Hello, ladies! This is Monica, the founder of the MyStraightener blog. In this post, I’m going to tell you about the best flat irons on the market so far and some other hair straighteners. I will also give you some tips and tricks on how to choose the best straightening iron for your hair type.
At the end of the post, I’m going to answer the most common questions about using flat irons and straightening brushes. Gosh, we have so much to discuss! I hope you have some leisure time =)
I don’t think the flat iron as a styling tool needs any introduction, and many of you have probably used one at some point. I know how hard it is to pick the perfect styling tool for your hair – at least, the one that’s good enough. So, to make it a bit easier for you, I’ve decided to draw up a list of top 10 flat irons. It’s based on both, my own experience and other people’s flat irons reviews. So, I’m trying to be objective and bias-free here.
Okay, let’s finally get down to business!
Why Are These the Best Flat Irons? Let Me Explain
As I said before, I’m trying to be objective and take into account all the technical features of the tool, such as:
- the temperature settings;
- the speed of heating up;
- surface material;
- width of plates;
- does a flat iron have a swivel cord;
- and other useful features.
I strongly believe that all of these features should be considered if you want to choose a decent flat iron that will work well on your hair. Let’s see why.
1. First, there are the temperature settings. Obviously, different hair requires a different heat level. The thicker your hair is, the higher level of heat you should pply to straighten it. I highly recommend you to read the instructions which usually say what temperature you should select for your particular hair type. This may vary a little bit from one flat iron to another. The general rule here is the less heat you apply, the better your hair condition will be. And always use a heat protectant, regardless of your hair type.
2. Pretty much all of the flat irons on my list heat up pretty quickly, from 30 seconds to 2 minutes. I don’t mind waiting a couple of minutes and I use this time to brush my hair and divide it into sections. But if you’re eager to get started, pay special attention to the hair straighteners that get warmed up real quick.
For my list of the best flat irons, I’ve chosen the models with the surface made of ceramic, tourmaline or both these materials. They are considered to be the healthiest solution for styling. What’s more, ceramic hair straighteners heat up quickly and evenly, meaning that they can straighten your locks on lower temperatures. This definitely reduces the damage.
3. The shorter your hair is, the narrower plates you need to straighten it properly. I have to admit, most flat irons don’t work well on really short hair. The most common width of plates is something about 1 inch, at least in my rating. If you have really long locks you can try a straightener with 2-inches long plates – for instance, the Xtava flat iron.
4. Many of straightening irons have a swivel cord that makes the whole styling process easier. I’d recommend you to choose from flat irons with a long enough cord so that nothing will keep you from making the best hairstyle ever. By the way, there are also cordless flat irons available for those who love styling their hair in a car.
If we’re talking other useful features, some models have an auto shut-off function. It’s very helpful if you tend to leave your styling tools switched on. But still, I would recommend you to be more careful. Please, do NOT leave any electronic devices turned on.
5. One more handy feature is dual-voltage that allows you to use a device abroad. But you will probably need a plug adaptor for that purpose.
6. Personally, I like when a flat iron comes with a protective glove that makes your experience safer. And it’s nice to have a travel case for a straightener, especially when it’s heat resistant (you will appreciate it when using your flat iron during travels).
7. You should definitely take into account flat irons reviews, let along the price of the hair straightening iron. Most of the models in my list are pretty affordable, yet effective and of high quality. Just be aware of the fakes and be sure that you can trust the seller. And I hope hair straightener reviews will help you avoid purchasing a fake and choose the perfect styling tool.
Don’t think that a high price always means high quality. For example, NuMe Fashionista hair straightener is rather pricey, yet it has quite a lot of bad reviews on Amazon.
Top 10 Best Flat Irons: Let’s Take a Closer Look!
For my list, I’ve picked out the top rated flat irons. So, let’s see what the best hair straighteners are and what the hype is about =)
1. KIPOZI Pro: Best Flat Iron for Curly Hair
This flat iron features far-infrared ion technology that helps make your hair shiny and soft, moistening it and reducing frizz. The 1-inch wide floating ceramic plates make it a good device not only for straightening but also for curling.
