The word "curlers" comes from the French language. In the classical sense, curlers are a plastic, wooden, bone, iron or rubberized tube around which hair is wound to create curls or waves. However, the curlers did not always look that way.
Something similar to modern curlers existed in ancient Greece. Archaeologists have discovered steel rods that Greek women used to create curls. Such rods were called kalamis. Only special masters - calamistra - could create a hairstyle with their help. Wealthy residents of Greece came to the kalamistra, who twisted their hair on such rods, and then loosened it, weaving ribbons, decorating with tiaras or hoops. Those who did not have the opportunity to pay for the services of a kalamist were forced to braid their wet hair in braids, dry it naturally, and then unravel it, laying it in their hair on their own.
In ancient Rome, steel rods or cylinders were heated and then the hair was wrapped around them. After the calamis had cooled, they were removed and the hair was combed. In Africa, natural materials were used instead of metal. The women soaked the vines with the juice of special herbs, and then twisted their hair around them, getting dense, small curls.
Curlers received a new round of evolution in the second half of the 17th century, when the Baroque style, characterized by wealth, splendor and pretentiousness, spread in Europe. The barbers made the ladies complex hairstyles, decorating them with flowers and sometimes even fruits. Hair was twisted on hot metal rods or nails. But the French noticed that it was harmful to the hair, and came up with papillotes. The papillote was a small roller made of cloth or paper. Before winding, the hair was moistened with water, and the papillotes themselves were fixed on the head with a cord or thread. It was customary for both women and men to have luxurious curls.
The papillotes were made of fragile materials, and therefore almost every time it was necessary to rewind a new batch of rollers. Over time, instead of paper and fabric, they began to use wooden or bone, and then plastic rollers, on which the hair was twisted and fixed with elastic bands or metal clips.
Once a certain Kramer from Sweden came up with the idea to make holes in plastic curlers to speed up the drying process. It is believed that later he proposed to make small teeth on the plastic, which prevented the premature unraveling of the curls and allowed to get rid of the "creases".
The word "curlers" was first used in the western part of the province of Brittany (France). Inhabitants of the town of Biguden on holidays wore high cylindrical headdresses, which were called bigudens. Wooden papillotes resembled these headdresses in shape. So in many European languages the word "biguden" entered, which later turned into "curlers".