Hair Tips, Hair Tutorials

How To Do A Sew In Step By Step

Natural partial sew in

Weaves are the best solution to those who are looking for a hair change or hair revamp. You can use them to increase the length, volume, and style.

The good thing is that you don’t have to wait for the hair to grow rather you can change your hair in minutes.

One of the styles so common among women of color is the sew in style. We love the style as it protects your naturally curly hair. In this article, you will learn how to make the sew in weave step by step so that you can make it yourself.

Things You Need

  • Thread

You will need the sewing thread, but make sure that the thread you use matches the color of your hair extension.

You should match the thread to the hair extension because sometimes your hair may show the tracks and thus making the colored threads visible. If this happens, it usually looks so unnatural.

  • A needle

While there are so many different kinds of needles, you won’t use just any needle. For the sew in, you need the curved needle or the AC needle. This is the kind of needle you use in the sew in method.

Further reading: Types Of Hair Extensions Methods

  • Scissors

You will sometimes need to cut the wefts or the threads, and the hair cutting scissors is essential. Once you have made the stitches, you will use the scissors to cut the threads.

  • The hair extension

We have either the synthetic or the human hair extension, so you get to choose which extension serves you best.

  • Tail comb

This comb you will use to make sure the hair weave is in place. Remember, you shouldn’t use the regular comb that will pull the strands out.

The steps

  • Do you know how much hair extension you need?

Before you go into the sew in process, you should know how much hair extension you need. Remember, this will solely depend on the thickness of the hair and the amount of fullness or length you need.

When you only need the fullness and not the length as the hair is the same length as yours, you will only need 2-4 ounces of hair.

When you have shorter lengths, and you need the hair to be longer, you will need to buy more ounces. You should use about six to eight ounces to get that full look you want.

I know you would be wondering how this works, but the longer the length of hair, the more the ounces you need.

  • Prepare the hair

wash your hairBefore you go for the sew in process, you need to clean the hair by using the right shampoo and conditioner. All those are going to nourish your hair strands and keep them moisturized. So, clean the hair, condition and dry it.

Remember, you will have the sew in on for a few weeks, therefore, its best to wash your hair first. Next, know the hairstyle of your choosing. When you know the hairstyle you want to attach, you will know how to make the braids.

You have to braid your hair to keep it flat. The braids will further guide you in the right way to sew in the hair extension.

Once you have the right braids, then you are ready for the sew in style. Also, if you intend to leave out some hair, then you can separate them and have them pinned aside.

  • Making the cornrow

Making the cornrowRemember, the essential part of the sew in is the cornrows because it gives your hair the anchor it needs.

Begin making the cornrows at least ½ inch in the edges of the hair. Part the hair clearly where you want to make your first cornrows.

Take three equal-size strands of hair then hold one strand to the right another one to the left. Also, leave the last one at the center. But you should have small strand sections. The essence is to make the tiny cornrows as you don’t want the sew in to be bulky.

Bulky cornrows not only create bumps, but they also make it hard to wash and dry the hair.

  • Strat making the cornrows


Begin by crossing the strands, the one on the right to the center, and the strand you had on the left; you can cross to the strand you now have at the center.

From here, add on the additional braid hair to keep the cornrow stable if you need to. Depending on how comfortable you find this, you can add the extension strand to the center or the left and right hand.

You shouldn’t cause pain to the scalp, so make the braids tight but not painful.

Keep going until you reach the end and thus have used all the braids. Next, you can secure the braids with the elastic. You could also sew in the hair into the formed braids.

  • Now sew in the extension

sew in the extensionThread the needle; you should avoid having to thread the needle in the middle of sewing the wefts in. So once you have inserted the thread in the needle, you can pull about 48 inches of the thread. Remember, it shouldn’t be such a long thread, and neither should it be short.

You can then tie the loose ends into a knot.

Prepare the wefts: if you want, you can take this step as you go or do it once and for all. Cut the wefts to match the width size of your braids and head. Use the scissors to cut the hair wefts out. So, you should have each line or braid having a weft attached to it.

If you were, however, after the increase of hair volume, you should fold the weft to half.

  • The first stitch

Remember, your first stitch is essential. So, when you have the weft attached to the needle and thread, you can put the needle under the cornrow then pull it out. It’s easy to use the curved needle, so when you pull the needle, it should at this time face you.

Use the needle to attach the extension by inserting it to the seam of the extension track. Make sure you make the needle go below both of the tracks. Now you can hold the weave making; sure it can cover all your braids.

Go on threading the hair extension to the end. If you need to fold the hair when the hair extension reaches the parting, do it.

