How to Curl Hair

by April Reinhardt
(last updated November 12, 2014)

If you have straight hair and have always wanted to wear curls, there are several ways to achieve the look. According to your hair type and length, some curling procedures may take longer than others, but you still can have curls that last all day long. The most important thing to remember about curl-resistant hair—hair that is thick and heavy, or very long—is to start with a volumizer. For all hair types, before curling, wash your hair, skip the conditioner, and then follow these great tips for how to curl your hair:

  • Hot rollers. Dry your hair after applying volumizer. Partition your hair into sections and roll it into rollers up to the scalp. Secure with the roller pin and leave the rollers in your hair until they cool completely. Remove the rollers, run your fingers through your hair to separate the curls, and then spray lightly with hairspray.
  • Curling iron. Just after shampooing, apply a quality hair product that contains a polymer to protect your hair during the curling process, such as Bumble & Bumble Defrizz, and then blow-dry your hair completely. Section your hair and start curling with a hot iron from the ends up towards the scalp. Keep the iron in the hair for at least one minute, and then slowly uncurl. Hold the curled hair close to your head until it cools, and then lightly spritz with hairspray. Continue to curl the rest of your hair. When the hair is completely cool, and the hairspray is dry, separate the curls with a comb or your fingers, and then spray with hairspray again.
  • Diffuser. If your hair is thick and slightly wavy, use a diffuser to encourage it to curl. Towel-dry your hair and apply curling cream throughout. With the diffuser attached to your blow-dryer, scrunch the ends of your hair into the prongs and move it close to your scalp. Continue drying your curls with the diffuser until your hair is dry. Spray with hairspray, separate the curls, and you're finished.
  • Foam rollers. If you want a more natural way to curl your hair, rather than using heating appliances, try foam rollers. While your hair is still wet, apply curling cream and comb through your hair. Section your hair and roll in the foam rollers. Depending upon whether you want loose curls or ringlets, use larger or smaller sections of hair. Allow your hair to dry completely—either under a hair dryer, using a blow-dryer, or wearing your curlers while you're asleep all night—and then remove the rollers and style your curls.
  • Flat iron. Apply curling gel to wet hair and then thoroughly blow-dry. Take a small section of hair and wrap it around the bottom plate of the flat iron. Close the iron and then glide it down the length of the hair, and release. Continue curling the rest of your hair, separate the curls, and spray lightly with hair spray.

You can also curl your hair using pieces of rags tied into wet hair, and then allowing it to dry completely. Another no-heat method of curling hair is to twist sections of wet hair tightly until the twist to the scalp, and secure the twists in place with bobby pins. Allow the hair to dry thoroughly and then separate the curls.

Author Bio

April Reinhardt

An admin­istrator for a mutual fund man­age­ment firm, April deals with the writ­ten word daily. She loves to write and plans to author a memoir in the near future. April attend­ed More­head State Uni­ver­sity to pursue a BA degree in Ele­men­tary Edu­ca­tion. ...

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