How To Use A Sock To Get Beautiful Curly Hair Without Heat

Posted on Oct 26, 2011 in Featured, For Moms, Hair Help | 131 comments

If you are a mom on the go with long hair you HAVE TO try this.  It will  knock your socks off and have you wrapping your hair up in them!  This is all about how to make your hair beautiful with no heat and no time.  Curl your hair in your sleep with a sock.

Yup, you heard me right.  Have you heard of this sock bun?  You really can curl your hair in your sleep with a sock.  If you have ever ran out the door in a sweat, with two different earnings in, desperately trying to throw some bobby pins in your hair in hopes that you don’t look like a mess.  You know what I am talking about Mom’s – This is for you.  In my house I get everyone else in the family ready first.  They are all looking adorable for every function  before I have even given a thought to what I am going to do to with my own hair.  Any busy mom knows exactly what I mean.  Whatever time is left is what determines your look for the day (good or bad), right?

I was on Pinterest a while back and spotted this post about the sock bun which links you to her video on YouTube. I have to admit, I was very skeptical at first. Basically they were saying that you could wrap your hair in a sock overnight and wake up with beautiful curls.  Before I started staying home with my kiddos I was a cosmetologist by trade.  I am forever trying new products and styling techniques, and love all things that have to do with hair. Now that I am a mom of two, my hair is at the bottom of the list of things to worry about.  It’s more about looking presentable than having a great style each day. This blows me away.

Why?

Because:

  • It literally takes a minute to do
  • NO heat at all – just a soft little sock in your hair
  • No product (for me anyway)
  • You can sleep in it very comfortably
  • It works Marvelously and is simple beautiful

This is the sock bun before and after of my hair. I have long hair with a cut that includes a lot of layering.  I have a natural wave to my hair and would say it curls very easily. From what I have read, this works on hard to curl hair too.  I do not have to use product for this to work in my hair.

Here are the  step by step instructions on how to make this work.

First steal a sock from your husband’s dress sock collection (that is what I did anyway). I chose a longer, thinner dress sock. Cut off the toe of the sock.

Now roll the sock into a ring.  View my video on how to roll a sock into a ring for a visual. This is now your new favorite hairstyling styling tool, I promise you!  This is all you need to make the curls in the picture above. To do this you start with dry hair.

Put your dry hair into a high ponytail. Get it as high on top of your head as you can. I flip my head over and gather the hair to put into a ponytail.  Secure the hair with a hair tie.

Now spritz just the hair in your ponytail with water.  You do not want it to be  wet.  I would call it slightly damp.  Remember you want it to dry overnight – if it is too wet it will not dry completely.  After you have tried this a few times you will know the perfect dampness for your own hair.

Now grab your rolled up sock and put your ponytail through the hole.  Pull the sock straight up to the tip of your ponytail.  When you pull the sock to the top of your ponytail – slide it back down just a bit.  With the hair that is sticking out spread it all the way around the sock evenly.   After the hair is spread around the sock it should go up and over the sock and then get tucked under the sock.   You should now have all of the ends of your hair neatly underneath the sock ring so you can begin rolling the hair onto the sock.  Start rolling the sock down so your hair is being fed through the hole, then up and around the sock.

Now simply roll all of your hair onto the sock until you reach the base of your ponytail.  Try to keep the ponytail straight up while you roll so that the hair is taught.

When you are finished rolling the hair onto the sock you have a  bun on top of your head.  I’m not going to lie I have dropped off my son at school with the bun in my hair.  There is no need to secure it with anything else.  It will stay put perfectly just the way it is.  Now go to sleep and dream about how beautiful your hair will be when you awake!  In the morning remove the bun and TA-DA!!!  You have a head full of soft pretty curls.

