How To Curl Your Hair Using No Heat and a Pair of Socks—Yep, Socks

Wake up to a great hair day with a little known secret: socks.

Curling your own hair is no simple feat. There are many things at risk: burnt fingertips, crimped strands, Shirley Temple ringlets, heat damage, split ends, and wasted time. If you've figured out a way to easily and consistently wield the curling wand, our hat's off to you. If you haven't, don't sweat. Turns out, you can learn how to get bouncy, beachy curls without even picking up a hot tool.

Thanks to TikTok beauty experimenters, we now all have access and instruction for an easy, heat-free way to achieve curls overnight. All you need is a pair of long tube socks. Yes, seriously. With just a reach into your sock drawer, you have a cheap, heatless curling method. Using foam rollers, fabric, or strips of an old T-shirt were common ways to curl one's hair in 1950s and 1960s, so think of this an updated version.

Sock Curls
Getty Images/Walter B. McKenzie

What You'll Need

The technique involves using two or four long socks, depending on how many sections you want to twist. The socks just need to be long enough to span the length between your roots and ends. The only other items you need are claw clips or long bobby pins to hold down the socks as you twist, as well as hair elastics. (Preferably, skinny silk scrunchies to avoid any creasing or crimping.)

How to Curl Your Hair with Socks

1. Start with damp hair. If showering, let hair air-dry until just slightly damp. If not showering, use a spray bottle to dampen hair.

2. Separate hair into two or four equal sections. Hold them separate using elastics while completing the rest of the steps, if desired. If you have thick hair—or just a lot of hair—four sections might result in better curls. For most hair, two sections will work.

3. Secure one sock at the top of your head with a claw clip or bobby pins. Line it up length-wise with one of the sections.

4. Separate the section into two equal halves on either side of the sock. Grab one piece of hair from one side (starting near the top of the sock and closest to your crown and roots). Proceed to fold the piece of hair over the sock, followed by folding a piece from the other side over the sock. You'll be forming an X-shaped design that feels almost like you're braiding.

5. Continue to add more pieces of hair from each side as you wrap it around the sock each time. It should be small pieces each time, not huge chunks. This is key to getting the ringlets later on.

6. When you've made it all the way down to your ends, secure the hair and sock with a hair elastic or silk scrunchie.

7. Repeat with other sections and socks.

8. If the socks don't feel secure enough up top near your roots to hold all night, add bobby pins to hold them down while you sleep or, if you have really, really long socks, you can tie the top around the root of your hair before twisting. Though, this method might result in unwanted creasing.

9. Sleep overnight with hair wrapped around the socks for best results. If using during the day, make sure hair is already about 80% air-dried and wait until hair is fully dry to remove socks.

10. After removing the socks, shake ringlets out with your fingers or flip head upside down. This helps to get rid of any creasing and loosen the curls for a more natural look.

Follow Along for Better Curls

Some women who have tried the technique recommend using hair products such as a styling serum beforehand to help achieve longer-lasting curls, and others note that this method might not work quite as effectively on all hair types, such as super curly or super straight hair. If you're not great at following blind beauty tutorials, watch this easy video. See her gorgeous results here.

No heat damage? Styling while we snooze? Now that's a way to curl we can get behind. Simply wake up and be ready to take on the day—rather, a great hair day.

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