Introduction: How to Curl Your Hair With a Flat Iron

About: Community Manager for Instructables and Tinkercad.

You don't need a curling iron to get perfect curls you’ll love! Next time you are looking for a new, fun hairstyle, pull out your flat iron and get these amazing results!

This hair style was done by Sharelle Loudd at Beautique Salon in San Jose, CA. She was awesome enough to demonstrate this secret flat iron curling technique while we documented the process. We hope these tips will help you make the most of your long natural hair without pulling out a curling iron and burning your forehead.

You may be tempted to buy one of those fancy new curling rods, but it's easier than you think to use a flat iron to curl your hair. Keep reading to find out how!

Thanks to audreyobscura for the beautiful photography.

Step 1: Tools and Products Needed for Flat Iron Curls


These are the hair products we used to create the curls, but you can sub in similar products as well! You'll need a spray to hold the curls, and an oil-based spray to use before flat ironing your hair. This will add shine and protect your hair while it curls.

Step 2: How to Comb Out and Pin Up Hair for Flat Iron Curls

Take a half inch section from the nape of her neck and spray with oil sheen. Oil sheen helps with the glide of the flat iron over the hair. Go ahead and smooth the oil sheen through the body of the hair.

Tips for Curling Hair:

  • Wrap as if you were using a curling iron (don't close the flatiron completely).
  • Use less heat for blonde hair and scale up as hair darkens.
  • You can tell if you're putting enough heat in with the flatiron by feeling the hair. It should feel warm, which lets you know that the heat is reaching all of the hair.
  • You can't put too much hair in at once, or it'll be too too tough.
  • Don't do the tips of your hair until the end, as they require the least amount of heat to retain the curl.

Here is just the motion you will be using as you twirl you wrist to turn the flat. Check your pulse, twist, look at your watch, twist, repeat:


Step 3: The Basics of the Flat Iron Curl


Take flatiron and use it underneath your hair. You will be twirling your wrist around while holding the hair with your other hand when making the turn. So you are turning the flat iron, not the hair around the flat iron.

As you can see in these gifs, you aren't wrapping all of your hair around the flat iron like you would with a curling iron. Instead you wrap just part of the hair and slowly and carefully pull it down the length of the hair.


Step 4: Using the Flat Iron to Make Waves

This method is to get "Beach body wave curls," a looser curl that falls down your back.


So instead of pointing the tip of the flatiron down, point it up, angling up (the angles do the curls).

Keep hair centered in the flatiron to avoid snags. Once you have it all wound around the flat iron, carefully unwind. If the curl comes out too tight, you can run your fingers through it to loosen it up.

Unlike the other curl, you wrap all the hair around the flat iron and then carefully unwrap it.


Step 5: How Your Flat Iron Curls Should Look

To finish off your new curly hairstyle, spritz with Kenra. You can also use an oil sheen and comb the top part of the hair to smooth it out.

Full Spectrum Laser Contest

Participated in the
Full Spectrum Laser Contest