You can select the required heat level from 170°F to 450°F which means this hair straightener suits for all hair types. For me, this is the best straightening iron for thick hair. It heats up in about 30 seconds, and the current temperature is shown on the LCD.
This KIPOZI ion straightener comes in rose pink, and its slick design is just great.
- temperature settings ranging from 170°F to 450°F;
- features a hook for hanging the device;
- dual voltage;
- 90-minutes auto shut-off;
- 360° swivel cord.
- the buttons are on the side, so you may accidentally push them while using the straightener.
2. HSI Professional Glider: Best Ceramic Flat Iron Ever!
This HSI hair straightener features ceramic plates infused with tourmaline that make your locks smooth and shiny. The device comes with a protective glove, a cute pouch, and an argan oil sample. The design is sleek and neat, and due to the base pattern, your hands won’t slip so much.
You can select the temperature from 140°F to 450°F depending on your hair type. This HSI flat iron works pretty well even on African-American hair. The floating 1-inch wide plates make it an excellent tool for both straightening and curling.
- temperature settings ranging from 140°F to 450°F;
- advanced ion technology locks in the moisture and gives you silky locks;
- comes with a protective glove;
- dual voltage;
- 360° swivel cord.
- this flat iron has a regular size (12 inches long), so taking it on holiday may not be that convenient.
3. CHI Original: Best Straightening Iron in My Rating
With this CHI original flat iron, you can get not only straight silky hair but also all kinds of curls, flips, and waves. It features 1-inch wide floating ceramic plates and uses far infrared technology to reduce frizz and static electricity.
This straightener heats up to 392°F, and you can’t adjust the temperature. So, this is a flat iron for normal or thick hair, not for fine and fragile one. The heat is evenly distributed, and an exceptionally high amount of negative ions are produced. Finally, the design is basic, yet neat and ergonomic.
- you can use it for both straightening and curling;
- far infrared technology helps to keep your hair healthy and shiny;
- features a swivel cord;
- dual voltage.
- it doesn’t have temperature degree settings;
- it’s no good for fine or fragile hair.
4. The Remington: Best Flat Iron for Thick Hair
This flat iron features 1-inch wide ceramic plates with titanium coating, and I love its slick and neat purple design. The Remington straightener heats up in about 30 seconds, and it has 6 heat settings from 310°F to 410°F, so this flat iron works pretty well even for African-American hair. The digital controls with LCD screen make it easy to adjust the right temperature for your hair type. The only thing is, the buttons are on the side, so you may accidentally push them while using the device.
Also, the Remington straightener features anti-static technology and visibly reduces static and frizz. Due to its long thin plates, you can use this flat iron not only for straightening but also for curling.
- this flat iron is lightweight and compact;
- it’s perfect for straightening as well as curling;
- the maximum heat of 410°F makes it a good hair straightener for thick, coarse hair;
- 360° swivel cord;
- 60-minute auto shut-off.
- the buttons are on the side, so you might push them by accident;
- the smell may seem weird as if this hair straightener is made of cheap plastic.
5. CHI: Best Hair Straightener with Color-Coded LCD Screen
This is a second generation CHI flat iron that comes in a sleek, ergonomic design. Its 1.25-inches wide floating ceramic plates infused with titanium will make your hair smooth and silky. This straightener heats up in about 40 seconds, and you can select the heat level up to 425°F.
The current temperature is shown on the LCD screen, and the screen changes the color depending on how high the temperature is. According to the instructions, the blue one is for fine or fragile hair (0-370°F), the green one is for medium or wavy hair (375-395°F), and the red one is for coarse, resistant hair (400-425°F). The mode button also helps you to choose the right heat level for your hair type.
The CHI flat iron is great not only for straightening but also for making curls, waves, and flips. For me, this is one of the best professional flat irons available on the market.
- this CHI straightener heats up pretty quickly;
- it features the color-coded LCD screen;
- comes with a nice thermal mat;
- dual voltage.
- comparing to the other flat irons in my rating, the CHI one is quite pricey.
