The Secrets To Getting The Perfect Curls Using A Flat Iron

Stunning body and volume

Curling hair with a flat iron is nothing new. In fact, we’ve seen salon experts and beauty gurus on YouTube and TikTok do it in a breeze. However, if you’re trying it out for the first time or if you’re used to curling irons more, using a flat iron to get bouncy curls might feel challenging. We’re here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be.

How to curl your hair with a flat iron

Curling your hair with a flat iron is not as hard as you think!

Curling your hair with a flat iron versus typical curlers

While curling irons and traditional curlers are made specifically to, well, give you curls, it’s hard to control the kind of curls you’ll get using these tools. This is because the results are dependent on the size and circumference of the barrel you’re using. Your hair length usually affects the kind of curls you get too since the longer your hair is, the more likely you’ll only get mid-to-tip ringlets.

On the other hand, using a flat iron can help you create bigger or smaller curls depending on the technique you’ll use. Hair length also won’t be an issue, since you’re not coiling your hair in a rod as you would with a curling iron and you will have more control over your starting point.

Learning how to curl your hair with a flat iron also makes styling more convenient since you don’t have to bring multiple hair tools if you want to switch between sleek and straight locks and bouncy curls.

All set? Grab your flat iron and let’s get to curling.

How to curl your hair with a flat iron

1. Start with clean, dry hair

We’re talking completely dry hair and not damp. It doesn’t matter if your flat iron is good for wet and dry hair, dry hair should be your starting point. Your hair should also be clean (ideally free from feeling sticky and sweaty) because oils and dirt on unwashed hair will also prevent your curls from sticking. Curls made on clean, dry hair form easier and last longer.

If you’re blow-drying your hair, use a hair mousse or a volumising hair prep product before you proceed to achieve a more voluminous finish.

2. Detangle your hair by giving it a nice comb through

Carefully comb through your hair to deal with any tangles. This will make sectioning your hair later a lot easier and will also prevent unruly clumps of hair from forming as you curl your locks.

Woman combing her hair

Say bye to tangles and hello to nice curls.

3. Apply a heat protectant or anti-frizz haircare product to ensure your hair is in its best condition

Now that your hair is free from tangles, it’s time to do the final prep before we actually get to curling. Apply a heat protectant or an anti-frizz haircare product to make sure your hair will have a protective shield against the heat of the flat iron. Aside from heat damage protection, this will make the hair look silkier and healthier too.

4. Divide your hair into sections

Even if there’s not exactly a ‘proper’ starting point when it comes to curling your hair with a flat iron, it’s still ideal to divide your hair into sections to make the process easier. If you have thin hair, four sections ought to do it. If you have thicker hair, do more sections. Secure each section with a hair tie or some bobby pins but make sure it’s not too tight so it’s easier to grab later.

5. Get your flat iron

While most flat irons would work for curling, the ideal ones to use are the standard to slim-sized styles. This is because they will be easier to twist to form the curls, rather than those with flashy and bulky bodies.

Set your flat iron using your usual settings and wait for it to heat up before proceeding to the next step.

6. Start curling from the hairs under the ear and work your way upwards

Once your flat iron is set, get a section of your hair from under your ear and clamp the iron half an inch away from the scalp. From there, rotate the flat iron slowly to a full turn; you can angle it away from your face or towards your face, there’s no right or wrong direction. As you rotate the flat iron, slide it down until you reach the tip of the hair section you’re curling.

If you do it right, a pronounced curl should have formed. Repeat the process for all the sections. Make sure to rotate your flat iron in alternating directions to angle the curls more naturally.

It’s important to start from the hairs under the ear since this sets the foundation for how much body and volume your entire look would have.

7. Give your hair a nice tousle

Run your fingers down your scalp and give the roots of your hair a good shake. This will loosen up the curls and make each layer blend better, creating a more natural, waterfall-like effect.

Woman with curly hair

Give those curls a good tousle for a more natural look.

8. Set, set, set

Make your curls last through the day by setting them with hairspray or any other hair-setting product you’re currently using. Apply the products lightly, just enough to hold the curls but not to the point that it’ll make your hair look stiff and crunchy.

Big and bouncy curls are great for making the hair look fuller and more lively. With this trick, you can achieve it easily and hassle-free.

Next, deal with heat-caused damage by adding these hair oils to your current haircare routine.

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