Getting those flawless, bouncy curls that you’ve always admired doesn’t have to be a daunting task anymore. With the proper techniques and a trusty curling iron, you can achieve gorgeous curls that turn heads wherever you go. In this guide, we’ll take you through the best tips for hair curling with a wand, ensuring your styling experience is stress-free, and your curls stay stunning all day.

How does Curling Iron work?

A curling iron, also known as a curling wand, is a popular hairstyling tool to create beautiful curls and waves in your hair. It features a heated barrel, which you wrap sections of your hair around to achieve the desired curl pattern.

Things to avoid before Curling your hair

Before curling your hair, there are several essential things to avoid to ensure you get the best results and protect the health of your hair. Here are some things to steer clear of:

1. Using Hot Tools on Wet Hair:

 Never use a curling iron on wet hair, as it can cause severe damage. Make sure your hair is completely dry before curling.

2. Skipping Heat Protection:

 Always apply a heat-protectant product before using any hot styling tool. Heat protectants create a barrier between your hair and the heat, reducing the risk of damage

3. Using High Heat Settings:

Avoid using the highest heat setting on your curling iron, especially if you have delicate or damaged hair. Opt for lower temperatures to minimize heat damage.

Check out this guide to avoid heat damage on curly hair with simple steps

4. Overloading Your Hair with Products: 

Using too much product, such as serums or oils, can weigh down your hair and make it difficult for curls to hold their shape. Use a small amount of product and avoid applying it near the roots.

5. Curling Unsectioned Hair: 

Not sectioning your hair before curling can lead to uneven results and make the process more time-consuming. Divide your hair into smaller sections for more consistent curls.

6. Rushing the Process:

Take your time when curling your hair. Rushing can result in uneven curls, and you may need to redo sections, causing unnecessary damage.

7. Curling Over Previously Curled Hair:

Avoid curling over sections of hair that have already been curled. This can cause excessive heat exposure and lead to damage.

8. Curling Damaged Hair:

 If your hair is already damaged or overly processed, refrain from using hot tools until it has been restored to a healthier state.

9. Curling Without Clean Tools:

Make sure your curling iron is clean and free from any product buildup. Dirty tools can affect the outcome of your curls.

10. Not Allowing Curls to Cool:

 Let your curls cool entirely before styling or running your fingers through them. This helps set the rings and prevents them from falling out too quickly.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can protect your hair from damage and achieve beautiful, long-lasting curls with your curling iron. Remember to take care of your hair and use proper techniques to ensure stunning results whenever you curl your hair.

How to use a curling Iron?-Step by Step Guide in 2023

Curling your hair with a curling iron can initially seem daunting, but with the proper technique and practice, you can achieve beautiful curls. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

Step 1: Preparing Your Hair

  • Start with clean, dry hair. If your hair is damp, it won’t hold the curl well and can cause damage.
  • Apply a heat protectant product evenly throughout your hair to shield it from heat damage.

Step 2: Section Your Hair

  • Divide your hair into manageable sections using clips or hair ties. This will make the curling process more organized and ensure even results.

Step 3: Select the Right Barrel Size

  • Choose a curling iron with a barrel size that matches your desired curl type. Smaller barrels create tighter curls, while larger barrels produce looser curls or waves.

Step 4: Set the Temperature

  • Set the curling iron to an appropriate temperature depending on your hair type. Fine hair may require lower heat, while thicker hair may need slightly higher heat settings.

Step 5: Curling Technique

  • Take a small section of hair, about 1 to 2 inches wide. The smaller the section, the tighter the curl will be.
  • Hold the curling iron vertically with the barrel facing downward.
  • Start at the base of the section and wrap the hair around the barrel, away from your face, leaving the ends out.
  • Hold the hair around the barrel for about 5-10 seconds (adjust depending on your hair thickness and desired curl tightness).
  •  Release the curl gently and let it cool in your hand for a few seconds to set the shape.
  • Repeat the process for all sections of hair, working your way around your head.

For a more Detailed View, follow this tutorial

Step 6: Curling the Top Section

  • Start the curling iron closer to your roots for added volume for the top sections of your hair.
  • Wrap the hair around the barrel away from your face, as before.

Step 7: Styling the Front Sections

You can alternate the curl direction for a more natural look for the front sections framing your face. Curl some sections towards your face and others away.

Step 8: Applying Hairspray

  • After curling all sections, allow the curls to cool completely.
  • Lightly mist your hair with hairspray to help the curls hold their shape throughout the day.

Step 9: Final Touches

  • Once the hairspray has set, gently run your fingers through your curls to create a more natural, lived-in look.

