The best hair straighteners have come a long way in the past decade. The words hair straightener alone are enough to bring back flashbacks of fried, damaged hair, snagged strands, and burned ears. While not all flatirons are created equal, new technology and advances have revolutionized the humble hair tool. Today the best hair straighteners get the job done without the damage or the drama. In fact, they often go above and beyond, and can curl, smooth frizz, and even condition your hair. There’s an option for everyone, from the tightest of curls to fine, straight hair.
- 1 Best hair straighteners for thick hair
- 2 Best hair straightener for frizzy hair
- 3 What to consider when shopping for the best hair straightener
- 4 Pros & Cons of Using Straightening Irons
- 5 What type of straightener is the healthiest for hair?
- 6 How do you use a flat iron?
- 7 How do you clean a flat iron?
- 8 How do you curl hair with a flat iron?
- 9 Which flat irons do hairstylists recommend?
- 10 How do you curl your hair with a flat iron?
- 11 Is ceramic or titanium better for your hair?
- 12 Are expensive hair straighteners better?
- 13 Can ceramic flat iron damage hair?
- 14 Are thick or thin straighteners better?
- 15 Is it OK to use hair straightener everyday?
The best hair straighteners can withstand even the steamiest weather and the most unfortunate of hair days—without frying hair in the process. While the styling process can take time, flat irons can also be a financial investment, so you want to be sure you’re choosing the right one. After extensively testing factors such as maneuverability, performance and temperature range, I landed on the top models on the market.
Yeaig team has an array of curl types, needs, and hair-styling tricks, and we’ve all tried a lot of hair straighteners in our lifetimes. Some flat irons have left us with crispy ends and cramped hands, while others, like the ones listed here, gave us sleek hair. There’s a dizzying number of options around, but hopefully our favorite hair straighteners can help narrow down your search.We put 35 popular flat irons through a rigorous test in our lab, trying each on different hair textures and carefully examining their ease of use, straightening abilities, glide performance, and value.
Best hair straighteners: 10 top products for your hair
- It only takes one glide to straighten your hair.
- While it also allows you to curl hair, you should expect the end result to look more like beachy waves rather than tight curls.
Plate Width: 1.5” | Plate Type: Ceramic | Temperature up to 450 degrees | Special Features: 30 second heat up time, automatic safety shut off, 360° swivel cable
Sitting at the top of our list is this Remington hair straightener because it delivers results in a single glide (no matter the hair type), and you can get through your whole head pretty quickly. Made of anti-static ceramic plates, it gives hair four times the average protection against heat damage and frizz, leaving you with a silky finish that eliminates the need to complete your look with a styling product.
- Sleek styling with minimal damage
- Color-treated or vulnerable hair
- High shine
- You prefer multiple heat settings
- You want wider plates
Plate material: Ceramic | Plate size: 1 inch x 3.75 inches | Temperature: 365 degrees | Weight: 14.3 ounces | Cord length: 8 feet 8 inches | Warranty: 3 years
The HSI is like a luxury automobile: it looks and feels expensive, it effortlessly does its job and it will cause people to stare—at your gorgeous hair. The sleek white barrel grip feels comfortable and satisfying in the hand, and a wishbone-style hinge is one of the iron’s trademarks. Because of its v-shaped, continuous barrel design, it doesn’t have a hinge with a gap that could pinch the palm of your hand as can happen with some other models. It not only aligns the plates and gives you precise styling control, but also makes it easy to clamp the tool close to your roots.
The straightener is forgiving on the wrist and is more lightweight compared to most of the other models I tested. It has a well-functioning swivel cord, and it comes with a nice silicone sleeve to keep the iron closed before use, for easy transport and to protect fingers during cool down. Plus, the 30-minute automatic shut-off gives peace of mind.
- This flat iron automatically shuts off after 60 minutes.
- The ceramic plate is quite thin, meaning you might not experience optimal results if you have thicker hair.
