How To Use Heated Rollers

It wasn’t that long ago that heated rollers were only for the older generation. If you wanted curls then there were many different tools to use to achieve the look, most commonly curling tongs and irons.

But rollers are back, and they’re not just for creating old-fashioned curly hair styles. In fact, they’re the tool of choice for many tops stylists creating the most modern styles in salons today!

So let’s explore how to use heated rollers!

Which heated rollers are right for me?

If you buy the right rollers then you’ll get the best out of them and find them as easy as possible to use. There are a number of considerations when choosing a set of heated rollers.



Here’s a list of some of the things you might want to think about before you part with your hard-earned cash.

  • The length and quality of your hair. The longer your hair then the more large-size rollers you will need. Fine hair might need more control over heat.
  • The look you want to achieve. Loose, wavy curls will require large rollers to achieve, ringlets or tight curls will require small rollers.
  • The material that the rollers are made from. Sponge, ceramic, wax core – there are different types of rollers to suit different needs.
  • The method of securing the rollers. Some sets of rollers still use pins to keep them in place, some now use grips that are intended to be much easier to use.
  • Cost. The price of heated rollers varies quite a lot, so you need to be sure how much you’re prepared to spend.


How to use heated rollers?

There are some basic principles of using heated rollers that apply no matter what type you’re using.


The best place to start with any type of rollers, perhaps barring the ones you can sleep in, is a head of clean, dry hair. If your hair isn’t dry when you start then your curls won’t stick around for that long. If you know you’re going to be pushed for time, think about washing your hair the day before. Otherwise, make sure you blow-dry it thoroughly.

Washing your hair the day before may actually help your curls stay longer, as hair will style better if it’s a day “old”. And think about skipping conditioner if you’re having trouble with curls dropping out, as less shiny and soft hair will hold a curl better too.

Some product will probably help. Check out some volumising/texturising mousse and run this through your hair before you start. You might want to think about some heat-protection spray too, especially if your hair is fine or damaged.


There are a number of different ways to roll your hair depending on the look you want to achieve. We’ll have a look at some of those different ways later. Before you start with any method, however, you’ll need to section off your hair. Make sure your hair is parted where you want it. Sometimes this will be your normal parting, but a deeper side parting can give you a more glamorous look, particularly if your hair is quite long.

Create a number of sections, depending on how many rollers you intend to use. You might want to limit the sections to four, (top, back, each side), and then work on one section at a time. Decide on which size rollers you’re going to use and how many – this will depend on the look you want to achieve and the rollers you have available to you.

With each section, take a strand of hair roughly the same width as your roller. If you want a longer-lasting curl or a more defined look, you might want to give the hair a quick spritz of hairspray before rolling up. Roll up tightly, making sure all the hair is wrapped evenly around the roller. Secure the roller and move onto the next until you’ve completed each section.


It’s important to wait until the rollers have cooled completely. This will ensure that you get the most staying-power out of your style. The softer-style rollers may allow you to sleep in them meaning that they will cool completely and give your curls the maximum chance of forming.

Then it’s time to remove them. Working from the bottom up, wind each roller carefully out of your hair. Do this in the opposite direction to the way you wound it in. Take care to avoid disturbing the curl as much as possible. Give each curls a quick spray with hairspray when you’ve taken it out.

When you’ve removed all the rollers, you will need to decide on how defined you want your look to be. If you’re looking for defined and separated, you should carefully run your fingers through the curls to arrange the style but retain the definition. Use a strong-hold hairspray to keep your creation looking neat. If you want more of a wavy or soft look, run a wide-toothed comb or a brush through your hair until you achieve the look you want. Finish with a product suited to the style you’re after – a hairspray or texturising product.

Here’s a video to show you the basics:

How do I get different looks?

There are so many different ways to use heated rollers to get different looks. The style you can achieve will, of course, be limited by a number of factors. The length of your hair, your hair type (fine, thick, coarse, oily etc) and the type of rollers you have are all considerations.

These days, most people want to achieve a glamorous, wavy Hollywood-type style. They want lots of volume and glossy waves of hair tumbling down. You will obviously need quite long hair for this! But if you’re blessed with a head of Rapunzel-like tresses then get yourself the largest rollers you can find and you’re good to go!

For waves, you want to roll larger sections of hair. Make sure, however, that the section of hair is no wider than the roller you’re using. If your hair sections are quite large and/or your hair is quite thick, leave the rollers in as long as possible. Roll the sections with the roller held horizontal to the floor for waves. For added volume you want to “over-correct” the roll of the hair. This means that you pull the hair forwards towards your face from where it naturally grows from the scalp before rolling it up. This will increase lift at the roots.


Ringlets may be considered quite old-fashioned these days but they still suit some people and you could reignite a trend! For more defined, tighter curls or ringlets, try holding the roller vertical to the floor before winding hair on tightly. Using smaller rollers will give you tighter curls.


Here’s Fearne Cotton showing you how to achieve a glamorous Hollywood style with heated rollers:

And here’s Fearne again, this time showing you a more relaxed style that would suit everyone:

What are the best heated rollers to buy right now?

Here are our top three sets of heated rollers to buy right now based on quality, flexibility and user ratings.

1. BaByliss Pro – 30 Piece Heated Ceramic Rollers

This set is so versatile. There are a large number of different-sized rollers, so should do the job for any hair type and any style. They come with grips and clips to fix in place and have a cool rim to stop you burning your fingers when inserting them. They have two temperature settings so should be great whether your hair is thick or fine.

Check the price on Amazon now!

2. Remington H5670 Jumbo Hair Rollers

These jumbo-sized rollers are perfect for creating glamorous waves. They have a velvet-touch barrel and ceramic ionic technology, which should help you create glossy, shiny curls with ease. The rollers have a wax core which retains heat for longer helping you to set your curls for longer for a lasting style.

Check the price on Amazon now!

3. Cloud Nine The O Pod Be The Volume Star Ultimate Gift Set

If you’re serious about creating curls, this is the ultimate set of rollers. The pod uses induction technology to heat each roller to optimum temperature within four seconds. The rollers have a soft-grip coating so they grip your hair and keep it sleek and shiny.

The rollers heat from the inside which means no burning your fingers when inserting them. You can even buy the pod and rollers separately, which means that you can buy exactly the right number and exactly the right size of rollers to suit you. They even have a dot which changes colour when the roller is completely cool, letting you know when they’re ready to remove.

Check the price on Amazon now!

So hopefully this guide has told you all you need to know about how to use heated rollers. Whether you’re looking for a head of cherubic ringlets or a glossy Hollywood mane of sexy waves, there will be a set of heated rollers that will be right for you. Now go get curling!

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