Pin curls are a great way to get a long lasting set of curls. Pin curls have been around since at least the 1920’s and used to be called “spit curls” because saliva was used to dampen hair. You don’t need to go to a hair salon for a great hairstyle; learn how to create pin curls at home for a long lasting style.

The Wet Set

Wash your hair with the shampoo you normally use, apply conditioner if you usually use it. Gently towel dry your hair and comb out any tangles. Apply setting lotion if your hair is very fine or difficult to hold a curl. Allow your hair to slightly air dry so it is more than damp, but not wet. A wet set holds curls longer, especially for baby fine hair.

Assemble bobby pins and a rat-tail comb to be within easy reach. Use a rat-tail comb to section your hair easier. A rat-tail comb has a long tail on the end of it.

Use the rat-tail comb to section hair in one-inch sections. Wrap the sectioned hair around your finger tightly while holding your finger close to your head. Slip the pin curl off your finger and pin it to your head with a bobby pin. You may need to use two bobby pins to secure the curl to your head, crossing one over the other in an “x” position.

Continue to place pin curls randomly until all the hair is in pin curls. Wrap a scarf around your head to keep pin curls in place while you sleep. If you are not going to sleep on pin curls, it’s best to hold the pin curls in place with short clips to reduce a crease line from using bobby pins.

The Dry Set

Wash your hair with the shampoo and conditioner you normally use. Comb out any tangles. Allow your hair to air dry or dry with a blow dryer set on “cool.”

Assemble bobby pins and a rat-tail comb within easy reach. Section hair into one-inch sections. This is where the “spit curl” comes into being. You can either set the pin curl totally dry, apply a de-frizzer or a light setting lotion to each section individually or yes, use saliva.

Twist the hair section gently from the ends to the root; the tighter the twist, the tighter the curl. Wind the twisted hair around your finger, which is placed close to the head. Slide the curl off your finger onto your head and secure with bobby pins. You may need to use two bobby pins that are crossed in an “x” to keep pin curls in place while you sleep. Wrap a scarf around your hair to keep curls in place.


  • Finger comb your hair after removing the pin curls for a sassy look.

  • Brush your hair after removing pin curls for an all over wavy effect.