6. Revlon: Best Flat Iron for Curling Hair That Heats up Very Fast
You can use this Revlon ionic flat iron for both straightening and curling, due to its 1-inch wide plates and ergonomic design. The plates are made of ceramic and tourmaline which are good for the health of your hair, reducing the damage and making your hair shiny and soft. There are 10 temperature settings, and the straightener can heat up to 455°F. Also, it takes only 15-20 seconds to heat up which is pretty fast.
- this Revlon flat iron heats up very fast, like in 15-20 seconds;
- it features 10 heat settings and the color-coded controls;
- auto shut-off;
- dual voltage.
- there is no indicator to tell if you’re using the low, medium or high setting;
- one may find the unit to be rather slippery.
7. The Herstyler: Best Flat Iron for Natural Hair
The Herstyler flat iron comes with a protective glove which will probably come in handy as this professional straightener can heat from 180°F up to 500°F. It makes it really good at straightening natural hair, yet the controls don’t have exact numbers in between the minimum and the maximum, so you’re supposed to guess the current temperature.
This flat iron features solid ceramic plates, and its negative ion and infrared technology help to eliminate frizz and reduce hair damage. The design is nice and slick, and due to the base pattern, your hands won’t slip so much. You can use the Herstyler flat iron for both straightening and curling as it features 1.25-inches wide plates.
- the Herstyler hair straightener heats up to 500°F;
- it comes with a protective glove;
- it’s pretty lightweight and compact;
- due to the base design, your hands won’t slip so much;
- 360° long swivel cord.
- the controls are a bit inconvenient;
- one may not like the design as the whole straightener is black, including heating plates.
8. VAV Hair Straightener: Best Flat Iron for Curling and Straightening
This flat iron features 1-inch wide ceramic tourmaline coated plates that give you shiny and glossy hair. It has a cute rose color design which is nicely offset by the white tincture.
The VAV hair straightener heats up in about 30 seconds, and you can select the required level of heat from 284°F to 446°F. The buttons are placed in between the plates, so it may be a little inconvenient to adjust the temperature. The current heat level is shown on the LED display. This flat iron can be used for both straightening and curling due to its thin plates.
- this straightener heats up in about half a minute;
- you can use it for straightening as well as for curling;
- 360° long swivel cord;
- 60-minutes auto shut-off.
- the controls may be a bit inconvenient;
- the smell may seem weird, especially when the straightener is heated up.
9. RUSK: Best Professional Flat Iron for All Hair Types
RUSK is one of the premier salon brands in the world, so this professional hair straightener will give you shiny, glossy, and soft hair. It features 1-inch wide ceramic plates infused with tourmaline. This flat iron works great on curly hair, and you can change the heat settings depending on what heat level your hair type requires.
This particular RUSK straightener comes in white, and the design is simple yet appealing and neat.
- the RUSK flat iron works well for thick and frizzy hair;
- a special Sol-Gel technology helps you to get smooth, shiny locks;
- this hair straightener features a long cord;
- it’s pretty lightweight.
- the design may seem too basic;
- sometimes, this flat iron may pull or snag hair.
10. Xtava: Best Hair Straightener for Thick Long Hair
I believe this is the best straightener for really long hair due to its 2-inches wide floating ceramic plates. It heats up in 90 seconds, and you can choose from 10 temperature settings ranging from 265°F to 445°F. The selected heat level is shown on the LCD.
This hair straightener features infrared heat technology that is supposed to make your hair shiny and healthy, heating it from the inside out. Also, the device comes with a heat resistant travel case which is rather useful.
- the Xtava flat iron has 10 temperature settings;
- works great for straightening long coarse hair;
- has a 360° swivel cord;
- 60-minute auto shut-off;
- dual voltage.
- due to its wide plates, this straightener doesn’t work well on short hair;
- the buttons are on the side, so it’s easy to push them by accident.
How to Choose the Best Straightening Tool for Your Hair Type?
Many of flat irons in my list work pretty well at straightening all hair types. Yet, I’d like to clear things up and tell you how to pick the right tool depending on your hair length, thickness, and overall condition.
