How to Use Spiral Rods: Perfect Heatless Curls Made Easy

Getting spiral curls with a curling iron is a classic, but if you have dry or frizzy hair, heat styling can cause a good deal of damage. So what’s a person who wants tight, even curls supposed to do. 

Bathrobe and flexirod curls are popular methods, but today’s article will look at how to use spiral rods to get flawless curly hair.

If you have been trying to achieve long spiral curls, this will help you get them without heat and with minimal products. Besides this, I will also talk about how to use a spiral curling iron or a curling iron with a spiral guide for those of you who want easy spiral curls with heat styling!

What are Spiral Rods?

What are Spiral Rods

Spiral rods are generally overlooked when compared to other methods of hair curling. Spiral rods are basically curling sticks where you wind clumps of damp hair around a spiral guide. Once the entire length of hair is wrapped around the rod, it is secured with a clip or elastic.

After the hair is dried, remove the clip and unwind the hair from the rod. Your hair will be in lovely corkscrew spiral curls! 

For best results, use something like a curling cream or mousse beforehand. Some people also finish off with hairspray to hold the hairstyle in place.

Who should use spiral rods? Most guides and videos show how to use spiral rods on natural hair as these hair types are well suited for curls. 

Hair that tends to curl or coil by itself will see the best results with this product. People with wavy hair will also find that spiral rods curl their hair, although the curls will be looser.

If you have thick, dense hair, you will need a lot of patience to use spiral rods! It will take ages to work these rods throughout the entirety of your hair. On the flip side, people with fine, thin hair will not see a significant difference with this kind of curler. 

The same applies to those with pin-straight hair, as their hair will not curl without some kind of heat styling.

You may also like: Curling Iron Vs Flat Iron– Which One Do You Need?

How to Use Spiral Rods: Getting Spiral Curls Sans Heat

how to use a spiral curling iron

This section will show you how to use spiral perm rods to get heatless curls. The process will test your patience, but the beautiful results will make it worthwhile in the end!

What You Need:

What You Need to Do:

  1. Start with clean, freshly washed hair. It is best to work with hair that is almost dry, and just slightly damp. If your hair is dry, use a spray bottle to mist some water into your hair.
  2. Section your hair into at least 4 different parts and use a clip to secure each portion.
  3. Apply some curl cream or leave-in conditioner to the first section of hair, from the mid-section to the ends.
  4. Then, apply a liberal amount of mousse or gel to the section.
  5. Take a clump of hair from the section and secure the spiral rod to the root of your hair using the hook at the top. Next, guide the clump around the spiral ridges of the rod until you reach the end of the hair. Use the included clip to secure the end.
  6. Repeat this step for the rest of the section of hair.
  7. Continue following steps 3-6 for the rest of the sections of hair. This can take quite some time, so be patient and take breaks in between if needed.
  8. After all your hair is wrapped around the rods, allow it to dry. You can air-dry it, or use a hairdryer on low if you’re in a hurry.
  9. After a couple of hours, unhook your hair and remove it from the spiral rods.
  10. As the last step, separate your curls and gently shake the roots to give your curls more lift and volume.

For a better idea, check out this video:

Heat Styling Spiral Curls: How to Use a Curling Iron on Yourself

If you have fine straight hair, you might find that you need a heat styler to get nice corkscrew curls. In this scenario, using a curling iron with a spiral barrel is your best bet. A styler like the Revlon spiral curling iron will create a spiral, yet natural-looking curls.

If you don’t want to spend a lot on a single function product, something like the Ion Straight And Spiral Styling Iron will work as both a straightener and a curler.

There is no shortage of curling iron tutorial videos, in case you want to learn something like how to use Conair curling iron. But here is an easy way to use a spiral curling wand or iron for beginners:

What You Need:

What You Need to Do:

  1. Before you start, make sure your hair is clean and damp.
  2. Apply the heat protectant throughout your hair.
  3. Separate your hair into multiple sections and work on one part at a time.
  4. Plugin your wand or spiral iron and wait for it to heat up-this should happen pretty fast.
  5. Take a small section of hair 1-2 inches below the roots and wind it around the spiral ridges of the wand.
  6. Hold it in place for a second or two, and then release it from the wand.
  7. Repeat for the rest of your hair.
  8. Once you are done curling all your hair, spritz the hairspray to hold the curls in place.

You may also like: Can I Leave Conditioner In My Hair Overnight?

Still Got Questions

Below you’ll find answers to questions I get asked the most about using spiral rods to curl hair.

01. Do Spiral Rods Need Heat to Work?

No, spiral rods are a form of heatless stylers. You do not need to apply any kind of direct heat for them to work.

02. How Long Will Spiral Rods Take to Curl My Hair?

You should leave your hair in the spiral rods in your for at least 3 hours, and even longer if you have thick, dense hair. You can even leave the rods in your overnight and take them out in the morning.

03. Can I Use Spiral Rods on Dry Hair?

While you can do so, it will not yield good results. Damp hair saturated with curling creams and mousses will be easier to mold into curls.

04. Will Spiral Rods Damage my Hair?

Spiral rods will damage your hair very little in comparison to straighteners and heated curlers. However, it does involve pulling and tugging on your hair which can cause some damage when done too often. So it is best to give your hair a break in between curling.

05. How Long Does It Take to Apply the Spiral Rods?

The time taken to curl with spiral rods will depend on how thick your hair is. If you have very thick hair, the process can take almost two hours at first. However, as you get used to working with the spiral rods, this time can decrease dramatically.

Last Words

Spiral rods are a blessing if you don’t want to heat style your hair. They provide a tangle-proof, frizz-free method that won’t damage hair in the long run. 

Knowing how to use spiral rods will always come in handy, whether you want a fun weekend hair experiment or perfect corkscrew curls for an event!