Congratulations! You’ve successfully curled your hair with a curling iron. You’ll become more proficient with practice and experiment with different curling techniques and styles to achieve the perfect look for any occasion. Always prioritize hair health by using a heat protectant and avoiding excessive heat exposure. Happy curling!

Using a Curling Iron for Different Types of Curls:

Now we will see how you can create different curling styles using different types of curling wands. See this video for a more detailed view.

1. Beachy Waves:

 For relaxed, beachy waves, opt for a larger barrel size. Wrap up 1 to 2-inch sections of hair loosely around the wand, leaving the ends out. Hold for 5-8 seconds before releasing. Run your fingers through the waves to separate and create a more effortless look.

Curling Wand with Large barrel – Bio ionic long barrel, 1 1/4 inch.

2. Tight Curls or Ringlets: 

To achieve tight curls or ringlets, use a smaller barrel size. Take smaller sections of hair and wrap them tightly around the wand. Hold for a few seconds before releasing. Gently scrunch the curls with your fingers or use a wide-tooth comb to maintain their definition.

Curling Wand with small barrel – Wavytalk 3/8 Inch Small Curling Iron Wand

3. Spiral Curls:

Create spiral curls by using a narrow, tapered curling wand. Wrap small sections of hair tightly around the rod from root to tip. Hold for a few seconds before releasing. Avoid brushing these curls to preserve their spiral shape.

Narrow Tappered Curling Wand- Hot Tools Pro Artist Nano Ceramic Tapered Curling Wand 

4. Loose Waves:

For loose, soft waves, use a medium-sized barrel. Wrap more prominent sections of hair around the wand, leaving the ends out for a more natural look. Hold for a few seconds before releasing. Combine the waves gently with your fingers or a wide toothcomb to soften the curls.

Medium Size Barrel- Beachwaver B1 Midnight Rose

5. S-Curls or Vintage Waves:

 Achieve S-shaped waves or vintage-inspired curls using a curling wand with a clip. Take a 1 to 2-inch section of hair, wrap it around the rod, and use the clip to hold it in place for a few seconds. Release the hair and gently brush it to create elegant S-shaped waves.

Curling wand with clip Conair Double Ceramic 1-Inch Curling Iron,

6. Messy or Textured Curls:

 For a more messy or textured look, curl random sections of hair in different directions using various barrel sizes. Leave the ends out for an undone appearance. Once all areas are curled, scrunch and tousle your hair with your fingers to create a carefree, textured style.

Relatable – how to curl hair with a flat iron


1. What do you put on a curling iron before using it?

Before using a curling iron, apply a heat protectant product to your hair. Heat protectants create a barrier between your hair and the heat, reducing the risk of damage and maintaining hair’s moisture. Spray or apply the heat protectant evenly throughout your hair, focusing on the ends and lengths.

2. Do you use a curling iron on wet or dry hair?

Always use a curling iron on dry hair. Curling wet hair can lead to severe damage, as the excessive heat can cause the hair to become brittle and prone to breakage. Ensure your hair is completely dry before using a curling iron.

3. What should I put on my hair before curling?

Before curling your hair, apply a heat protectant product to shield your hair from heat damage. Additionally, you can use a styling mousse, foam, or light-hold hairspray to add texture and hold to your curls.

4. Should I use conditioner before curling my hair?

Yes, using conditioner before curling your hair is beneficial. Conditioner helps to moisturize and protect your hair, making it more manageable and less prone to damage from heat. After washing your hair, apply a conditioner suitable for your hair type, and rinse it thoroughly before styling.

5. What to do after curling your hair?

After curling, avoid using a regular brush after curling as it can disturb the curls and cause them to lose shape. Instead, use a wide-tooth comb or your fingers to separate and define the curls gently. You can also use a light-hold hairspray on your fingers and scrunch the curls to add volume and hold. Avoid excessive combing, as it may cause the curls to lose their bounce and definition.

6. How do you comb curls after curling?

After curling, avoid using a regular brush after curling as it can disturb the curls and cause them to lose shape. Instead, use a wide-tooth comb or your fingers to separate and define the curls gently. You can also use a light-hold hairspray on your fingers and scrunch the curls to add volume and hold. Avoid excessive combing, as it may cause the curls to lose their bounce and definition.


Remember, practice makes perfect for curling hair with a wand. Experiment with different techniques, barrel sizes, and curling directions to find the style that suits you best. Remember to use heat protection and hair products to maintain the health and longevity of your curls. With a bit of practice and creativity, your curling iron can become your ultimate tool for achieving a wide range of stunning curls and waves. Happy curling!