This is my new go-to styling technique. I have been doing this at least four times a week to my hair.   It looks great all down, in a simple ponytail, or half up.  I would do this for a fancy evening out or to curl my hair for an up-do as well.  It gives me such natural looking  perfect curls.  So simple and so beautiful. Anyone can do this.  It is nice to be able to leave the house and not feel like a mess for a change.  This look is quite different from my normal hair in a messy bun because I ran out of time to do anything with it look – and it takes the same amount of time.

Video Demonstration

If you are more of a visual person, I have put together a short video to help show the process.

How To Put A Sock Bun In Your Hair Video

Sock Bun Inspired Hairstyles

If you are looking for a quick hairstyle using the sock bun curl technique, you can find one here:

Fancy Five Minute Hairstyle Using Overnight Sock Bun Curls

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131 Comments

  1. I love this! Your hair looks gorgeous! Almost makes me want to grow out my hair…but I’m not sure if it would work on my ridiculously fine hair. I love how it looks on you though.

    • My cousin and I tried this the other day…And it worked! W The bun itself is actually super cute. (We were joking around and called it the “TRON” bun, if anyone has ever seen that movie before) It was very easy and took a minute to do. It curled her hair really well, but mine not as much. I didn’t wet mine so that could have made a difference though. I highly recommend this if you haven’t tried this…
      I StumbledUpon this<3

    • Another good thing about this way of getting curls is no heat is used on your hair. Heat is a real stressor for hair.

  2. That looks awesome, Kimmy!
    I’ll definitely try this, especially since I won’t have much time to spend on myself soon… ;-)

  3. Wow Kim, what a fun idea! I am going to give it a try tonight and if it works for my super straight difficult to hold a curl hair you will officially be a miracle worker if it works as far as I am concerned. With twins on the way and a 6 year old and a full time job taking care of other peoples children I just don’t have the time or energy to make myself presentable each day… I usually have to make a choice, hair or make-up… perhaps I can look great everyday now??!?! I hope so :) Thanks for your post!

    • Hope it works for you as well as it does for me – sounds like you will certainly be needing all the help you can get saving time in the near future! I am unbelievably happy to hear that you are expecting twins!! Congrats to you and your husband!

    • I hear ya! I have a 4 year old, a just now 2 year old, and 3 month old twins. My hair is a crazy mess 90% of the time. I cut it a little shorter just to make it easier to deal with when the twins were born but this makes me wish it was longer! I will be growing it out now!

  4. I have a couple of questions: How do you get the sock into that perfect puffy ring? Also, I’m a little confused about the rolling your hair through it portion. My hair is only shoulder length, would this still work?

    • Regina,
      I would say if your hair is shoulder length that you might get some curl at the bottom but it probably isn’t long enough to get the ringlets – there just wouldn’t be enough hair to wrap it enough times. I used a “knee high” lightweight sock. If the sock is too small there will not be enough fabric to make it nice and full. Make sure when you roll the sock into a ring to start from the toe end and roll up to the knee high end. When you pull the sock to the top of your ponytail – slide it back down just a bit. Now the hair that is sticking out gets spread around the circle – over the top of the sock – and then tucked under the sock – then you can start rolling it down. Hope that helps!

      • Thanks! I was worried that my hair might not be long enough, but I might give it a try anyway! :)

      • maybe if you used a smaller sock it might work? dunno, just a theory.

    • My hair is long, but I have a lot of short layers. I’m thinking just regular knee high hose and putting them four or five places around my head. My only problem is I know when I put my hair in a ponytail holder, it leaves a mark even if my hair is dry when I put it in. I have baby fine hair though.’

      • My hair is the same way, as far as the pony tail holder goes. I’ve noticed, though, that my pony tail line always blends right in to my curls; you can’t even tell it’s there. I think it will be fine!

  5. This sounds brilliant! Can’t wait to try it but after you cut off the toe of the sock, how exactly do you roll it? I’m having trouble understanding. Do you sew the two ends together, turn it inside out, or what? Thank you for informing us!

