We’ve all heard of hat hair, but what about box hair? Box hair, also called “cold set,” is when your wig takes on the shape of the box or other storage space, leaving it with crimps or bumps that wreak havoc on the flawless lines you desire. Cold set is most common when a wig is shipped new in tight packaging or stored for a lengthy time, but it can also occur when traveling or anytime the wig finds itself in a position that encourages creasing.
The easiest way to dodge cold set is with an ounce of prevention; storing it carefully, ideally on a wig stand. But if you find yourself dealing with the unsightly lumps and bumps of box hair, there are a few easy steps you can take.
Box Hair/Cold Set Triage
Begin by carefully detangling your wig with a wig brush or comb. This will allow you to smooth things out enough to identify the problem areas. Next, spray these areas with water, and gently comb through again. Give the wig a few good shakes to allow the fiber to fall naturally. Dry on a wig stand. If the wig hasn’t been boxed up for too long, this may be enough to restore your wig to all its glory.
If you’re still seeing those pesky imperfections, take things up a notch by applying gentle heat. Place the wig on stand, and spray it down with water. Next, use a hairdryer on the lowest setting, and hold it at least 6 inches away from the wig while brushing or combing through the fibers. Hold the brush taut for a few seconds on problem areas as you go. If your wig is synthetic, be sure to keep the air circulating freely to prevent heat damage. Allow the wig to cool and continue to air dry on the stand.
Sometimes, the most stubborn creases just do not wish to cooperate. If you find this to be the case, you can employ the use of a hand-held steamer (the kind used for getting wrinkles out of clothing). Repeat the steps in Level 2 using the steamer instead of a hair dryer. Again, keep the steamer on a low setting, and hold it at least 6 inches away from the wig fibers while you gently brush or comb the strands.
It may be tempting to leapfrog through the steps, especially if you are anxious to wear your new wig out of the box. But each step plays an important part in smoothing the fibers and ensuring your wig is not subjected to undo heat stress. With a bit of patience and care, have confidence that you can smooth out any wrinkles your wig throws your way!