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Curly Nikki

Achieving Gorgeous Curly Coil-Outs

By January 27th, 202115 Comments
by Lisa Michelle via

You may have heard them referred to as finger coils, comb coils, or just plain old coils, but this curly style packs a punch! Coils and coil outs are essentially a single strand twists and single strand twist outs.

The coils themselves can be done with a just a rattail comb (or even your fingers) and your favorite styling pudding or pomade. You can wear your coils and subsequent coil-out for a few days to a week at a time. Even better, a coil out looks great on many hair lengths, whether you’re rocking a TWA or longer curls. So let’s get started!

Get the Coil Out Curly Hairstyle

1. Coils and coil outs look best on freshly washed and conditioned hair. A key tip for pulling off this look is to thoroughly detangle before styling. This makes the actual creation of the coils a much smoother process. Apply a liberal amount of leave-in conditioner to your entire head.

2. Depending on the size you want your coils to be, take your rattail comb and separate a small section of hair to work with. A smaller section (about a quarter of an inch or so) will yield a straw-set type curl, while a larger section (maybe an inch square) will give you a larger coil and coil out.

3. Take a section of your hair and add a small bit of your favorite styling product from root to tip. You may find a product like Darcy’s Botanicals Organic Coconut & Aloe Moisture Pudding well suited for this style. It offers the moisture you need plus a soft hold. Comb through for even coverage.

4. Starting close to your scalp, gently pull the comb through your hair and slowly roll the comb around. Pull down slightly as you twist the comb; this creates the coil itself. Make sure to take your time until you get the hang of it or you could tangle the hair. Remember, TWIST and PULL. Continue twisting the comb until you get through the ends. Repeat the process across your entire head.

5. If you’re using your fingers you’ll still want to begin by combing through the ends. Then, begin twisting the hair, rolling the twist around your index finger. You still want the coil to be tight at the scalp. Smooth between your fingers as you reach the end of the coil, using your thumb and index fingers to twist the ends. Repeat the process across your entire head.

6. Now that you’re done with the coils themselves, you can let them air dry or dry under a hooded dryer. You can wear the coils as a style, or you can proceed with the coil out process.

7. When you’re ready for the coil out, start by adding a tiny bit of oil on your hands. You’re going to separate the individual coils into smaller sections, like separating your twists for a twist out.

8. Take a coil and add a bit of your favorite oil or butter to the ends to help prevent frizz while pulling the coils apart. Gently stretching the coil down will make it easier to find the natural separations in your hair. Smooth the little coils through the ends and give it a little twirl on your finger. Voila! You may find that creating three to four sections within each coil will give you a fuller look. Continue to separate the rest of your coils.

The nighttime routine for your coils is pretty simple. Regardless of whether you’re still wearing the coils or have transitioned to the coil out, tie a satin scarf on at bedtime to protect the coils and keep them fresh. Refresh the coils in the morning with a spritz of leave-in conditioner and you’ll be out the door in no time.

Final Thoughts

Depending on how small you do your coils and how much hair you have, this style can be accomplished within one to two hours, but may last you a week or more.

the lovely MissJoyceMD shows us how she achieves her gorgeous coil-outs!

Do you rock coils? What’s your regimen and products?

CN Says:
Early in my journey, I’d coil out quite often… perfect springy curls every time. I used a leave-in under Fantasia IC Gel.


  • Anonymous says:

    What do you guys recommend for my frizzy ends on my first coil out? I love the polished look I've seen on women after it's salon done. My first appt is Dec. 8th, but wanted to try the finger coils myself. I LOVED them day 1, 2 & 3. Used ECO Styler gel, Aveda Curl Prep, Jane Carter's Nourish & Shine, Keracare essential oils and glossifier. Had the shine I was looking for, but didn't seem tight enough and certainly would not have lasted over five days. Help! Love this website…..

  • Lisa Michelle says:

    Thanks for the great feedback ladies (Lisa Michelle, not Price lol!)!! I would love to see pictures of you rocking your coil outs on here and my own site, Feel free to email me or post them to my facebook page ( I know the style can last pretty much as long as you need it too…that's the beauty of the coil out! @anonymous (11/14/11 12:50) that's great info you're sharing as well!

  • Anonymous says:

    i just may try this as i'm in a styling and time management rut right now lol.. and ssk's are killing me! I had to put my hair up for 3 wks and have barely touched it due to having no time. Styling usually winds up a time consuming disaster for me though so I hope this works. I have hair that doesn't curl, it only waves so I wonder if it will hold the coils.

