One of the most commonly used hair styling tool is the curling iron. Women around the world use curling irons to create long curls, short curls, waves, and to straighten their hair. Most women who use a curling iron use it every day of the year, and on some days they use it several times. After all of this use most curling irons end up covered in burnt on hair spray, styling gel, and other compounds that cannot be identified. If your curling iron is dirty you do not need to throw it away. There are several cleaning methods that you can use to clean the gunk from the barrel.
Prevention is Your Best Option
The best way to prevent serious gunk built up on your curling iron is to clean your curling iron after each use. The two best daily cleaners for your curling iron are alcohol wipes or rubbing alcohol on a cloth. To clean your curling iron, unplug it and allow it to cool. When it is cool to the touch use an alcohol wipe, or a cloth moistened with rubbing alcohol, to wipe down the barrel of your curling iron. This will remove hair spray, styling gel, and other debris that has adhered to your iron during this use.
Baking Soda Paste
If it has been a while since you have cleaned your curling iron, and it has developed a crust of hair spray, hair, and mystery compounds, then you need something a bit stronger than an alcohol rub to clean it. If you have baking soda in your pantry then you can create a paste using baking powder and a little water. Mix with your fingers or a spoon. If it is too thick then add a little more water. The paste should be thick, but spreadable. To clean your curling iron using this cleaner unplug your iron, make sure that it is cool to the touch, and then rub the baking soda past on the barrel. Allow the baking soda to do most of the work for you. To see if the paste is working simply wipe an area of the barrel clean and see how it looks. If the gunk is still there apply a little more paste and continue to rub it gently. To clean the paste off use a damp rag to wipe off all of the paste.
If you have tried everything else and your curling iron is still looking gross then you may need to resort to using oven cleaner. Unplug the curling iron and make sure that it is cool to the touch. Wrap the cord and plastic handle of the curling iron in a rag to protect it from corrosion. Then place the iron on a surface that wont be affected by the oven cleaner. Spray the barrel with the oven cleaner and let it stand for 15 to 20 minutes, or until you can see that the residue on your curling iron has bubbled off. Wipe off the curling iron with a damp cloth making sure that all of the oven cleaner has been removed.