There’s no denying that curled hair is absolutely stunning. If you don’t want to use heat tools on your strands, however, you may be wondering how you can achieve defined, heat-free curls. Enter pin curls. This popular curling method has been around for quite some time—your mom and grandma likely rocked pin curls hairstyles back in the day! Even better, you can do pin curls on short hair and long hair. Below, find a step-by-step tutorial on how to do pin curls to get bouncy, beautiful spirals.
STEP #1. WASH YOUR HAIR
As with most heat-free hairstyles, how you prep your strands can make all the difference. When washing your hair, look for a formula that will help keep frizz at bay, like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Frizz-Defy Shampoo and L’Oréal Paris EverPure Frizz-Defy Conditioner.
STEP #2. APPLY A FRIZZ SERUM OR CREAM
Speaking of frizz, after hopping out of the shower, it’s a good idea to apply a styling product to keep your strands sleek and tamed. Use a frizz serum, like the L’Oréal Paris EverSleek Frizz Finish Oil-In-Serum, or a hair cream, like the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle SLEEK IT Frizz Vanisher Cream. Apply either to damp hair.
STEP #3. PART YOUR HAIR
Working with damp hair, part your hair how you plan to wear it, whether that's to one side or down the middle. Use a wide-tooth comb to brush through your strands and ensure there are no knots or tangles.
STEP #4. CREATE YOUR FIRST PIN CURL
Starting at your hairline, grab a one-inch section of hair and hold it upward. Then, place one or two fingers—the more fingers you use, the bigger your curls will be—at the end of that section. Roll the hair around your finger(s) until you reach your scalp. Carefully remove your fingers and lay the curl flat against your head.
Editor’s note: If you’re creating pin curls on short hair, you’ll likely need to use the one-finger curl method.
STEP #5. PIN AND REPEAT
Pin the curl with two bobby pins in a crisscross fashion. Continue to section your hair, roll your curls, and pin until you have a head full of pin curls.
STEP #6. WAIT IT OUT
Once your pin curls are in place, waiting is the name of the game. If you have a day of household chores ahead, consider doing your pin curls in the morning and giving them the day to dry before a night out. If you want them for the morning, create your pin curls hairstyle the night before and wrap a silk scarf around your head while you sleep to avoid frizz.
STEP #7. REMOVE YOUR PINS
When your hair is dry, unveil your pin curls by carefully removing all of your bobby pins. Make sure to take your time with this as you want your curls to stay tightly coiled for the time being.
STEP #8. SHAKE IT OUT
After all of your pins are removed, gently shake and comb through your curls with your fingers to help separate them and create a fuller appearance.
STEP #9. TOUCH-UP
Now that you’ve finger-combed your curls, check to see if there are any strands you may have missed when creating your pin curls—or that could simply use a touch-up. Use a small, half-inch curling iron to curl any outlying strands and perfect your look. Then, pump a dime-size amount of hair serum into your hands, rub them together, and work the product throughout your strands for a shiny, frizz-free finish.
STEP #10. SEAL YOUR STYLE
You wouldn’t want your flawless pin curls to fall mid-day, would you? To seal in your style, make sure to mist your pin curls hairstyle with the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle LOCK IT Weather Control Hairspray.
Next up: Now that you know how to do pin curls for the perfect heat-free ‘do, perhaps you’d like to brush up on other heat-free options. Here’s How to Get the Look of a Blowout Without a Blow Dryer.