10 Ways To Get Heatless Curls Fast

10 Ways To Get Heatless Curls Fast

Are you guilty of overusing hot tools to curl your hair? We were too, and our hair was not happy with us! Although using a curling wand or flat iron might seem like an easy fix for unmanageable hair, it’s actually contributing to the problem in the long run. But don’t worry, there’s an abundance […]

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Are you guilty of overusing hot tools to curl your hair? We were too, and our hair was not happy with us! Although using a curling wand or flat iron might seem like an easy fix for unmanageable hair, it’s actually contributing to the problem in the long run. But don’t worry, there’s an abundance of healthier ways to create the perfect curls.

Get ready to discover step-by-step methods for achieving gorgeous curls without the heat. Our professional stylists at RUSH are excited to share their expertise and help you achieve quick and fabulous results while maintaining the health of your hair. 

What does heat do to your hair?

When you expose your hair to high temperatures from heated styling tools like curling wands, or blow dryers, you risk causing significant damage to your hair‘s structure. The heat can strip away the natural moisture from your hair, leading to dryness, brittleness, and an increased likelihood of breakage and split ends.

While using a heat protectant can help minimise some of the damage, it doesn’t provide complete immunity against the harmful effects of heat styling. This is especially true if you regularly bleach your hair, as the combination of chemical treatments and frequent heat styling can exacerbate dryness and make your hair even more fragile.

As the weather warms up, it’s an excellent time to explore heatless styling options that can help maintain your hair’s health and minimise the risk of damage. By giving your hair a break from the heat, you’ll be taking a proactive step towards healthier, more resilient hair.

How to style your hair without using heat

For decades, women the world over have utilised techniques and tips to create curls at home with zero need for heat. Below are our top 10 ways to achieve beautiful, bouncing curls without sacrificing your hair health. With each of these methods, be sure to use enough styling product to hold the curl – whether that’s a mousse, lotion or spray – and finish the ends with a touch of oil for softness.

Method 1: Twist Curls 

Twists are the classic go-to for women with afro hair who not only want some looser curls but also use these traditional styles to protect their hair and keep it fuss-free.


  • Fabric-covered elastics


  1. Section the hair into at least 4 sections, up to 8 for tighter curls.
  2. Separate each section into two equal parts.
  3. Twist the two parts around one another, all the way to the bottom, keeping them taut.
  4. For non-afro hair, secure the ends with fabric-covered elastics, but not too tightly.

For those with afro hair, there’s no need to tie a band around the ends, as the curls will simply twist around themselves. If you’re trying this on straight or wavy hair then you will need to secure the ends with fabric covered elastics but be sure not to make them too tight as you could damage the ends.

Method 2: Sock Bun Curls 

 Grab your thickest, longest socks –and hopefully clean – socks!


  • Thick, long socks (one per hair section)


  1. Divide hair into at least 3 sections (2 for the sides, 1 for the front).
  2. Twist each section of hair tightly around a sock until it resembles a twist.
  3. Sleep on the sock buns or wait for the hair to air dry.
  4. Remove the socks and comb through the curls with your fingers.

If you want a similar effect that’s a little bit looser, also try using curling rods.

Method 3: Bantu Knot Curls 

 Bantu knots originated from tribes in Southern Africa before going on to inspire black women across the world to curl their hair.


  • Styling product
  • Hair elastics or pins


  1. Divide damp hair into equal sections.
  2. Apply styling product to each section.
  3. Twist each section until it becomes a rope-like structure.
  4. Coil the rope around itself and secure it with an elastic or pin.
  5. Allow the hair to air dry completely.
  6. Unravel each coil and rake through the curls with your fingers to achieve desired looseness.

This is a style that many women with afro hair wear on a daily basis – but if you’re keen on just keeping the curls, let the hair air dry and then slowly unravel each coil of hair. Your hair length and texture will greatly affect the tightness of the curls and you will need to rake through the lengths with your fingers to achieve the desired looseness of curls.

Method 4: Headband Curls

Much like the sock method, the headband is simply a shape to form damp hair around, but as it’s actually made to fit to the head, you might find it easier to wear, especially if you’re keeping it in overnight. 


