The Return of Curlformers for Voluminous Curls!

It’s week 3 of the Wash Day Experience and the focus is on voluminous curls

may wash day experience week three

I haven’t used Curlformers in quite some time now. It’s been about three years since I’ve purchased them and I don’t use them often because I found that they cause my fine hair to experience some unnecessary breakage. It’s not a lot but really any breakage that’s avoidable is too much.

I thought it would be a good idea to try using Curlformers again to achieve voluminous curls because in spite of my love/hate relationship with them, they did cost me a small fortune. I still don’t plan to use them often but from time to time I’ll dust them off and play with them to get my money’s worth.

Pros and Cons of Using Curlformers

While there are certainly people who sing the praises of Curlformers, there are others who are less impressed (like me – but mainly the installation process). Before I share my wash day experience, let’s take a look at the pros and cons, starting with the pros:

Curlformer Pros

  1. They stretch the hair enough to eliminate and prevent single strand knots from forming.
  2. They create the perfect base for different types of curly hairstyles as these curlers are available in spiral, barrel and corkscrew sizes.
  3. Depending on your natural curl pattern, Curlformers yield the results of either a blow out or a press and curl.
  4. You can achieve nice voluminous curls.

Curlformer Cons

Now, on to the cons of using Curlformers:

  1. They are craaaaazy expensive! You’ll pay around $70 for just 24 curlers and depending on the density of your hair, you’ll need at least twice the amount.
  2. There’s a steep learning curve to installing Curlformers. When I first started to use them, my hair would constantly snag in the hook that’s used to pull your hair through the curler. It took a while to determine how much hair could safely make it through the curler without snagging.
  3. While one Curlformer isn’t very heavy on it’s own, having a head full of them can put a little too much weight on fine hair. I think that’s partially why I incurred breakage (that and the stupid hook kept getting stuck in the middle of the curler!).

curlformers set

How it Went on Wash Day

Products used:

Pre-Poo: Vatika Coconut Oil + Aubrey Organics GPB Conditioner
Shampoo: Shea Moisture Fruit Fusion Coconut Water Weightless Shampoo
Deep Conditioner: Shea Moisture Fruit Fusion Coconut Water Weightless Masque
Rinsing Conditioner: TRESemme Botanique Nourish & Replenish Conditioner
Protein Deep Conditioner: DIY Goat’s Milk, Honey & Oils
Leave in Conditioner: Camille Rose Naturals Coconut Water Leave in Conditioner
Styler: CurlPrep Sweet Buttah
Gel: CurlPrep Around the Way Gel
Oil Sealant: DIY Oil Mix (Apricot Castor Oil, Pumpkin Seed Oil

My process this wash day went pretty smooth but I still had issues installing my Curlformers – not each time but more times than I would like which is none.

curlformers for voluminous curls

Wash day began the night before, starting with my pre-poo. I allowed it to sit over night so that the coconut oil would have time to penetrate my hair. When applying my pre-poo, I’m VERY generous with the products and have to blot my hair of excess oil. I went to bed with my hair wrapped and pinned in 5 bantu knots..

In the morning (Friday this week), I released the knots and put my hair in 5 twists. Then, shampooed my hair once and followed it with my deep conditioner. After allowing the DC to sit on my hair for about 15 minutes (no heat), I then rinsed out the deep conditioner and used my rinsing conditioner to finger detangle through my hair before rinsing it out.

Then, I applied my DIY goat’s milk treatment. I had 1 1/4 frozen cubes of goat’s milk in the freezer so I thawed them out and proceeded to mix. Unfortunately, it was just a little bit short of being able to treat all of my hair so I focused most of it on the ends and then put on my thermal cap and Hot Head for 15 minutes of heat penetration.

After removing my Hot Head and thermal cap, I allowed my hair to cool for a few minutes before applying my diluted rinsing conditioner right on top of the goat’s milk conditioner. Then, I finger detangled a little more and rinsed it all out with cool water.

Finally done with the wash and conditioning process, I had to run out so I just worked my leave in conditioner throughout my hair and put it up in two twists to form a halo before rushing out to take my son to the doctor.

When I returned home, my hair was still pretty damp but styling was made very easy as my hair was thoroughly moisturized and detangled.

Before installing each Curlformer, I spritzed some water on the sections, and then smoothed each product in (styler, gel and then oil). Notice that I used two different sizes throughout my head so that I would achieve less “perfect” looking curls.

curlformers on fine natural hair

8 hours of air drying (I was just doing things in the house) and 15 minutes of soft bonnet hair drying (just in case I wasn’t completely dry) later, I removed the Curlformers before going to bed with my hair up in a loose french roll with my ends left out. (see this post by Hairscapades where she shares how to do this modified pineapple).

I’m not entirely sure how I’m going to style my hair this week but it will be very stretched out. 2-3 days of wearing it out before I eventually put it up in a bun. Follow me on Instagram @FNHairNFaith to see how I styled.

While the result of using Curlformers is pretty impressive, the number of pros isn’t enough for me to outweigh the number of cons. You can achieve very similar results with flexi rods or perm rods (it’s all in the technique) for far less money and much less stress on your tresses.

voluminous curls

The Wash Day Experience

What say you about these pricey styling curlers known as Curlformers?


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  1. Awesome post! I also have Curlformers which I found to be stressful on my fine tresses. I really love your results though! I’ll definitely be trying it out again soon 🙂

    1. I really wish I had gotten the dupes! lol they weren’t out just yet when i got these though.

      thanks so much. I have to get back to blogging. I’ve been going through some personal challenges so I had to put it on the back burner for a while

    1. Thank you 🙂 I’ve yet to get my curlformer sets to last more than 2 days! Instead what the gel does is it keeps my hair smooth and frizz free. Even after the curls are gone, I can wear it straight or rather nicely stretched 🙂 and, I only use a jelly type gel, not one with lots of hold

  2. I had no idea air drying took so long with curlformers. I had no idea they caused breakage either. Thanks for sharing the pros and cons, as I haven’t tried them yet. But I do love your curls. Excellent job! BTW, I only keep my twists on for two weeks. Thanks for asking.

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