Fail: No Heat Curls

No Heat Curls #1
No Heat Curls #2

Pin Reaper: Jill

Original Inspiration:


What I Did: So, I have naturally curly hair. But when I saw how to make the heatless waves via Pinterest, I thought, why not try it. Besides, the girl in the pictures had flawless waves from the technique- that should happen to me, right? Wrong. I woke up with the twists still perfectly intact, which made me excited about the end result. Well, when I unpinned them, and desperately tried to claw my way through the Narnia forest of hair, I was left with the most unmanageable [hairdo] that you could possibly imagine. I mean seriously. My hair has never looked this horrible, EVER. With the force of 50 bobby pins, I was finally able to make a bun that was presentable enough for work. Holy crap. Never again. I angered the beast that is my hair.

My Result:

pinterest fail no heat curls curly hair crazy

Next Time I Will:ย  This project only has hope on people with soft, super straight hair. I would absolutely never attempt this again.




  1. Julie

    I think the length of the hair has something to do with it too – the weight probably helps weigh down the curls. I have naturally curly hair as well, that’s ringlets if it’s super short – but the longer it gets, the bigger the curls get and they get closer to waves than curls.

  2. SLH

    I actually do have soft, super-straight hair. Every time I’ve tried this, it ends up looking like your results.

    I DID find, however, that if I just put my hair in two larger buns (one on the top of my head and one on the bottom), I get some decent waves. It’s not nice enough to wear my hair down and wavy, but it makes for a really full and wavy ponytail that actually looks pretty good.

    P.S. LOVE the blog. I’ve been lurking forever.

  3. Procrastinateher

    For curls without heat you could just do what a lot of people used to do in the late 1900s: plastic curlers/the bendable foam-covered wires, and a shitload of mousse. Leave for a few hours/overnight.

    I mean you have to invest in curlers and mousse, but that’s a small investment if you plan on curling hair on the regular.

    Source: years of curling hair for dancing and a healthy fear if curling wands.

  4. julia


  5. Hilary

    I have tried this exact same thing and get the same result as you! It was awful! I have naturally wavy hair and it used to be really long, I’ve cut it a few times til it was shorter and shorter and shorter. I’ve NEVER been able to get this to work no matter what the length. I’m not sure what hair type/length it works on but it’s definitely not for my hair at all!!!

  6. Samantha

    I tried this and ended up with the same result I have long straight hair and it takes forever to curl or wave my hair. I was super excited and I did exactly what you did. I had an afro, It was not a great look for me. : (

  7. Sabrina

    I have naturally curly hair and what I do is to just twist it loosely….not all up on top of my head like that but in 3 or 4 big twisty braids-ish. It tames the curls into nice, uniform spirals and I get lots of compliments ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Amy

    My 12 year old daughter tried this and it was a fail for her too! She has naturally thick long brown hair and she looked like a lion when she took these knots out in the morning! It was funny. Some pinterest projects work out well, others not so much!

  9. Anna

    I laughed and laughed at your photo! I have supersoft, super straight stereotypical nordic hair, and this is just not a good way of getting curls. I have tried this method more than once and it always ends up looking like yours.

    I`ve tried modifyning the method and have also found that bigger buns makes for a slightly better result, AND making sure you comb through your hair, and making sure each section it`s suuper straight and uniform before staring to twist. But that only slightly improves the look.

    Better go buy that curling iron..

  10. Tania

    I do these every night with the same length of hair! Maybe try a little serum and alligator clips to hold the knots in place. Brush your curls out and hold the hair straight as you’re twisting.

  11. Michelle

    The look on your face is epic!

  12. Shea

    Yah this is a big fail!! I tried this one as well and i have super straight soft long hair and i was just as frizzy and crazy as yours! I ran around frantically for like 10 min trying to get the poodle in a pony tail so i could go to work…it was awful!

  13. Kim

    I have done this to my hair for years and it turns out gorgeous each time. Just like in the original picture.

    I do not have naturally curly hair, but it does have a (very) slight wave. I have done it when my hair was as short as bra strap length down to waist length. Always works.

    Also, the less hair that you put into each twist the tighter (more) curl you will have. so if it turns out to be too much, just add a bit more hair to each individual twist.

    If you have longish hair, try it again. Practice could make perfect.
    ….just NEVER use a brush on it or you will have a frizzy mess.

  14. Sydney wilson

    So i have super thick, curly hair. I am a pro at the no heat curling. What went wrong was prolly how you twisted the hair. That and you need more smaller twists and dont comb them out with you fingers. Put your fingers on your scalp and gently shake the curls loose. Dont give up try again!!

  15. jrex

    Oh the horrible memories! My mum once did this to me when I was a little girl, for school pictures. She got my hair wet, twisted it into loads of thin locks, and wrapped those locks around really thin leave-in curlers for the night. And that’s why I have A BEEHIVE in my year two photos. By the time we realized how badly it had gone the next morning, there was no time to fix it or I’d have been late for school, so I had to just go on like that. I was so embarrassed. Oh, I really should try to find those photos and post them; I know they’re around her house somewhere. What a disaster!

