Due to variance in the display of color across different monitor types, color swatches may not be an exact match to actual product. Use for reference only.
Graftobian Crepe Wool Hair is made from the finest English mohair natural fiber, and comes in a tightly braided and twined rope. When taken apart, fluffed and straightened it triples in length and volume. Besides it's use for the free-laying of facial and body hair, it's also very popular in use for making inexpensive wigs that can look as authentic as human hair. It can also be blended and used as filler into human hair pieces where needed because it is easy to adjust in color, length, texture, and volume during styling. Besides the many uses mentioned in the previous page description, it's ideal to use as a filler for vintage hair styling bun "rats". Or, use it to fill in sparse areas of facial hair or blending the edges of a beard, and it can even be chopped up very fine to use for a beard stubble effect!
Real facial hair is a mixture of colors, so for the most realistic looking results it's best to mix 2 or 3 crepe hair colors together - blending them well when straightening - and shaping the hair a bit before attachment. This can be done by using a wig maker's hackle or simply using a wide toothed comb to help mix and blend the hair colors together. Best of all, crepe wool hair can be "painted" with liquid hair coloring products, colored hair sprays, or even airbrushed! Makeup artists, hair stylists, and costumers prefer using crepe hair because of it's many advantages over using real human hair:
* Facial hair does not grow completely straight, so crimping human hair to match facial hair growth and texture is very difficult to achieve. For example: if you are doing an African American based character with beard, then it is nearly impossible to use human hair on them because the natural facial hair follicle produces very curly/kinky hair, which is pretty much identical to the crepe wool hair when unraveled.
* Human hair does not work well at all with adhesives, and it is very tedious and time consuming effort to develop the skill to make the human hair attach with adhesive realistically, much less blend well through out the laying process so the end result looks natural and believable to the eye.
* Using real human hair is just far too expensive to the budget than crepe hair, and you get 3 times the volume and length to work with in crepe wool hair than you would with human hair!
Crepe Wool Hair isn't all that difficult to free-hand lay in creating realistic looking facial and body hair if you practice first with step-by step techniques that are available to view through various online videos. For beginners and novices we recommend this video by Graftobian, which can be viewed by clicking here. ALWAYS plan on buying more hair than you think you will need for your project, especially if you need to practice, or to cover any unforeseen errors in cutting and application. Being prepared in your technique, tools, and supplies is part of the success of producing a realistic looking false hair attachment! Go slowly and take your time - this will go a long way in reducing or eliminate mistakes along the way, and build confidence in your skill to achieve a more realistic looking result!
Graftobian Crepe Wool Hair is sold in yard (36") rope lengths, and may yield up to 3-4 moderate length beards, depending on how full or long you want the desired beard end results. To use the hair, cut the desired length you want for your beard, mustache, etc. with scissors from the rope. If you want to use the entire rope length then don't cut it. Twine is used to hold the braid together, so discard that when you begin to unravel and pull the braid length apart. The hair will be very curly/kinky when you first unwind it and must be straightened out if you don't want it to remain that way. After unbraiding the hair, use a wide toothed comb to help untangle and smooth it out for cutting.
There are several methods that can be used to straighten crepe wool hair:
1. You can run very hot water over it in the sink or shower, stretch the braid a bit, and hang it up to to dry. The weight of the water will pull the hair straight as it evaporates. You can speed up the process with a hair dryer but the results won't be quite the same as if you completely air dried it.
2. Wet hair can also be force dried by ironing it with an iron set to 'wool'. Warning: use an ironing cloth over it to be careful not to scorch burn the crepe hair.
3. It can also be unraveled and ironed directly without wetting it. Put it between two very damp towels or cloths when ironing. It may have a slight crimp to it with this method but test first. You can also try using the steam setting.
4. It can also be straightened out into a less curly more wavy pattern using a large barrel curling iron on a very low setting and moved through the iron without rolling it.
As a frame of reference only - a modest length beard with moustache takes at least 1 to 1 1/2 feet of crepe wool, depending on how full or long you want the beard. The adhesives most commonly used and highly effective to apply the crepe wool hair to skin are: Graftobian Spirit Gum, MM-1049, Telesis Beta Bond Plus Acrylic Adhesive, MM-1108, PPI Spirits Matte Spirit Gum Adhesive, MM-1520, or Premiere Products Sigma Bond Adhesive, MM-1109.
Professional Tips in applying crepe wool hair, from our Resident Emmy Award Winning SFX Artist, Suzanne Patterson:
- Be careful not to straighten the crepe wool hair completely, as real facial hair is never completely straight. Keep some slight curve in the hair to work with, as you can always use hair spray products to further straighten and set the hair in the final style.
- For the most realistic and natural looking beard and mustache result; use a slightly darker shade underneath a lighter shade, which you can use to blend in on the top/final layer. This will give the look of natural highlights, or you want a more aged beard or mustache look you can mix in grey or white crepe hair with any color for a salt and pepper effect. For greyed light brown or greyed dark brown, use the Graftobian Crepe Wool Hair available in either of these two specially pre-mixed colors for faster and realistic looking results.
- Always apply the crepe hair in thin segments - about 1 inch wide. Never apply a big wad of hair all at once!
- Make sure the skin area in which you will be laying hair is cleaned with an alcohol based astringent. Do not apply any makeup products in this area either.
- Cut your crepe wool hair lengths longer than the end result calls for, as you will always want it to be long enough to be able to custom trim it to the appropriate desired length. This helps to acheive a more natural looking "growth" and fullness where needed.
- Always use a thin coat of adhesive for best results, and only work small areas at a time. Make absolutely certain that the adhesive you use dries completely matte, especially if your work is being shot in a UHD camera.
- Begin your hair attachments at the back of, or underneath the area you are building the look, and work the layers forward to the front or the top, similar to laying "shingles" on a roof.
- Press hair onto adhesive with tools, such as the end of a makeup brush or other dowel-like tools, rather than your fingers. Adhesives are very sticky, and using only your fingers would pull away or matte the hairs together rather than to the skin.
- Use a small rolled towel or cloth to press against the laid hair against the skin to "set" it into place and absorb any excess adhesive.
- Glue the hair segments in thin layers. Each layer should be laid over the previous section of hair to cover desired area and build thickness. Be sure that you orient the layers in the direction of natural hair growth for realistic looking results. If you notice any unwanted bald spots or thinness during the laying process, do fill in where needed, and before you begin the trimming process.
- Allow the adhesive to dry the hair onto the skin completely before doing any final trimming or styling.
- The hair should look like it's been evenly applied so you can more accurately trim and style the hair for the desired end results.
- Use very sharp scissors for trimming the hair, and take extreme caution in cropping any hair close to skin. Point the scissor blades upward and slightly slanted back while trimming to acheive a more natural looking finish. For trimming close to skin I always use this tool: Brow Groomer Scissors with Comb Attachment, PPS-0137.
Always use an adhesive remover (appropriate to the adhesive used) to soak off the hair attachments, and to remove any remaining adhesive residue. Work slowly in the removal process so you don't end up pulling the hair off the skin, rather the remover should release the hair from the skin.
Crepe wool hair is sold in braided ropes by the yard / 36" / 91.4 cm.