How To Measure The Barrel Of A Curling Iron

Curling Iron Sizes, Which Size To Choose When & What They’re For
Curling Iron Sizes, Which Size To Choose When & What They’re For from


Choosing the right curling iron can make a huge difference in achieving your desired hairstyle. One important factor to consider when selecting a curling iron is the size of the barrel. The barrel size determines the type of curl or wave you can create. In this article, we will guide you on how to measure the barrel of a curling iron to ensure you make the right choice.

Understanding Barrel Size

The barrel size refers to the diameter of the curling iron’s cylindrical heating element. It is typically measured in inches or millimeters. The larger the barrel size, the looser and bigger the curls will be. Conversely, smaller barrel sizes create tighter and more defined curls.

Measuring the Barrel Diameter

To measure the barrel diameter, you will need a measuring tape or a ruler. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Prepare the Curling Iron

Ensure the curling iron is turned off and completely cool before measuring the barrel. This will prevent any accidental burns during the process.

Step 2: Measure the Diameter

Place the measuring tape or ruler at the base of the barrel and measure straight across to the opposite side. Make sure to take the measurement at the widest point of the barrel. Note down the measurement in inches or millimeters.

Step 3: Double-Check the Measurement

For accuracy, measure the barrel diameter at a few different points to ensure consistency. If the barrel is tapered, measure the widest point and the narrowest point to get an average diameter.

Choosing the Right Barrel Size

Now that you know how to measure the barrel of a curling iron, let’s discuss how to choose the right size for your desired hairstyle:

1. Loose Waves and Beachy Curls

If you want to achieve loose waves or beachy curls, opt for a curling iron with a larger barrel size, around 1.5 to 2 inches. This will give you voluminous, relaxed curls.

2. Defined Curls and Ringlets

For more defined curls or ringlets, choose a curling iron with a smaller barrel size, around 0.5 to 1 inch. This size is perfect for creating tight, bouncy curls.

3. Versatility

If you want a curling iron that offers versatility, consider one with an adjustable barrel size. These curling irons allow you to change the barrel size according to your desired hairstyle, giving you the flexibility to create various looks.


Measuring the barrel of a curling iron is a simple yet crucial step in selecting the right tool for your hairstyling needs. By following the steps mentioned in this article, you can accurately measure the barrel size and make an informed decision. Remember to consider your desired hairstyle and the type of curls you want to achieve when choosing the barrel size. Happy curling!