Using Rollers in Shorter Hair

Using a roller to curl your hair is a safer alternative to curling irons for styling and curling hair. Some are designed to be slept in, so you can wake up with pretty curls, saving you time in the morning and eliminating the risk of damage to your hair. You can also save money, as hair rollers are less expensive than hot, electric curling tools.

A common myth when it comes to style is that having short hair will make styling easier and more manageable. But unless your hair air dries perfectly and is frizz-free, it’s usually not the case. And if you want to curl your hair, it causes another issue. It’s already complicated to curl long hair, but doing it for shorter hair can be even harder, especially if you have a crop or bob hairstyle.

Here are the types of rollers you can use for short hair and some tips on how you can use them to style your hair:

Where to Buy
Conair Compact Multi-Size Hot Rollers, Blue
BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Roller Hairsetter
Remington H5600H Ionic Conditioning Hair Setter


Hot Rollers

Hot rollers are a common type of hair rollers because it makes super quick curls. It’s great for creating totally different looks depending on the size of rollers and how you roll your hair. A set of hot rollers usually comes in different sizes in a container that both stores the rollers and heats them up. You just need to roll in the mini electric rollers, clip them in place, and let them cool down for curling.

Here’s how to use hot rollers for short hair:

1. Choose the right size.

Look into getting the right rollers for your hair type and length, and choose the style you want. This way, you can be ensured of the right style and safety when using it for short hair. Small hot rollers are made for tighter curls, while larger ones are designed to create looser waves. Short-haired people will have a better time with tighter curls, as the hair length won’t allow big waves. But you can still use large rollers for adding volume to your hair, making it look a bit more natural.

2. Prepare your hair.

Don’t skip prepping even if your hair is short. Remember, no hair length is safe from heat when you don’t protect it right. This is why it’s important to provide adequate protection for your hair to lessen the risk of damage.

For best results, wash your hair first and use only a bit of conditioner. You may opt for heat protectant products to prevent damage. Dry your hair after, then get rid of tangles. Always detangle your hair before using any rollers.

3. Section the hair.

This one’s an easy thing to do with short hair. It takes less time and effort to section short hair. If you want tighter, more defined curls, divide your hair into smaller sections. You can do this by separating it into one-inch sections. But you can experiment with your hairstyle depending on your roller size and how you part your hair.

4. Heat up your rollers.

Hot rollers tend to heat up quickly, so you need to prepare how many and what size of rollers you will use. Prepare the number of rollers you need and heat it up, following the instructions from the roller pack. Roll it to your hair when it’s ready. Make sure that your hair clips are ready, too, as you need to clamp them to your hot rollers to keep your hair in place. This can keep your hair and hands safe from potential injury.

5. Start rolling your hair using the rollers.

Begin from top to bottom when dividing and putting the rollers on to prevent tangling and risking weird-looking curls. Roll the rollers in along with your hair tips. Afterward, roll everything to your scalp, using the clips to keep it all in place. Be careful in handling the rollers as they can be really hot.

6. Let your hair cool.

Wait for your hot rollers to cool down completely before removing it. The curls need to take time to sit in the heat so it can last longer. Also, letting it cool while it’s still in your hair will make it easier for you to remove them when it’s done. It’s best to wait for about 30 minutes to less than an hour for those curls to set.

7. Style your curls.

Once you’re done, remove the rollers and brush your hair. Loosen your curls with your fingers and brush and style it however you want.

When you’re done styling, you can use a small amount of anti-frizz serum or setting spray.

Where to Buy
Tifara Beauty 42-pack 7" Flexible Curling Rods
Red by Kiss Flexi Rods (10" Length, 1/2" Diameter)
1/2” Diameter 9.5" Length Twist-flex Hair Roller Curling Rods – 12 Pack


Flexi rods

Flexi rods, also known as bendy rollers, have been around for so long, but they are still very effective for creating spiral curls without relying on any pins or clips. It can be distinguished by its long, flexible, cushioned rods that allow you to achieve bouncy, high-impact ringlets that are super on-trend. These perm rods are to be used on wet, detangled locks to be effective.