Sorry that I may be repeating myself since I’ve already mentioned something in flat iron reviews. But I want to make it easier for you to navigate in this beautiful world of styling =)
What Is the Best Hair Straightener for Fine, Medium, and Thick Hair?
If your hair is fine, fragile or damaged you have to be careful with the temperature. Your locks require the lower heat to reduce the damage. The maximum heat level that you can apply on thin or damaged hair is 350°F. But maybe you should start with lower temperature, something like 170°F – and see if this would work. Also, thin hair requires a flat iron with narrow plates so that you will be able to straighten it in one pass.
If you have medium normal hair which isn’t damaged, set the medium heat level. Really coarse thick hair, including African-American one, usually requires high temperatures to straighten it – up to 450°F. Choose from the flat irons that can maintain such heat level.
How to Choose the Best Flat Iron for Long and Short Hair?
Generally, flat irons aren’t very good at straightening really short hair. But if you do want to give it a try, pick from the models with as narrow plates as possible. I guess, the common width of the flat iron plates is 1 inch but there may be even narrower models on the market. And for straightening short hair, choose from the models with a slim and rectangular-shaped design. This will help you to get to the roots.
For straightening long hair, you can use a flat iron with wider plates that can handle plenty of volumes – something like 1.5 inches and more. If your hair is thick and wavy, it will probably work fine – just like the models with the standard 1-inch wide plates.
But if you have kinky or frizzy locks, straighteners with narrow plates are more effective for you. For wiry and tightly coiled hair, tourmaline flat irons will be a great option as they reduce static and frizz.
What Is the Best Straightener for Black Hair
When it comes to straightening, the hair color doesn’t matter so much. Its thickness and health are way more important. If you have such a question, you may be one of the girls out there who have African American hair or Asian hair. Your hair is probably dense, thick, and hard to tame. For styling it, you need a flat iron that can maintain high temperatures. Other features depend on your hair length and health.
Remember: Women with all hair types should definitely apply heat protectants before any styling.
What Are My Other Options If I Want to Straighten Hair?
As you probably know, flat irons aren’t the only option for straightening and curling hair. There are hair straightening brushes and hot air brushes that work great if used properly.
First, there are brush straighteners. They are considered to be a better tool than the flat irons. Hair straightening brushes cause less damage to your locks, and they keep more volume after styling. Also, this is a faster and easier way to get things done.
When using a brush straightener, you should keep several things in mind. First, always apply some kind of a thermal protectant. Comb your locks properly.
Second, be aware of the hot bristles – you don’t want them to touch your scalp.
Third, don’t hold a brush straightener as a regular brush however tempting and easy this seems. You should hold it kind of upside down so that bristles won’t touch your skin. To straighten a strand in one pass, hold the brush tight to the surface of the hair. More detailed guide on how to use a hair straightening brush you can find in this article.
Remember: You can use a hair straightening brush only on fully dry hair.
Your second option is a hot air brush. It’s a round-shaped electric tool that can be used for both straightening and curling. But you probably will be able to create gentle waves rather than tight curls with this appliance. Hot air brushes can comb, blow-dry, and style your hair at the same time. It’s a good choice if you want to add extra volume or just keep it.
Hot air brushes are considered to be safer than curling tongs since they don’t hold hair between heated plates but curl it by blowing hot air. Curling brushes with a ceramic-coated surface are better for the condition of your locks. And hot air brushes that feature ionizing function can actually make your hair a little healthier.
For hot air brushes, the same advice goes: always use a heat protectant, select the right temperature for your hair type, pay attention to the speed, intensity, and the barrel size of the curling brush.
Ceramic and tourmaline coatings are considered to be the best ones for a hot air brush barrel. The only problem that may occur is that your locks may get stuck in the brush bristles. To avoid this, choose from models with tangle-free anti-static bristles, like this one.
You’ve already asked us about hot air brushes. You can read the answers here.
Related Article: Best Flat Iron for Silk Press
What Do You Want to Know about Flat Irons: FAQ and Tips
Does a flat iron cause damage to my hair?
As any electrical styling appliance, a straightening iron may damage your locks if not used properly. To reduce the damage as much as possible, select from the straighteners with ceramic or tourmaline plates, set the right temperature for your hair type, and follow the instructions.