Finish off with a simple knot once you reach the other end.

Also, be sure to leave about half-inch at the beginning of the cornrows as well as the end.

Go on to the next row and the following one to the end. Remember, you should stitch the weave at least ½ inch after the last row you made.

  • To secure the weft

Make a few stitches to secure the wefts and then repeat the whole process.

So, when you are doing the securing, you don’t have to go under the cornrow again. Therefore, you can make two or three stitches again. Just create a looped knot to end the stitching process and secure it.

You can trim the edges of the wefts to make the hair look like your natural hair.

You Can Sew in Without Cornrows


Well, you can sew in without making the braids under the weave first. This is what we refer to as the braid less weave. It’s not as common as the previous one, but it works.

So how does the braid less method work?

Notice that you will need just the same things you did in the first process, but remember it will take you a little more time.

  • Clean the hair

Always remember the cleaner the hair, the better as it keeps the hair sewn in. You won’t have to wash it sooner, and you won’t scratch the hair because of dirt.

  • Threading the needle

Before you can start the process, you should thread the needle. To secure the thread, make the knot at the end. Make that horizontal parting from one ear to the next. If you wish you can make the parting.

Measure the wefts to take the right width size since you don’t want to attach the wefts so long.

  • Have you created the parting?

Since you will have to part your hair, you should start the process by forming this part. Make or attach the track where the parting is.

Create a knot in the form of a loop, attaching it very close to the scalp. Continue to do this from left to right then ensure the thread is secure and tight. Now you have the weft in place so you can move to the next one.

Now go to the other side where you want to attach the wefts. But remember to leave at least a single space between the last two you made. Create the looped knot to the wefts.

Go on with the process to the end of the wefts and comb it to place.

How to Install the Weft with The Closure

Closure gives the sew in a complete finish. So, the tracks and wefts won’t be visible. To install it, remember to align it with the parting on the head. But even before you start, leave about ¼ of the closure on the front of the hairline.

Go on to put the first stitch through the closure then go on to stitch it on the braided cornrow. Also, pull it through the closure again and then loop it. Finally, bring it to the edge of the closure.

Now go on with the process and secure the opposite side of the closure. Remember, as you are stitching the hair, you will want to protect the edges so you shouldn’t pull the hair too tight. Moreover, stitch the hair through the perimeter of the braid and be gentle.

Also, you shouldn’t have significant gaps when making the stitches. Then stitch the sides of the closure then go on to stitch the back.

Once you finish, you can part the hair as you wish to. Style the hair as you want to make it fit in with the sew in to give it a complete finish.

Caring for Your Sew In

The only way to have the hair last long is to care for it. Note that, the way you care for the sew in isn’t the same as the way you care for your natural hair.

  • Washing the hair

You will need to wash your hair at least once in two weeks, but you must be careful when washing the hair. You shouldn’t loosen the tracks of the hair in the process of cleaning the hair. So, use the toxin-free shampoo and conditioner.

You can use the applicator bottle to make sure the shampoo goes to your scalp too. Then wet the hair and put a palm-size shampoo on the weave as you help it lather. Apply the shampoo from the roots to the bottom or ends.

You should rinse the hair thoroughly to ensure you don’t make build-ups.

To dry the hair: its best to air dry the hair, but if you can’t wait, then use the blow dry at the lowest settings.

  • Which products do you use?

Although you may want to use all the different products in the market, it’s not a good idea. First off, avoid products that contain alcohol. You can use mousse, gel, and hairspray. Also, avoid products that make your hair unnaturally shiny.

  • When going to bed

Before you go to bed, you can brush the hair to make sure it has no tangles and knots. To finish off then, make a loose ponytail as that will prevent tangling. Cover your hair with a head wrap that’s made using satin. Also, only sleep on the satin and silk pillowcase.

This will retain the hair moisture, thus keeping it from drying. When you have curly hair, you will need even more moisture retention.

  • For the swimmers

If you can wear your swim cap, the better because the chlorine pool water is often too drying. It will further cause fading.

The Pros and Cons of The Sew in Style

The pros

  • When you use the sew in method, you will have all the hair covered thus protected. When you don’t manipulate it, then it grows faster as you retain the length.
  • It does last longer than most styles and its, therefore, ideal for anyone who doesn’t like frequent hairstyle change.
  • You can use it to experiment with different lengths, texture, and colors. You, therefore, don’t have to use your natural hair for the outrageous color.

The cons

  • When you make the braids too tight, you risk experiencing hair loss.
  • Washing and conditioning your hair is tricky when you have the sew in style.

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