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Choosing the Right Flat Iron

Buying the first flat iron you come across (no matter the bargain) won’t guarantee the best results. Poor quality flat irons are a menace to your hair, creating frizz, dryness, split ends and overall damage. Investing good money in a product that works towards your daily appearance is a sensible idea, so instead of picking up the cheapest flat iron available, save up and select a high quality professional model. Your hair will most definitely appreciate your choice.

Why go professional? Pro flat irons feature the best technology available for heat styling, maintaining consistent, even temperatures and letting you control the way you style via temperature and airflow settings. There’s a reason why professional stylists prefer these flat iron models and it’s time you discovered the benefits!

First you must focus on choosing the right flat iron for you, and to do that you have to consider your hair type and length. Here’s a guide to the size of flat iron plates you should use according to hair length and type.

  • Thick, course or curly hair: the right plate size for this hair type if it’s at an above shoulder length is 1-1 1/2 inches, with a shoulder length it should be 1-2 inches and if it’s at a below shoulder length, 1 1/2 - 2 inches. The temperature should be 380 - 410 degrees for an efficient styling process and quick results.
  • Shop flat irons for thick, course or curly hair

  • Normal, medium or wavy hair: at an above shoulder length the plate size needs to be 1/2 - 1 1/4 inches, with shoulder length hair the plate size must be 1-1 1/2 inches and if it’s at a below shoulder length, choose a flat iron with plates 1 1/4 - 2 inches in size. As for temperature, look for flat irons that handle 360 - 380 degrees.
  • Shop flat irons for medium or wavy hair

  • Thin or fine hair: With this hair type you can use any plate size, but choose a flat iron with a temperature of 360 degrees.
  • Shop flat irons for thin or fine hair

    Flat Irons and Hair Types

    As you may have noticed with the short guide, the choice of a flat iron depends on your hair type. If you have course or curly hair, you need a professional flat iron to straighten and tame textured, unruly locks. A high temperature is also needed, along with advanced technology to straighten out without causing damage. With medium, normal or wavy hair we mean hair that’s slap-bang right in the middle: not too oily, not too dry, not too thick and not too thin. It usually has a tendency to wave and has some volume, letting it adapt to lots of different styles. You need a flat iron that is not too tough on your hair, and not too lenient in order to obtain great results.

    Thin, fine or naturally straight hair can use just about any flat iron. The most important thing you must focus on is the correct temperature. The thinner or finer your tresses are, the cooler you need your flat iron to be. Start off as low as you can (at around 180 degrees F) and work your way up the temperature setting as you see fit. You’ll start to notice frizz, breakages or dry ends if the plates are too hot for your hair.

    Plate Technology

    An essential feature of a flat iron, the technology of the plates determines the outcome of the heat styling process. Here’s a list of technologies to help you decide which one suits your needs the best:

  • Ceramic: one of the most common on the market, ceramic produces negative ions and distributes heat evenly to seal the hair cuticle and give you sleek, frizz-free tresses.
  • Shop ceramic flat irons

  • Ionic: this technology uses negative ions to neutralize the positive charge in the strands (that causes dryness and frizz), leaving you with healthy, shiny locks that are frizz free and smooth.
  • Shop ionic flat irons

  • Infrared: infrared uses gentle heat to smooth out your hair, penetrating the hair shaft without causing any damage. This technology evens out the ions and keeps the temperature consistent, providing sleeker, glossier results without the curse of frizz.
  • Shop ionic flat irons

  • Nano: this is an advanced heating technology that is infused into flat iron plates making smoothing and styling swift and efficient. Nano usually combines with another technology, creating Nano Silver or Nano Titanium which are also advanced.
  • Shop nano flat irons

  • Silver: you can have safe, clean styling with Silver technology, which eliminates bacteria from the flat iron plates and your locks, leaving you with a secure and hygienic styling process every time you use your iron.
  • Shop silver flat irons

  • Titanium: a relatively new technology, titanium can straighten hair super fast and keeps heat levels consistent to safely style without damage.
  • Shop titanium flat irons

  • Tourmaline: this is a semi-precious gemstone that’s one of the world’s finest negative iron generators, creating six times the amount ceramic produces. It’s sometimes infused into ceramic plates to provide very sleek and very shiny results in half the time.
  • Shop tourmaline flat irons

    Travel Flat Irons

    Avid travelers don’t have to give up looking their best just because their flat irons can’t function abroad. A lot of flat irons are made to work in a certain country and can’t handle voltage converters, often ceasing to work in the process. If you don’t travel a lot, buy a flat iron with 110/120V, but if you’re constantly living out of your suitcase, find a dual voltage model and if possible, a travel sized one to tuck into a corner. You can also find pocket sized or mini flat irons that can be easily stored in an office drawer or purse for emergency retouching.
    Shop travel flat irons

    Shop pocket sized flat irons

    Accessories

    You don’t have to conform to just owning a flat iron to make your styling process easier, there are lots of convenient accessories to keep your styling secure and efficient. There are heat proof mats and pouches that help protect your surfaces and countertops from the heat of the flat iron, just make sure to keep the iron away from water! Flat iron holders are very useful, protecting your counter top from heat damage or scratches and leaving your styling space free. There are some that can be mounted on the wall to further save space.