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Curling Rod or Wand, which one is better?

Updated on March 20, 2017

Back in school, I was so obsessed with giving my hair a straight look, until I could get a straighter. And today, I am totally obsessed with curling my hair. Curling is in these days, Curlers have been enjoying a moment for a while now and I have to admit – I just love it. For what I believe is: curls make any woman appear more chic, impressive and utterly smart, no matter, how short or long their hair is. Curling sometimes can be hard, especially if you have never tried it before. I have been using curlers for a while now, but using a curling iron with a clamp is something I cannot do even now. I prefer sticking to my curling wand which is one of the best of its kind: Simple and fast.

If you know anything about curling hair with a heated rod or wand, you would be aware that curling irons have been a standard even before the invention of electricity. Surely, you might have seen an iron or a wand before in your life, in case you have not, curling iron is a barrel that gets heated if plugged into power. This curling iron has a clamp which holds hair after they are wrapped around the barrel. You then leave the hair like that for a span of few seconds and release the clamp and pull the iron out so that you can have the curls you wanted.

Quick comparison between Curling Rod and Curling Wands

Every woman loves to use this wonderful hair product because it helps you create the look you want within minutes. It is a great reliever from the parlor appointments indeed, when we sleep through our alarm clock and have to look hot and fabulous in no time. When we do quick comparison between the most popular trends in the current curling tools are irons which do not have clamps and are called as the curling wands. These tools are better than the traditional iron because of the absence of clamp that often added weird creases to the curls. Whereas the tapered irons of today let you have different sized curls which depend on where the hair is being wrapped on the wand.

It takes a bit of practice to learn how to use a curling wand when there is no one to guide you. You will have to learn how much time it takes for the curl to set. So once you are aware on how it wrap it correctly means you know how to curl your hair now.


Once the curling wand is plugged in, select the heat, but in case you are not sure about the heat level to go for the lowest setting initially and see how it works on your hair. This should be done so that you do not have to risk suffering from fried hair. But, in case your curls do not hold, increase the heat and try again. The general rule says, thinner the hair, lower is the setting, thicker the hair, more heat it needs.

Types of Curling Irons and Wands

Before you decide, on which type of curling iron or wand to go for, consider how will each affect your hair type. Everyone has different hair; hence you need to try different types before finding the perfect styling tool. Below are the few tips that can help you take the right decision:

Fine hair curls

For fine hair curl, you can go for the curling iron or wand with variable heat setting. This is because it holds the curl easily, though the barrel size you use depends on the type of curls that you intend to create. You get more versatility with this wand and at the same time, it does not burn your hair. Ceramic and tourmaline models provide better heat distribution and protection from heat damage.

Short hair

For short hair opt for a curling rod which has small barrel size, so it is good to style your hair in small parts. Smaller barrel ensures minimal risk of burns.

Long hair

If you have long hair then a curling wand which offers soft and loose waves can help you get your best looks. It is easy to wrap your hair along the tapered barrel than to use a curling iron and wind it. If you are looking for tighter curls, then a curling iron with the medium or large barrel is better as it offers you better choice and versatility.

Thick hair

Thick hair is difficult to manage, and it gets even harder if the hair is long. For long and thick hair, you can use a curling wand which has a large barrel size because it can create waves.

Sizes and use of Curling Iron Barrels

Curling iron barrel is uniform in diameter if compared to tapered curling wand barrel. And, the larger barrels create bigger and loose curls while the smaller barrels create tight curls. The ideal barrel you should be using depends on your hair and curls you want.

3 quarter inch barrel is used to create tight and firm curls.

Half inch barrel is used for creating medium curls.

1-inch barrel is used for creating soft waves.

One and a half inch barrel helps in creating soft waves in long hair.

2 and 3-inch barrels create waves and loose curls.

How to use a Curling Wand

All curling wands are not alike, the size of the barrel you use determine the types of curls you will have. You will also have to know beforehand which type of a curling wand you must go for. The tourmaline or ceramic ones are typically the best and are considered to be the safest for your hair. Adjust the heat settings as per your hair type and preferences.

How to prepare your hair

It is important to brush your hair, and fully detangle them. Use quality spray for heat protection and brush your hair thoroughly to stop any damage to their hair. Always use large hair clips to pin your hair on the top.

