Learn How Hot Rollers Can Take You to Big Billowy Curls Without Drama
Some just don’t find styling hair to be their thing. Is that you?
Or maybe it’s more you suck at curling iron worse than a beauty school drop-out.
Or sometimes it’s a time crunch problem.
With no time to style, meh! Ponytail here we come. Again.
Yet the solution could be hidden behind the toilet paper or under some towels in the bathroom. Dust it off and you’re a new girl with a new ‘do.
What solution is that? Hot hair rollers of course.
Hold on. Were you aware even roller “virgins” can pull off totally envy worthy hair with little to no practice? You just have to give heated curlers half a chance.
Okay so maybe you’ve tried these before only to find you can’t keep the rollers in your hair to save your life.
I know. Frustrating, isn’t it?
Maybe you’re tried these and the curls had next to no staying power. There’s a solution for that too.
So let’s see if we can’t improve these beleaguered heated rollers’ image in your mind. Because they really don’t deserve their relic-of-the-past reputation. Especially when they are more forgiving than any curling iron ever has been.
To discover what’s here for you, you can obviously keep reading or skip ahead. Your choice.
Quick Section Navigation
- 10 Hot Roller Hacks For The Best Curls – Stolen From Beauty Bloggers
- Prep Steps
- Sectioning Smart To Get On a Roll
- Here’s Ways to Easily Change the Curl Pattern
- VIDEO: How Do These Curls Differ From Curling Iron Curls?
- Quickie Reviews – 3 Choices That Look Interesting
Now to be honest I’m thinking that far too often lack of success with hot rollers comes down to NOT KNOWING HOW TO USE THEM RIGHT. (Sorry for yelling.)
So a good place to start might be here:
10 Hot Roller Hacks For The Best Curls – Stolen From Beauty Bloggers
Anyone looking for full on glam hair might want to try these hot roller hacks. Because …
- They work like a charm.
- They can make for some awesome volume or soft billowy curls.
- They can also help you get the most from what’s an often overlooked styling tool.
Yeah to help you get there here are some badly needed tips that give you the 411 on how to get the most out of them. (#3 is totally worth remembering.)
Sure there may only be one or two things listed here you are not doing but should.
But and again, it would seem those that don’t get the results they were hoping for might not know how to use these curl makers the right way. (And I saw that eye roll – just because you’ve mastered it doesn’t mean everyone has.)
For many hot rollers are the tool of choice when time is short.
Light them up, pop them in and before you know it you’ve got instant volume cooking while you’re hands are free to apply makeup, touch up your nails, or check your cell phone.
First things first, prep is vital. So don’t be in such a rush you that skip it.
Electric Roller Prep Steps
And by prep we mean product application to enhance volume and extend the staying power of your big loose curls.
Failure to do this, or do it right, might be the reason your curls don’t last.
The nice thing is you can do this prep while your rollers are heating up.
Hack #1 Protect Those Strands: Yeah let me harp on this one more time. It should go without saying but I’ll say it anyway. Always, always, always apply some kind of thermal heat spray before you commence rolling. If you like here’s a heat protectant how-to must read for any aspiring hot tool addict that covers the ins and outs your hair needs you to know!
Hack #2 Styling Product of Choice: There’s no one hard and fast solution when it comes to product.
1. Obviously some prep with more hairspray that Dolly Parton and that’s BEFORE they start rolling. Another spritz is applied when the curl is first released to insure it holds up. That can work.
2 Others find working dry shampoo into their strands is a better way to get curls that last. Then raking their hair with their fingers or a comb to get the product distributed throughout which also helps with volume and texture.
3 Don’t forget about styling mousse. Some find it works wonders when long lasting curls are what you want.
4 Of course a popular alternative to dousing your strands with moderate hold hair spray would be dry texturizing spray. Actually this is like THE situation this stuff was invented for. You typically mist a section of hair with texturizing spray before the big roll up. The style that results should remind you more of a messy bedhead look. Cha-ching!
Next comes the all-important sectioning.
Sectioning Smart To Get Things Rolling
Hack #3: Remember Last of the Mohicans? By that I mean you’re looking to “Mohawk” or section the hair across the top of your head front to back. This is the easiest way to get started.
Just keep in mind you don’t want this section to be too wide.
To style this you’ll want use three or four jumbo rollers or the whatever the biggest ones are that came with your set. The idea is to impressively roll up the hair across the top of your head.
IMPORTANT: Don’t overload the rollers.
