This hairpiece was one of those that had to grow on me, no pun intended: upon first taking it out of the box and trying it on, I hated it. A few days later, I decided to give it a whirl anyway and wore it out to run errands, and after wearing it out for a few hours, I fell in love with it.
It’s a shame wig retailers have such strict regulations about accepting returns, because many times to truly know how you feel about a wig, you need to take it out for a test drive, like you would when choosing a new car. But some retailers won’t take a wig back if they think you did so much as put it on your head. Sigh. I get that this is not all their fault, because regulations about accepting wig returns are quite strict (which makes sense when you think about it – you’re taking back a product someone else put on their head, so the risks of that getting nasty are pretty high) but the bottom line is that makes it incredibly hard to decide if you like what you purchased or not. Sure, sometimes what comes out of that box is so ugly you know you’re going to hate it right away, and sometimes the opposite happens – all you have to do is look at the wig and you know you’re in love. But those two occurrences are rare. Usually you’re unsure at first – or at least I am. For me, the real test is always what happens when I wear something out of the house. If people compliment me constantly, that’s great, but more often than not, people just don’t notice my hair if a piece is good – and that’s also fine. It may in fact be preferable for many people who don’t want others to see anything amiss about their hair – even if what’s amiss is that it’s a bit too fabulous.
So. All that to say that I had to wear Miss Brilliance out one day to realize it did not, in fact, suck, but was actually pretty great. It’s a plain old color 4, which bores me, but it’s got more auburn blended in than the Renau color 6 that feels super-flat to me. That said, the color choices on this piece are really slim, and so far I’ve only seen it at Wig.com (a few other online stores carry Wendy Williams, but they don’t have this particular unit). It is a great color match for my bio hair though, so that’s always nice. The hair fiber is a bit on the dry side, and is a little frizzy, but that’s to be expected since it’s a curly piece. It’s rare to find a curly synthetic that is also soft and silky, maybe wavy ones can be, but full-on curls just aren’t silky by nature. This is a pretty loose curl, but it’s a curl nonetheless:
It’s a nice length – long, but not overlong like Easihair’s Luscious – and the headband is soft and is a complete, 360-degree circle, which means it’s incredibly comfortable. Two things that are odd about this piece, though: there are no combs in it, and there’s no way to adjust the size. While this works out OK for me, as the headband fits my head fine, for someone with a smaller or larger head (my head is average size, leaning towards petite) it could obviously be a problem. I personally don’t care for using combs, but most people do like them, especially on a 3/4 wig like this, so it’s really odd to me that this one doesn’t have them. Again, I lucked out with the size and fit of this, and therefore have no problems. But without combs or an adjustable tab, there’s a bit of risk involved in trying it. And if it stretches out, even I’m out of luck getting it stay on my head.
That said, Wig.com has a decent return policy, and this isn’t an expensive piece. It retails for $49.99, but wait awhile and the site will have a 30% off sale and you get it for less. I got it during their 45% off Black Friday sale (or maybe it was Cyber Monday, I forget) so I got it for less than thirty bucks. This is why, even though I hated it initially, I was willing to wear it out and risk not being able to return it if I still hated it at the end of the day. I’m so glad I went and tried it out, too – because it’s comfy, and it’s a pretty length, and it’s quite natural-looking. No one batted an eye, which again, is always a good sign in my opinion. I even wore it out the next day to some places where people know me, but not well enough for me to tell them about my fake hair habit (grocery store, veterinarian, local restaurant) and none if them seemed to care much that my hair had grown four inches and gone curly, either.
It’s a really nice, natural curl pattern, which held up well after hours of running around, and even getting rained on a bit. I haven’t experienced any shedding with this piece, but it does get tangly due to the length; it’s fairly easy to comb through when the tangles take over. It’s full but not overly so, and like most headband wigs I’ve tried, it tends to be flat up top. While that’s not as pretty as something with a bump at the crown might be, it is fairly natural-looking, as that’s what most of our hair would do if pushed back into a headband. I also felt it was a touch thin at the back of the crown, but not enough where it would be noticed. Other than in that area, I thought it had plenty of hair.
Overall this is a real winner for throw on and go hair, but if you aren’t a brunette you’re going to have problems with color. Wendy’s line is geared towards African-American women, so there’s only one blonde to try, but even within the darker colors there’s just not a lot of variety. When it comes to wigs, I’m lucky to have fairly dark brown hair – it does seem that finding good blondes is more problematic in general. Sorry blondes, but unless you can wear the 1488A, this one isn’t going to work for you.
So Brilliance is my new main weekend headband wig – definitely prettier in style than Escape, less glam than Impulsive, and more practical than Luscious.Who knows how long this one will be around as some of these celebrity wig lines come and go quickly; if you think you can wear Brilliance you might want to snatch it up while you can. I know I already bought one backup and may try to snag a third at some point.