Your FAQ Guide To Curling/Clipless Wands

How was your weekend? Mine was so busy! I refinished a little bistro set for my patio that I found for free at the dump (eep!) at my apartment (posted on Instagram @ ElleSees), had a fun night out with friends (including an old-school video arcade bar), and saw Sky Fall (my first Bond movie ever! I liked it). Also, on my Instagram--I've been doing a #30DaysofThankful where every day this month I post a pic of one thing I'm thankful for. Please join in and share along with me.

So today's post has been sitting in the draft pile for over a year now, but when Bee emailed me over the weekend, I was reminded to finally write it. I'm a big fan of curling wands (or clipless wands) and use them in many of my hair tutorials. They are simply wonderful in getting those waves that we all want. I hope this FAQ guide helps!

Why Get a Curling Wand?
Every time I do a tutorial with a wand, someone always tells me to Just Use Your Curling Iron as a Wand! Just Take the Clip Off! I Saw This on Pinterest! Etc. And while I appreciate the idea, it isn't my preferred wave method (don't get me wrong--I love my curling irons: scroll down for a recent tutorial). If you are on a very tight budget, then by all means, use the curling iron, but here's why you might want a wand:

  1. Technology--How old is that curling iron? Technology has certainly changed since the basic metal curling iron, so you might consider a wand as an upgrade. Some wands help control frizz with their barrel type, like tourmaline ceramic. The temperature can be higher than a curling iron, so if your hair needs that, a wand might be for you. Wands can help with less damage due to even heat, and some have keratin therapy.
  2. Curl Hold--I've found waves hold better/longer via curling wands. And since most of you have said lasting curls is an issue, you might want a wand.
  3. Barrel Length--Some curling iron barrels are not long enough for my hair, and curling wands can be longer, thus making it easier/faster to get waves.
  4. No Bumps/Less Damage--The clip can cause bumps in hair and hair could get caught in it. Since not all irons heat hair evenly, more damage could be caused. Many wands have Teflon technology, so hair doesn't stick and slides right off. 
What Kind of Curling/Clipless Wands Are There?

  • Tapered/Conical--These are great for two reasons: a more natural-looking wave, and different-sized waves, depending where on the barrel the hair is wrapped.
  • Straight--This is similar to the wave from a curling iron, with all curls/waves being the same size. And it is perfect for waves or ringlets. Many straight barrels don't have a tip to hold onto, leading to burned fingers. This is something you might consider. 
  • Inverted--Tight curls at the top, looser at the bottom--I don't see as many of these around, and don't use mine that often, but they could be just right for you. Bedhead has a variety of Curlipop inverted wands.
What Wand Is Right For Me?
  • Budget--Curling/clipless wands can be purchased at drugstores, chain stores (Wal-Mart, Target), beauty stores, mall kiosks, and online. Prices can average from $25 and up to the hundreds. I have had great results from wands at all price levels. The tapered wands pictured were around $25-$40.
  • Technology--Heat tools have come so far! Consider wands that have tourmaline or ceramic barrels. 
  • Result--Are you looking for ringlets? Loose waves? Definition of existing/curls or waves?
What Size? What To Look For?

1 in and 1.5 in tapered/conical, Note the black tip.
  • The smaller the barrel, the tighter the curl. The standard curling wand is 1 inch, and I think this will suit most needs. If smaller waves are what you're after, like in my Taylor Swift Hair Tutorial, get a 3/4 inch.
  • If you have long hair, consider a 1.5 inch wand for looser waves (pink pictured above).
  • Look for
    • adjustable temperature
    • heat resistant glove (a necessity with a no-tip and straight barrel)
    • Tourmaline ceramic
    • swivel cord
    • tip to hold onto (for beginners)
Adjustable temp/level via knob and digital

Wands I Own:
  • Conair--This is the first wand I saw on the market and is a favorite of many (red wand),
  • Remington--These wands are among the lightest I've tried. The Pearl (pink) line is more expensive than other Remington wands (purple), but I find they all work the same.
  • 3-in-1 or 4-in-1--Brands like Jose Eber and Her Styler are great because the wands are interchangeable, meaning you can change the size and type of barrel. These are pricier, but can be a value if you're looking to buy more than one wand. Note: these do not have the tip to hold onto, so I would recommend these if you are wearing a glove and are used to heating products.
Her Styler and Jose Eber  in 19 and 25 mm (gloves are a must with these)

If you have any questions, please leave them below or email me. 
Tomorrow, I'll show you how to use each type of curling wand, as well as the results for each.

PS: Don't forget to enter my OWN Renewing Skin Care giveaway--the entire line! 
New ways to enter have been added.



  1. thanks for sharing! very informative post :)

    i just recently purchased a curling wand and love it!

    check out the giveaway at our blog: http://www.counttofour.com/2012/11/count-to-four-shop-ear-warmer-headband.html


  2. Thanks for this post. I don't have a curling wand and was always wondering to do curling myself. Will definitely look into it and try.

