I’ve never been too fond of curling irons and have always been much more of a hot roller kind of girl, thanks to the tricks to using hot rollers my mom taught me growing up. I used to watch her as a little girl, looking up at her from our bathroom tile floors, admiring the way she’d roll her soft brown hair up onto her head with her hot rollers. It looked so neatly fashioned that she looked like something out of a magazine. Around 12 years old, she taught me her tricks to using hot rollers, and ever since, they’ve been the only things that have touched my hair, outside of a straightening iron I waited until 25 years old to use. I always preferred the soft, luxurious look of curls made with hot rollers over tight ringlets made with a curling iron. If you’ve never tried them, or never had any luck, try some of my favorite tricks for using hot rollers. In fact, even the Victoria’s Secret fashion models use hot rollers to achieve the fluffy, luxurious hairstyles they don on the runway. Voluminous waves are just a roll or two away!
1. Start at the Top
First things first when learning tricks to using hot rollers. Many people try to curl their hair in rollers around their head, starting with the bottom strands. Big no-no there ladies! Start at the very top point of your forehead in the middle and grab a good handful of hair. You’ll be starting to roll from the top and sides down, not with the bottom part of your hair. Grab the top part of your hair first and roll down, not up.
2. Work Your Way down the Back
After you’ve rollled the top few pieces of your hair on the very top of your head, start to roll down the back, in a straight line, as if you were making a part down the middle of your head with the curlers. The sides of your hair should be the only thing left when you get done with this part.
3. Roll from the Ends and Twist around
Before we go any further, let’s first address how you actually want to roll your hair into strands. Never roll from the bottom portion of your hair up in a loose, fashion, or a tight one. Instead, what you’ll want to do is place the roller on the underpart of the hair you're curling and roll it just enough to wear your hair ends can’t be seen. Then, twist the rest of your hair around the curler, pinning it up this way. When you take your hair down, instead of tight ringlets, you’ll have even, soft, wavy curls.
4. Twist up the Sides
Now that you’re through rolling up the center of your head, start with the sides. Roll them up the same way, except instead of rolling from the underneath side down, grab a good portion of your hair that you’ll be curling, and place your roller in the middle of the hair shaft. Roll the rest of the bottom portion of the strand around the curler, and then continue to roll it up away from your face. You want to pin your hair back, as if away from your face. Doing it in this twisted fashion gives your hair those same soft, wavy curls we’re going for, not tight ringlets.
5. Repeat on Both Sides
Repeat on the rest of your hair, until everything is pinned up. Your hair should look neatly curled away from your face and all the curlers should be going in multiple directions, yet still look neat on top of your head, with no loose strands coming out.
6. Use Clips, Not Pins
One of the most important tricks to using hot rollers is never to use those metal pins that come with the rollers, or those plastic small clamps. Instead, use large hair clips, which will hold your hair and won’t leave creases in your hair.
7. Finger Comb
When you take your hair down, never take a hairbrush to your curls! This is what makes them deflate faster, and leaves them looking fluffy and undone. Instead, finger comb your hair, starting with the crown, and just gently work your hair to blend it together. Leave the curls at the ends alone and fix as desired.
8. Spray if Needed
I personally don’t use spray because my hair is very coarse and holds well, but if you need to use a hairspray, don’t use one with alcohol which can make your hair sticky and look “fixed.” Get a natural hairspray instead, or do what I do and just put blow-out cream in your wet hair before drying. Your curls will still hold well thanks to the extra conditioning power.
9. Use Different Sizes
When using your hot rollers, don’t ever use all the same size. I alternate between the teeny tiny ones and the medium ones for the longest lasting effect, and use no rhyme or reason as to which ones I use where. I leave the larger rollers alone, since they don’t tend to hold as well.
Hot rolling your hair doesn’t mean you have to look like an old school chick, and in my opinion, it’s much easier to do than using a curling iron, because you can just pin it up and leave it on while you’re doing your makeup. If you’d like some other tips on hot rolling your hair, check out the sources below. Do you hot roll your hair?