Plate Width: 1” | Plate Type: Ceramic and Nano silk | Temperature up to 450 degrees | Special Features: Releases negative ions to smooth out frizz
The straightforward control panel and thin ceramic plates make this flat iron a dream for anyone with fine hair. Even on the lowest heat setting, the iron is still effective, easily straightening hair in a single glide. “I did one pass and was able to get to the next part of my hair,” our tester says. It uses nano silk plates — which combine minerals and ceramic nano-particles to lock in moisture and protect hair from heat damage. This is an important feature for thin hair, as it’s more prone to heat damage than other hair types. The negative ions in the plates also prevent frizz, leaving a silky finish. And, if you’re in a rush, this tool has your back because it heats up quickly and provides long-lasting results.
Note that the plates themselves are thinner than those on a standard flat iron (one inch vs. 1.5 inches). Therefore, if you’re working with thick or voluminous hair, it may take longer to get through it all. However, it does get bonus points for automatically turning off after 60 minutes, so you don’t need to worry if you ever forget to unplug it.
- Easy maneuverability
- Creating versatile styles, from completely straight to bends to waves
- You want ultra-high heat
- You prefer multiple heat settings
- You feel strongly about having auto shut-off
The T3 Lucea ID hair straightener would be in our top spot if it wasn’t so expensive. But it might be worthwhile if you’re concerned about hair damage. Most hot hair tools claim to cause less damage than the competition, but the T3 delivers a unique temperature-finding feature the company calls HeatID Technology. To set the right temperature, select your hair features via the touch controls on the iron’s handle: texture (fine, medium, coarse), length (short, medium, long), and if your hair is color-treated. It will then suggest a heat level. I also love its Refresh Mode for touching up hair later at a lower temperature based on previous settings.
- Extra smooth glide
- Multiple temperature settings for a variety of hair types
- Versatile styling with floating plates
- You want the ultra-high heat of a titanium iron
- You strongly prefer a narrower 1-inch iron
This highly rated ultrathin iron is perfect for getting bobs, lobs, and bangs stuck straight. Its long, slim plates also make it easy to reach frizz that sits at the roots of naturally curly hair and any baby hairs hanging out on the hairline. Hair length and texture aside, this straightener has become a go-to for stylists and non-stylists alike because it has 50 heat settings, up to 450° F, and a lightweight body that’s easy to hold.
- It leaves a nice finish, making ends look healthy rather than damaged.
- It starts with a 400 degree temperature setting (which is pretty high), and the temperature adjustment system is not straightforward.
The Xtava Pro Satin Infrared flat iron tames curly hair minus the damage, leaving hair shiny and smooth. Its 2-inch wide, ceramic tourmaline floating plates glide through even the coarsest hair for glossy results.It has 10 temperature settings on an LCD digital display ranging from 265°F – 445°F. Choose between 265°F – 300°F for fine delicate hair, 300°F – 380°F for normal hair, and 380°F – 445°F for thick or coarse hair.
Extra wide, 2-inch bottom floating plates plus upper dual-plate technology maintain even heating for quick styling. With a heat-resistant travel case and dual voltage plug, you can keep your style on the go.Designed with 90-second rapid heat-up technology, a 60-minute auto shut-off function, and an 8-foot long 360-degree swivel cord for tangle-free straightening. Enable the lock feature by double clicking the power button
Best hair straighteners for thick hair
- 11 temperature settings
- Reduces frizz
- Heats well and spreads evenly
- Retains moisture
- Might pull hair
This titanium flat iron hair straightener has damage-free plates and releases high levels of negative ions to give you smooth and silky hair by retaining hair moisture. It offers 11 temperature settings ranging from 265℉-450℉, easy to customize depending on your different hair type. It delivers heat to your hair consistently without frying it. The special titanium plates have been designed to create long-lasting and lustrous results. The human-factor engineered design lets you hold the straightener at ease and style effortlessly to get shiny, frizz-free hair.
- Has a 3D flexible heating plate
- Extra-long heating plate
- Comes with built-in C-sensor and automatic shut off functionality
- Temperature dial is difficult to set
This straightener redefines the traditional straightener iron, locking in natural moisture and transforming frizzy hair and making it look sleek and shiny. It has an extra-long heating plate that allows it to come in contact with larger volumes of hair, thereby increasing its efficiency. The ceramic coated plates glide through the hair without tugging and pulling, and the 3D flexible heating plate allows you to adjust the angle, thereby prevent snagging or pinching of the hair.
