair length:

As extensions usually sit around ear level, you're going to measure your from the top of your ear to the end of the hair. Place the tape measure about 1 inch (2.5 cm) above your ear and measure the length of your hair. If you have wavy or curly hair, pull it straight before you measure.

Measuring desired hair extension length. 

Place the tape measure about 1 inch (2.5 cm) above your ear and pull the tape down to the desired length you want for your style preference. If you are installing wavy or curly hair hair extensions take into account how the brand measures curly lengths. You will need to know if their measurements are in the extension’s curly state or straight state. At Sleek by Hailey, we measure our wavy, curly, and coily hair extensions in the hair's stretched/straight state. 

hair length chart straight curly wavy coily hair

Picking the Right Length Hair Extensions

Adding volume to your current length:

If you want to add volume to your natural hair, pick extensions that are about 2 inches (5.1 cm) longer than your hair. Especially if you have fine hair, you're going to want extensions that are just a little bit longer than your natural hair.

If you want a very natural look, choose extensions that are within 4 inches (10 cm) of your natural hair length as these are the best for blending with your hair.

If you have shoulder-length hair, try 12-inch (30 cm) extensions as they are the perfect length for adding a little bit of volume and length.

If your hair is a bit longer and comes down to your collarbone, we recommend buying 16-inch extensions (41 cm) as these will add some volume and length. If you are petite, these should extend below your bust; otherwise, these are about bust-level for most people.

Another option is to choose 18-inch hair extensions. These are just slightly longer and weigh a bit more, but they are also a great fit for most people.

If your hair is down to your chest, hair experts agree that 20-inch hair extensions (51 cm) or 22-inch hair extensions (55 cm) are ideal lengths for you. As your hair is longer, you can also handle extensions that are longer. These extensions should add nice volume and depth and be able to blend in seamlessly.

For people with longer hair or hair that reaches the middle of their back, a good extension length is going to be 24 inches (61 cm). Your hair with the extensions should reach your waist..

Adding extra length overall regardless of your natural hair length 

With our extensions ranging from 18 to 30 inches, the length you choose will depend on of course the look you are trying to achieve. In this case, the current length of your hair is not a factor. 

Best Hair Extensions for Short Hair 

For a natural look, your best bet is to mix together different lengths for layers. For example, if your desired length is 18 inches, your best option is to blend with 14- or 16-inch hair extensions. Blending it ensures that your hair doesn't look uneven.

Best Hair Extensions for Medium Hair

If your hair is medium length, the good news is that you can pull off both shorter extensions and longer hair extensions. The right pieces will help your hair look thicker and give it more bounce. Broadly speaking, we don't recommend going any longer than 16-inch or 18-inch extensions.

Best Hair Extensions for Long Hair

Longer hair is suitable for many different options, and 20-inch, 22-inch, 24-inch, and 26-inch extensions are all doable. It's quite easy to blend long natural hair with extensions for a very natural look.

Most Common Questions

What are the different types of hair extensions?

There are many different types, among them tape-ins, bonded, clip-ins, weft, sew-in, Keratin, and Halo. There's also synthetic and human hair extensions.

What is the most common length of hair extensions?

The most popular lengths are 18 inches, 20 inches, and 22 inches.

Can you layer hair extensions with different lengths?

Hair extensions of different lengths can be layered. When layered in order of different lengths, like 18, 20, and 22 inches, the extensions can create a light and flowy style. The ends can be texturized using shears.

How long do hair extensions last? 

With the proper care, there will be varying time frames for how long hair extensions can last. Tape-ins can last 6-8 weeks depending on hair type of rate of growth while sew-in extensions can last upward of 8 weeks. Clip-in hair extensions can last for between 3 and 6 months, although you should not permanently leave clip-ins installed in your hair that long. 

Read more about How Long Hair Extensions Last

What are the best brushes for hair extensions? 

It's very important to use the right brush for your hair extensions. You'll want to buy one with flexible bristles, that glides gently over the extension bonds, and that causes as little breakage as possible.

Choosing The Best Length Extensions

When it comes to hair extensions length Sleek by Hailey has enough variety for everyone. With our extensions ranging from 18 to 30 inches, the length you choose will depend on of course the look you are trying to achieve.

Remember that the perfect choice will be the one that makes you feel the most comfortable and confident. It all boils down to your personal preferences. As there are various lengths available, it can be helpful to experiment until you achieve the end result you're looking for.

Wearing hair extensions is the easiest way to completely change your look. If you've always wanted longer hair instead of shorter hair, now's the time to take the plunge and find the right hair extensions for your unique hairstyle.

Once you figure out the right length for you, you'll want to consider different hair extension textures as well as types. And after you make your decision, all you have to do is feel confident and beautiful with your new extensions.