How Do I Choose the Best Clipless Curling Iron?

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  • Written By: Rachael Cullins
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 01 September 2019
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Most curling irons include a spring-loaded clamp that holds the hair to the iron, making it easy to use. A clipless curling iron is different. It is simply a heated wand used for making spirals or waves and does not feature a clamp of any kind. Choosing the best one depends on the look desired and the various available options for the equipment.

There are several advantages to a clipless curling iron over a regular iron. This special tool is not as damaging to the hair, as the hair cannot be caught in a clamp or broken by pulling clamped hair down the iron. Clamps also tend to leave marks or bumps in the hair, whereas the clipless iron produces a smooth curl. The clamp-free curling iron often heats to higher temperatures than a regular curling iron, creating a long-lasting hairstyle.

A clipless curling iron may take some practice after purchasing in order to achieve the look promised by the manufacturer. Various sizes of waves and curls can be made depending upon the amount of hair wrapped around the iron. The size of the heated tube is an important consideration when purchasing a curling iron of this kind. In general, a smaller iron will make tighter curls, and a larger iron will make looser curls or waves.


Some versions of the clipless hair iron are conical, meaning they taper from large at the base to smaller at the end. This allows the wearer to choose between small and large curls. Other versions are the same diameter from base to tip, ensuring a uniform-sized curl. Both are effective for curling the hair and the choice between the two should be based on the desired style outcome.

Heated hair tools can be made of various materials. Most clipless irons are made from ceramic or glass, to reduce damage to the hair. These surfaces can be slippery and make it difficult to wrap hair around the heated tube. Choosing a clipless curling iron with a no-slip surface may make using the tool easier.

It can be easy to sustain a burn when using a clipless curling iron, as the fingers must be used to hold the hair on the iron. Some models come with a heat-resistant glove or fingertips for the working hand, which may be useful in preventing injury. Choosing a model with various heat settings is beneficial so that there is heat level available that is hot enough to yield curls or waves yet not so hot that it burns or damages the hair.


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Post 5

I love clipless curling irons! Mine was expensive though. It's a Karmin wand and it didn't come with a glove, which was a real bummer but hey, gloves are cheap. I did burn myself a couple of times using it before I bought the glove though!

Post 4

@ceilingcat - I think it definitely is necessary to use a glove with clipless curling irons. However, I purchased a model that didn't come with a glove, and I just use a regular knit winter glove when I curl my hair.

Post 3

If you're going to buy a clipless curling iron, I think it's necessary to buy a clipless curling iron with glove. Most of the clipless curling iron models I've seen don't have a plastic cap at the end for you to hold onto while curling your hair like regular models do. So it's really easy to forget what you're doing and burn yourself!

In fact, this happened to me when I first started using a clipless curling iron. I was so used to curling my hair with the other kind I kept grabbing the end of the iron. I had several burns on my left hand til I got used to it!

Post 2

@dautsun - That's a really good idea. However, I did want to point out that clipless curling irons aren't as expensive as they once were. In fact, some of the less expensive brands have come out with their own models. I just saw a Conair clipless curling iron at the store for around $30!

Post 1

I love styling my hair with a clipless curling iron. My friend bought one awhile ago and let me borrow it, and I've been hooked ever since. However, at that time, most of the clipless curling irons were extremely expensive. So I made my own!

I had a several 2 inch curling irons at home, so I removed the clamp from one. I found a tutorial online that showed me how to do it, and it was really quite easy. Plus, it was free since I already had an extra curling iron!

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