I would love if someone would make a post showing the different results the various types of needles give when rooting hair. Hair rooting is always the least thing I’m happiest with when I’m done with my babies and I’m constantly trying to improve it. I have one set of needles right now…I think they’re just the average ones, but I’ve been doing it for a while and could PROBABLE be ok with the more advanced ones, I guess I’m just wondering if the actual size makes much of a difference or if it really ALL depends on the skills in the hand that holds it, lol. I’m not TERRIBLE at it, but would love to get better
There is too many variables on which the final result of rooting depends;
1- the vinyl - how thick, hard it is
2- how much was it warmed up
3- size of the needle
4- quality of mohair
5- skill of the rooter, and even more importantly PATIENCE, there is no quick and easy way to do it
Some vinyl is easier than other. I have rooted one head and was over the moon with it, then I tried to do the next with the same mohair, same needle and it was awful. I use 42g - 43g one barb needles for most heads, but any 42-43 should leave good result. Needles 38g will leave big holes, and the hair would come out easier.
I am in love with the 43 g single barb needles! They don’t leave holes, are easy to use, and are so strong. I do a small patch at a time carefully trying to only get one hair at a time and then tweeze out any extra hairs. Having really good tweezers is a must. Here are some pics of ones I’ve done with these needles
I have tried many different types of needles and I am also in love with the 43 gauge one barb needle.
Here are some examples of that I have rooted. I mostly use the 42g needles, but depending on the vinyl, mohair and the look I want I will try other needles.
This one I did with the 46g needle using the med.brown Slumberland straight/slightly wavy mohair.
This one I did with the 43g 1barb needle using dark brown mohair from Angela Sprott.
This one I did with the 42g needle using curly black mohair from Angela Sprott. Even though I use mostly Slumberland, I love Angela’s curly mohair which IMO is much better when it comes to curly.
This one I did with the 42g needle using deep dark brown Slumberland Straight/slightly wavy mohir.
Lovely rooting. I prefer the 43G single barb needle that I buy from Secrist. It seems to hold up much better than the other 43g I have tried. I have the 46G single barb from Tinkerbell and they have such a long needle part that I find they have an undesirable amount of flex for my liking. I actually don’t see much difference in how my rooting looks between the 42 crown needles, the 43G single barb and the 46G single barb as I attempt to only root 1-2 hairs in each follicle regardless of the needle I am using. The end result with any of the needles depends on the skill of the person using it. (I would guess that a 38G would leave a slightly larger hole in the vinyl though).
I also like one barb 42 or 43, frankly cannot see difference between them. I get mine from Heavenly Illusions in Germany, they are covered in plastic coating and do not need a holder, and are very easy on my hand. But, in this moment I am rooting with Alpaca, and I had to get 3 and 6 barbs, as I was not getting any hair with the single barb ones. But I would never use thicker than 42g, as they leave too big holes.
Thanks to those for your kind compliments. I hope my pictures help because when I started about 6 yrs ago I had no idea what needles or mohair to use. I have learned that not all needles, mohair and vinyl are compatible with each other. This is why I always start at the back of the head and test the combination I am using. What I check for is if the needle is pushing the hair all the way through the vinyl, is the mohair coming out the texture and color that I want, is it easy to get the hair to go in each time and if the hair lays nicely and not breaking.
I agree with Rainbow about starting at the back of the head. Different people have different tastes. I like my babies with lots of hair even if it isn’t really accurate (makes them look older sometimes) but those open spaces just make me crazy to fill them in and before I know it the baby has a headful.
I now use mostly 42g crown needles. With the angle, only one barb usually picks up a hair and they don’t go dull as fast since I can keep rotating the needle. 38g for human hair that I have since it is slippery and doesn’t grab as well. I can use forked or single barb but not getting the hair every time gets frustrating.
Forked needles made all the difference for me. Until you try and master them, you might not notice a difference. I used the 43 barbed needle for half of a head, and then finished it with a forked, and it was such a noticeable difference. The barbs can rip the vinyl, leaving tiny pieces that stick up and feel rough when you rub the head, but forked needles just slip right in and out and you can’t see the hole.
I have both 42g and 43g fork needles and they are very thick, which is great as they do not bend or break, or at least I have not managed to break one as yet. But they do leave a round hole, which is much more visible than the hole left by my German 1barb or crown 42g & 43g needles. I also find that I miss, do not get hair and then when I try to insert another hair in the same hole the vinyl is too stretched and does not grab the hair. I know that some people get very nicely rooted heads with them, but I get better result with other types of needles.
I’m sure it’s because I’m inexperienced, But I have broken at least 7 needles doing my first head with BB mohair and 42g 3 barb crown needles from BB. I’m using their micro rooting tool. Am I flexing the needle too much? How much needle needs to be protruding from the tool? It’s going to get expensive buying new needles…lol
Assuming that your are using the mushroom with the cut needle? You can put most of the needle into the tool so that you only have the really skinny shaft of the needle sticking out for rooting. The less you can “flex” the needle, the longer they will last. I have the best luck just holding the needle in my fingers (I coat them in the stuff you use for tool handles to make them a bit easier to work with and sometimes wrap a rubber band around that so that it is a bit thicker to grab.
The needles should not flex, once they bend they will snap. As i said, heat the head and then push the needle in a straight line. Do not worry, you will work it out; I have also broke lots of needles on my 1st head. I am sure it was something like 20!!! LOL To my defense; it was a very hard head, so hard that without heating it there is no way I could get needle in it, and the head was huge.
Thanks for the advice. I’m enjoying the process. I’ve learned so much already by doing this first practice doll, like putting the eyebrows in the wrong place and the skin getting all chalky with the matt finish…lol. I hope the next couple dolls will be better.
Which one of the 42 g crown needles are you all using from BB?
#2940 - One Ounce Uncut 42 Gauge CROWN Needles .04mm barb depth
#4493 - One Ounce Uncut 42 Gauge CROWN Needles .02mm barb depth
I bought a pack one time and could not get them to root a darn thing! I have since been told by someone else that they have 2 kinds and one works well and the other not so much. It has been so long ago that I tried them and I now do not know which ones I ordered that I didn’t like.
Angie I use the #2940 which has more depth than the #4493. Before I used the #4493(sorter depth) and rooted from the middle because I couldn’t get the hang of rooting from the cut end. The hair would not always catch and go through the vinyl or I would get those darn little short hairs sticking up. I switched to the #2940 and what a difference. I have no problem with the hair catching and going all the way through when rooting from the cut end, but I still get a few of the little hairs that stick up, but not near as many as before.
Is the 2940 a true crown needle with the barbs all at the tip?
Angie, I don’t know what you mean by a “true crown needle”. The #2940 that I use are the triangle with a barb on each side which are level with each other. Hope that makes since.
crown needles are triangle and the barbs are all at the tip end and at the same distance. I have gotten needles before other places that said they were crown needles but the barbs were unevenly spaced one on each side.