    I can see how this might work with really thick hair and just a few loose buns. I’ve never even thought about trying that again, and I keep my hair really short now anyway! No fuss at all! ๐Ÿ™‚

  16. Michelle

    OMG! I can’t stop crying, LOL! The look on your face is priceless!

  17. Amy

    omg, I’m dying, lol! The look on the pinterest girl’s face cracks me up like this is the best hair style method ever…. I tried this on my daughter and her hair ended up like yours. She cried and it was awful.

  18. Biff

    I have done this multiple times with different methods. I learned a lot about it. I have naturally straight hair that doesn’t like to hold curl well with irons. It is almost to my waist with a shorter layer to my bra strap.

    The first time i did this i used rags and rolled them like i would curlers, they get knotted in the hair easy and it causes friz easier.

    The next time i did it i used rags again and rolled the same, but i used a hair smoother BEFORE i rolled them. They were a bit less frizzy, but still wasn’t pleased.

    This last time, i used these bendable foam things. They are long enough that i could wrap my hair down the length of them in a spiral. I only used damp hair, no products. i slept in them overnight, when i unrolled them i put smoother in my hands and ran them along the curls as i was seperating them. This kept them from frizzing up.

    Factors that will make or break them:
    1) the condition of your hair…. is it healthy? do you have a lot of split ends? is your hair coarse or fine?
    2) use a smoother or frizz control when unraveling them
    3) the apparatus you use to “roll” them
    4) possibly the way you roll them.

    I love this chic:

  19. Jill

    Haha, I’m glad you guys got a kick out of my fail!
    Basically.. I have fine, curly hair- but a lot of it. It’s past my shoulders. I’ve had better luck with blowing my hair out, twisting all of it at the top of my head, and lightly securing it up there. It gives me subtle wave the next day, minus the ‘fro (as seen in my unfortunate picture).
    As for attempting this again… no shot in hell hahaha.

  20. Katie

    i do this all the time and it works! Your hair has to be damp and the smaller the bundles the more curly and frizzy its gonna get. I also learned that you CANNOT brush it out and barely run your fingers through. Just shake it out. Also you could try parting your hair and twisting it tightly to the side of your head, same curls just more natural look or even the braids trick for waves. Goodluck!

  21. knitchic

    I do this all the time. The first time it turned out like yours. Not attractive. But like the others who have had success I found that if I trust bigger chunks into the buns the results are very pretty. My trick is damp hair with a touch of mousse and big chunks.

  22. Laura

    I’ve tried this method to no avail in the past…. but i recently discovered the BEST trick ever that involves tucking and wrapping your dry hair into a soft headband before bed…I’ve done it multiple times w/ great results each time, and have convinced multiple friends to try it, w/ success each time! I sprayed some styling lotion in to damp hair, blow dried it, and then tucked my hair into the headband… it’s a little challenging to get the headband out in the morning, but other than that, easy breezy! This girl has a video tutorial detailing how to do it… give it a try!!

  23. Nat

    Setting your hair without heat used to be a beauty standard. Everything from the pin curls in the 1920s and 30s to the soft, brushable waves in the 40s and 50s were accomplished in a similar way, except they had a secret ingredient that isn’t listed here. The curls will hold if you apply setting lotion to damp hair and let your hair dry fully before pulling them out. You can buy setting lotion at beauty supply stores

  24. Mihakuu

    I invested a whole 5 dollars in a package of foam covered twists that are a whole lot easier to deal with. It takes a fair bit of practice to get this technique down pat. The biggest thing I struggled with on this is putting too many in my hair. The more twists in my hair the tighter the curl, so best to use larger amounts of hair in each one. Once I’m done twisting and setting them, I spritz them with some spray in conditioner. And don’t paw at it, It’ll feel a bit knotty but if you try to brush it out you get poof.

  25. Alicia

    1. This method is called bantu knots and there are tons of tutorials on youtube
    2. Wet your hair and brush each section before twisting
    3. Maek sure your hair is 100% dry before taking it out
    4. bigger sections= less afro
    5. Don’t brush or comb through the curls…use your fingers to gently separate the curls and toss your hair around a few times

  26. Ma2EandT

    Oh my gosh. You still look adorable. At least you tried…her hair was probably a wig anyway. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  27. MzTeaze

    Just ROFL. Bantu knots are not for everyone.

  28. Michelle Luna

    I have thin/medium somewhat coarse mixed-race hair past my butt. Here’s what happened when I tried a knot out:
    As you can see I didn’t make that many knots, 6 altogether, because my hair isn’t very dense at all, and when I twist my hair into a bun it compresses into a much smaller-seeming amount
    A hint of the future
    I should’ve just stopped here and gotten in the shower when I saw what trying to finger comb this out resulted in
    When I finally got my plastic pick through my entire mane… and mane it was

    In hindsight, I’m reading that it takes a lot of oil/serum to keep things smooth, and CLEARLY I didn’t use enough Biosilk (my HG). I live my life in a bun already, and get nice enough curls out of that since my hair isn’t very thick, so I don’t think I’ll ever do a knot out again that uses more than 2 buns… and a shit ton of serum

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