  • Headband
  • Hairspray (optional)


  1. Attach the headband to the crown of your head.
  2. Wrap sections of damp hair around the headband, alternating under and over.
  3. Continue wrapping until all hair is completely wrapped around the headband.
  4. For dry hair, follow the same method and mist with hairspray, leaving it to set for an hour.

As well as using regular headbands, you will also find products online that are specifically created for this technique; they feature an ultra-bendy headband plus clips and scrunchies to secure the hair.

Bonus tip – this also works on dry hair! So if you need some curls in a hurry, just use the same method above but on dry hair; then mist with your favourite hairspray and leave it to ‘dry’ for an hour or so.

Method 5: Hair Donut Curls 

Again, this is a very similar method to the sock bun curls, but instead of using a pair of socks, you use a hair donut – or a few depending on your hair length or thickness.


  • Hair donut(s)
  • Hairspray
  • Hair elastics


  1. Pull damp hair into a ponytail at the top of your crown and secure with an elastic.
  2. Mist hairspray on the ponytail.
  3. Pull the ponytail through the hair donut.
  4. Wrap the donut with your hair, covering each section until the donut is completely covered or you run out of hair.

Method 6: Heatless Curly Ponytail 

If you’re looking for an instant way to add luscious curls to your hair without any heat, a curly ponytail hair extension is the perfect solution. This method is especially great for beginners who are new to the world of hair extensions.


  • Curly ponytail hair extension
  • Gravity Defying Hair Ties
  • Bobby pins (for thick hair)


  1. Put your hair up securely using Gravity Defying Hair Ties.
  2. Take your curly ponytail hair extension and insert the claw into the base of your ponytail.
  3. Optional: Take a strand of the hair extension and wrap it around the base to make it look more natural. For thick hair, secure with bobby pins.

Method 7: Pin Waves

With just a few simple tools and a bit of patience, you can create long-lasting beachy waves.


  • Spray bottle filled with water
  • Hair clips or pins
  • Hairspray
  • Hair wax


  1. Starting at the base of your hair, work in small sections, using the spray bottle to dampen each section as you go.
  2. Wrap each section of hair around your middle and index finger, as if you were wrapping it around a curling wand.
  3. Pin each curl into place as you go, repeating all over your head.
  4. Finish with hairspray and allow your hair to set for about 40 minutes, depending on the length and thickness of your hair.
  5. Once you take down your curls, warm up some hair wax between your hands and apply it to your hair in a scrunching motion to prolong the life of your heatless waves and achieve a tousled look.

Method 8: Velcro Rollers 90s Blowout 

The 90s are back in a big way, and big, fluffy hair is once again stealing the spotlight. If you want to achieve a retro-inspired blowout look without any fancy hair tools, velcro rollers are your new best friend.


  • Velcro Rollers
  • Creaseless clips
  • Hairspray
  • Rat tail comb


  1. Wash and blow dry your hair until it’s almost fully dry.
  2. Use a rat tail comb to separate your hair into different sections and mist hairspray all over.
  3. Roll your hair inwards or outwards around the velcro rollers, depending on the style you want to recreate. For this tutorial, roll inwards to frame your face.
  4. Secure the rollers to your head using the creaseless clips.
  5. Leave the velcro rollers in for 20 to 30 minutes, then mist on hairspray again to hold the hairstyle’s shape.

Method 9: Bouncy Pin Curls 

Fine, limp hair can often feel like a challenge to style, but with this method you can easily add bounce and volume to your strands. 


  • Hair clips
  • Spray bottle filled with water
  • Hairspray


  1. Section off your hair into one-inch sections, using a spray bottle to dampen your hair as you go.
  2. Loosely wrap individual sections of hair around your middle finger alone (unlike the pin waves where both middle and index fingers were used), slide the curl down, and secure it with a hair clip. This will give you a tighter curl.
  3. Repeat all over your head, ensuring the sections are small enough that the curls won’t fall out of the clips.
  4. Finish with hairspray before unravelling your bouncy, long-lasting curls.