  • Anonymous says:

    COIL OUTS ARE MY LIFE right now! lol.

    I had a major setback on my journey this year with breakage caused by blow drying and believe it or not, overkill with twist outs & stretching, and not moisturizing enough. My super fine coils really suffered but now I'm on the right track.

    I love my coil outs and so does my hair! What I realized about coil outs is that it allows my hair to just 'be' in it's natural coil pattern. My coils, especially the ends are just free, and aren't bend or pulled in a direction they don't want to go and this makes all the difference for us super fine haired ladies in a protective style. My hair retains moisture like never before in this protective style, I assume because the strand is allowed to coil in it's natural state.

    I make them quite small since my hair is low-medium density – about 1/4 inch parts. I just twist around my finger (I don't use combs at all anymore). I use Giovanni Wicked Wax pomade to set mine and clip them down to dry so the roots don't uncoil. I refresh them with Giovanni Force Pomade (a stronger version of Wicked Wax), as well as Shea Moisture Curl Milk and seal with shea or capuacu butter. I spritz every day to moisturize. They look great for about a week, I refresh them, then take them down after 2 weeks. I use a mix of half coconut and 1/2 avocado oil to take them down and as wonderful pre-poo.


  • Chantae' *.* says:

    I see you Joyce! lol
    super cute!

  • Anonymous says:

    I just did this on my hair. It was okay. I think next time I will make the coils bigger and use a comb.

  • Skyye says:

    After I wash and deep condition my hair, I add Qhemet Moringa Tree Conditioning Ghee as a leafve in, then I finger coil using Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie and Qhemet Aethiopika Hydrate & Twist Butter. I keep the coils in for 7-10 days then do it all over again!

  • Anonymous says:

    Thanks for all the styling ideas!

  • Anonymous says:

    I have had success with this style. It works, but I dislike the shrinkage.

    Coil-outs are a staple style that I run to when the SSK get me down – it's also a great timesaver during nursing clinicals when I have to get up at O-dark:30 in the morning!

    I use either KCKT+KCCC or Miss Jessie's curly pudding. I cannot separate my 4c curls once the product is dry, but I can wear the style 5+ days without it looking ratty.

    Someone posted that Target will be having a BOGO on MJ products soon, so I hope try the curly merigue when it goes on sale.

    I recently purchased IC fantasia and will try it with Castor oil as a sealant this weekend, I hope it doesn't flake on me.

  • moonchyldcrab82 says:

    Thanks for the tutorial. I've never tried this but she makes it look so easy I'm a have to try it! If I could pull this off it would change my life because I could actually run errands with these (and still look cute) instead of having to sit in the house until my hair dries LOL

  • Anonymous says:

    I remember doing these as a little girl…and usually getting the comb caught in my hair. It was fun though. LOL
    I have 100% success now that I'm older.

  • Krystal K. says:

    I just did a blog post on this (it posts at 3:00 PM EST at Thanks for the tips. I think I may try this out tomorrow! I hope it works 🙂

  • Annie L. says:

    I've had this done for years (I suck at doing it myself) and it's my absolute favorite! I've had them done super small and large, when my hair was 1-inch and when it was 18-inches. My stylists used ONLY OIL and WATER and the coil and coil out were perfect, soft, moisturized and super shiny every single time.

    Mine lasted 2 weeks and I didn't wear scarves or really take care of them so they do have lasting power. Consider trying it with an oil/water spritz if you're concerned about the weight of pomades or the dryness of gels. Also, my stylists used the TAPERED COMB not the rat-tail but I'm sure both work the same magic. I really miss this style but am still on salon strike and get 'sleepy' when I do more than 2 at home, Lol!

  • Mrs. Val says:

    This is a style I haven't tried. I don't know why but the method of doing this scares me. LOL. I think I'm afraid of tangles, but this tutorial makes me want to give it a whirl…

  • Michelle@Radiant Brown Beauty says:

    Looks super cute on you! Longer hair will have trouble maintaining the coils but a great tip is to actually LEAVE the conditioner in your hair. OK it depends on the conditioner for Aussie Moist is my conditioner of choice. Anyway, leaving the conditioner in will help your curls stay clumped and protected from the elements.

    Leaving the Aussie Moist in and defining the strands by twirling them yield beautiful results.

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