• Wed, Jan 25 2012

DIY Hair: Fancy Curling Irons (Does This Look Better Than Hot Rollers?)

The last time I used a curling iron was when I was 14. It was my mother’s, and I think it was from 1985. I never liked it, but I spent a really good portion of my life crouching by an electrical outlet trying to give my hair “bounce.” I don’t know why I did that. I should have been straightening my hair like every other 14 year old in the world in 2000. But I discovered hot rollers soon afterwards, and used them ever since, so it all worked out fine.

Until yesterday, when Remington sent over their Curl Perfect Curling Iron (seen above). Which, in addition to looking like a space alien’s sex toy promised perfect curls. RIGHT THERE. IN ITS NAME.

So, we tried it. Here’s how it works:

Step 1: Blow dry your hair. Or let it dry. Have dry hair, I guess is what we’re aiming for. Here’s how we’re starting out:

Step 2: Pick up the perfect curling iron. It’s grooves are intended to help guide you in forming the curl. The idea is that you clamp a piece of hair at the bottom of the curling iron (there is a clip that clips your hair in place) and then you gently twist up. I left the curling iron in for around 1 minute on each, though I suppose you could go longer or shorter. Here’s how the curls look:

remington curl perfect curling iron

Step 3: The problem I have here is that I can never get the tips of my hair to not look straight when I’m using curling irons. Maybe because I’m overly nervous about burning my fingers and thus don’t make sure that the very bottom of the hair is clipped in to the heated metal part of the iron. Maybe this is about bravery, and what it means to each of us. Or maybe that’s just a way in which even really good curling irons are not as great as hot rollers. I do think that it’s worth pointing out that you’ll be stuck sitting in place curling your hair for 20 minutes with a curling iron, whereas you can just clip in hot rollers, which gives you the freedom to put on your make-up, or return e-mails, or make pancakes, or basically do anything you want except go outside. But I guess it’s not that bad to sit on the couch watching The Shawshank Redemption, so, you know, okay.

Here is how it came out:

See what I mean about the ends looking straight? Does anyone know how to avoid that? I tried to go back and re-do them a bit, and used Frizz-Ease, which helped the ends be not be quite as noticeable.

Still, the curls are a lot bouncier and more free flowing than when I use rollers,which might be good for some parties. I could do this, sometimes. Or not! Please tell me what to do, decisions are hard.

Here’s a picture of me with curling iron hair on the left (I am clutching the Curl Perfect Curling Iron here) and the hot roller hair on the right (I am not clutching anything, there, but I use Remington hot rollers). Try not to pay attention to the fact that I am wearing identical make-up and holding my head in a similar position in both photos. Which do you like?

Sorry! This poll is now closed.

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curling iron vs hot rollers

 

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  • Meghan Keane

    I think you need a curling iron glove. It’s a kind of intense looking heat proof glove that lets you hold your hair in place and eliminates the straight bit at the end of your hair. And there are special curlign irons that are just a heated bar. again, a more intense version of a regular curling iron, bec it looks super phallic.

    • Niki

      agreed, it makes curling your hair with a curling iron a million times easier.

      however, if you’d rather use hot rollers and want tighter, bouncier curls like you get with the curling iron, try using a set of smaller rollers.

  • BeccaTheCyborg

    I’m on Team Hot Rollers, but I mostly just wanted to say how pretty your makeup looks. SO PRETTY.

    • Ellen W.

      Totally agree. It’s the makeup Katherine, Duchess of Cambridge is trying to do.

    • Jennifer Wright

      Thank you so much! It’s pretty basic. The lipstick is Illamasqua “Box” and I apply Make-Up Forever Aqua Black Waterproof Cream Eye Shadow around my eyelash line with a brush. Since it’s cream, the lines aren’t as hard as the kind you get with an eyeliner pencil. I use a gold eye shadow base on the upper eyelid, which I then cover with a pale brown eyeshadow (but the gold softens it, so it doesn’t seem all “blam! Your eyelids are not human colored!) and a bit more brown in the crease. I also apply a bit of the brown to the lower lash line to help the black blend a bit. God, this seems really complicated, now. It’s actually not basic so much as “years of vain experimentation.”

