How To Curl Fine Hair Without Damaging It

Aug 22, 2016 by Sarah (Day Styles)

For those of us blessed with fine strands of thin hair, it can be tough to put a curl in your hair and actually have it stick around for more than a couple of hours. What’s worse is that it takes some industrial styling tools to get any shape to your strands if they’re naturally straight. When the hair is thin, individual strands are much weaker, delicate, and “slippery” -  which is why they only hold a curl for an hour or less. Of course, it’s hard to do this without drying and damaging your hair. Heated styling tools remove most of the moisture from your hair, and thin hair has a harder time absorbing moisture in the first place, leaving fine hair dry and fried! Well, don’t worry - it’s possible to curl your hair, but it’s getting the curls to hold that is the tricky part! If you want curls without the damage that comes with them, check out these neat tricks below.

Make Sure Your Hair Is Dry

If your hair is a bit too dirty to style and you need to wash your hair, that’s fine, just make sure that your hair is 100% dry before you start to use styling tools. If you’ve ever used a flat iron or curling iron on damp hair, you’ve probably heard that sizzling sound - that is what we want to avoid at all costs. Take your time with the blow dryer to ensure that all of your hair is completely dry and prevent unnecessary damage.

Let Your Hair Be A Bit Dirty

That said, before you try to curl your hair, make sure there’s a little “dirt” in your hair. Natural oils from day-old hair mixed with a product like volumizing mouse help keep the curls in place, as the product helps the different strands lock into curls.

Use A Low Heat Setting

Don’t use your hot styling tools at maximum temperate, especially when your hair is thin and fine - it will literally cook or burn your hair. Don’t both using anything over 350° Fahrenheit or a low/medium setting - that is more than enough heat to style fine hair.

Give The Curls Time To Set

When you’re finished curling your hair, pin each of the curls to your head when they are in tight coils. Give each of the curls a blast of strong hold hairspray and let it dry before removing the clips. This allows the curls time to set and is a great way to help them stick and hold without using more heat than absolutely necessary.

Less Than Seven Seconds

To decrease the chances of damaging your hair, you have to use the heated styling tools quickly. Don’t hold a flat iron or a curling iron on your hair for any more than seven seconds. For people with especially fine hair, three seconds should be more than enough - but it really does depend on the texture of your hair. Just don’t fry those luscious locks!

Try A Braid

Sleeping in braids is a great way to get heat-free curls. Apply some leave-in conditioner to your hair and then section your hair into braided chunks and you’ll wake up to some great beach waves in the morning. If you want tighter waves, make your braids from smaller chunks of hair, and if you want looser waves, then make your braids from bigger chunks of hair.

Get The Right Products

Invest in the right styling products that cater to your type of hair and protect your hair from the heat. Heat protectant spray or serum on your hair before you blow dry can help prevent heat damage. Using gentle, sulfate-free products in the shower can help keep your hair healthy and fine.

Use The Scrunch Method

When you use the scrunch method, you’re going to want to either shower first or get your hair soaking wet with a spray bottle. This is another no-heat method so you won’t need a blow dryer or any heat tools by your side. While your hair air-dries, use your fingers as a comb, scrunch your hair with your hands, and apply a curl spray. Once your hair is completely dry, just set it with hairspray, and you’ll be good to go.

An Oldie But A Goodie

If you want to avoid heat (and potential damage) altogether, there’s no school like the old school! Foam rollers for your hair don’t require any heat, and you can sleep on them to wake up with a head full of curls. Brush them out in the morning for a more natural blown-out look. Using one these methods, you can expand your range of hairstyles without damaging your hair in the future!

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