Must Haves for Starter Extensionists
Updated: Sep 18, 2019
A huge question I get after my extension classes is, what do I need to buy first?? So I decided my next post needed to be about what your starter extension kit should have! Now remember, these are just going to be your basic starter tools and supplies, and from here you can build and grow as you want!
If and when you take a BellaMi Master Certification course, the kit itself is KILLER. It includes most of the major things you'll need for your first clients. If you haven't taken this class yet, the basic tools you'll need that are included inside your kit are :
*Color Swatch Ring
Fusion Heat Tool
*Fusion Heat Shield Pin Curl Clips
*Replacement Tape & Single Sided Tape
*Extension Release Liquid
4 Alligator Clips
*BellaMi Mixed Bristle Brush
Everything in that list marked with an asterisk can be purchased directly from www.bellamiprofessional.com. Everything else must be purchased or replenished from an outside source, because it's only available through BellaMi at a Master Certification Course (Make sure to tell em I sent ya ;) ).
Other than that, that's what this post is for! Here are my recommendations depending on each method, linked to the purchase source at each recommendation.
Number 1 & 2 things to make sure of is that you have bead pliers and silicone lined beads. I typically use these BellaMi Silicone lined copper flare beads for most of my clients. I suggest starting with #13 Blonde, #8 Dark Blonde, and #3 Dark Brown to start with if you don't want to have every color in stock. That gives you a light, medium and dark color to choose from in a pinch, and then when you need another one for a specific client, you can order them with the clients hair.
Some clients need a smaller silicone bead than BellaMi offers and for those clients, I like to use these aluminum micro beads. This ensures proper application and an integrity focused application if they have finer or thinner hair. You can order them in similar colors as I listed above, a light, medium and dark color.
My favorite pliers are the BellaMi ones, but you can't get them without attending a certification course as of now. My back up pliers and the ones I used before are these metal bead pliers. I like the grip on them and the sturdiness seems to hold up well. They're also not over charging for these like some companies do.
After this you'll need c-needles, and usually I like to keep more than one. This set comes with 12 for less than $5 and they work well for me in salon.
For nylon thread, you want to match the root part of your weft. For me, I like to either go to Hobby Lobby and buy threads that match most common root colors, or buy these to have on hand because it comes in a variety of colors. Just make sure whatever you're purchasing is NYLON so that it doesn't absorb and hold water.
Next up is a looper tool, which you can purchase from BellaMi or make your own using 30pd fishing line and weighted, glass beads to weigh down the end of the tool.
ITips use similar tools as above. The pliers and loop tools listed above are needed for itips as well. The largest difference is that you need NON silicone lined beads for the itips. You can order the same color trick listed above for weft beads, but sizing does vary for itip beads, depending on the size of itip being used.
You need a fusion tool, and BellaMi's new fusion tool is awesome. If you can't get your hands on that one, a good one to get you started is this one. Then later on you can invest in a higher quality one if you're going to be doing these regularly.
BellaMi also provides 2 sizes of heat shields. If you prefer a smaller one, I like these for that. Otherwise I alternate between Bellami's round and rectangle ones. Which one you choose is a personal preference.
For removal, you'll need your bead pliers listed above, and your extension release liquid from BellaMi to ensure clean removal of your BellaMi ktips.
To make life easier, a ktip table clamp from BellaMi is fantastic, but you can only get this from a Master Certification Class also.
For tapes, you need your head chart and tape pliers, only available through a Bellami Master Certification course. You'll also need replacement tape and single sided tape, and BellaMi's is THE best. You'll also need extension release liquid when it comes time to maintenance these, using the same one listed for ktips above.
Now there are some tools that can make your extension installs 10x easier, and I've linked a list of MY extension must haves (and a few other hair tools) for you below.
So hopefully this helps answer the question! If you have anything else that is a must have for you, let me know in the comments below. Also, if there is some part of your question I missed here, comment below so I can add it or make another post about it.
Thanks for reading!