How long should Flexi rods stay in?

Flexi rods are a popular hair styling tool used to create beautiful, bouncy curls. But one of the most common questions people have about using flexi rods is – how long should you leave them in for? Here’s a detailed look at how long you should keep flexi rods in to achieve different styles.


Leaving flexi rods in overnight, or for 8-12 hours, is recommended for creating tight, long lasting curls. The extended time allows your hair to thoroughly dry while wrapped around the flexi rod, setting the curl pattern. This long duration ensures your curls will hold their shape for multiple days rather than dropping out quickly. Overnight drying is best for those with very curly or coily hair types that require ample time to set the curls.


  • Creates very defined, springy curls
  • Curls last 3-5 days typically
  • Great for tight curl patterns


  • Requires sleeping with rods in
  • Curls may be too tight and separated for some preferences

4-8 Hours

Leaving flexi rods in for 4-8 hours is ideal for creating very curly, voluminous curls with lots of body. It allows enough time for your hair to dry fully while wrapped around the rod. The curls will still bounce back well and hold their shape for a couple days typically. This timeframe works well for those with curly hair types as well as some straight and wavy hair types.


  • Creates defined, bouncy curls
  • Curls last 2-3 days usually
  • Doesn’t require sleeping in rods


  • Takes significant time
  • Hair may not dry fully if very thick

1-3 Hours

Leaving flexi rods in for 1-3 hours creates looser, softer curls and waves. This shorter timeframe works best for those with straight or slightly wavy hair types. It allows enough time for the hair to take on a curl shape while not overly manipulating the hair texture. The curls have a relaxed, romantic look and tend to fall out after one day. Using a holding product can help extend the longevity a bit more.


  • Creates soft, touchable curls
  • Doesn’t require a significant time commitment
  • Ideal for straighter hair types


  • Curls fall out quickly
  • Less defined curl pattern

30 Minutes or Less

Leaving flexi rods in for 30 minutes or less creates subtle waves and bend rather than full curls. This very short duration is best for straight hair types wanting to add in a slight wave or volume. The waves will fall out very quickly though and do not make a dramatic change to hair texture. This can be a good option for a slight style change or boost of volume that does not require much time or commitment.


  • Very quick styling time
  • Adds soft wave and volume
  • Ideal for straight hair


  • Does not create true curl shape
  • Waves fall out instantly

Factors That Affect Dry Time

In addition to the rod size and your hair type, other factors impact how quickly your hair will dry in the flexi rods.

Hair Thickness

The thickness or density of your hair plays a big role in dry time. Fine, thin hair will usually dry a lot faster than thick, coarse hair when rolled in flexi rods. Those with very thick hair may need to extend the drying time significantly to ensure the hair dries fully before removing the rods.

Hair Length

Longer hair means more hair is wrapped around each roller, so the drying time will be longer than shorter hair. Shoulder length hair will typically dry faster than hair reaching mid-back and longer lengths.

Products Used

Any products applied to the hair before rolling can affect how fast or slow the hair dries. Lots of thick, heavy styling creams or oils will prolong drying time. Using lighter leave-in conditioners or mousses allows the hair to dry faster than heavy products.

Rod Size

Smaller flexi rod sizes will dry hair faster than larger rods. This is because smaller rods wrap less hair around them so there is less volume to dry. Opting for smaller rods is a good idea if aiming to cut down on drying time.

Temperature & Humidity

Environmental factors like heat and humidity levels impact drying as well. Hair will dry faster in hot, dry environments than cool, humid climates. Using a hooded dryer can help speed up flexi rod drying time by blasting concentrated heat directly on the rods.

Tips for Drying Flexi Rods Faster

Here are some tips to help your flexi rods dry more quickly:

  • Apply products sparingly
  • Blot hair with paper towel or t-shirt before rolling to remove excess water
  • Use smaller rod sizes
  • Section hair into smaller parts before rolling
  • Sit under a hooded dryer while rolling
  • Position under ceiling fan or direct fan breeze
  • Roll rods tightly and smoothly to avoid gaps

What If Hair Is Still Damp?

Taking flexi rods out before the hair is 100% dry is not recommended, as the curls can fall flat quickly. But we don’t always have 8+ hours for drying. If your hair is still slightly damp when you need to remove the rods, use these tips:

  • Remove rods slowly and carefully to avoid disrupting the curl shape
  • Do not run fingers through curls or break them apart
  • Use a diffuser attachment on your blow dryer to gently finish drying the ends
  • Mist hair lightly with holding spray
  • Tie hair back gently with a scarf or wrap while finishing air drying

Overdrying Flexi Rods

It is possible to leave flexi rods in too long and overdry the hair. Signs your hair is overdried in the flexi rods:

  • Hair feels crispy, straw-like, or crunchy
  • Curls feel brittle and snap apart when touched
  • Cuticle looks fried and rough
  • Hair is tangled and matted around rod
  • Lots of flyaway hairs stick straight out

Overdrying can cause damage to the hair cuticle and moisture levels. Be sure to monitor the drying progress and remove rods once fully dry but before reaching crispy, crunchy texture.

Maintaining Flexi Rod Curls

Getting the right dry time for your hair type will help create long lasting curls. But you also need to take care in separating and maintaining the curls after removing the rods. Be gentle when taking rods out and separating curls. Avoid roughly finger combing or fluffing at the roots immediately. Let the curls set and cool completely before manipulating. Use a wide tooth comb only if needed to gently detangle and break up parts. Lightly massage roots and scrunch in serum or oil to soften and enhance the curls shape. Sleeping with hair loose on a satin pillowcase helps reduce friction and keeps curls intact longer.


In conclusion, the ideal flexi rod drying time depends on your specific hair type and goals. Very curly hair may need 8-12 hours drying time to achieve tight, defined curls. Straight and wavy hair can get away with 1-3 hours for soft waves. Other factors like hair thickness, products used, and environmental humidity play a role too. With some trial and error, you can discover the perfect drying time to create your desired flexi rod curls. Just be careful not to overdry to the point of brittleness or damage. Gently maintaining the curls after removing rods also helps lock in the style. Follow these tips to master drying and enjoying gorgeous flexi rod curls.

Leave a Comment