So keep the size of any sections you plan on winding around the curlers to the width of the roller or slightly less. Reason being if you take too wide a section some strands will fall off or not be exposed to the heat to be curled properly.
See why I feel this is critical. If you take-away nothing else, make sure you remember this one.
Hack #4 Section Smart: Another way you can overload the rollers is working with sections that have too much hair.
So if you have thicker hair you’ll want to divide you hair into smaller sections.
That said, the downside is you may run out of rollers before you run out of hair.
Hack #5 What Roller Size? If you’re looking for size specifics here you go.
- Most find using an inch and a quarter or less works great for fine hair.
- Those with thicker strands would benefit most from inch and a half rollers, more or less in the judgement of those at refinery29.com.
- While jumbo rollers will always have a place for volume up top in the crown area. So think big if that’s what you want.
Just makes sense doesn’t it?
Hack #6 Try Alternating Layers: Thought this was another good idea also from refinery29.com as long as you have enough hair and rollers. Vary the number of rollers per layer of hair on the sides. This will tend to give a more natural looking outcome to your styling efforts.
Along the same lines alternating the direction you roll these up on the sides will also create more natural looking waviness.
Finally if you’re worried about all those layers you had cut in, don’t be. You can expect a more bouncy piecey look when you take the rollers out is all.
Ways to Easily Change the Curl Pattern
Too many mistakenly assume hot rollers are good for one thing – big loose curls. But believe it or not how you make use of the rollers allows you to affect the type of curls you get.
So yeah it matters where you start and how you place the rollers.
Three Ways To Wrap Things Up
Hack #7 Where you start rolling determines what kind of results you get.
Relax. There is no right answer here.
Just three different looks that are affected big time by where you start placing the rollers.
Start At the Bottom: Most beauty bloggers demonstrate these by rolling favorite curlers from the ends up. Sure that’s the classic, time honored hot roller approach that concentrates ginormous curls towards the bottom of your strands. But honestly it doesn’t maximize your curling potential here.
Start in the Middle: So the slightly the more adventurous might want to start by placing the roller mid strand. Or at least a few inches from the tips depending on how long your hair is?
From there wrap the lower portion around the roller, then roller the whole shebang to your scalp. This distributes the heat differently giving you a different type of curl. Just take care to make sure the ends are tucked in properly.
Start At the Top: Want one more idea? Seventeen magazine suggests you stick the roller near your scalp and wrap the hair around it rather than rolling it up. By near I’d say no further away than half an inch from your scalp.
Should They Stay Vertical or Horizontal?
Hack #8 Place The Rollers Vertical or Horizontal: When it comes to how to use hot rollers orientation matters.
So for those wondering whether rollers should be vertical or horizontal, yeah that matters too.
Depends on what look you’re going for.
Vertical placement gives looser, fluffier, more cascading spirals.
While placing them horizontally leaves you with seriously voluminous hair with body to spare.
Either way you want to try to keep the hair nice and tight against the roller. So keep it taut as your rolling generally winding the hair AWAY from your face.
Cool Down Is Critical
This is when the curl sets. For that reason don’t be in a hurry to remove the rollers before they’ve had a chance to work their styling magic.
That means you’ll want to give these heated wonders plenty of time to cool down.
Hack #9 Chill Out for 10, 15 even 20 Minutes
Some more high tech rollers have an indicator to tell you when it has cooled down.
Lacking that about 20 minutes from the time you place the last one should about do it. Or when they’re all cool to the touch – whichever comes first.
Finally we’ve arrived at the end game.
Your Heated Hair Roller End Game
You usually want to avoid brushing freshly minted curls. The risk of brushing out the curl is just too great.
Hack #10 What to Do Instead of Brushing
Finger raking is much preferred way to soften things since these sometimes lack staying power to begin with. Remember even gentle brushing can destroy the curl pretty much completely.
Some find that bending over and shaking their hair is another safe way to loosen the waves.
How Do These Curls Differ From Curling Iron Curls?
Good question. One many ask.
So how about if I show you?
This video clearly shows the difference.
This way you can see for yourself that curls made with the iron are tighter while those with hot rollers tend to be looser.
The stylist also points out that hot roller curls tend not to hold all day. Which may be why you see a choking cloud of hair spray in videos demonstrating how to use hot rollers.
I would hasten to add that with the use of the right styling products that lack of hold can be overcome.
Still as you can see if are expecting hot rollers to produce the same type of defined curls you get from a curling iron you’ll be disappointed.
