How To Crimp Hair: A Step-By-Step Guide

  • 5 min read
  • Oct 13, 2023
Best Crimper For Short Hair
Best Crimper For Short Hair from

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Are you looking to add some volume and texture to your hair? Crimping is a popular styling technique that can give your locks a unique, wavy look. Whether you want to rock a retro-inspired hairstyle or simply add some pizzazz to your everyday look, crimping is a great option to consider. In this article, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process of how to crimp your hair, the advantages and disadvantages of this technique, and answer some frequently asked questions.


Before we dive into the details, let’s start with a brief introduction to hair crimping. Crimping is a hairstyling technique that creates small, zigzag-like waves or crimps in the hair strands. This can be achieved using a crimping iron, which has special ridges or plates that imprint the waves onto your hair. Crimping was extremely popular in the 1980s and 1990s and has recently made a comeback in the world of fashion and beauty.

Now, let’s explore the step-by-step process of how to crimp your hair:

Step 1: Prepare Your Hair

Start by washing and conditioning your hair as you normally would. Apply a heat protectant spray or serum to protect your strands from the heat of the crimping iron. Comb through your hair to remove any tangles or knots.

Step 2: Divide and Conquer

Divide your hair into small sections using hair clips or elastics. This will make it easier to work with and ensure that you crimp each section evenly. Start from the bottom layers and work your way up.

Step 3: Heat Up the Iron

Turn on your crimping iron and let it heat up to the desired temperature. It’s important to choose the right temperature for your hair type to avoid damaging your locks. Fine or damaged hair should be crimped at a lower temperature, while thicker or coarse hair can handle higher heat.

Step 4: Crimp Away

Take a small section of hair and clamp the crimping iron close to the root. Hold it in place for a few seconds and then release. Move the iron down the section, repeating the process until you reach the ends of the hair. Repeat this step for each section of hair until you’ve crimped your entire head.

Step 5: Set the Style

Once you’ve crimped all of your hair, allow it to cool for a few minutes. This will help the waves set and last longer. You can also use a hairspray or texturizing spray to hold the style in place.

Step 6: Finishing Touches

If desired, you can gently run your fingers through your hair to loosen the waves and create a more natural look. Add any additional styling products or accessories to complete your desired hairstyle.

Step 7: Maintenance

To keep your crimped hair looking its best, avoid washing it for at least 24 hours after styling. This will help the waves hold their shape longer. When it’s time to wash your hair, use a gentle shampoo and conditioner, and avoid excessive heat styling to prevent damage.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Hair Crimping

Like any hairstyling technique, hair crimping has its pros and cons. Let’s take a closer look at both:

Advantages of Hair Crimping

1. Volume and Texture: Crimping adds instant volume and texture to your hair, making it look fuller and more dynamic.

2. Versatility: Crimped hair can be styled in various ways, from loose waves to intricate updos, providing endless versatility for your looks.

3. Retro Vibes: If you’re a fan of retro fashion, crimped hair is the perfect way to channel that nostalgic 80s and 90s vibe.

4. Long-Lasting Style: Crimped hair tends to hold its shape longer than other hairstyles, making it a great option for special occasions or events.

5. Minimal Damage: When done correctly and with proper heat protection, hair crimping can be a relatively low-damage styling option.

6. Quick and Easy: Once you get the hang of it, crimping your hair can be a quick and easy way to switch up your look.

7. Suitable for All Hair Types: Whether you have straight, wavy, or curly hair, you can achieve stunning results with hair crimping.

Disadvantages of Hair Crimping

1. Heat Damage: Excessive heat or improper use of crimping irons can cause damage to your hair, including dryness, breakage, and split ends.

2. Time-Consuming: Crimping your entire head of hair can be time-consuming, especially if you have long or thick locks.

3. Limited Styling Options: While crimped hair offers versatility, it may not be suitable for all occasions or professional settings.

4. Potential Frizz: Depending on your hair type and the weather conditions, crimped hair may be more prone to frizz or flyaways.

5. Repeated Use: Regularly crimping your hair can lead to over-styling and potential damage in the long run.

6. Learning Curve: It may take some practice to perfect your crimping technique and achieve the desired results.

7. Not for Everyone: Hair crimping may not be everyone’s cup of tea, and personal preferences for hairstyles can vary.

FAQs about Hair Crimping

Question Answer
1. Can I crimp my hair without a crimping iron? Yes, you can achieve a similar effect by braiding your hair and then using a flat iron to press the braids.
2. How long will crimped hair last? The duration of crimped hair largely depends on your hair type, but it can typically last up to a few days with proper care.
3. Can I crimp my hair if it’s already damaged? It’s best to avoid crimping damaged hair, as the heat can further worsen the condition. Focus on repairing your hair before attempting any heat styling techniques.
4. Can I crimp my hair if it’s naturally curly? Yes, crimping can add definition and texture to your natural curls, creating a unique and voluminous look.
5. How do I prevent heat damage while crimping my hair? Always use a heat protectant spray or serum before applying heat to your hair. Additionally, avoid using excessive heat and limit the frequency of crimping.
6. Can I crimp my hair extensions? Yes, you can crimp hair extensions, but be sure to use heat protectant products and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines.
7. How do I remove the crimped waves? Washing your hair and using a wide-toothed comb or brush can help remove the crimped waves and return your hair to its natural state.
8. Can I crimp my hair if it’s very fine or thin? Yes, you can crimp fine or thin hair, but be sure to use a lower heat setting and avoid leaving the crimping iron on your hair for too long.
9. Can I use hairspray before or after crimping? Yes, using hairspray before crimping can help the waves hold their shape, while using it after can provide additional hold and control.
10. Can I crimp my hair if it’s already colored or chemically treated? Yes, you can crimp colored or chemically treated hair, but be sure to use a lower heat setting and take extra care to avoid further damage.
11. Can I crimp my hair if it’s very short? Crimping shorter hair can be a bit challenging, but you can still achieve a subtle crimped look by focusing on the top layers of your hair.
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