Method 10: Pipe Cleaners 

Who would have thought that pipe cleaners could be the key to achieving perfect heatless beach waves? This creative styling method is not only effective but also incredibly fun and easy to do.


  • Pipe cleaners
  • Spray bottle filled with water


  1. Twist the tops and bottoms of the pipe cleaners together, ensuring they are all lined up closely to resemble the barrel of a curling wand.
  2. Working with fairly large sections of hair, grab a chunk from the back and spray it with water until it is damp.
  3. Wrap the damp hair around the makeshift pipe cleaner barrel, locking it into place by folding the pipe cleaners around the hair at the top, middle, and bottom.
  4. Repeat the process all over your head and allow the style to set while you do your makeup or eat breakfast.

Once you unravel your hair from the pipe cleaners, you’ll be left with stunning, beachy waves that look like you just spent a day in the sun and surf.

These heatless curl methods offer various ways to achieve curls without damaging your hair with heat styling tools. Choose the method that best suits your hair type, length, and desired curl pattern for the best results.

Book Your Hair Appointment Now

We’d love to hear about your experiences with heatless curling methods. Have you tried any of these techniques before? Leave a comment below and let us know you’re tips and tricks!

If you’re looking to take your curls to the next level or want some expert guidance on how to achieve the perfect style, why not book an appointment at RUSH? Our skilled stylists are passionate about helping you find the best curling method for your hair type and desired look. 

Find your nearest hair salon or book your appointment at Rush today! Your hair will thank you!


Why should I consider using heatless curling methods?

Heatless curling methods are an excellent way to achieve gorgeous curls without exposing your hair to the damaging effects of high temperatures from heated styling tools. By opting for heatless techniques, you can help maintain your hair’s natural moisture, reduce the risk of breakage and split ends, and promote overall healthier, more resilient locks.

How long do heatless curls last?

The longevity of heatless curls can vary depending on factors such as your hair type, the specific method used, and your hair’s natural texture. Generally, heatless curls can last anywhere from a few hours to a few days, with some methods providing longer-lasting results than others. Experiment with different techniques to find the one that gives you the best results for your hair type.

How can I make the curls last longer?

To help your heatless curls last longer, try the following tips:

  • Ensure your hair is completely dry before unravelling the curls
  • Use a lightweight hairspray or setting spray to help hold the curls in place
  • Avoid brushing or combing your curls, as this can cause them to fall out more quickly
  • Sleep on a silk or satin pillowcase to minimise friction and preserve your curls overnight
  • Gently refresh your curls in the morning with a light misting of water or curl-refreshing spray

Can heatless curls work on all hair types?

Yes, heatless curling methods can work on all hair types, from fine and straight to thick and coily. However, the specific method you choose and the results you achieve may vary based on your hair’s unique texture and characteristics.

Do I need any special products to create heatless curls?

While you don’t necessarily need special products to create heatless curls, certain styling products can help enhance and prolong your results. A lightweight leave-in conditioner can help keep your hair moisturised, while a sea salt spray or texturising spray can add volume and definition to your curls. A light-hold hairspray can also help set your curls and prevent them from falling out too quickly.

How can I curl my hair in 2 hours without heat?

If you’re short on time and need to achieve curls quickly without heat, try the headband method or the sock bun method. These techniques can help you create beautiful curls in just a couple of hours, making them perfect for when you’re in a rush or need a last-minute hairstyle change. For more information read our guide on How to get Curly Hair overnight

How long does it take for heatless curls to develop?

The time it takes for heatless curls to develop can vary depending on the method you use and your hair’s natural texture and thickness. Some methods, like the headband or sock bun techniques, can create curls in as little as 2-4 hours, while others, like the twist or Bantu knot methods, may require you to leave your hair in the curlers overnight for best results.

Why won't my heatless curls stay in?

If you’re having trouble getting your heatless curls to stay in, there could be a few reasons:

  • Your hair may not have been completely dry when you unravelled the curls
  • You may have used too much product, weighing your curls down
  • Your hair’s natural texture may not hold curls well
  • You may have accidentally brushed or combed your curls, causing them to fall out