Buying a hair straightener or flat iron can be a little confusing. It is even more confusing when you have no idea why some are small, some are big, some are cordless, have different shapes and why they have different plates. Now, I know a lot of people like me have asked themselves this question “is there a difference between a hair straightener and a flat iron?” No, a hair straightener is a flat iron.
A hair straightener is a device used to style or straighten hair, weaves and wigs. Some people use it every day and some rarely use it, but it depends on how you like your hair. Although I wouldn’t recommend straightening your hair every day because it would damage it.
I am going to give you a few tips on how to choose a hair straightener and after reading this article, you will decide for yourself whether you will be fine with 1 or 2 straighteners, but either way is still fine.
One of the first things to look for is whether it has a temperature gauge or not. If you think you’d rather have the same temperature every time you use it, then you can just buy the one with only an ‘on’ and ‘off’ switch or button. There are also hair straighteners that switch of automatically after some time when you are done using it. This feature is useful in case you forget to switch it off. Make sure that you know what temperature it is though.
A temperature gauge allows you to adjust and control the heat settings, they usually have about 4 temperatures or more you can choose from and the highest is normally 220 degrees Celsius (or 450 degrees Fahrenheit). Some flat irons allow you to set your desired temperature by displaying it digitally for precise heat.
However, be careful when adjusting the heat because some hair types get damaged too easily when the temperature is high. If you have got thick or curly hair then it might be safe for you to set it at a high temperature, but if you have thin or soft hair then I suggest that you always set it at a low or medium temperature to prevent hair breakage.
2. Size and shape
There are mini hair straighteners which are made to be convenient for styling or straightening short hair, they are not only for short hair though but they are easy to use. These hair straighteners are more recommended for traveling because they can fit in your purse and take a small space in your suitcase and they are light, so your bag won’t feel heavy. Long hair straighteners are made for any hair length and differ in thickness.
If you are going to use you hair straightener to curl your hair, then pick the one with curved exterior edges. This one makes it easier to curl your hair anyhow. But you can also use it to straighten your hair, although it won’t be as effective as the one with sharp edges.
If it has sharp edges then it will work better for straightening your hair, this one may limit you because it is not so good at curling unless you are a professional.
The width of the flat iron may determine its effectiveness. Wider flat irons enable you to straighten your hair much quicker.
3. The Plates
Hair straighteners have different types of plates, namely titanium-coated plates, ceramic-coated plates and tourmaline ceramic-coated plates.
Titanium-coated plates – Titanium plates work best on curly, coarse hair and keep the temperature constant throughout straightening or styling.
Ceramic-coated plates – Most straighteners are ceramic-coated. They heat up quickly and therefore you don’t have to wait after a few passes before it starts straightening, which saves you time, it also gives you even and smooth results. However, they wear down after some time and tend to straighten unevenly.
Tourmaline-ceramic or tourmaline plates – These plates distribute heat evenly and give silky smooth results. They are good for damaged hair and reduce frizz, but they are not ideal for fine hair.
4. Do you prefer a portable straightener?
Would you rather have a straightener that you can put in your purse and not have to worry about how heavy it will be and where you will plug it? Well, there are straighteners suitable just for your needs. Mini straighteners are light and tiny enough to fit in your purse and there’s also cordless straighteners that you can use anywhere. So if you travel a lot, these are made for you.
5. And of course, the big word… Quality?
No one wants to buy a straightener that will wear down in just a few months or break quickly or even worse, damage your hair. So it is important to get one that will not only last for long but is also worth every dime you paid for. It must work on both real hair and on extensions and the hair must not stick on the plates
I always look for straighteners with more unique features than others. The edge-to-edge plates allow you to get closer to your scalp and therefore straightening out all your hair locks.
Some of them have unique features such as:
- The ability to moisten dry, damaged hair while straightening,
- Having a cord that never tangles
- Protective heat shield
- Comfortable handle
- Plates that touch firmly for best styling results
Well, those are all the tips I have for you on how to choose a hair straightener and remember, don’t always go for the cheaper ones or else you might get disappointed and waste your money having to buy another one. I hope these tips have been helpful to you. If you have any other tip you would like to add or have a question then feel free to comment below. All the best.