How to curl your hair with straighteners

How to curl hair with straighteners according to the experts at GHD and Trevor Sorbie

1st February 2020 | Author: Amira Arasteh

We’ve watched reams of YouTube videos that show people curling their hair with straighteners yet no matter how hard we try, our hair never looks as good or feels as effortless.

So we decided to get advice from the experts, namely stylist Harry Wiffen at Trevor Sorbie‘s London salon and Adam Reed, global ambassador for GHD.


How to curl hair with straighteners

Below we’ve listed a step-by-step written guide on how to curl your hair with straighteners, or you can jump to the bottom of the article to watch the professionals in action.

Before and After hair curl with straighteners

Step 1: Rough dry your hair 

Harry advises that you’re best off rough drying your hair – if you’re starting from scratch. “You want the hair to have some natural kink and movement to it…obviously if your hair is quite frizzy naturally, you’ll want to blow dry it though.”


Step 2: Prep the hair

Next, Harry advises that you prep your hair with a holding spray, as well as a heat protector – particularly if you have a lot of hair or it’s thick.  Adam, unsurprisingly, recommends GHD’s Curl Hold Spray to create curls that last for hours. To which Harry explains “if your hair is a bit soft, the curls can drop out but if there’s a bit of grit to it, they’ll hold nicer.”


Step 3: Start at the nape

When looking to curl your hair with straighteners, you’re meant to start at the nape of the head – which is, perhaps, where people go wrong; starting too high or too low in the hair.

Take your hair in small sections, Adam stresses. If you try to do too much hair in one go, it will be too thick for the straighteners and the curling effect won’t work. Place your straighteners facing downwards at the root of the hair and close the plates. 


Step 4: Rotate and glide

Now for the part with which we struggle: the rotation. With the straighteners positioned downwards, turn the straighteners halfway towards the back of your head once and glide the styler through your hair slowly. If you’ve ever curled ribbon using scissors, you’ll know that you simply need to keep the ribbon in one place. Straightening your hair works on the same principle. 

Repeat the technique until you’ve achieved the desired look.

READ NEXT: GHD Platinum Plus review

A sidenote – the quality of your straighteners does play a major role in how well you can curl your hair with them. Even the GHD Original IV can snag a little, rather than glide. The best straighteners we’ve used for this are the GHD Platinum Plus (pictured).

READ NEXT: How to cut your own hair

Harry recommends going off-piste and alternating directions – as in sometimes rotate the straighteners away from your head and sometimes rotating them inwards.  “Curls don’t go the same way so do one coming toward you and one going away to look more natural.” Adam adds that alternating the direction of the curl by rotating your straighteners in the opposite direction also gives your hair a more “undone look”.


Step 5: Gently separate the curls and set with hairspray

Let the curls fall. Harry advises that “it’s important to leave the hair to cool down and then when it’s all done, you can play around with it to help it stay in place.”

Once your curls are cool, tousle your hair and run your fingers gently through your newly-created curls to separate and soften them before spritzing them with hairspray to smooth the look. 

Amira curl hair with straighteners


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