A curling iron is a necessary hairstyling tool for any woman's bathroom vanity. This heated wand can create tight spirals or loose waves, and channel a variety of fashionable looks, including 1940s glamor, celebrity style and contemporary sophistication. Curling irons are available in many brands, styles and price points. It's an easy process to curl hair and enjoy beautiful, spun tendrils that stay curled all day long.
Find the right curling iron. For tight spirals, consider a 1 inch or smaller iron. For larger, flowing waves, choose one 1-1/2 inches or larger. Look for a curling iron made from ceramic materials (not metal) to help protect the health of your hair via the use of negative ions. Additionally, choose a style that offers temperature settings: Lower heat is best for curl touch-ups, while the highest settings help curl thick and unmanageable hair.
Spritz wet hair with protective product. Many heat-protection styling products are available in stores and online, such as Aveda Brilliant Damage Control and Nexxus Heat Protexx. Consult fashion magazines and blogs for product reviews and choose a styling product that works well on your hair type. Using a heat-protection styling spray before curling will help prevent your hair from breaking in the long term.
Blow-dry clean hair. To protect the health of your hair, make sure it is fully dry before heating and styling. While you are doing this, turn on you curling iron to allow it to reach the desired temperature.
Clip your hair into manageable sections. Pile and pin the hair onto the crown of your head. Begin with the lower back sections; or, for shorter hair, begin with the top sections on the crown.
Curl a 1- to 2-inch section of hair. Clamp the curling iron onto the tip of the section and gently roll the barrel tightly toward the scalp, stopping about 1 inch from the roots. Hold the wound curling iron for approximately 10 seconds, then gently open the curling iron to release the hair. The hair section should unravel in a curled tendril.
Continue to curl the remaining hair sections. Use bobby pins or a clip, if necessary, to shift curled hair sections as you work with the straight strands.
Complete the styling with your fingers and finishing spray. Touch up the sections as needed.
Tips & Warnings
Purchase a curling iron that allows for temperature adjustments, to protect your hair. Use heat-protective shampoo and conditioners, if curling your hair is a daily styling routine.