ah... so i haven't posted in a while. but here goes.
so i hardly ever do wet sets anymore. my hair is basically too long for them to look right at this point (straight, it's down to the middle of my back)... my hair is also very thick, which means that it tends to get rat's nest-y really easily now.
so i fake it! i've figured out ways to fake the pin curl look without actually pin curling my hair. a lot of it has to do with timing.
curling your hair with a flat iron is a really nice look... a lot of girls do it in a way that gives them really tight curls. they tend to last a long time, and look nice and shiny. i curl my hair usually the night before, which is integral in making it look like i have pin curled it. i don't really like my hair with tight pin curls anyway... my favorite look is the 2nd day pin curl set. this is mostly because my hair is SO thick, the first day it can be very very tent-like (and reminds me of my junior high years when i had hair that made me look like a wookie.)
ANYWAY, i grab about an inch of hair and start the curl about 4 inches from my head. this actually makes it so the curl starts to form about 6 inches from my head (because of the twisting of the iron). i use a 1" iron to do this, and one that goes SUPER hot. i have a Biosilk iron... Chi of course also makes a good one. it's also important that you use some sort of heat protective product while you're doing this. i use the chi iron spray... this not only keeps your hair from getting fried (and i heat style my hair about every other day so this is important!), but it also actually helps set the curl. i don't use much hairspray (if any).
i make sure i'm curling all in the same direction from my head. this will keep the curls uniform and also make sure that they are going to create the nice wavy look the next day.
so! i sleep on my curls (this really only works if it's not super humid out and you're not a sweaty sleeper).
in the morning, i brush my hair like i would brush out a pin curl set (check youtube for a video of how to do this properly!). the hair is super soft, movable, and doesn't get all ratty like a pin curl set does on me. i might give it a squirt of flexible hold hairspray if i feel like it.
2. the other option is using a tapered curling iron. if i'm trying to fake a pin curl look, i will start at the base of the hair and roll up (not at the root like you usually use a tapered iron!!!!!). i do the same kind of technique, following a similar pattern all the way around. again, i sleep on it (unless i'm doing it in the morning in preparation for going out later in the night... same idea, though i won't brush it out in the morning, i'll just walk around all day looking like Pollyanna... or, put my hair up in a bandanna).
so yah. i'll post some pics of what this looks like when i brush it out tomorrow. if i remember. which lately means there's about a 75% chance that i'm not going to remember.