The technique of the sew-in weave was created by Christina Jenkins in the 1950's. Jenkins patented the technique in 1951 and began to teach others how to install the hair. There is evidence that weaves have existed since the era of Ancient Egypt. However, Jenkins' techniques are what began the modern-day trend.
A sew-in weave is a technique used to add hair extensions onto one’s natural hair to create fuller, longer hair. Sew-ins are achieved by braiding the natural hair into a cornrow pattern and using a sewing needle to sew a weft, or track, of hair extensions.
Hair extensions come in a variety of different types. Human hair extensions, such as those that come from India or China, are the most common types of extensions used for sew-in weaves. It is possible to use synthetic hair; however, it will not look natural nor will it last long. It is also possible to use a blend of both human and synthetic hair. You can also choose the type of texture for the extensions. Some popular hair extension textures include silky straight, Yaki, or Indian wave.
Sew-in weaves can be extremely versatile depending on the hair type and pattern of the cornrows. Hair can be cut, curled, and colored as if it were one’s natural hair. Sew-in weaves can also be pulled up in a bun or ponytail, provided the cornrows are patterned properly where they cannot be seen. Sometimes, it is necessary to have a partial or half sew-in weave where part of the natural hair is left out to blend in with the weft hair.
With proper care, sew-in weaves can last anywhere from 6 to 8 weeks before it becomes necessary to remove.