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Crimping Clinic

Modern Crimping
By Joanne Elliott

What is crimping?

Modern crimping is a hair styling technique that has been around since the early 1970s. Just like a straightening or curling a crimping iron uses heat to cause a temporary change to the hair's appearance and texture.iron, Crimping adds texture, and the ability to do a completely new look to your hair. This is not a permanent style - you can wash it out in just one shampoo! The key to crimping is experimenting to find the look that is best with your face shape and current hairstyle.

Should I crimp?

The ideal face shape to support crimping is small and oval, however, any face shape can take advantage of crimping if it is applied wisely. Some face shapes can support an entire head of crimping, some shapes do best with only partial crimping. Crimping can be done to just the bottom layer of the hair, the top layer of the hair or all of the hair.

Crimping of the bangs will add texture and fullness to the front of your face while crimping of a topknot or ponytail will add height. Why not try experimenting, and crimping multiple ponytails, for example? Remember, if your hair is thin, crimping will give it body. If you have thick hair, it will make it look ‘big’.

With crimping, the ‘messier’ you go, the better! If you want more volume, use a volume enhancing shampoo and conditioner and apply a little volume gel to the roots of your hair before you begin to blow dry.

How to Crimp

If you have analyzed your face shape, the condition of your hair and have figured out a great way to add crimping to your "look" follow these steps:

  • Wash your hair with a mild shampoo.

  • Use a good moisturizing conditioner.

  • Finish with a cold water rinse to seal the hair shaft.

  • Blot your hair as dry as possible with a towel.

  • Detangle.

  • Apply a good heat protection spray.

  • Blow dry your hair on the coolest setting.

  • When hair is totally dry, use the crimping iron on your hair, small sections at a time.

  • Apply the crimping iron to the hair for only as long as the crimping irons’ instruction manual states (models vary… but it’s generally a few seconds)

  • When the time is up remove the crimping irons from your hair. And then, hey wow! Check out your funky new style!

To crimp, or not to crimp?

If your hair is in good condition, then why not give crimping a try? But make sure you don’t crimp your hair too often (as in every day) as it will cause damage in the long run. If you are going to crimp, make sure that your hair is 100% dry before you begin, and always use a heat protective spray. Since crimping may cause some breakage to the hair, it is best to stop the crimp just above the ends of your hair.

If your hair is in bad condition, and is prone to snap or break, think twice. Even with the aid of a heat protecting hair product, your hair will sustain damage, and its condition will deteriorate still further. Also, don’t forget that crimping might not suit your face shape. Get an honest opining from your girlfriends or your Mom before you go out to the mall!

Where can I buy crimping irons?

You can buy a crimping iron at most beauty supply stores, retail stores and discount outlets like Best Buy, K-Mart and Walmart. But before you make an investment in a brand new crimping iron, you may want to get a professional hairstylist to fix your hair in crimps to see if you like it!


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