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How To Curl Your Hair Using a Flat Iron/ Straightener

Updated on January 10, 2011

Ever heard of the expression "beauty is pain"? Whoever came up with that one wasn't lying, and I think we all know that half the pain is letting go of so much money to keep up with our image! On a more specific note, styling our hair in itself can be quite pricy. Not only do we need everyday products such as shampoo and conditioner, but we also must make expensive one-time purchases such as straighteners and curlers to help with our styling. Fortunately, there is a way to cut this spending in half, and keep more money in our wallets.

Straightening and curling our hair, although each producing completely different results, can be done easily with one iron. Many people are unaware that if you twist the straightener properly, it will create perfect, buoyant curls. This art takes a lot of practice, but after about five times you can get the hang of it and curl your hair more perfectly than if you were using a curling iron. First, we'll go into the basics to prepare for this type of hairstyle.


Every time you alter your hair using heat, it is essential that you put on a heat protector beforehand. Heat protectors are around ten dollars, which may seem a bit pricy, but they will last you a very long while as you only need to spray your hair a few times. The brand I use is Pantene's Heat Protection & Shine Spray and it seems to work very well. If you do not use a heat protector and you curl/straighten your hair repetitively, you will notice that your split ends will increase and your hair may even begin to break off. It's important to keep your hair healthy as you style it.

The quality of your hair straightener will also determine how well your curls turn out. A good straightener is one that costs around $100 and heats up past 350 degrees. I own two types of straighteners -- a CHI and a BioIonic OnePass -- and both give me great results. A twenty dollar straightener you found at WalMart will not cut it; you will end up having to pass the flat iron over your hair at an extremely slow rate to make any type of wave. Not only will this take forever, but you'll probably end up damaging your hair. Spend the money and get the right type of straightener. It's worth it.

Finally, you'll need hairspray to spray each curl with after you pass the iron over it. If you don't have any hairspray, your curls will probably just end up falling and you'll waste a lot of time for nothing. Just about any type of hairspray will work, but the best kind is the type that has a continuous spray as you hold down the nozzle. 

Now that the basics have been covered, we'll go in to the simple steps it takes to curl your hair with a flat iron. Before you begin, tie up about half of your hair in a bun if your hair is very thin so it will be more manageable.

  • Take a small amount of hair, about an inch and a half wide, and place the flat iron at the very top of it.
  • Clamp the flat iron down on the hair tightly.
  • Rotate the flat iron 360 degrees away from your head, only moving the iron down upon your hair as little as possible. 
  • Once the iron is rotated, make sure the clamp is tight, and slowly pass it along your hair.

When you get to the end, you sure have a beautiful, bouncy curl! Spray it with hairspray and move on to the next section of hair. I have included a video for a visual to help explain these steps. 

The girl rotates the iron toward her, which works as well.

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