Now that you know almost everything there is to know about using the hot little numbers which set should you buy if you don’t already have one or you want a better one?
Mini Reviews of Three Promising Sets
Before we dive in you should know that on a whole, satisfaction with hot rollers is lower than other styling tools.
There are many reasons why that could be.
Either the rollers don’t stay in, the clips don’t work to help them stay in, you end up with creases in your hair, the curls don’t last, the initial use produces burning plastic odors, there aren’t enough rollers, or the ones included are too small.
… so we thought you should be aware of that.
Because you want to have a pretty good idea what you need before clicking the order button in order to avoid disappointment.
Even then there is likely no perfect solution here so some compromise is in order.
Anyways first up are
Conair Compact Multi-Size Hot Rollers
These hot rollers show good things can come in small packages. It’s consistently rated well by users – which is rare for hot rollers.
This is a great set for those looking for a variety of smaller rollers. The sizes range from half an inch to three quarters to an inch. (Those are on the small side for styling longer hair unless you focus on the lower part only.) So no, you won’t find jumbo curlers in this set.
But the good news is if you have a preferred size you can always order more from the package insert that comes included. Last I heard three rollers were $4.00 plus S&H.
Better news still being ribbed rollers helps them stay put some. Using the pin in the middle of each almost insures they do.
Certainly the price is right. That alone should leave you beyond happy.
Of course you want to be careful whenever handling them however because, well, they’re hot. Mentioned because the fact they pack a lot of heat apparently isn’t obvious to some. Plus there is no cool end.
This set also lacks an on off switch – if that matters.
Hack To Simulate Instant Heat Up: If instant heat up is more what you have in mind just get yourself a timer. You can set it so the rollers are hot when you get up, get out of the shower or whenever. Most timers can also be set to turn off too. This gives the perfect alternative to a lack of auto shut off which bothers some.
Oh and it’s not unusual for them to smell like melted plastic the first few times you use them. This is mentioned more than a few times by those leaving reviews. This should come as no surprise and does go away with use.
Then another smaller roller set to consider would be the …
Remington H1015 Compact Ceramic Worldwide Voltage Hair Setter
One reason for the popularity of this set might be the price. The price is amazingly affordable. For less than the cost of a casual dining meal for two you get 10 rollers split evenly between one inch and one and a quarter inch sizes. They are coated to help them stay where you put them.
These are ceramic rollers. That means they’re going to be heavier. So one common complaint is the rollers tend not to stay in. (That’s almost a universal complaint with hot rollers, by the way.)
Hack to Make The Rollers Stay: One way some use to solve that is with butterfly clips. The nice thing about the price point with this set is you can go out and get some plastic hair clips (like these) to hold each roller and still come out ahead.
Another user found that if you push the curved side of the clip against a hard surface until it bends a little that can help it hold the roller more securely.
The cool touch ends means you’ll love how you’ll have to worry less about burnt fingers. Not perfect perhaps. But better than other rollers.
One final thing, aside from its petite size, that makes it a popular choice for world travelers is its dual voltage.
Hack To Make Sure They Get Them Hot: These guys should start heating up almost instantly. If not make sure you push the rollers down in the unit until you hear them click in place. Just a good trick to know if you’re having troubles getting them to fire up.
Finally many are looking for jumbo rollers. Neither of those first two really qualifies. But this one does.
Conair Xtreme Instant Heat Jumbo And Super Jumbo Hot Rollers
This setter from Conair almost falls into the love it or hate it category. Yeah the results are kind of mixed. But since there is a need for a set with jumbo rollers it made the cut. Because when it works massive voluminous curls have never looked so big.
Now on the plus side these heat up fast. The number of times this is brought up suggests it is true.
On the downside a most common complaint is they don’t stay in or the clips used to hold them in place creates creases in your curls. Given how often this is brought up you may find a problem with that too. Part of that may be due to the weight of the rollers.
Yeah but, these are truly jumbo rollers. Four of them are and inch and three quarters. The remaining 8 are an inch and a half. They are flocked or have a layer of protective foam wrapped around them. Rollers these size should leave you with awesomely volumized hair.
They employ ceramic infused tech. That makes for the best heat transfer and longer lasting salon style curls. But it also means heavier rollers.
Finally you should know the lack of an on and off button can be troubling for some.
Oh and one more thing. Don’t buy a set because of the color of the rollers. That can change. Yet as long as they perform the same does it really matter?
Maybe this is why so many are unhappy with the set. They’re deciding on their choice for the wrong reason. Just saying.