Best hair straightener for frizzy hair
Prepare to be wowed by the new Dyson Corrale. Dyson is really stepping it up in the world of styling and the Corrale is a must-have straightener for 2020! This hybrid device offers up to 30 minutes cordless styling, meaning you can easily pack it in your handbag or suitcase for styling on the go, and quickly recharge it within 70 minutes or simply use it plugged in, too.
You can be sure your hair is in good hands with Dyson’s new technology that offers flexible plates that provide the same quality of style but with less heat, promising up to 50% less breakage. The flexible plates also mean fewer flyaways as they gather the hair and provide extra comfort and control when styling.
GHD is a classic brand that have never let us down when it comes to styling, especially straightening. We love the fact that these stylers are available in a number of different colourways, including this limited edition neo-mint version. We love this beautiful green colour and how smooth the plates are. The fact that it’s so compact and comes in a handy heat proof travel bag means it’s perfect for styling on the go- holidays and festivals are sorted.
This straightener runs at 185-degrees which is the optimal styling temperature and isn’t as hot as other brands which is good for weaker and dryer hair. These GHDs also automatically switch off after 30 minutes of inactivity so you never have to worry about whether you’ve left them on again. They are on the higher end of the scale but a good price for limited edition.
What to consider when shopping for the best hair straightener
Heat settings: A flat iron with multiple heat settings allows for more customization and flexibility when styling since you’re able to select a temperature that works for your hair type/needs. Our expert testers preferred having an option of a temperature range for their flat irons, and Hughes agrees: “It is a must for all hair types. Most irons go up to 430-450ºF,” but that doesn’t mean you should crank up the heat all the way! We recommend always starting off at a lower temperature and increase the temperature as needed since temperatures above 450ºF can cause decomposition of hair’s protein content, causing irreparable damage.Although there is no scientific guidance on the best temperature ranges to use for different textures, our pros averaged all the temperature suggestions from manufacturers for fine, medium and thick, coarse hair:
- Fine hair types should stick to 240-330°F
- Medium to normal hair types can style at 330-370°F
- Thick, coarse hair can handle temps starting at 390°F and go up from there.
Plate width and length: “1-inch plates are ideal,” says Hughes. “I think if a plate is too wide it makes the tool more difficult to use or maneuver in the hair.” These narrower plates also make it easier to do detailed styling (like curling, bending or waving) and they’re also better for getting closer to the root of the hair. One exception: If hair is super long and you’re just looking to press hair straight, a 1.5-inch or 2-inch width can make faster work of the task.
Cord length: If you’re planning on styling hair in a bathroom or close to an outlet, cord length might not be an issue, but if you don’t have an outlet by your mirror, you may want to opt for a longer (or “professional”) length. Cord length in our study varied from 5.6 to 10.8 feet, with an average of 8.1 feet — the longer the cord, the more convenience and range you’ll have.
Auto shut-off: “People are busy and we can all forget to turn off an iron when we are running late, so auto shut-off ensures you some peace of mind,” says Hughes. In our tests, auto shut-off varied from five minutes to two hours, which is handy when you can’t quite remember if you turned the tool off — but we still recommend powering off and unplugging the tool after use to ensure it is completely off.
Pros & Cons of Using Straightening Irons
If you want to rock the locks of Jennifer Aniston or Paris Hilton, try using a straightening iron. Also called flat irons, these hairstyling tools create the super-straight, frizz-free shiny styles seen everywhere from the red carpet to the catwalk. You do not need a designer hairstylist to get the designer look, however. You can take this styling tool in your own hands and re-create the look. Before embarking on this new look, consider some of the pros and cons of straightening irons.
Almost all hair-straightening irons are ceramic, because this material heats evenly, causing less damage to hair follicles. Some straightening irons also emit negative ions, which help the body release healthy nutrients along the hair shaft. Cheaper straightening irons are metal coated in ceramic, which produce an inferior look.
The pros of using a straightening iron include reduction of frizz, quick heating time and the flexibility of changing your hairstyle at your whim. There are straightening irons that work in various types of hair ranging from wavy to curly, thin to thick. Some models are lightweight with an ergonomic design.
