How to Use a Curling Iron on Long Hair: A Step-by-Step Guide

Curling irons are incredibly useful tools, especially for achieving voluminous and bouncy curls. As someone with long hair, mastering a curling iron can be tough.

You might find that some sections aren’t getting hot enough, and you may also find that some curls are tighter than others.

With this guide, learning how to use a curling iron on long hair will be easier than ever before.

We’ve collected all of the best tips and tricks that you can do at home to create the most polished hairstyle possible.

Choosing the Right Curling Iron

Before you get started with curling your hair, it’s important that you find the perfect curling iron first. With long hair, you’re going to need a longer barrel so that most of your hair is touched at once.

Some other important factors to take into consideration when buying a curling iron are:

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Barrel Width

Think about the type of curls that you want to achieve. If you want tighter curls, then you’re going to need a smaller barrel. On the other hand, for looser beach waves, a larger barrel is recommended.

Tight curls are best achieved with a curling iron barrel under half an inch. Looser waves are best achieved using a curling iron that is thicker than an inch.

Barrel Materials

The materials used to create the barrel of your curling iron are also very important. This is especially true for long hair as you’re going to need even heat distribution. Our favorite materials for effortless curls are ceramic, tourmaline, 24K gold, and titanium.

However, when working with titanium, you’re going to need to pay close attention to heat. If you have long hair, you’re going to want an iron that gets hot quickly. This will help you to get through a full head of hair much faster.

Cord Length

You might think that cord length isn’t important until you use a curling iron with a short cord. It’s best to find an iron that has a six-foot cord or longer, as you’ll be able to reach all areas of your hair easily. Most professional curling irons have very long cords.

Using a Curling Iron on Long Hair

Now, it’s time to learn how to use a curling iron on long hair, and the steps are easier than you might think. Check them out below.

Step 1: Prepare Your Hair

Preparation is of the utmost importance when curling long hair. You will need to protect your hair from the heat, and the right items will help the hair to hold the curls.

For this, you’re going to want to find a heat protectant or a hair oil that promotes curls. Without using a heat protectant, you’re going to experience a lot of damage and breakage.

Start by spritzing your hair with the heat protectant or running the oil through your locks. You can then use a brush to comb all of the product through the entirety of your hair. Pay close attention to your ends and work the product up to your scalp.

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Step 2: Preheat the Curling Iron

Depending on the type of hair you have, you’re going to want to set the iron at the right temperature. Thick and coarse hair will be curled perfectly at temperatures between 300°F and 400°F. For thin and fragile hair, however, you’ll want to set it closer to the low temperatures, such as 200°F to 275°F.

While the curling iron is preheating, continue onto the next step.

Step 3: Section Your Hair

As someone with long hair, it’s going to be impossible to curl everything without sections. Using a comb, you’re going to want to divide your hair into three or four horizontal sections.

After this, you can then pin them using a hair comb or elastic. Take each individual horizontal slice and divide them into halves, again securing each section with a clip.

We’re going to work with each smaller section individually so you can achieve the best possible curls.

Step 4: Curl the Back Sections

Working from the back to the front, grab a one-inch section of hair and lift the clip of your curling iron. Slide the section of hair under the clip, starting a couple of inches away from your scalp. Then, close the clip and twirl your hair towards your head, making sure you keep the hair tight.

Leave your hair on the curling iron for five to six seconds, touching it gently with your fingers to see if it’s warm enough. Once warmed, gently slip the iron out of your hair, releasing the clip, and holding the curl in your hand for a few seconds. At this point, you should have a beautiful bouncy curl.

Step 5: Curl the Side Sections

Curling the side sections is very easy. All you have to do is follow the same processes explained in step three and four. Our biggest recommendation when curling hair is to make sure that you alternate curls.

For example, one curl should be done towards your face, and the next should be curled away from your face. In this way, you will end up with a head of hair that is full of volume.

Step 6: Curl the Front Sections

Arguably the most important part of curling is focusing on the sections that frame your face. When curling these areas, you’re going to want to make sure that you pull the iron away from your face.

What this does is make sure that the curls form outwards. This will not only keep them out of your face but also create a beautiful frame to accentuate your features.

Step 7: Finish the Look

At this point, your entire head should be filled with curls, and you can now check to see if there are any improvements that need to be made. You may find that some areas will need to be curled again and others might be a little too curly for your liking.

Using your fingers, gently comb through the areas that are too curly. This will make them slightly fall. Once you have achieved the perfect look, finish the entire style with a finishing spray or oil.

Final Thoughts

Knowing how to use a curling iron on long hair is simple and can easily be perfected with practice. As with any type of styling, the more often you do it, the easier it becomes. Using this guide, you’ll be able to curl your hair faster each time you do it. Not to mention, you’ll have a salon-quality style to show off too!

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