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How Long Does a Sew in Last: Everything You Need to Know (2023)

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If you’re considering getting a sew-in, one of the most important questions you might have is “how long does a sew-in last?” A sew-in is a popular hairstyle that involves adding extensions to your natural hair by sewing them onto a braided base.

While sew-ins can give you a beautiful, versatile look, it’s important to know how long you can expect them to last before you commit to the style.

In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about how long a sew-in can last, including factors that can impact its lifespan, how to care for your sew-in to extend its longevity, and signs that it’s time to remove your sew-in.

Factors That Affect How Long a Sew-In Lasts

how long does a sew in last

The lifespan of your sew-in can vary depending on a variety of factors. Here are some of the most important factors to consider:

Type of Hair

The type of hair used for your sew-in can have a big impact on how long it lasts. Synthetic hair typically has a shorter lifespan than human hair, as it can tangle and lose its shape more easily. High-quality human hair, on the other hand, can last for several months with proper care.

Installation Method

There are several different methods for installing a sew-in, including traditional braiding, micro-braiding, and the popular “no-braid” method. The installation method you choose can impact how long your sew-in lasts. For example, traditional braiding can put more stress on your hair and scalp, which can lead to damage and a shorter lifespan for your sew-in.

Maintenance and Care

How you care for your sew-in can also impact how long it lasts. If you don’t properly care for your sew-in, it can become tangled, matted, or frizzy, which can shorten its lifespan. On the other hand, if you take good care of your sew-in and maintain it regularly, it can last for several months.

Hair Growth

Finally, your natural hair growth can also impact the lifespan of your sew-in. As your hair grows, the braids that your sew-in is attached to can become loose, which can cause your sew-in to shift or become uncomfortable.

Depending on how quickly your natural hair grows, you may need to have your sew-in adjusted or removed and re-installed after a few weeks or months.

How Long Can You Expect Your Sew-In to Last?

So, how long can you expect your sew-in to last? The answer can vary depending on the factors we discussed above.

If you’re using high-quality human hair, have a gentle installation method, and take good care of your sew-in, you may be able to extend its lifespan beyond 12 weeks. However, if you’re using synthetic hair, have a more stressful installation method, or don’t properly care for your sew-in, it may only last for a few weeks.

How to Care for Your Sew-In to Extend Its Lifespan

How to Care for Your Sew-In to Extend Its Lifespan

If you want your sew-in to last as long as possible, it’s important to take good care of it.

Wash Your Hair Regularly

One of the most important things you can do to care for your sew-in is to wash your hair regularly. Use a gentle shampoo and conditioner, and be sure to thoroughly rinse out all product to prevent buildup.

Avoid washing your hair too frequently, as this can cause your sew-in to become dry and brittle.

Sleep with a Satin Bonnet or Pillowcase

When you sleep, your hair can become tangled and matted, which can damage your sew-in. To prevent this, sleep with a satin bonnet or pillowcase, as these materials are less likely to cause friction and tangles.

Don’t Over-Style Your Hair

Over-styling your hair can cause it to become dry and brittle, which can shorten the lifespan of your sew-in. Avoid using high heat on your hair, and be gentle when brushing or combing it to prevent breakage.

Get Regular Maintenance

To keep your sew-in looking fresh and prevent damage, it’s important to get regular maintenance. This can include tightening any loose braids, repositioning any extensions that have shifted, and trimming any split ends.

Signs It’s Time to Remove Your Sew-In

Even with proper care, there will come a time when you need to remove your sew-in.

Excessive Shedding

If you notice that your sew-in is shedding more than usual, it may be time to remove it. This can be a sign that the hair is becoming damaged or that the braids are too tight.

Uncomfortable or Painful

If your sew-in is causing discomfort or pain, it’s important to remove it immediately. This can be a sign that the braids are too tight or that they are pulling on your natural hair.

Matting or Tangles

If your sew-in has become severely matted or tangled, it may be time to remove it.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How long does a sew-in last on natural hair?

A sew-in can last between 6 and 12 weeks on natural hair.

Can you wash your hair with a sew-in?

Yes, you can wash your hair with a sew-in, but it’s important to use a gentle shampoo and conditioner and avoid washing too frequently.

How often should you get a sew-in?

It’s best to wait at least 8 weeks between sew-ins to allow your hair and scalp to rest.

Can you swim with a sew-in?

While it is possible to swim with a sew-in, it’s important to protect your hair from chlorine and saltwater, as they can cause damage.

How do you remove a sew-in?

To remove a sew-in, carefully cut the threads that are holding it in place, then gently unravel the braids from your natural hair.


If you’re considering getting a sew-in, it’s important to know how long you can expect it to last. By understanding the factors that impact the lifespan of your sew-in and taking good care of it, you can extend its longevity and enjoy a beautiful, versatile style for several weeks or even months.

And when it’s time to remove your sew-in, be sure to do it carefully to prevent damage to your natural hair.

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Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is the founder and editor-in-chief of, a site dedicated to those passionate about crafting. With years of experience and research under his belt, he sought to create a platform where he could share his knowledge and skills with others who shared his interests.