8 Ways To Curl Your Hair

Who isn’t after the perfect curl? From foam rollers to straighteners, here are eight different yet effective ways to achieve that sought-after “do.” 

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Traditional Curling Iron

What You’ll Need: Curling Iron (We love the CHI 1” Curling Iron)

Time: 10-30 minutes, depending on hair length

Separate your hair into two sections. If you have thick hair, three sections may be better. 

Start by holding the curling iron vertically with the clasp facing forward. Clamp a 2-inch section of hair about 1-2 inches from the ends. Curl the hair out and away from your face, all the way up to the root. Hold for around 10 seconds and release. Follow these same steps on all sections, starting from the layer closest to the nape of your neck. Finger comb hair to loosen up the curls and secure with hairspray. 

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Clip-less Curling Wand

What You’ll Need: Curling Wand (We love the Enzo Milano 1” Barrel Wand)

Time: 10-30 minutes, depending on hair length

Separate your hair into small, vertical sections starting from the nape of your neck up to the top of your head. Comb each section of hair to remove any knots before curling. Hold the curling wand in a vertical position and wrap small sections of hair around the curling wand away from your face. (Heat-resistant gloves like this one are good ways to make sure your fingers don’t get burned during this step.) Lift the wand up and let the curls fall, so their shape remains intact. Secure your look with hairspray. 

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Hot Rollers

What You’ll Need: Hot Roller System (try FHI Heat Runway IQ Styling Starter Kit)

Time: Around 30 minutes

While the rollers are heating up, section your hair into four large sections—one over each ear, one in the back and one on top. Separate the top section into three parts. Grab the section closest to your hairline and pull it straight up. Place a roller under the hair a few inches from the ends. Leaving the ends out and keeping the hair pulled tight, start rolling up and away from your face. After a few full rotations, tuck the loose ends around the roller and then continue rolling to your scalp. Place a clip on the roller to secure it in place. Repeat these steps on all sections of your hair. Let the rollers cool for twenty minutes. Unroll them one at a time, starting at the back of the head and moving forward. Once they’re all removed, run your fingers through your hair from roots to ends to loosen the waves and secure your look with hairspray. 

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Foam Rollers

What You’ll Need: Foam Rollers (These Conair rollers are our go-to)

Time: 20 Minutes-Overnight

Brush or comb your hair to remove any tangles. Since this technique involves no heat, apply a lightweight mousse to dry hair to help the curls stay in place. Part your hair into equal sections, working from the area closest to the nape of your neck to the top of your head. Gather a small piece of hair form your first section (the size of this selection depends on the size of the roller—the smaller the roller, the smaller the section and the tighter the curl). Starting with the ends of your hair, place hair over the roller and begin to roll up your hair up to your ears or roots. Secure all of your hair into the rollers and spray the finished rollers with hairspray. If time allows, sleep with the rollers in your hair and remove them in the morning. If you’re in a rush, blow-dry your hair with the rollers in to set the curls. To remove the rollers, do not pull them out of your hair. Instead, carefully unroll them down your hair until they are completely out of your hair. Once all rollers are out, gently finger comb your hair and secure your new look with hairspray. 

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Straightener

What You’ll Need: 1” flat iron (try ghd Eclipse)

Time: 10-30 minutes, depending on hair length

Start with dry hair that’s either straight or wavy. Take your hot straightener and clamp it down on hair. For big, loose curls clamp about halfway down the strand. For tighter curls, clamp lower down the strand. The key to this technique is lifting your elbow upwards, while clamping the hair with the straightener. In an outward motion, twirl your hair around the barrel of the straightener, leaving the ends out for a more relaxed look. For perfectly polished and bouncy curls, include the ends. Repeat these steps with one-inch sections all the way around your head. Finger comb your hair and spritz with hairspray to secure your new look. 

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SoCal Curls

What You’ll Need: SoCal Curls band (SoCal Curls)

Time: 30 minutes-overnight 

Microwave this hair tie for 30 seconds. Tie the hair tie around your head, securing it tightly at your forehead. Start from one side of your head and loop a section of your hair around the hair tie (up, around and through). Add the next section of hair to the hair that you just finished looping and continue this step until you’ve reached the midway point at the back of your head. Repeat this technique from the other side of your head and finish off by looping and tucking in any remaining strands of hair into the hair tie. Wait thirty minutes to an hour (or you can leave it on overnight) and untie the hair tie and carefully remove to release your curls. Secure with hairspray. 

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Pin Curls

What You’ll Need: Bobby pins

Time: Overnight

Start with dry hair. Lightly mist curl-enhancing spray onto hair. Section your hair into two sections, parting it horizontally right above your ears. Wrap small sections of hair around two fingers, wrapping it away from your face. Once the wrapping reaches your scalp, lay the curl flat on your head and pin it down. Do this to your entire head. Leave these in overnight. Remove all bobby pins in the morning and secure your look with hairspray. 

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Braid and Straighten

What You’ll Need: Hair ties and any sized flat iron (Try CHI’s 1 ½ inch Flat Iron)

Time: 10-20 minutes  

Start with damp hair. Section the top half of your off from the bottom part of your hair. Take damp hair and braid into loose, individual braids around your head. Do the same with the top section of your hair that you sectioned off. Blow-dry braids with high heat until they are thoroughly dried, then run the straightener down each individual braid until heated throughout. Release the braids and spray with hairspray to set your look in place.