  • Nikita

    All curling irons look super phallic. (Sidenote: Maybe that’s why they appeal to me…) I’m terrible at using hot rollers so a little extra time with the iron is worth it to me for they achieve the perfect curls.

  • Nikita

    Now I have penis on the brain.

  • Krissy

    Is it okay to say I like both? I think they’re both gorgeous – hot rollers more for everyday, curling iron for special occasions.

    Either way, you’re gorgeous.

  • Ella Jane Goeppinger

    I’ve actually found the best way to get perfect curls root to tip is with a straightening iron. I use a 1″ straightener because my hair’s only about shoulder length, but one could use a wider one with longer hair. just clamp down on the hair at the root (or wherever you want the curl to start) and twist is 180 degrees either upwards or downwards, then slowly pull down hair. WORKS SO GOOD.

  • MR

    Again one guy’s perspective – and I see the vote tally is totally against it. But I think the rollers’ outcome highlights your face’s features better, especially your eyes. The other look looks fine too, but at a shindig….

  • Kj

    I’m starting to think that these posts are just an excuse to show off how gorgeous you are, Jennifer.

    Just kidding, there’s nothing wrong with showing off how gorgeous you are.

    ANYHOW

    You’ve actually pretty much sold me on the hot rollers! I like that you can put them in and go, and the retro-ness of them appeals to me – I can seriously picture myself going around with a scarf on them, doing 40s-ish things. …yay!

    • Jennifer Wright

      You have no idea how much make-up I slathered on for these pictures. Suffice to say, my actual head is about the size of a coconut.

      (I’ve tried the scarf thing! It actually helps them stay in, but if you venture outside, even to take out the garbage for a second, someone will appear out of nowhere and sort of half shriek “what’s that on your HEAD” as though you’ve started growing spikes. No one recognizes hot rollers anymore).

  • Lauren

    I really like both. I would do hot rollers for every day and the curling iron for random acts of awesome hair.

    Also, what lipstick are you wearing? It’s a gorgeous! I also have eyebrow envy…

    • Jennifer Wright

      I think this is my plan, too. And the lipstick is Illmasqua “Box”. It is a really good lipstick that I wear a lot, clearly. http://www.sephora.com/browse/product.jhtml?id=P241717

    • Lauren

      Thanks! I’ll be getting this tomorrow now so I can wear it this weekend. I’ll also be getting hot rollers apparently. Thanks for making me go over budget on my beauty product fund, but I’ll look good, so it’s OK.

  • amber dawn

    I think both look really good, but the hot rollered hair doesn’t scream “Curly” just “wavy with body”. So for curly, I voted the curling iron.

  • Hannah

    Jennifer, you look gorgeous!

    • Jennifer Wright

      Thank you Hannah! So do you! I can’t see you now!

  • Meg

    I know the answer to this! I never know answers to hair questions!

    After you clamp your curl and roll it up, slightly release the pressure on the clamp and twist the iron tighter. It takes a bit of practice, but the ends should slide right in.

    Side note- I’ve always been a bit wary of hot rollers for some reason, but the bounce you got is so pretty I’m going to have to try them!

  • Irene

    i’ve actually heard of a slightly different way to curl the hair which doesn’t leave the straight ends b/c it curls them with a diff. technique.

    you start by clamping a regular curling iron in the middle of the strip of hair. As you turn the iron upwards, keep a slight (not tight) hold on the clamp so that as you curl upwards, the bottom part of the strip of hair curls around the iron as well. Continue curling upwards until the entire strip of hair is wrapped around the curling iron. Fully clamp iron onto hair once all the hair is wrapped around the iron

    Hold for a few seconds and release hair from the curling iron. Since you started clamping and curling from the middle of your hair, you shouldnt have a problem with the unclamped straight end you mentioned having up there

  • Mona

    I think both look beautiful for different occasions. Hot curlers for meeting with family for brunch and curling iron for meeting your friends for a party. I used to hate it when I couldn’t get my hair to curl at the top but I have accepted it. It makes it more elegant and put together, and anyone that knows you will already know that you don’t have naturally curly hair and they won’t think anything of the straight part, they will only think “Oh! your hair is curly today!”

  • lovaaa

    I just got this curling type wand today, and i absolutely love it! My hair is so perfectly curly and big! I’d recommend this to everyone.