From a customer e-mail:
What do people who wear wigs do at airports? It seems like something that might show up on a full-body scanner (I do NOT like those things!), if there aren’t metal parts in it to begin with.
There’s something you need to know up front: YES, the TSA can totally tell you’re wearing a wig as soon as they put you through that scanner. Can anyone else see the results? No. And because of this, you shouldn’t worry too much about it.
It’s actually a good thing, if you think about it. The TSA have been trained to identify when someone is wearing a wig when they go through the scanner. They have also been trained on how not to flip out because someone is wearing a wig when they go through the scanner, because it’s a normal thing for someone to be wearing a wig when they get scanned. *
Source: the TSA agents at JFK, LAX, MCO, and ATL airports have informed me of this upon direct inquiry while I was there. I have NEVER had issues wearing a wig through the body scanner. The same is also true of the security checkpoints at London Gatwick airport. Easy-peasy.
The key is to make sure there is nothing else under your wig except hair or a wig cap / wig liner. If they spot anything bulky or metallic under your wig, they will pull you aside and screen you in a private room. Even in these cases, though, they will screen you PRIVATELY, so if your main fear is being outed as a wig wearer for whatever reason, you can rest easy, there. Wigs are extremely commonplace and considered a normal part of someone’s attire. The TSA are used to seeing hundreds of people in wigs come through their gateways every day.
I have worn all sorts of wigs on airplanes! I travel frequently for this job (always looking for new products) and have never had issues with my hair.
A list of some of the wigs I’ve worn through domestic and international airport security (for your reference):
- Hailey by Noriko (Burnt Sienna-R)
- Jessica by Jon Renau (Shaded Peach) <-- This is one of the most comfy wigs EVER for super-long airplane commutes!
- Scarlett by Jon Renau (Shaded Sun)
- Amal by Rene of Paris (Crimson-LR)
- Kristen by Jon Renau (Shaded Peach)
* Always remember: just because we wig wearers tend to be a secretive bunch does NOT mean that it’s a rare thing to wear a wig. There are A LOT of wig wearers out there!