Five Ways to Curl Kanekalon Hair

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Most of us know that one of the major downsides to synthetic hair is that you generally can’t curl it with a curling iron because it’s made out of plastic and thus might melt *meep.* But there’s a way around that issue that’s becoming more and more known thanks to the growing use of Kanekalon hair in crochet braids. One tried and true way to curl synthetic hair is to use hot water, but there are a few other methods that work as well. Check them out below.

Jump ahead:

Curling Kanekalon Hair With a Curling Iron

So, this method is the riskiest. Generally, synthetic hair and curling irons don’t get along, but some brands of hair can handle a little bit of heat. Before (or after) you buy your hair, check the label to see if it can be curled. Usually the amount of heat the hair can handle is written on the label. If for some reason you don’t have the label, test the hair by curling a very small section of it with a curling iron to see if  it melts or not. Vlogger Britney John curled her Kanekalon hair with a curling iron using the lowest setting of a plug-in iron. She shared that the curls lasted a couple weeks before falling. If using a curling iron isn’t worth the risk, try one of the alternative methods below.

Curling Kanekalon Hair Without Hot Water – Roller Set

So, as mentioned, curling synthetic hair with hot water is a tried and tested way to curl the hair. But you can actually curl synthetic hair without heat, much like you can curl your own hair. YouTuber tastePINK curled her hair by spritzing it with room temperature water, then brushing it out to detangle it. She rolls the hair in medium-sized sections; uses a small-tooth comb to detangle further, then uses styling foam on the hair to help the curls set. She twists the hair and rolls it with foam rollers.  (To see exactly how she rolls jump to about the 2:20 minute mark ;-). Once the curls are in, she lets them set over night. She later unravels the curls using a downward spiral motion. She separates some of the hair but not too much to avoid frizz.

If you have synthetic hair and want to temporarily curl it, this method is great. If, however, you’re looking for a permanent curl, you won’t get it by simply letting the curls set overnight as the curls fall out after a few days.

Curling With Hot Water

Be extremely careful when using this method or any curling method that requires heat. Be sure to take the necessary pre-cautions to avoid getting burned. You can do this if the hair is already attached to your head, but it’s probably easier if you curl the hair prior to installing it. Choose your method of curling, whether it be two-strand twisting, perm rods, flexirods or bantu knots. Curl the hair using your method of choice. You can moisturize the hair with a moisturizer if you like, but it’s not necessary. If the hair is already installed you can use a mug of hot water to dip and set each curl, like in the video below.

If the hair isn’t already installed, you can curl the hair by using flexirods, for example, then putting them in a bowl of hot water to set the curl.

Note: the water doesn’t have to be boiling hot. It can be the temperature of a drinkable cup of coffee. The hair doesn’t have to dry for a long time before you unravel it. However, you should wait at least five minutes before unraveling. The longer you wait the tighter and ‘more set’ the curl will be. Below is a tutorial on curling with perm rods.

Un-Curling or ‘Straightening’ Kanekalon Hair

The curls you get when you curl with hot water pretty much won’t fall out, like ever. But a little unknown fact: you can uncurl Kanekalon hair simply by dipping it back into hot water.

Vlogger Pretty Crystal Clear actually uses a fabric steamer to ‘straighten’ her hair. Note: the curls that she straightens are soft curls. So it’s not clear how this might work on a tighter curl. But it might be worth trying.

Pre-Twisted or Pre-Curled Kanekalon Hair

Now, if you’ve skimmed or read all of the above and find yourself saying, ‘girl, I just… can’t,‘ you’re likely the perfect candidate for pre-twisted or pre-curled hair. Check out Sadora Paris’ curly ‘do that she crocheted in using pre-twisted Havana Mambo Twist hair.

Like with pre-twisted hair, with pre-curled hair you really have no work to do, as you long as you like the curl pattern.

There you have it! Did we miss anything? Tell us in the comments below!

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An entrepreneur at heart, I founded Unruly in 2013 after spending six great years in advertising. I’m über lazy when it comes to doing my hair so I’m always looking for easy and quick ways to care and style my hair.

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