An advantage of using synthetic hair on a wig or hair system is that it is much less expensive when compared to the cost of human hair; a disadvantage is that it is often more difficult to style the hair into a curly hairdo. The best tips for curling synthetic hair include using a curling iron set to its lowest setting, if the hair can withstand it, or to use hot water to shape the curls. The heat from hot water can be used to mold synthetic hair into any shape, with the help of foam hair rollers. In either case, the person curing the hair should use caution not to burn the hair or him- or herself.
Some synthetic hair can withstand low heat, so a curling iron set to its lowest setting can be used to style it. A light heat protectant should be applied on the hair first; this will help protect against damage that could be caused by excessive heat. The curling iron should be set to be a few dozen degrees lower than the recommended temperature set by the wig manufacturer, because it is always best to err on the side of caution when curling synthetic hair with this method.
Traditional synthetic hair can offer unique challenges. Curling synthetic hair with hot water may be the only option to style it without the intense heat of a hot tool appliance. The hair should be parted into sections, with a foam roller rolled onto each piece. Synthetic hair extensions can also be curled with this method. How many rollers are used depends on the type of curls being created; more rollers can be used for a more defined curl, while using fewer rollers will result in a loose wave.
Hot water is often the key to curling synthetic hair. A pot of water should be brought to a boil, then allowed to cool until it is about 180°F (82°C). The person doing the rolling should use a towel to protect his or her hands from accidental spills, and carefully dip each foam roller into the water. The water should saturate each hair-wrapped foam roller for no more than five seconds. The heat from the water will end up curling synthetic hair into the shape of the foam.
Once all the hair has been treated, it should be placed on foam head to air dry. The hair should not be disturbed during this time, for this can cause the hair to lose its curl. Even though it may seem tempting, a blow dryer should not be used. Once the hair is completely dried, the foam rollers can be removed and the hair can be styled as usual.