The Modern Way to Use Hair Curlers

Bringing back the lost art—the cool-girl way.

Kathryn Wirsing

Even though they're still very much a mainstay of red carpet and runway beauty, old-fashioned hair rollers have practically gone extinct among lived-in-texture-loving millennials. In the eyes of many a twenty-something, they're hard to use, time-consuming, and run the risk of making your hair look too done à la Grandma Agnes. 

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In the spirit of debunking these myths, and giving our hot tools a break, we looked to NYC hairstylist Kat Zemtsova to transform limp, dirty hair into cool-girl waves using nothing more than $5 satin rollers. Watch the magic happen before you eyes below:

Step 1: Prep the hair

Kathryn Wirsing

"Spray the hair with setting mist, or if you already have product in your hair from the day before, slightly dampen your hair to give it a quick reset," says Zemtsova.

Step 2: Roll 'em up

Kathryn Wirsing

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Using satin rollers (which help to eliminate frizz/are less abrasive to the hair), take a section of hair, one at a time, and roll away from the face—keeping in mind that the larger your sections of hair are, the looser the waves will be. 

"For that cool-girl look, leave the last inch or two of your hair hanging out of the roller for blunt, rock 'n' roll ends," she says.

Step 3: Set that sh*t

Kathryn Wirsing

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You can go completely heat-free by leaving them in while you're sleeping or getting ready, or you can take the extra step to locking the waves in place by giving them a quick blow dry, says Zemtsova. 

Step 5: Take out the rollers

Kathryn Wirsing

One by one, gently take out your rollers by lifting the clasp, then rolling them down, away from your face.

Step 6: Loosen up those waves

Kathryn Wirsing

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At this point, your curls are probably way too tight and glossy. To loosen them up, run your fingers through your hair from roots to ends and shake 'em out. Don't be afraid to make them look a little messy, it's cooler that way, says Zemtsova.

Step 7: Voilà!

Kathryn Wirsing

See? So not your Grandmother's pin curls.

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