  6. I absolutely cannot wait to try this! My hair is getting long and I’ve been getting lazy and I’m sick of the messy bun…and I’m sure my boss and coworkers are, too! My hair is thick but fine and has a bit of a wave to it anyway–so I hope this works!

    • This should work great for your hair type! Your coworkers will never be jealous of your new look :)!

  7. I’m so trying this! I have wast length hair, that is wavy but not as curly as I’d like it to be, I have use reg curlers before but this looks so much easier and faster!

  8. I am trying this right now! It was a little difficult getting it started but once you get started it rolls right up. I have hair that down past the middle of my back…guess we will see how it turns out in the morning!

    • Heyy! I was just wondering how this worked for you! I have almost waist length hair, and I was just wanting to know if it actually works for long hair!

  9. I wish I could see the front to see what it looks like.

  10. i have tried this but my hair has a lot of layers and i have a really hard time getting it started… i think because it’s all different lengths? does that happen to you too?

    • It is a bit difficult to roll layers onto the sock perfectly but I just maneuver them as I roll the best that I can. Pull the sock down a little farther when you begin and try to tuck more hair underneath – the hardest part is making sure it is nicely tucked in so that you get curls and not a mess. I would suggest trying it on “day old” dry hair and it might be easier to work with. Keep trying – it gets easier as you do it more.

    • that happened to me too but i started with about 2-3 inches sticking out and i tucked it in like normal and then just had to keep tucking it in but in the end it worked… that probably didnt make since but if it did im glad!

  11. I recently tried this “curls with a sock bun thing.” Although, my hair didn’t turn out as beautiful as yours. My hair is about half way down my back and is cut in several different lengths of layers throughout the bottom. While rolling my hair in the bun I found it difficult to keep all the layers tucked inside and rolled correctly. So the end result was frizzy “big” hair not pretty curls. Any suggestions? Thanks!

    • It is a bit difficult to roll layers onto the sock perfectly but I just maneuver them as I roll the best that I can. Pull the sock down a little farther when you begin and try to tuck more hair underneath – the hardest part is making sure it is nicely tucked in so that you get curls and not a mess. I would suggest trying it on “day old” dry hair and it might be easier to work with. You could also try adding some product like mouse after a shower and letting t air dry. Keep trying – it gets easier as you do it more. You can also use a really light serum after it is curled to smooth the curls a bit. I LOVE Paul Mitchell’s Super Skinny Serum (but beware you need just a tiny tiny amount. Just add a drop to the palm of your hand and rub your hands together then run your fingers through the curls that are “frizzy” and it should help smooth things out! Hope that helps – good luck!

  12. Can you do a video tutorial? I am having a hard time understanding how this is supposed to work

  13. I tried it and must have done something wrong. Not a whole lot of curl. Of course, I have fine straight hair so maybe that has something to do with it? And I had a hard time rolling the sock down all pretty. I couldn’t get it evenly distributed like yours looks like!

    • Tiffany,
      You could try adding a light mouse to your hair after a shower and letting your hair air dry. I would say give it a try again with the aid of some styling product – it gets easier to roll nicely the more you try it! Don’t be afraid to unroll it and try again right away if it isn’t smooth.

  14. I love it! I’m going to try this before I gut my hair off! I was THIS close to doing it next week. Thank you!

  15. Can you post a video of the rolling of sock & hair? I gotta be honest, I’m more of a visual learner, and I’m not able to glean from the pictures exactly what to do. Your hair looks AMAZING after this, and I’m dying to try it! Thanks! (Came over from Pinterest!)

  16. Hi! Is your hair or (anyone elses hair who tried this), layered? Mine is layered and I am having trouble getting the ends to tuck under the sock. Any tips or tricks? Also, does this cause you to have headaches at night? If I wear buns or anything in my hair at night I usually wake up with a headache.

