If you have ever shopped for a doll, then you know that the vast majority of dolls on the market have shiny, straight hair. We hear that curly, coily and wavy hair is harder to manufacture, but we figured it’s nothing a quick DIY project couldn’t fix!

A Google search and a trip to the store later, Evelyn and Nikki tried giving this doll a naturally curly makeover.

What you'll need:

  • Pipecleaners
  • Doll
  • Scissors


  1. Cut your pipecleaners in half and fold it into a V-shape
  2. Twirl a small section of your doll's hair and place the bend of the V-shape at the doll's scalp
  3. Twist the section of hair over and under both sides of the pipecleaner until you reach the end, and then bend the end of the pipecleaner to keep it from unravelling. 
  4. Repeat for until all of the hair is twisted.
  5. Dunk the doll's head into a cup of boiling water for 10 seconds.
  6. Blot her hair dry with a towel and let it air dry over night. 
  7. The next day, unravel all of the twists. 
  8. Separate and fluff the curls, and use scissors to snip off any straight ends. 

What NOT to do

It was a fairly easy process, but not without its missteps. Learn from our mistakes! If you’re going to give this project a go, keep these tips in mind:

  • Don’t purchase a doll with a ponytail. She’ll probably be bald in the center of her head. Look for a doll that is created with her hair already down.
  • Prep the hair. If you’re transforming an old doll, be sure to detangle the hair. It’ll make for smoother results!
  • Avoid cheap dolls. The price of toys can be shocking, we know. But there is a difference between a $1 doll and a $20 one. And that difference is shed synthetic hair all over your carpet.
  • Avoid tinsel pipe cleaners. These are all we could find at the time, but the normal fuzzy ones are much easier to handle.
  • Let the hair completely dry. Blot with a towel to remove excess moisture, then let it air dry for at least 24 hours.

Watch the Video

Can’t be bothered with DIYs? Purchase gorgeous handmade naturally curly dolls from Natural Girls United.