  3. Another great post Elle! I use a hair dryer and a straighter, waiting for my hair to get a little longer before I buy anything else!

  4. Great Post!
    I have the Remmington Pearl curling wand and I love it; I also have a 25mm barrel curling iron which is good but i prefer the curling wand if im honest!

  5. Thanks so much for this useful information regarding curling wands, I never know which is the right fit. Luckily you've have better educated me!

  6. Mine was filled with Bama losing.

  7. I can never, ever get my fine hair to hold a curl so I have given up!

  8. My weekend was filled with celebrate my sister and cousin birthday

  9. hey elle!
    i agree, if you can afford it (and they have some good deals out there) buying a new wand instead of altering an old iron makes a difference.

    i have the slightly tapered one and if i wasn't too lazy to actually fix my hair :) then i would use it more often. my daughter uses it and her hair is so so pretty when it's done. it's quick too-much quicker than a curling iron i think.
    have a great day!

  10. I really need to get more curling products and it will be great to see your tutorials through the week!

    Chic 'n Cheap Living

  11. very informative post! love curling wands! :-)


  12. This is such a great post! So informative! xo


  13. oh dear, there are so many..

  14. I've always wanted to try one of these, but do get overwhelmed with all the options. I think I prefer those interchangeable ones.

  15. I have yet to try this whole wand trend out as my curling iron seems to get the job done but I do like the idea of the tapered wand. Maybe Santa will bring me one for X-mas :)
    (PS thanks for the nice comment on my blog today. I was worried people might get peeved about me talking about politics but in the end we are all entitled to our opinions. thanks again)

  16. This is exactly what my hair stylist used on my hair this past weekend. So funky! But it worked great.

  17. I'll have to try a wand...I really didn't know there was a difference, and it's hard for me to get those curls to hold.

  18. Great advice! I don't own a curling wand. Now I'm curious to read your next post...


  19. Hmmm, I've been thinking about one of these...

  20. I need to try a wand!! I've heard great things. Thaks for your tips!

  21. I have never owned one and I didnt know there was a difference. Thank you for sharing.

  22. I have a Conair that's very similar to yours! And I love it :)

  23. there's a lot of great information in the post! i've been interested in using a wand for awhile, but am terrified of burning my fingers haha. for now, i'm relying on curling my hair with a straightener and/or french-braid + releasing :)

  24. Excellent info! I had no idea there is so much to curling wands. I don't use them, because my hair is too coarse, but this post is very informative to other girls.
    Girlie Blog Seattle | Cheap Makeup Reviews

  25. Thank you for this post! I've been wanting to buy a decent curling wand for a while now, but had no idea where to start :) x

  26. you had a great weekend elle! glad you liked it and i have a bistro table too. i enjoy sitting at it. enjoy yours. this is excellent advice on purchasing a curling wand.

  27. You've pretty much sold me, I need a wand!

  28. Wow! And here I thought I knew about curling irons haha x

  29. I have such straight hair I think I would like to try a curling wand just to see if if would work to add a bit of bounce and volume to my hair!
    Daisy Dayz

  30. sounds awesome but my luck i'd burn myself, i've done it with regular ones
    Xo Megan

  31. I've been wanting one of these for a while... I saw the first time you talked about it and for some silly reason I still don't have one... Ugh!!!

  32. So, I know this is crazy, but I've never owned a curling iron and I didn't even know there was such a thing as a curling wand. The curse of having curly hair, I guess. Good tips!

  33. I'm thinking of asking for one for Christmas. Now to decide what size would match my natural curls the best.

  34. great info!!!


  35. Great post. I own one of these too and use it occasionally. Still the flat iron is what I use the most.
    OK, your last photo with all the wands and the gloves. A bit kinky looking! :)


  36. Great post, thanks for all the information!

  37. I love them use mine every single day.

    <3 Marina

  38. Whoa! So random that you should be posting about this! I saw that you had commented on my blog so I hopped over to visit and low and behold you are posting about something I was JUST wondering about yesterday. I was trying to decide if I should invest in a curling wand or just attempt to use my curling iron without the clip like suggested on other websites. You're right, though, it's really too short. I have such long hair and a wand would really cater to that! Plus, I like the idea of the tapered ones so the curls would look more natural. Thanks for this! :)

  39. Inverted wands are ideal for long hair. You get a tighter curl in the mid shaft (which carries the weight of the hair), and a looser curl at the ends which curl easily do to damage and porosity. The effect is a uniform curl from root to end that lasts days. My hair is thick, super long, and coarse my chi orbit is my go to iron. You can get a loose messy beach wave or by twisting the hair tightly are ounce the iron you can get a pincurl effect.

    I hope this helps


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