  17. You can purchase a premade roll at beauty supply stores that carry hair products. Fairly cheap also.

  18. Do you think it would work if you did it in two different sock buns? one on top & one down in the back! My hair is VERY thick, I have layers & my hair is just a little passed my shoulders so I wondered if the bottom hair would get more curl because it doesn’t really go up to the top of my hair in a pony or do you think the reason it works so well is because it is so high up in the pony? if it doesn’t work what’s the worst that could happen? I wake up with bad hair and have to wash it? I normally have to do that anyways. Think I will try it and see ..haha!

    • That is a great Idea. It’s worth a shot. I would put one high up on your head and then one directly beneath that. I think it would work marvelously and your right the worst that could happen is that you our out a pair of socks :) I would love to hear if it worked for you after you give it a try!

  19. WOW! This really looks cool. I have hair that is fine but a lot of it and not easy to hold a curl so I am going to try using product with my hair the first time. If it works for my hard to curl hair it will work on anybodies hair! I Love the Curls just hate the process of getting them and then they just fall out! So hopefully you have the answer to my problem!! :). BTW this is my first time to this site as a co-worker told me about it but has not yet invited me. So I found you on the first page. :) Thank You, Becky Shuta

    • My hair is the same way, fine but tons of it and doesnt want to hold a curl! And same here, this is my first time on Pinterest and this was my first page too! I have the sock bun in my hair now so I will have to let you know how it works out!!

  20. Hair is up in a sock bun right now and heading to bed! what a great idea! I am a new mom and need every minute I can get. Even if this doesn’t turn out too great I am definitely using this as an up do some time : ) Thanks for sharing your creativity!

  21. My hair is very thick and down a little past my pants line. It never has held a curl, though I’m dying to try this. Do you think that it would still work in my hair? If so, do you have any suggestions on making it easier to roll? My arms aren’t quite long enough to reach the end of my hair above my head.

    • You might try some product in your hair after a shower and letting it air dry. This may give you a little extra hold. I haven’t tried this because I don’t have enough hair, but I’m thinking you could roll it into two different socks. Roll one way up on top of your head, and then roll another one directly underneath it. That might make it a little easier to manage.

  22. This is awesome! How do you do it so that there won’t be a crease from the ponytail holder?

    • The picture above is with a regular pony tail holder and because the hair is dry it doesn’t leave much of a mark. I do, however, understand that everyone’s hair is different that it may leave dents in finer hair. I would use a “scrunchie” type hair tie or you could even use a cloth headband and wrap it around a few times to prevent a crease. I am going to try wrapping the ponytail with a small section of hair and securing it with a bobby pin to see if that works – I think it will.

      • I had a dent the first night I tried it as well. The next night I used a rubber band to hold the pony tail while I rolled my hair in the sock, then right before I got the roll to the base I carefully cut the rubber band out. It doesn’t feel quite as secure as using a pony tail holder, but I don’t get the dent. Thanks for the trick Kim!

      • i used a stretchy cloth headband type thing instead of a pony tail holder and it was thicker but no dent!

    • I always get a crease, too. The best luck I’ve had is to just leave off the ponytail holder altogether, but it makes it harder to get a tight sock bun.

      • I would use a “scrunchie” type hair tie or you could even use a cloth headband and wrap it around a few times to prevent a crease. I am going to try wrapping the ponytail with a small section of hair and securing it with a bobby pin to see if that works – I think it will.

  23. So, when you are rolling it, is it like when we used to roll down our knee socks from our knee to our ankle and it was this perfect little ring? My hair is shoulder length, but I have lots of hair, so I was thinking of trying multiple smaller socks?

    • Exactly! I think multiple socks would work great. One high on your head, and then one or two directly underneath. I think that would still give you a consistent look to your curls. Let me know how it works!

  24. OMG! That looks amazing!!! I can not WAIT to try this!

  25. Does the rubberband used for the pony tail leave a “dent” in your hair when you unroll the bun and take the tie out?