Hot Rollers vs Curling Iron: Which Tool Is Better for You?

hot rollers vs curling iron

hot rollers vs curling iron

There are a lot of hair tools that you can use to make your hair curly. Back in the day, hair rollers were one of the most common curling tools. Recently, however, a lot of people have been using curling irons. In today’s article, I will talk about the similarities and differences between hot rollers vs curling irons to show you what these tools are all about!

It is safe to assume that everyone knows what a curling iron is. They come in various shapes and sizes. Some of them come with clamps, and some even have three barrels that are used simultaneously to style the hair. The reason people love using any type of curling iron on their hair is that this tool offers fast and gorgeous results without damaging the hair too much.

On the other hand, you have hot rollers. These are a modern take on traditional rollers. They also offer easy hairstyling without the potential of too much hair damage, but you need to learn to use them properly if you want to get the desired results. The plus side with rollers is that your hair will look more voluminous once you style it, whereas the same effect cannot be achieved with a curling iron.

There are a ton of things to consider when deciding whether you want to use hot rollers or a curling iron on your hair. With this article, I want to help you make a better, more educated decision while also giving you a look at the top three hot rollers and top three curling irons. If this all sounds interesting, stick with me as we get right into the article!

Main Differences Between Hot Rollers vs Curling Irons

The main differences between hot rollers vs curling irons are:

  • Hot rollers are less likely to damage your hair, whereas curling irons are more likely to cause damage.
  • Hot rollers allow multitasking while in use, whereas curling irons do not allow you to multitask while using them.
  • Hot rollers are less likely to burn your skin, whereas curling irons are more likely to burn your skin if they come in contact with it.

Hot Rollers vs Curling Irons – A Comparison

If you have never tried out one of these tools, or maybe neither of them, then you are probably wondering what they are all about and what makes them different from one another. This is something that I struggled to understand in the beginning, but once I did, I used the knowledge to decide which tool is better for my hair and for which situations.

So, I want to share with you some of that knowledge and show you what the differences are between hot rollers and curling irons. Let’s compare some of their features:

Heating Element

Hot rollers come in their own case or base—whatever you want to call it. This base heats up, which then heats up the rollers. Once they reach the desired temperature, you can put them in your hair.

On the other hand, with the curling iron you do not have such a base but you do have a barrel that heats up. When heated, the barrel is used to create the curls, but it should never be touched directly because it can burn the skin. You hold the tool by the handle only and wear a heat-protective glove if you need to come in close contact with the heated barrel.

Ease of Use

Both hot rollers and curling irons can be somewhat challenging to use at first. It takes some time for you to learn how to properly use the tools to style your hair, but once you do, your curls will look effortless.

I would still say that hot rollers are somewhat easier to use than a curling iron; you attach the rollers to your hair and go on with your other chores, while with a curling iron, you have to pay a lot of attention to what you’re doing and to each strand of hair.

At the same time, using hot rollers is much safer because they cannot easily burn your skin like the curling iron can. Because of this, I think it would be much easier to use them instead of the curling iron for daily curling.

Resulting Curls

If you use hot rollers to curl your hair, you will get loose, big curls that will look voluminous and shiny. On the other hand, curling irons can give you curls that look more like beach waves or even coils.

The size of the curls will largely depend on the size of both the curling iron barrel and the hot roller itself. Still, I recommend that you use hot rollers for more defined curls and curling irons for more natural, wavy hairstyles.


Hot rollers are safer to use on all types of hair. If you use them properly, there is little to no risk of damaging your hair. On the other hand, curling irons can both burn your hair and your hands if you are not careful, so I think they are not as safe to use.

Some Reviews of Hot Rollers and Curling Irons 

Now that you have some insight into the similarities and differences between hot rollers and curling irons, I want to tell you more about the top choices of both categories. Let’s look at the detailed reviews of the best products!

Top 3 Hot Rollers

If you are thinking about buying some hot rollers, I would like to suggest three amazing options that you need to look into. These rollers are affordable, effective, and super easy to use. Let’s look at them closely:

1. BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Hot Rollers


The reason why I chose these BaByliss hot rollers as my top overall choice is because of the way they are designed. Nothing can beat the nano titanium roller that has far-infrared heat!

Key Features
  • Different sized rollers are included
  • Clips and pins are included
  • Even heat distribution

What I like about this set of hot rollers is that you do not have to worry about damaging your hair with them – their velvet finish ensures that the hair stays healthy and shiny!

What I do not like about this set of hot rollers is that they can sometimes get a bit too hot and might make you feel uncomfortable.

  • Quick hairstyling
  • Rollers have a heat-ready dot
  • Might be more suitable for thicker hair than for thinner hair

These hot rollers might be a bit pricey for some people, but they are worth it. You can also purchase the pack of five rollers if you do not need the big 20-roller pack!

