Let me start by saying that I am not a 25-year-old Essex girl with a head of luxuriant hair extensions down to my waist. I am a 50+ year old Londoner with fine, shoulder length, hair. I was approached by Sleep-In Rollers to offer my take on them.
I wasn’t sure what to expect, like many of you, I’d seen these bright pink rollers on reality tv celebs. The rollers themselves are essentially foam tubes encased by soft velcro.
Our revolutionary rollers have been designed to flatten like a sponge when you lay down letting you wake up to hair with body and bounce.
Because I was looking for volume and lift for my fine hair, I chose the Mega Bounce Gift Set priced at £35.00 comprising of: 10 Mega-Bounce Sleep-In Rollers, 10 original rollers, a drawstring bag hairdryer hood and a velour pouch with clips.
I washed my hair and used a volumising hair mousse, Kérastase Résistance Mousse leaving it fairly damp as I wasn’t going to sleep straightaway. I’ve read a few reviews where women have straightened their hair before rolling and then set the rollers with hairspray.
For a start, I want to use hair straighteners as little as possible and secondly, I don’t want the ‘crunchy’ effect that comes with ‘set’ hairspray. I also find it nigh on impossible to take out rollers that have been hairsprayed into place, my hair is fine, I don’t want to upset it by tugging on it too much.
If you are planning to sleep in them, do not roll them too tightly or they’ll pull your hair uncomfortably when you turn in your sleep. You can use the hairgrips to secure them, making sure the grips are placed in between the foam roller and the outer velcro part, surprisingly they don’t leave ridges. Also, be careful to place the rollers away from your face, keep them back from the hairline because you don’t want to feel the rollers on your face when you turn.
Seeing how huge the ‘mega’ ones are, I honestly don’t know how I slept in them. It wasn’t the size of them that bothered me so much, but the noise of the velcro, I could hear a ‘rustling’ sound every time I turned over. Maybe listening to them was the equivalent of counting sheep, because I did nod off.
Remove the rollers starting from the bottom and work your way up. The hairgrips are easier to remove if you squeeze the roller a little first.
I wasn’t expecting, not did I want, a cascade of tumbling curls, I wanted volume and movement. What I actually got was ‘silly’ volume, absolutely huge, 80s style hair. The crown, where I put the largest, ‘mega’ rollers was really high, I put this down to the strength of the Kérastase mousse I used.
I couldn’t control the volume, but I didn’t want to weigh my hair down with serum to flatten it so, in a stroke of sheer genius, I put it up in a ponytail. Because my hair is so fine, my ponytails always look a bit miserable and flimsy, but not only was the crown area high, the ‘tail’ part was perfect, full and with curly bits at the end, as good as one of those ponytail extensions – I loved it!
It is definitely a question of trial and error and practising various hairstyles to adapt the Sleep-In Rollers to suit your own hair. What I do now is use a really tiny blob of mousse, just raked through the roots, when I want a volumised style.
It’s true that the longer you leave them in the better they work. Although, to be honest, I don’t think sleeping in them on a regular basis would do your hair any favours, the velcro, even though it’s a lot softer than traditional hard velcro rollers, might tear at the hair when the rollers move with you at night.
I would suggest either leaving the hair rather damp and leave them in for a long as possible (they look cute), or use the hairdyer hood attached to the nozzle of your hairdryer (lowest setting). Only remove the rollers when hair is completely dry and has cooled. The rollers are so light, they’re comfortable to wear around the house, something I appreciate in this hot weather.
My weekday routine is that in the mornings, after drying my hair, I spritz a little volumising product onto the crown area, put in four of the larger, mega rollers to create height, do a quick whoosh with the hairdryer and let them cool whilst I apply my make up. It takes me about 20 minutes (30 on a bad day) to do my make up. When I take them out, my hair has just the right amount of volume, nothing crazy, just a gentle lift. Fine hair is flat hair, so this is now a ‘must do’ for me.
Johanna, who has short layered hair, tried the extra small rollers Short Hair Volume Rollers £17.95 She said they were very comfortable to sleep in (I bet, they’re tiny!) and they made her hair fiercely curly with mousse and nicely volumised without.
A couple of tips
I didn’t think I’d need a tail comb, I’ve never back combed my hair, I always worry it’ll damage it. But I think it would be a lot easier to use one to section hair for the roller, the hair you pick up should not be wider than the width of the roller. I manage with a regular comb but I can now see the benefits of a tail comb.
I didn’t like the way my fringe turned out, but in a ‘where have you been all my life?’ moment, I see that the Sleep-In Roller shop sells this A Fringe Roller! £4.50. An extra long roller for your fringe, if you haven’t got a fringe, you just wouldn’t understand – UPDATE Reader, I bought two!
Ironically, given that the Sleep-In Rollers are marketed to young women, I believe they are really well suited to fine hair (which sadly, a lot of us older women have). They will create much-needed volume and more importantly, lift that lasts, as long as you use a good quality volumising mousse or root lift spray.
OFFICIAL SITE: Sleep-In Rollers
18th July 2013
UPDATE 13th August 2016
Three years later and I’m happy to say the prices haven’t gone up.
What I am sad about though, is that the sponges on my rollers have started to disintegrate. Not surprising really, because I use at least two every day (for a little root volume – a spritz of Philip Kingsley’s Dry Shampoo One More Day first and that ‘day old’ flatness is gone). I use the whole set 3 times a week.
Out of all the products I’ve trialled for this site, these are the ones I’ve used constantly. The velcro is very gentle and doesn’t tear at the hair. They are easy to keep clean by pulling off stray strands of hair and if I hadn’t noticed that the sponge part is just starting to break down, they would look as good as new.
Would I ever actually sleep IN them again? No, I don’t need to, plus the mega sized ones don’t flatten that much and the crunchy noise they make isn’t overly relaxing. Forget the Sleep In bit and just put them in, do your make up and take them out 15 minutes later.
If I use them on very slightly damp hair with a body building mousse (which has to be Kérastase Resistance Volumifique Mousse as I’ve said above) then I know my hair will last all day and right through the evening.
I’m also still loving the (hard) fringe roller. I had a couple of very bad hair weeks when I lost my one (it had rolled under a radiator cover) so I replaced it – then found it the next day, as you do. It doesn’t curl the fringe under in an awful sticky out bouncy way, it just curls it under enough to stop it looking flat. It’s a Godsend too when your fringe is too long and you can’t get to the hairdresser to get it trimmed.
SHORT HAIR VOLUME ROLLERS X 20 PLUS DRAWSTRING ROLLER BAG
These have had a name change, they used to be called something like root lift rollers, but these rollers are perfect for women with short layered hair, which a lot of older women have – although I think if hair’s in good condition you can have any length at any age. Unlike the mega bounce rollers, they’re very comfortable to sleep in and will give even very fine hair good-sized volume. I also see the price £17.95, is the same.
Sleep In Rollers Shop
Just spotted this in the clearance section, traditional ‘day’ (i.e. hard) rollers 10 large, 12 medium for £7.50. P&P £2.95
Free P&P if order is over £17.95