Home Hair Can You Use Hair Tinsel in Curly Hair?

Can You Use Hair Tinsel in Curly Hair?

by Gabbi

If you have ever wanted to add a fun pop to your hair but do not want to use chemicals or color treat your hair, adding some strands of hair tinsel can be just the accessory you are looking for!

Hair tinsel has been a unique, eye-catching trend that has been used in so many ways over the past couple years. From celebrity red carpets to music performances, to social media, these glittery strands can be a subtle and shiny way to add a fun twist to your normal hair routine. 

While the metallic strands are delicate, they can be washed and styled with your typical hair care routine, including using heat styling tools on them.

Often, these hair tinsels are seen adding a pop of shimmer to locks that are sleek and straight, but more and more we are seeing hair tinsel incorporated with curly and wavy textures as well. 

Can you use hair tinsel in your curly hair? Hair tinsel can be applied in curly hair, however it does require additional styling, as the strands are bought straight. Unless you are planning on wearing your curly hair straightened, the hair tinsel will require styling with a curling wand or iron to match the texture of your curl pattern.

Although it requires extra attention, hair tinsel in any hair type is a fun trend that we discuss in depth in the article below!

What Is Hair Tinsel?

Hair tinsel is a eye-catching and unique hair trend that is also often referred to as “fairy hair.” The trend consists of thin, glittery strands of tinsel that can be added to the hair for a dimensional and sparkly effect.

The shiny nature of the tinsel creates a reflective shimmer to the hair that can be a fun way to infuse your hair styles with a different look.

Hair tinsel is available in a variety of colors, but most often they are seen in bright or metallic shades that pop against the natural colors of the hair.

There are also options of hair tinsel that are available in natural hair color shades as well, to create a more subtle shimmer to your hair if you do not want to create the contrast the metallic shades can offer.

Over the years we have seen “fairy hair” sported on celebrities and all over social media, in styles that are more dramatic or more discreet.

Either way, the thin, sparkly strands will add texture and dimension to your strands that can peek through the hair to be eye-catching enough without stealing your spotlight.

How Is Hair Tinsel Applied?

Hair tinsel can be applied in two popular, main methods which will not cause damage to your natural hair. The first method is to hand tie the hair tinsel to individual strands of hair, which can create a more subtle appearance as it is based on adding the glittery extension on a strand-by-strand basis.

The hair tinsel is tied into the hair close to the scalp, but can also slip out of the hair naturally as the hair sheds.

The second method for applying hair tinsel is with a microbead extension, which is adhered to the hair in a way that is similar to the process for applying microbead natural hair extensions.

The microbead method can have up to 20 strands of hair tinsel within on microbead, which can create more of a statement with the shimmery accessory.

The microbead is attached to the hair close to the scalp, with several strands of natural hair pulled through the bead and clamped shut with hair pliers to close the opening.

Either method can be performed by a professional hair dresser, however there are DIY “fairy hair” at-home kits that follow the microbead method if you are wanting to experiment with hair tinsel on your own.

How Long Does Hair Tinsel Stay In The Hair?

Similar to natural hair extensions, how long hair tinsel will last in your hair varies based on the application method and natural hair texture. Using the hand tied method will offer results that do not last as long as the microbead method, due to the hairs’ natural shedding cycle.

The average amount of time the hand tied hair tinsel will last in the hair is anywhere from one to two weeks, and then it will naturally slip from the hair as the strands fall out.

Also, hair that is fine or thin in texture can last less time than thick or coarse hair, especially if you are using the hand tie method. The tied knots are able to slip through the hair more easily if the hair is thin or fine.

Microbead hair tinsel can last for several months before it is grown out. Similar to microbead extensions, the hair tinsel that is applied with a microbead can last for some up to six months or longer.

If you are wanting to try out hair tinsel, but unsure of the commitment, the hand tie method may be a better option for you as they will not last as long. If you love the look of the glittery tinsel and want to commit to a longer period of time, you should opt for the microbead method.

Can You Use Hair Tinsel In Curly Hair?

Hair tinsel can be used in a variety of different hair textures, including curly hair. However, unlike natural hair extensions, the hair tinsel is not available in a variety of different textures. The hair tinsel strands are straight, and are not available in a pre-curled look.

If you have curly hair and want to have hair tinsel applied into your strands, it would require additional attention to style the “fairy hair” properly. Hair tinsel would need to be curled with a curling iron or wand in order to match the curl pattern of your natural texture.

The hair tinsel material is heat-resistant, so it can be used with a curling iron or a flat iron throughout the duration of it being applied to your hair.

Best Tips For Hair Tinsel In Curly Hair

Along with the added styling time needed to make hair tinsel blend in with your curly locks, there are a few other best practices when caring for your hair tinsel.

Because the hair tinsel requires the use of a curling iron to give it the curly texture, if you natural curl pattern is not cohesive it can help to curl your entire hair with the styling wand in order to create a seamless and well-blended texture throughout.

Curly hair is prone to easily becoming tangled, and requires gentle handling to remove the tangles without loosing clumps of hair in the process.

When hair tinsel is applied in your curly strands, it is important to ensure you are being gentle when combing out any knots, and using a detangling spray to help loosen the tangles before combing.

Although hair tinsel in curly hair requires the use of a curling iron, it is best to use any heat styling tool on a lower heat setting. Even though the strands are heat-resistant, keeping the heat styling tools on a lower setting will prevent any potential damage that can happen to the delicate hair tinsel.

Whether you are using a curling iron or a flat iron, be mindful of the heat setting before styling the hair tinsel to your desired effect.

In some instances, the hair tinsel may need to be curled with a styling wand before being applied to the hair in order for the two textures to blend together.

Depending on your unique curl pattern, pre-curling the hair tinsel before applying may create a more natural effect, than applying the hair tinsel in its straightened form and curling afterwards. If you have loose or wavy hair, you may be able to apply the hair tinsel regularly, and then curl it after.

The hair tinsel also may not keep its curl shape throughout the length of time it is in your hair. Much like regular curls that can stretch out in between washes, the hair tinsel may also loose some of its curl.

Frequent touch-ups with the curling wand may need to be made to refresh the curls and to keep the strands in their desired style.

When washing your hair with hair tinsel in, it is important to avoid being too rough on the scalp when shampooing the hair.

Although being too rough when washing your hair can cause damage and increased tangles anyway, with hair tinsel extensions it can cause them to loosen or fall out sooner than planned.

Being gentle when washing your curly hair with hair tinsel extensions will also help avoid additional knots, which can also cause stress to your hair.

If you want to see a visual tutorial, take a look at this video from Mirella Manelli on YouTube.


If you have curly or wavy hair and are looking to switch up your style, adding in some hair tinsel can be a fun and damage-free way to do so.

Whether you are going to a salon professional or using an at-home kit, hair tinsel provides a shiny, unique, and whimsical look to your hair that is only enhanced by its curly textures.

While some heat styling may be required to keep the hair tinsel looking uniform with the rest of your curls, the payoff will be sparkly, eye-catching strands that can accessorize your hair for several weeks.

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