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Guide to Choosing the Best Hot Roller for You

Guide to Choosing the Best Hot Roller for You

Looking to give hot rollers a twirl? In 7 Reasons to Try Hot Rollers we talked about the advantages of hot rollers (or hair setters) vs. curling irons or wands, but how do you know what type of hot roller is best for you?

The best place is to start is by considering roller size, roller quantity, roller surface material and heating technology.

Roller Size

Your hair length and what style you want to achieve are one of the first few things to consider.

One key point is that, with hot rollers you always want to make sure the length of your hair can wrap around the roller body at least twice. The general rule is short hair smaller rollers, long hair larger rollers. Case in point, if you have short hair, rolling your ends around a 1.75” roller would be difficult.


Left to Right:
1.75”     1.50”   1.25”   1.00”   0.85”

0.85” to 1.00” - Tight curls
Imagine more defined ringlets for longer hair. These also work best on shorter shoulder length hair.

1.25”- Medium curls
Traditionally a popular size that delivers soft feminine curls and body for any hair length.

1.50” to 1.75”- Big curls
Just stepped out of the salon blown out look with lots of body and volume. Best for shoulder length and longer hair.

Remember no matter what your hair length is, one advantage of using a hot roller is that it will give your hair volume at the roots! That’s why so many wedding stylists use them as a precursor for beautiful up-do’s and looks that last all day long.

Results vary depending on hair type but in general long set times lead to longer lasting curls. If you decided on a smaller roller set like our The Spiral (0.85” – 1.25” rollers) , you can still achieve larger voluminous roller looks. You can try to set your hair for a shorter time, or try tugging your hair immediately after taking out your rollers to get a similar look.

For examples of hair styles using large rollers view our tutorial Voluminous Curls Day To Night and for an example of tight curls view our tutorial Bring on the Romantic Curls.

Roller Quantity

For first time users this is may be easily unnoticed. However, knowing how many rollers you need beforehand can help alleviate a lot of frustration later. Some women with short fine hair may only need 8 rollers, while others with long thick hair may need 12 or more rollers. It’s always a good idea to see how many rollers a full set includes!

Our Jetset Hot Roller Collection comes with 16, 18 or 26 rollers, depending on the model.

Roller Material and Surface

The roller material and surface can vary from simple hard plastic to flocking (or velvet) and Velcro rollers.

Hard plastic rollers are quite common and usually the least expensive. These often have ribs or bumps on the roller’s surface to act as a guide for rolling or combing hair, but the overall smooth surface tends to cause slippage when the hair is clipped into place.

Flocking and Velcro rollers are designed so that fine or slippery hair is easier to grip. Flocked rollers have short fibers all over the surface of the roller that helps polish and shine hair.

Velcro rollers also have long plastic “hooks” on the surface to catch hair, sometimes too well. Unfortunately, often users find that when unrolling the hair from Velcro rollers, freshly rolled hair gets tangled and undone due to too much pulling and snagging.

Some rollers offer additional ceramic, ion and tourmaline infusions to help fight frizz and boost shine. Our Jetset Hot Roller collection uses all three.

Heat Technology

There are mainly 3 types of technologies that heat-up rollers. The most commonly found are conduction sets and the less common alternatives are steam and induction.

Conduction rollers heat all the rollers at once and usually takes anywhere between 5-10mins to heat up before the actual hair setting process starts. PTC based sets can be easily identified, since each individual roller is placed on a post or slot that conducts heat to the roller. Prices for conduction hot rollers are probably the most reasonable.

Steam technology has been around for a while. Each roller has a foam surface and heats one at a time taking about 10 seconds. Some disadvantages are that hard water can cause flaky buildup and impact the performance over time, foam can become mildewy, plus, if you leave the roller heating for too long the foam becomes over saturated with hot scalding water.

Lastly, there is induction. Advanced induction technology hot rollers like ours are known for heating up extremely fast. For example, our patented Jetset Hot Roller Collection only takes 8 seconds for the rollers to be ready for use. It requires less time and the hair styling process can start immediately. To achieve longer lasting curls, the Jetset is also designed so each roller reaches higher optimum temperatures for styling and curling compared to traditional rollers. Plus, did you know, our roller caps stay completely cool to the touch?