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Woman with glittery hair tinsel in her hair

Hair Tinsel Is The Key To A Shiny, Glittery Mane Without The Commitment

Hair tinsel is the glittery hair trend taking over social media. Read on to learn everything you need to know about this sparkly hair accessory.

If you’re ready to take your shiny hair to the next level, prepare to be obsessed with hair tinsel, the latest hair trend taking over social media. Known as “fairy hair,” hair tinsel is used to create the appearance of sparkly, shimmery hair. No, this isn’t hair glitter or glitter gel, but actual glitter strands installed throughout your mane. You’ve likely seen your favorite celebrities and influencers rocking hair tinsel on red carpets or at special events, and now it’s your time to shine. With summer and music festival season quickly approaching, it’s the perfect time to consider fairy hair.

Are you ready to give hair tinsel a try? Read on as we break down everything you need to know about the popular trend, including how to tie hair tinsel and how to care for your newly glittery strands.

Is Hair Tinsel Still Popular?

Hair tinsel has had its moments over the last decade, and we are once again in the resurgence of this trend thanks to TikTok. Videos about hair tinsel have garnered over 158.1M views, which is a testament to how many people are interested in fairy hair. Upon first glance, one might think that hair tinsel is just for teens, but anyone, no matter their age, can explore with hair tinsel. On TikTok, you’ll see more Gen X’ers with these shiny strands, but that doesn’t negate the fact that adults are opting for this trend so they can slay glittering hair without the commitment.

How Much Is It to Tinsel Your Hair?

Depending on the number of tinsel hair extensions you want, the price will vary. "It can range from $10 to $20. It’s usually an add-on service if you are already getting a blowout or style,” says Brittany Rodriguez, hairstylist at Medusa Salon in Brooklyn, NY.

Can You Put Tinsel in Curly Hair?

Unfortunately, there isn’t any pre-curled hair tinsel on the market, but that doesn’t mean you can’t jump on the bandwagon. If you want to put hair tinsel in curly hair, you’ll have to use a curling iron to match your hair texture. It might take a few extra steps, but it can be done as long as the hair tinsel you’re working with is heat safe.

Casey Clark with glittery hair tinsel

How Do You Use Hair Tinsel?

When it comes to installing hair tinsel, you’ll most definitely want to go to a salon to have a stylist professionally insert these glitter hair strands. Not only will it help preserve the integrity of your hair, but it also ensures it’s done properly.

There are two methods to installing hair tinsel: single-strand and microlink. Rodriguez describes the two processes she frequently practices with clients at the salon with a mini hair tinsel tutorial:

“For microlinks, I take a small section of hair and thread it through the microlink bead about a centimeter away from the scalp. Then, I grab a few strands of tinsel and thread it to the top through the bead, making sure a millimeter of tinsel is sticking out at the top. Once the hair and tinsel are inside, I clamp the bead down with pliers so it will flatten to the head.”

The other single-strand method involves creating a slip knot with the tinsel and tying it to a few strands of the hair close to the scalp, according to Rodriguez.

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Can You Brush Fairy Hair?

After getting your hair tinsel installed at the salon, you’ll want to be careful when brushing your hair. For the most part, Rodriguez says you can brush your hair like normal, but be careful near the base where the tinsel was inserted.

To help make brushing your hair a breeze, use a detangling product like the Biolage Hydrasource Detangling Solution that controls static while renewing moisture for healthy-looking hair.

Does Hair Tinsel Damage Hair?

Luckily, there’s no real damage associated with having tinsel strands. However, to prevent knotting, Rodriguez recommends brushing at least two times a day to keep hair in pristine condition.

Similar to any style or hair trend, you’ll want to keep your hair hydrated with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner. Opt for a shampoo like Redken All Soft Argan-Oil Enriched Shampoo for Dry Hair that adds moisture to dry, brittle hair with its argan oil-infused formula.

After you wash your hair, use the corresponding Redken All Soft Argan-Oil Enriched Conditioner For Dry Hair that adds moisture and detangles so you can leave the shower knowing your hair is ready to go.

Additionally, when styling your hair with heat, make sure to use the lowest setting and a heat protectant like Redken Extreme Playsafe Heat Protection And Damage Repair Hair Treatment to prevent heat damage.

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How Long Does Hair Tinsel Last?

Normally, colorful tinsel lasts for one to two weeks, depending on how you take care of it at home. If you want to keep your hair tinsel as long as possible, opt for the microlink installation method. The single-strand method can sometimes slip out early with typical washing and brushing.

As much as we love a clean scalp, skipping a few shampoo sessions can help your hair tinsel stand the test of time. Use the Biolage All-In-One Intense Dry Shampoo With Rice Starch to cleanse hair and absorb sweat and oil on the scalp.

How Do You Remove Hair Tinsel?

While you can remove these glittery strands at home with a hair tinsel kit, we recommend going to a stylist to make sure it’s done properly and to avoid potential breakage. The method for removing tinsel hair extensions depends on the method used to insert them.

“To remove the microlink method, I squeeze the bead with pliers in the opposite direction to open it up. The tinsel will fall right out,” says Rodriguez. “With the single-strand method, I will find the slip knot, open it back up, and slide the hair out.”

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