How to Preserve Curls Overnight

by Michelle Powell-Smith ; Updated February 27, 2017

Keep your curls looking their best, even on second-day hair.

John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Crush your hairstyle, not your curls! Whether you have natural curls or created them with a wet set, a curling iron or hot rollers, smart sleep strategies will help you to maintain your curls overnight. Going to bed with your hair down and without taking any precautions can leave you with mangled curls. And some nighttime techniques – like rollers or pin curls – just plain hurt. Use this simple technique to keep both you and your curls fresh for the next day.

For the Naturally Endowed

For Curling Iron or Roller Set Curls

Skip the spray and loosely gather your curls on top of your head in a ponytail. Secure with a hair elastic, but avoid pulling it too tight.

Grab the ends of your hair and thread a rolled-up sock with the toe cut out – or a doughnut-style commercial bun maker – over the ends of your hair. Spread the hair evenly around the bun maker and begin to roll down, toward your scalp. Continue rolling until the bun is sitting against your scalp.

Unroll your bun and remove the hair elastic in the morning. Fluff and separate your curls with your fingers.


  • The bun trick will create curls as well as preserve them, so try it on barely damp hair as a no-heat curl technique.

    If you’d rather not wear a cap, sleep on a satin pillowcase to keep your curls intact.

Photo Credits

  • John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images

About the Author

With a master's degree in art history from the University of Missouri-Columbia, Michelle Powell-Smith has been writing professionally for more than a decade. An avid knitter and mother of four, she has written extensively on a wide variety of subjects, including education, test preparation, parenting, crafts and fashion.