Create Bouncy Curls with Cardboard Tubes

Category Styling
If you are looking for a thrifty, no heat, alternative to rollers or a curling iron this tip may just be for you. It is certainly a great temporary fix. You just need bobby pins and some recycled TP or paper towel tubes from your crafting stash. You will be pleased and surprised by the resulting bouncy curls.


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I flew up to visit my parents recently and realized I'd left my curling iron at home. I was a bit bummed as I love to do my hair. Before I got the chance to even contemplate buying a cheap curling iron at one of the local shops, my thrifty mum suggested I make use of a big bag of toilet paper tubes and wrapping paper centers she had put aside for crafting. Admittedly, I laughed at first, but it turned out to be pretty awesome. The cardboard grit is enough to keep it a bit non-slip, and smooth enough that your hair does not get stuck in any teeth (like many curlers have). Using different sizes of tubes gives different types of curls. Also, no electricity was used and no hair was damaged by heat. I'm a big fan of this method!



  • cardboard tubes from toilet paper and wrapping paper
  • hairbrush
  • water
  • bobby pins
  • serrated knife


  1. Cut the tubes into shorter lengths. Gift wrapping paper tubes are usually much thicker and can be sliced with a serrated knife.
  2. Brush your hair then dampen with a very small amount of water. Do not soak.
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  4. Use bigger rolls where you want bigger curls. I use them more at the bottom section of my head.
  5. Secure hair onto roll with a bobby pin.
  6. Continue dampening and rolling all your hair. Allow to air dry while you do something else, or speed up the process with a hair dryer. When fully dry, remove the tubes and love your bouncy curls.
Comment Pin it! Was this helpful? 7


February 5, 20190 found this helpful

When my hair was long, in the early 70s, I used orange juice cans and TP rolls, and eventually, as it got longer, beer cans.


It took hours for my hair to dry, but I wanted to straighten my curly hair. One day, I stepped outside my apartment door with all those cans, etc., in my hair. One of my neighbors yelled, "You get all the channels, don't you!"

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
February 5, 20190 found this helpful

Those cardboard tubes sure worked great, your hair looks beautiful!

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February 5, 20191 found this helpful

My mom used to do the same thing, but to straighten her curly hair. I remember her talking about orange juice cans specifically. :)

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February 6, 20191 found this helpful

That is super cool! I've never tried cans-- kinda keen on doing it for fun :) Love the neighbour's comment!!!

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