Straw Curls: How to curl hair with straws

By: | Last Updated: July 3, 2022

Are you always on the lookout for different ways to curl your hair without using heat?

That’s why you’re thrilled when you found out about straw hair curls, as they’re a creative and affordable way to style your hair without worrying about damage.

But if you haven’t heard of the method before, using straws to curl your hair may lead to a few raised eyebrows.

You may be skeptical about trying it, but once you give it a chance, it might become one of your favorite curling methods.

So if you’re interested, this article will break down how to do straw curls on different hair lengths and textures, so read more below.

How do you do straw curls?

Whether you’re trying to stay away from heat or just intrigued by it, heatless curls are always the best way to go if you want to maintain healthy hair.

That’s why you’re excited to see methods like the straw curls slowly grabbing everyone’s attention.

So how do you make your hair curly overnight with a straw?

If this is your first time hearing about straw curls, the basic concept is to wrap your hair around a drinking straw and let it sit overnight. Once you unravel your hair in the morning, you’ll literally wake up with bouncy ringlets.

But if you’re wary about using plastic straws, an alternative is to use reusable silicone straws or compostable straws, like the Plasticless Flexible Drinking Straws.

How long do straw curls last?

How long do straw curls last

Depending on your hair texture and aftercare, straw curls can last 2 days or up to 2 weeks.

On straight hair, straw curls might only last for a couple of days as your hair texture doesn’t tend to hold curls very well compared to naturally curly hair.

So if you want your straw curls to last longer, the trick is to avoid washing your hair for a couple of days and use dry shampoo instead.

Can Natural hair do straw curls?

It’s a known fact that if you want to have healthy natural hair, you’ll need to do a bit of care and effort to maintain it. 

That’s why you’re always careful about the styles you wear with your hair since you don’t want to ruin it.

But since you’re curious about this method, you want to know if it’s safe to wear straw curls on natural hair.

Any hair texture, even curly hair, can wear straw curls. You can use this method to give your curls an extra boost of volume and definition.

Since they don’t require heat, straw curls are also great for when you’re trying to transition into your natural hair, so you won’t have to worry about damage.

How to do straw curls

Now that you know what straw curls are for and how long they can last, here are a few step-by-step guides on how to do them:

How to do straw curls (long hair)

Aside from straws, you’ll also need a spray bottle and several rubber hair ties, so grab them beforehand to make the process quicker.

To start, spray your hair with water until it’s damp. Then, section your hair into 3 parts and tie the 2 sections up, leaving the bottom part down.

Grab a 1-inch section of your hair and start rolling it around the straw, leaving about ¼-inch sections on both sides of the straw. 

Once you get to the end of your hair, fold one side of the straw and tie it with a rubber hair tie to secure it.

On the other end of the straw, roll the straw until it’s close to your scalp before folding the end and securing it with another hair tie. 

Repeat the method on each section of your hair.

Let the straws sit for a few hours or overnight. The longer you leave the straws on, the longer your curls will last.

If you’re in a hurry, you can also use a hairdryer to speed up the process.

Once you’re ready to take them off, slowly untie the hair ties and unroll or slide off the straws from each section.

Then, slowly run your fingers on each clump of curls to loosen and make them look more natural.


How to do straw curls (short hair)

If you have a pixie cut and are worrying about missing out on straw curls, don’t fret. As long as your hair is long enough to wrap around the straws, then you’re good to go.

A quick tip, if you’re using plastic straws, you can cut them in half so you can use less, and they won’t be as bulky on your head.

First, you’ll need to spray your hair with water until it’s damp. 

Then, grab a small section and wrap it around the straw. Once you get to the ends of your hair, fold the edge of the straw and use a bobby pin or hair tie to secure it.

Repeat the steps until you get all sections of your hair.

Leave the straws on overnight and slowly unravel them in the morning.

If you like the look of the tight ringlets, you can leave the curls as is. Otherwise, you can run your fingers on each clump to create looser curls.

How to do straw curls on natural hair

How to do straw curls on natural hair

Whether you have short, medium, or long hair, you can do the same methods as above on natural hair.

For those with medium or long strands, remember to section your hair into 3 parts to make the process easier.

It can take a while if you have long, thick hair. But with a little bit of patience and perseverance, the curls will be worth it.

Since natural hair is prone to dryness, you can also apply a bit of leave-in conditioner or serum once you run your fingers through your hair the next day.

How to do straw curls (braids)

If you have braided hair and are looking to mix it up a bit, the straw curls method is a fun way of adding more style to your strands.

All you need to do is to dampen the ends of your hair and roll each braid with a straw. Then, fold the ends and secure them with a hair tie or a bobby pin.

You can keep the ends braided or unravel them before rolling up the straws for a more dynamic look.

Just remember to keep the curls on the ends of your hair to preserve your braids.

Leave the straws on overnight, then slowly unravel each one in the morning.

How to do straw curls on relaxed hair

Since relaxed hair is chemically treated, it’s more prone to damage if you apply heat. That’s why a heatless method is the best way to go if you want to create a curly hairstyle.

Whether you want to maintain your relaxed hair or are trying to grow it out, a straw curl set is a safe way of styling it.

Just remember not to do this on freshly relaxed hair, as this could ruin your treatment.

To do straw curls on relaxed hair, you can follow the guides above and secure each section with a hair tie or a bobby pin.

Since you have relaxed hair, leaving the straws on overnight is recommended instead of using a hairdryer to prevent hair damage.

You can then unroll each section in the morning and run your fingers through each curl clump to create voluminous curls.


Can you do straw curls with gel?

If you want your straw curls to last longer, applying gel can give an extra hold so they can last for days.

After dampening your hair, get a 1-inch section and apply a small amount of gel on the entire strand. Then, grab your straw, roll it up to your scalp, and secure it with a bobby pin.

Repeat the steps on all sections of hair, making sure you apply the gel before rolling up the straw.

If you want to leave the straws in overnight, you can also wrap your hair around a silk scarf or bonnet to keep your hair frizz-free.

In the morning, slowly unravel each section. A good-quality gel will give you soft and bouncy hair.

You can leave the curls as is if you want to keep them tight. But you can also run your fingers through each clump if you prefer looser curls.


How to do straw curls without straws

How to do straw curls without straws

If you like the spiral look that straw curls can give but are wary about using plastic straws, an alternative would be using Flexi rods.

If you’re not familiar, Flexi rods are bendable foam hair curlers that can give you voluminous overnight curls without using heat.

What’s great about them is that they’re available in various sizes, so you can choose how big or small you want your curls to be.

They’re also easily accessible, as you can find them online or at your nearest beauty supply store.

You can use the steps above to create the straw curls look using your Flexi rods. But instead of using hair ties or bobby pins to secure your hair, you can easily bend the ends of your Flexi rods to keep them locked throughout the night.

The final takeaway

If you want to maintain healthy hair, it’s essential to give your hair a break from heat styling tools once in a while. But that doesn’t mean you’ll also get to skip on giving your hair some bouncy curls.

That’s why learning how to do a few heatless curling methods can still allow you to experiment with your hair even when you’re on a hiatus from your curling iron.

The straw curls method may take more time and effort, but the results will feel rewarding, knowing that you’re not damaging your hair.

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