The advantage to straightening irons is that creating different looks is fun and easy. Try the sleek flip by applying mousse and blow-drying your hair. Straighten the hair from the roots and add a flip at the end. Try an elegant upsweep by applying mousse and letting your hair dry. Straighten your hair from roots to ends. Twist the back section of your hair and clip it in place. Take the sections closest to your face, twist them and pin them to the back twist. Take a comb and gently pull a few hairs out of the twist.
The primary con of using a straightening iron is that, with repeated use, hair can get dry, brittle and damaged. It can lose shine and look dull and unhealthy. Frequent use may create split ends. The best models are gentler to hair, but they are also expensive, costing up to $500. People with extremely thick and curly hair may experience more damage to their hair because it takes longer to straighten it. However, some of the damage and negative effects of using a straightening iron can be mitigated by using heat-protection spray and leave-in conditioners.
There are additional disadvantages to using a straightening iron to style wavy or curly hair. First of all, the look is temporary. If you get caught in a brief rain shower or go for a walk on a humid day, you lose your look. Of course, once you wash your hair you must begin the style anew. If your hair is extremely thick, you may wish to use an iron with bigger plates. However, bigger plates make for a much heavier and more difficult to use iron.
Frequently Asked Questions
What type of straightener is the healthiest for hair?
Straighteners that are designed with infrared heat are the healthiest for the hair. If you can’t find an infrared straightener, look for a one-pass ceramic straightener. Ceramic plates are gentler than titanium and tourmaline plates. And since one-pass straighteners work quickly, they expose your hair to less heat.
How do you use a flat iron?
Start by making sure your hair is completely dry and combed through so that there are no tangles, then divide your hair into sections. Run the iron over each section with a consistent speed, not letting it sit on one area for too long.
How do you clean a flat iron?
Once it’s unplugged and completely cooled off, Rivera suggests wiping down the plates with a cotton pad soaked in rubbing alcohol. Then, give them another wipe down with a clean cotton pad to make sure the plates are completely dry.
How do you curl hair with a flat iron?
Taking one section of hair at a time, clamp the hair in the flat iron at mid-shaft and wrap the rest of the hair (except for the very ends) gently around the flat iron, says Rivera. Then, gently pull down and release.
Which flat irons do hairstylists recommend?
While every hairstylist has their own personal favorite hair tool, each of the experts we spoke to agreed that a good flat iron should have three key features: flexible plates (to avoid tugging and breaking), adjustable heat options (to prevent heat damage), and a comfortable grip (since you’ll be holding the tool for a while).
How do you curl your hair with a flat iron?
A simple twisting technique in the wrist will transform your flat iron into a curling wand. For tight curls, clamp down on a chunk of hair and turn your wand 180 degrees inward. Gently pull down and through, keeping your hand in that angled position. Alternate between flipping inward and outward for the most natural results. Make sure to apply a layer of heat protectant spray, as this technique will add more strain to your hair.
Is ceramic or titanium better for your hair?
THE BOTTOM LINE
A thick hair type will need more heat and therefore work better with titanium. Ceramic, on the other hand, is suitable for Fine hair which causes less heat damage. If you’ve damaged or color treated hair, you obviously require moisture, the best for that is a ceramic.
Are expensive hair straighteners better?
Know the Difference Between Price and Value. The problem with cheap straighteners is that they tend to break more quickly. They may also damage your hair, unevenly apply heat, snag your hair, and even overheat. A more expensive straightener should last for years, and cause less damage to your precious tresses.
Can ceramic flat iron damage hair?
Modern ceramic flat irons can heat up to nearly 400 degrees Fahrenheit (over 200°C). Apparently, this is so that it is easier to straighten your hair, but it also makes it easy to damage your hair and scalp.
Are thick or thin straighteners better?
A wide plate hair straightener makes styling larger sections of hair easier, which is great news for those with a bounty of thick locks. Because thick and curly hair tends to be drier by nature, do use a heat protectant to support your locks and prevent straw strands during styling.
Is it OK to use hair straightener everyday?
Most people with curly or wavy hair tend to use a blow dryer or straightening iron to make their hair more manageable. But, using heat on the tresses every day can damage the hair cuticles severely. Not only will it make the hair rough and frizzy but will also lead to breakage.