Preheat the Iron

Always preheat the curling wand (almost 2 – 4 minutes) before using it, to allow it to give your hair a better curl.

Use Heat Resistant Glove

Most curling wands available in the market today come with heat resistant glove, this is because curling wand does not have a clamp and you have to use your fingers to wrap the hair. So, it is important to put on a glove before using the wand.

Wait for few seconds

Hold your hair in the curling wand for two to five seconds and not more than that.

Cool the Curl

For keeping the curls tight, hold them after they are removed from the wand so that they become cool. Bobby pin can also be used to hold them in place and at the same time, you can proceed with curling rest of the hair.

When you have curled all your hair, mist your hair with the help of a hairspray.

Best Hair Styles

Below are the best hairstyles that can be made from your curling wand:

The Curled away look:

This curling style looks ultra flattering on every face.


  • Blow dry your hair with thermal protectant
  • Use a curling wand with 1-inch barrel and curl your hair vertically from the mind section way from your face.
  • Let the curls cool and then mist with the hairspray.
  • Finally, finger through the curls and reapply the hairspray.

Face shape: This hairstyle works for all face shapes.

2. Tousled waves:

The perfect hairstyle for warm days and a lovely weekend


  • Prep your hair with a texturizing spray.
  • Barrel of minimum 1.25 inch must be used.
  • Curl your hair vertically, flip them upside down and shake the curls out.
  • Finish the style with a quality hairspray.

Face shape: This hairstyle works for all face shapes.

Curled half up

This is a hairstyle meant for your romantic escapade, look no further as this is the look for a perfect date.


  • Prep blow dried hair with a thermal protectant, use one-inch curling barrel and make sure, you curl only the ends.
  • The backcomb crown and pull top and sides towards the crown.
  • Then twist your hair and use bobby pins. Use a headband and place it three inches away from your hairline and arrange the locks as you like.
  • Touch up the ul ends and then finish the style with hairspray that can hold your hair.

Face shape: This hairstyle goes best with all face shapes.

Curls side swept

Try “curls side swept” for a glamorously curled look for a wow-worthy look


  • Prep your dry hair with a thermal protectant.
  • Starting from the nape of your neck, then curl the hair vertically separated in 1-inch sections with 1-inch curling barrel.
  • Work in small section till you reach towards the front, then create a deep side part and curl away from your face.
  • While removing hair from the curling wand pull then to the side.
  • Use a strong hairspray to keep the look.

Face shape:

This hairstyle is for all face shapes.

By adding curls to any hairstyle can add texture, bounce and playfulness no matter what the length of your hair is. Hope you will enjoy these creative fun hairstyles.

Tips on Curling your Hair

  • Do not curl wet hair, it will damage your hair and the curling won't happen
  • Do not overlap your hair when wrapping them around the wrap.
  • Do not hold your hair for more than two to five seconds.
  • Keep your curling wand away from getting wet
  • Curling hair with high heat every day will damage it. In case you have to curl the hair each day, use a lower heat setting.
  • Avoid damage to the hair by using a heat protectant.
  • Use a heat resistant glove while curling your hair, else there are chances that you might burn it.


  • Do not use curling wand daily to curl your hair, because ultimately you will have to pay for it. Curl them only on special occasions.
  • Always switch off your curling wand and take the plug out from the electric socket when it is not in use.

Things needed for curling your hair:

Below are the things you need to curl your hair, keep them handy:

  • Curling rod/ curling wand
  • Good quality hair spray
  • Curling glove
  • Heat protectant for hair
  • Hair brush/ comb

Use a small section of hair: Do not try to curl large part of hair at once, and this is the rule that applies to all rods and wands. If you want to create tight curls, wrap minimal hair.

Wrap your hair

To wrap your hair, hold them from the end and then wrap around the barrel, try to curl away from your face and wrap your hair around the base of the barrel rather than going from the centre to the tip. For tight spiral curls, you must twist your hair before wrapping it around the barrel.


No matter what your hair type is adding curls to it (short, long medium), adding curls to it makes you look more glamorous, smart and put together. So, no matter what your current hairstyle is, pick up a curling wand for yourself and treat your hair with a perfectly new and refreshing look. This will add a pinch of style statement to your personality and will make you look extra gorgeous. So, stop worrying about the world and gift yourself a new look. Get started, get inspired.


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