Overall Rating
  • 4.3

2. Remington Thermaluxe Pro Hot Rollers


If you are looking for some professional hot rollers, look no further! This pack of 20 ceramic rollers in two sizes is bound to amaze you with its effectiveness.

Key Features
  • Long-lasting curls
  • Dual heating technology
  • Compact storage

What I like about these hot rollers is the Thermaluxe Advanced Technology. The rollers heat both on the inside and the outside, allowing you to quickly and effectively curl your hair.

What I do not like is the fact that these rollers come in two sizes only – having rollers in three sizes allows for more versatile hair styling.

  • Rollers heat up in 90 seconds
  • High-quality clips included
  • Rollers come with a limited warranty

I recommend these hot rollers because they come at a very affordable price, the design is amazing, and the rollers are quite effective!

Overall Rating
  • 4.3

3. Conair Xtreme Instant Heat Ceramic Hot Rollers


If you are looking for rollers that will give you natural, voluminous curls, then these Conair rollers are perfect for you. You get 12 rollers in two sizes that you can use to create curls in just a matter of seconds!

Key Features
  • Rollers have a velvet finish
  • Rollers have an aluminum heating core
  • Rollers have a ceramic thermal layer

What I like is that these rollers are very well-made – those ceramic and aluminum layers work together with the soft flocking layer to give the perfect hairstyling experience.

What I do not like is that these rollers are quite big and might not be that suitable for shorter hair.

  • Easy to use
  • Rollers come with super clips
  • Clips might not hold very well

If you have thicker hair that you want to style quickly, then these jumbo rollers are a great choice for you!

Overall Rating
  • 4.2

Top 3 Curling Irons

If you are not that into hot rollers and would rather stick to a curling iron, I got you! I have three great options for you to check out. With these curling irons, your hair will look flawless and surely turn a lot of heads!

1. HOT TOOLS Signature Series Gold Curling Iron


This gold curling iron from Hot Tools is my absolute favorite because it styles hair perfectly in a matter of seconds. What is even better is that you can use it both as a curling iron and a curling wand!

Key Features
  • Adjustable temperature settings
  • Professional swivel cords
  • Ergonomic, soft handle

What I like about this curling iron is that you can adjust the temperature to fit your hairstyle. That means you will not have to worry about burning your hair!

What I do not like is that it does not come with an auto shut-off option.

  • Consistent temperature
  • Different sized barrels are available
  • Cord might be a bit short

This is a great curling iron for all hair types. I recommend that you get it and enjoy the beautiful curls it can produce!

Overall Rating
  • 4.6

2. BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Curling Iron


BaByliss is a company that creates great products – I mentioned them earlier for their hot rollers. Now, I will tell you more about their amazing curling irons!

Key Features
  • High-quality barrel
  • Various barrel sizes available
  • Adjustable temperature settings

What I like about this curling iron is that it comes with a unique turbo heat button that you can use to heat the barrel more quickly!

What I do not like is that the clamp cannot hold larger hair sections.

  • Long swivel cord
  • Far-infrared heat
  • Curls might not last a long time

I recommend this curling iron mostly because of the amazing barrel. With that far-infrared technology and nano titanium coating, you will never have to worry about hair damage!

Overall Rating
  • 4.6

3. Conair Double Ceramic Curling Iron


Another curling iron that I proudly present to you is the Conair double ceramic. With the higher ceramic content, I can bet that you will achieve the perfect curls in practically no time!

Key Features
  • Curl control technology
  • Instant heat-up
  • Turbo heat button

What I like about this curling iron is that it comes with a cool tip. That means that you will not have to worry about burning your fingers while you’re curling your hair!

What I do not like is that the cord is only 5 feet long. In my opinion, a great curler like this one should have a cord that is at least 7 or 8 feet long!

  • Auto shut-off
  • Dual voltage
  • Buttons are badly positioned

A great curling iron for all types of hair, this Conair curler can make the perfect gift for your loved ones!

Overall Rating
  • 4.5

How Long Should You Leave Heated Rollers In?

You should let the rollers heat for about 10 minutes and then add them to your hair. You can leave them in your hair as long as you’d like, but no less than 10 minutes. It depends on your type of hair, so you should see what timing works best for you.

Final Thoughts on  Curling Irons vs Hot Rollers 

That’s everything you need to know about hot rollers and curling irons. The former would be better for you if you like to multitask while styling your hair, whereas the latter is a better option if you are looking for a tool that requires more attention while styling.

Both hot rollers and curling irons can be great for you if you learn to use them properly! Let me know in the comments if you have had any experience with using these tools and what it was like. I cannot wait to read all about it!

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