By Yahaira Garcia, Walker Tape Co.

As a stylist, your clients trust you to guide them through all the steps of hair replacement. Figuring out the right hair system is a big one. Equally important is matching the tape to the hairpiece and client.

If the tape and the system don’t match, it can cause damage to the system or not hold as well. If the tape doesn’t match your client, it can cause discomfort or irritation. Finding the right tape is one of the best ways to keep clients coming back.

To simplify finding the right tape, here are a few guidelines to consider for each system type.

Polyurethane Systems

Polyurethane systems blend with your client’s skin tone. They can be customized to match the client’s skin exactly. They’re made out of silky rubber, which helps create a natural look.

Poly systems tend to be really strong and opaque, so most tapes will work. But to help you narrow it down, here are some things to bear in mind when looking for the right tape.

With poly systems, you’ll want a tape that:

▶ Is gentle on your client’s skin.

▶ Leaves little residue.

▶ Doesn’t hold for too long (few clients want to wear these for more than a week).

With the opacity of these systems, you won’t have to worry about the tape being too shiny. So, regardless of the tape finish, it will still work with a poly system.

Mesh Units

Mesh is a larger category that encompasses two different system types. These two types are very similar but have enough differences that they require different tapes. So, let’s talk about them individually.

Full Lace

Full lace units can be the most difficult to find the right tape for. They are incredibly delicate, being made fully of lace. Plus, the scalp shows through these systems. This creates a natural look but also means that a shiny tape will show through.

For full lace, you need a tape that:

▶ Is very gentle on systems.

▶ Can hold for long periods of time.

▶ Is dull.

▶ Doesn’t leave much residue.


As the less expensive partner to full lace, monofilament systems are popular. They’re made with a blend of polyester or nylon and lace-like materials. They’re an excellent choice for clients with more delicate scalps.

Monofilament systems have similar requirements as full lace systems. They need tapes that:

▶ Are good for sensitive skin.

▶ Are gentle on systems.

▶ Have little to no shine.

▶ Have a flexible carrier.


This is the largest category of hair units, combinations are probably the most common you’ll see. They include a variety of inexpensive mesh systems.

Lace Front

Aptly named, lace front units are made with lace solely along the front hairline. This helps create a natural-looking hairline without the hefty price of a full lace system.

With lace front systems, it’s best to find a tape that:

▶ Is thin enough to help create a natural hairline.

▶ Is gentle on the lace.

▶ Doesn’t shine through.

Welded Lace

The tightly woven mesh that makes up a welded lace system is great for creating a natural-looking hair part. Many people love these systems because of their natural look and how easy they are to style.

To create a good look with a welded lace system, you’ll need a tape that:

▶ Is kind to the client’s skin and the hair system.

▶ Can keep hold for an extended period of time.

▶ Doesn’t have a shiny finish.


Finally, we’ll look at French-drawn units. These are made of three layers of material, alternating layers of glass-silk and Swiss lace. They are widely considered to be one of the most comfortable kinds of systems available.

The comfort of French-drawn systems is one of their biggest appeals, so selecting a tape that maintains that comfort is crucial. Choose a tape that:

▶ Is dull.

▶ Has a flexible hold.

▶ Is kind to skin.

While we believe that each of these recommendations can optimize the hair system experience, everyone is different. It is possible that our recommendations won’t work for some clients as well as others. Experimenting to find the right tape is a great way to keep clients coming back. When you work with your client, you will be able to find the perfect tape.