A new doc­u­men­tary has just been released that picks up where Chris Rock’s 2009 Good Hair left off. LA-based salon own­er and founder of Just Exten­sions Hair Bar, Riqua Hailes embarked upon a 6 week glob­al jour­ney to uncov­er the hid­den truths of the bustling $9 bil­lion hair exten­sion indus­try. From the web­site:

Frus­trat­ed with ven­dors sell­ing MEDIOCRE hair DISGUISED AS QUALITY , Hailes DECIDED to trav­el to the source to find the best. DURING HER SEARCH RIQUA found MUCH more than “Just Exten­sions.” MEETING vil­lagers who cut THEN sold their hair FOR SURVIVAL, women and chil­dren who sac­ri­ficed their hair for reli­gious beliefs and ven­dors who unapolo­get­i­cal­ly manip­u­lat­ed the sys­tem for finan­cial gain IMPACTED RIQUA PROFOUNDLY.

Hailes goes past the sur­face in the Just Exten­sions doc­u­men­tary to real­ly explore the lives that are affect­ed in sup­ply­ing hair exten­sions. In an inter­view with Refin­ery29, Hailes recalls one girl who only received $7.50 USD in exchange for her waist length hair.

Hailes also uncov­ers the myth of “Brazil­ian hair exten­sions” as she encoun­ters work­ers from a Chi­nese fac­to­ry dump fall­en hair into ger­mi­cide to soak. These same strands are mixed with syn­thet­ic fibers and mar­ket­ed as Brazil­ian or Indi­an hair. Mean­while in Brazil, exten­sions are some­times made from horse tails. 




Watch the trail­er below:

The doc­u­men­tary is now avail­able on iTunes.

Share your thoughts! Will you be watch­ing?


Tex­an by birth, Los Ange­leno by sit­u­a­tion. Lover of Tame Impala and Shoegaze music. Come­di­an by trade. Mac­a­roni and Cheese con­nois­seur by appetite.

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20 Comments on "New Documentary Reveals that ‘Brazilian Hair Extensions’ are Often a Marketing Hoax"

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Fatty Bamboo

this isn’t sur­pris­ing. the demand for exten­sions is far too great

Fatty Bamboo

wow. u real­ly tried it with this one. are you also an indi­rect rapist, by sup­port­ing busi­ness­es who prof­it­ed from slave labor? gtfo

Victoria Owl

I won­der, is it like this with all com­pa­nies that sell human hair exten­sions?

Sad­dest of all is that the women least able to afford fake hair are the ones who shell out thou­sands of dol­lars annu­al­ly to buy it. That would be fine if their children’s col­lege accounts were ful­ly fund­ed, or if they owned prop­er­ty, but they waste mon­ey on this non­sense and have noth­ing to show for it lat­er. And all to try to emu­late Asians (because they’re the only group out there with NATURAL hair like this) who they laugh at hys­ter­i­cal­ly. If only they knew how long and beau­ti­ful their own hair would grow if they just stopped relax­ing… Read more »

Aaaaaaaa­men! That’s the truth!


Weaves can be safe­ly sown in, with amaz­ing growth results to fol­low. Still, no one can argue with the fact that you have a valid point.


Absolute­ly they can. I have sel­dom seen a weave that looked bet­ter than one’s own nat­ur­al hair, if it is being tak­en care of prop­er­ly. I can’t help but be remind­ed of a doll when I see a young lady with a weave. They’re hid­ing who they real­ly are and that’s so sad to me.

Fatty Bamboo

ugh. peo­ple are always try­ing to police & dic­tate how peo­ple with low­er incomes should live their lives & spend their mon­ey. as if adher­ing to beau­ty stan­dards doesn’t trans­late into qual­i­ty of life for a lot of peo­ple. also, some­one choos­ing to wear weave is not nec­es­sar­i­ly cor­re­lat­ed to them hat­ing their own hair.


Not polic­ing at all. Just giv­ing my sis­ters a much need­ed heads up. When they get to retire­ment age and don’t have a pot to pee in, but instead are still rock­ing an expen­sive weave, cling­ing for dear life to a patchy scalp, then they’ll get it lol.

Gregory Chandler

In nations like India, a woman’s hair is often tak­en by force. There­fore, women who wear hair weaves are indi­rect rapists.


In oth­er shock­ing news… water is actu­al­ly wet! Seri­ous­ly? like com­mon sense isn’t too com­mon I guesss.

sipo mtambo

black women and their men love to be abused as they live in illu­sions…

Fatty Bamboo

no one loves abuse

I think it’s sad peo­ple in these coun­tries are so poor to be sell­ing their hair to eat and com­pa­nies pay­ing them next to noth­ing while get­ting rich. Even with ship­ping and pro­cess­ing what they buy and sell this hair for is an obscene prof­it mar­gin. Oth­er than that I’m not too inter­est­ed this doc. I have nev­er and don’t want hair that grew out of some­one else’s scalp on my head ESPECIALLY some­one who isn’t black. I will only wear syn­thet­ic. Just me. each his own. I doubt the over­whelm­ing major­i­ty of peo­ple who wear this hair give a… Read more »

I got a weave once and the hair styl­ist was so tak­en aback that I had bought syn­thet­ic hair. To me it would strange to wear anoth­er person’s hair on my scalp.


So so sad! we black women need to wake up and claim our nat­ur­al hair back not indi­an hair or horse tails. SMH


I just…have no words right now honestly…alot of thoughts going through my mind…I’m look­ing for­ward to the dis­cus­sion this hope­ful­ly gen­er­ates…

Victoria Owl
I don’t knock wear­ing hair exten­sions espe­cial­ly for those who suf­fer from hair loss due to health issues but I guess the safest way is pur­chas­ing the syn­thet­ic type hair? There are so many women who wear wigs, clip-ins and crotch­et braids that mim­ic their own nat­ur­al tex­ture vs the horse hair look­ing exten­sions. I can nev­er tell these days whether or not its real and mind you, those afro, kinky like exten­sions are made from syn­thet­ic hair! So why even both­er going through the has­sle of pur­chas­ing so called “real” hair that doesn’t even look like your own hair?… Read more »
Justice S

I am so glad I have nev­er worn weave in my life.