Best Hair Straighteners and Flat Irons for Every Budget
- 1. Remington S5500 Anti-Static Flat Iron
- 2. HSI Professional Glider Flat Iron Hair Straightener
- 3. Remington S9520 Pro Flat Iron Hair Straightener
- 4. INFINITIPRO BY CONAIR Tourmaline Ceramic Flat Iron
- 5. CHI G2 Ceramic and Titanium Straightening Hairstyling Iron
- 6. REVLON Salon Straightener Copper + Ceramic Flat Iron
The key to creating that super-smooth, super-sleek straight hair is – surprise, surprise - a great hair straightener. But finding a good-quality flat iron that doesn’t damage your hair and that is budget-friendly is much easier said than done. The sheer number of options – ceramic, titanium, tourmaline, ionic, wet-to-dry, and so much more – is overwhelming to say the least.
To help simplify the shopping experience for you, we rounded up some of the best hair straighteners based on every hair type and budget. Some of these options are perfect for fine and thin hair, others are ideal for thick and curly hair, while some are suitable for all hair types. Certain models are also versatile and can help you create both straight and curly or wavy hairstyles in a matter of minutes. So, whether you’re looking for an affordable flat iron for occasional hair straightening or the cream of the crop that will give you that salon-like look, keep on reading.
The Best Hair Straightener
Do flat irons damage hair?
When used properly, and with the right heat protection products, flat irons are safe for your hair, but high temperatures, using them when your hair is wet and excessive use can leave your hair dry, brittle and potentially heat damaged.
Hair is at its most fragile when it is wet, so it is important to only use your hair straighteners on dry hair as dry hair can withstand higher temperatures.
The temperature of the flat iron is important too, as keratin – the fibrous protein strands that make up your hair – can start to melt at 233˚C, while the outer layer of your hair, the cuticle, can be damaged at temperatures more than 185 ˚C. For fine or color/chemical treated hair, you should set the iron’s temperature at around 160 ˚C while thicker, coarser, or curly hair can withstand temperatures of 185 ˚C.
To help prevent hair damage when using straightening irons, go for a lower temperature, don’t use on wet hair and be careful not to pull or drag your hair through the plates as you straighten.
Which is better: titanium or ceramic hair straighteners?
Whether titanium or ceramic hair straighteners are the best will depend on your hair type and length as well as how often you intend to use them.
Ceramic straighteners are excellent at evenly distributing the heat along the iron, so you don’t suffer from cold or overheated spots. This has the benefit of minimizing hair damage and giving you greater control. Ceramic will also help to eliminate frizz and will be less likely to pull on the hair shaft. But they do take longer to heat up and are more prone to chips and damage.
Best for: all hair types, but particularly fine, more fragile or frizz prone hair.
Titanium straighteners, on the other hand, are powerhouse heaters, getting to temperature fast and holding it there for longer. The result is a super-smooth finish to your hair and if doubled with ionic technology are excellent frizz fighters. But those high, fast temperatures can be fierce and can lead to hair damage if not appropriate to your hair
Best for: titanium makes the best hair straightener for thick hair, as well as coarse or unmanageable locks.
How do I clean a flat iron?
Regular using a flat iron and you will inevitably get a build-up of skin and hair cells, grease and hair care products on the plates which you need to clean regularly to get rid of all this gunk. Do read your product’s manufacturer’s instructions for any specific guidance on cleaning them. But as a basic ‘how to’.
Always ensure the flat iron is switched off, unplugged and fully cooled before you clean the straightening plates. Now, using dampened cotton pads or a soft cloth, swab the plate surface to clear away any dirt and build-up. For more stubborn surface debris you could use a little rubbing alcohol soaked into a cotton pad or a clean, damp toothbrush.
Once cleaned, wipe the surface with a dry cloth and allow to air dry. And one final tip when it comes to storing your flat irons, avoid wrapping the cable around the irons as this can weaken and twist the cable over time, shorting the life span of your hair straighteners.