Bendy rollers are a low-cost, low-effort, and no-heat solution for creating pretty curls. It’s great for short hair lengths because it can be used to make tight ringlets.

Here’s how you can use flexi rods for short hair:

1. Choose rollers according to how tight you want your curls to be.

Small rollers will produce tighter curls, while larger rollers will give you waves. Since you have short hair, smaller rollers will work best.

2. Cleanse your hair as usual.

It’s important to start with clean hair to get nice curls. It’s best to use the rollers in damp hair. If you washed it clean, towel dry your hair to remove excess water because if they are too wet, the curls will not set properly. If your hair is already washed, you can spritz water or a leave-in conditioner to dampen it.

3. Prep your hair.

Comb your hair to remove any knots or tangles. Then put a styling product like a styling mouse or curl definer if you have fine or very straight hair to make curls last longer.

4. Section your hair.

Partition your hair into sections. Remember, the more hair you put on each roller, the bigger your curls will be. If you have super short hair, you will most likely have many sections so all can be covered.

5. Start rolling.

Roll your hair tightly around the rollers, starting at the back of your head. Wrap the end of a small section of hair around the middle of the roller up to three or four times. Grip the roller on either side and slowly roll it up to the root. Bend the roller so the two ends will overlap like a pretzel. Repeat until you covered all sections. For a more natural look, twist your hair in random directions as you roll, so your curls are not uniform.

6. Let the curls set.

Keep the rollers in your hair for a few hours. If you really want it to last, you can keep it overnight. Wrap your hair in a satin scarf or a pillowcase before sleeping to reduce falling or pulling of hair as you sleep. It can also help prevent having frizzy curls.

7. Remove the scarf and check if your hair is dry.

Once the curls have set, remove the wrap and feel around your hair for dampness. If you feel moisture, wait longer if you can allow the hair to dry. If you don’t have time, use a hairdryer but keep the setting low.

8. Remove the rollers and style your hair.

Unbend the rollers from their pretzel shape and bring it back to its straight rod style. Resist the urge to touch them, so you won’t make them frizzy. Then, separate your curls carefully using your fingers. The more you separate your curls, the bigger your hair will be at the end. Do not use your comb or brush because it will create frizz and undo your progress. Style it in a way you prefer, then spray it with a hair spray or finishing spray to preserve the curls and keep it in place.

Where to Buy
Conair Soft, Bouncy Curls Foam Rollers, 48 Pack
Annie Salon Style Small Foam Hair Rollers - 5/8" Blue - 14 Piece Set - Soft Heat-less Hair Curling Tools
36 Pieces Foam Sponge Hair Rollers 2cm Soft Hair Styling Curlers DIY Hairdressing Curlers Tools for Women and Girls Home Use (Pink, Yellow, Blue)


Sponge rollers

Sponge or foam rollers are soft, making sleeping with rollers so much easier. The sponges are soft, and the plastic clips are quite flexible. If you want to curl your hair overnight without experiencing any pain, use this styling tool.

As with most rollers, it’s best to use narrow ones instead of wide-sized rollers for short hair.

Here’s how you can use sponge rollers for short hair effectively:

1. Cleanse your hair.

It’s always best to start with clean, damp hair, but if you don’t want to wash, then you can dampen it with water.

2. Prep your hair and rollers.

Comb out your hair to remove tangles, then divide it into thin sections. Choose rollers that are not too wide, as it will be hard to make curls with it.

3. Begin rolling.

If you try to roll the hair up around the foam from ends to roots, the curls will look way too tight, and the clip lines will be obvious because you have a thin amount of hair clipped around it. As a technique, twist a section of the hair first before wrapping it up with a roller. Then, clip it to secure its place. Repeat until you covered all your hair.

4. Let the curls set.

Wait for around 15 minutes (for slight waves) to 5 hours (for long-lasting curls) before removing the rollers for curls to set. You can also sleep in hair rollers as the sponge is comfortable.

5. Remove the curlers and style your hair.

After letting your curls set, remove rollers one at a time. Comb your hair using your fingers to fluff and separate the curly strands. Finish your hairdo with hair spray or anti-frizz serum.