Also, you should always apply a thermal protector before any heat activated styling such as flat ironing, blow drying, and so on. Keep in mind that straightening wet or damp hair can cause lots of damage – hair gets burned, and ends get split.
Remember: Do NOT straighten damp or wet hair with any electrical styling appliance
How to set up the right temperature for styling?
The required heat level depends primarily on the density and overall condition of your hair. If your locks are fine, thin or damaged, start with lower temperatures – something like 170°F. The maximum for you is 350°F. The golden rule here – the less heat is applied, the better your hair condition remains.
Really dense coarse hair can handle higher temperatures – up to 400°F or even 450°F. Some of the flat irons in my list can maintain such heat level. And relatively healthy medium hair needs medium temperatures, something in between 300°F and 370°F.
I would recommend you to take your lead from the instructions of one particular model since different straighteners vary in terms of material, quality, intensity, and so on. The manufacturer should give your detailed instructions on how to select the heat level for their straightener brand.
What surface materials are good for straighteners?
There are several of them, but ceramic, tourmaline, and titanium are considered to be the best materials. Most of the popular models are made of ceramic, sometimes ceramic infused with tourmaline. Due to the ionizing feature, ceramic flat irons smooth your locks and reduce frizz.
Keep in mind that flat irons can be solid ceramic or ceramic-coated. In the second case, you won’t have the same kind of heat distribution, so the results may be disappointing.
Titanium irons are more powerful. They heat up much faster and have a higher ionic distribute, and they work great on really thick, curly or stubborn locks. For instance, popular BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium-Plated Ultra-Thin Straightening Iron is made using titanium. And if your locks are pretty easy to straighten, you probably don’t need such a powerful tool.
How to curl your hair with a straightening iron?
Some models can be used as a flat iron and a curling iron two-in-one. For curling, choose from the models with narrow plates and rounded edges. For instance, Style House Professional Styling iron is a suitable tool for making curls and waves. Another one is the Absolute Heat Pro Ion Digital Flat Iron which has a sleek design and rounded edges.
Before curling, make sure your locks are completely dry and well combed. Put a heat protectant. Divide your hair into strands. Take one strand and run a flat iron through, twisting as you go. To get the better result, pin your curls and seal them with hairspray. Repeat until all strands are done. When your curls have cooled, release and gently brush them.
Related Article: Best Steam Hair Straightener
So, now you know almost everything about best hair straightening irons – at least, everything I know about them =)
I hope my list of the best hair straighteners will come useful for all of you out there. I’ve tried to find the top ones that feature great technical characteristics along with a neat design and nice packaging. Yes, those things matter, too!
I highly recommend you to read some flat iron reviews before purchasing the tool. Finding real reviews from real people may be hard but that is a whole other discussion =)
Finally, let’s revise what you should bear in mind when choosing or using flat irons:
- When choosing a flat iron, pay attention to such features as the maximum temperature level, the speed of heating up, surface material, the width of plates, and others.
- It wouldn’t hurt to read hair straightener reviews written by real people.
- Different hair types require different heat level and width of plates.
- Be aware of the fakes.
- There are many affordable flat iron brands on the market, yet such a tool can’t be too cheap.
- Always put some kind of a heat protectant before styling.
- Apply a flat iron only on fully dry hair.
- Select the heat level depending on your hair type and overall condition.
- Narrow plates are better at straightening short and medium-length hair, and wider plates are suitable for really long locks.
- Flat irons with thin plates and rounded design can be used for both straightening and curling.
- Hair straighteners cause minimum damage is used properly.
- Take care of your flat iron: gently clean the plates with a damp washcloth after each use.
Remember: Never clean a flat iron if it’s plugged in!
Well, I guess that’s it! There are plenty of various flat irons on the market, so choosing the best one is quite a challenge. But if you know a little something about these tools, this knowledge will work in your favor.
So, what does your experience with flat irons look like? Which one do you find to be the best straightener? Do you prefer this kind of styling tools over the other straighteners, and why? Feel free to leave your comments below!