Hair Straightener Buying Guide

Hair Straightener Buying Guide

Buying a hair straightener may seem easy especially when you look at the seemingly simpleness of a flat iron. However, there is more to buying the perfect hair straightener for yourself or loved one. Do not be intimidated though because once you know how to go about the buying process it becomes a seamless process.

Hair Straightener Buyer Guide

In this hair straightener buyer’s guide article we are going to share with you the pertinent aspects to consider when buying a flat iron. There are at least 4 areas you should be looking at when shopping for a hair straightener. Here is a summary of what you should be looking for and at!

Hair Flat Iron Buying Guide Overview

When you want to buy a hair flat iron you should consider your hair texture because hair straighteners are not one-size-fits-all type of tools. You should also look at the materials used in the plates and know which material is suitable for your hair type. The next thing is plate size. Shorter hair would need a flat iron with less wide plates than long thick hair would. You will also want to look at the features you need the flat iron to have and those that add convenience.

All in all you should consider effectiveness of the hair flat iron in terms heat transfer and heat evenness. The main ingredient of the hair straightener to achieve its purpose is heat. If it heats well i.e. fast enough and with even distribution along the surface of the plates then it would be a good start.

Next you will consider durability of the hair tool because it will not be wise to be buying a hair straightener every few months.

Next you will consider ease of use. An easy to use hair straightener will be a delight to have and this is where some features will be playing a measure role. e.g. swivel cord that can turn 360 degrees.

After all these you also need to consider price. An expensive hair straightener is not necessarily a good quality one. If you do not want to go wrong look for luxury hair straightener because it will have the qualities you want.

The above is a compact summary of what you should be looking at when buying a straightener. Let us further expand each area to go into more detail as to what to do or look for. Let us look at these points individually.

Your Hair Length and Texture

Your hair could be thick, thin, curly, wavy, coarse, short, long. You may also have frizzy hair or that “frizzies” easily or you may have damaged hair that needs repairing and your choice of a good hair straightener is critical.

You may also have unruly hair that need that special flat iron to tame it. Consider all these, the texture of your hair, as you go about buying a hair straightener.

Plate Material

There are different types of hair straighteners with primarily 3 to 4 different materials that can used for Flat iron plates and they vary in properties to determine their suitability for your hair type and quality of the flat iron.

These are porcelain, silicone, teflon, ceramic, titanium and tourmaline. The plates can either be coated with the material or the plate may be made wholly from the material. e.g. you can have a ceramic hair straightener whose plates are either coated with ceramic or made from ceramic.

In relation to plate material is temperature. Temperature control and the how quickly the plates heat up also make the bases of selecting a good quality hair straightener. The material making up the plates have a direct impact on how quickly the plates can heat up as well as control the temperature.

You may also have unruly hair that need that special flat iron to tame it. Consider all these, the texture of your hair, as you go about buying a hair straightener.

Plate Size

Hair straighteners come in different plate sizes to accommodate different hair lengths and type. The plates size ranges from 1/2 inch (half) to 2 1/4 inch (two and one quarter inch). The sizes are 1/2″, 1″, 1 1/4″, 1 1/2″, 1 3/4″, 2″ and 2 1/4″.

The plate size and the plate material should be used in combination to decide what size to buy looking at your hair length and texture.

Hair Straightener Features

Flat irons have a myriad of features depending on the brand, quality and purpose (intended use). These features will shed some light as to how to choose the right flat iron for your hair and they could be classified into at least two categories.

Basic Features

The first category is the category of features that we can say are basic features related to hair type. Hair straighteners are made to target particular hair types and there should be minimal features expected with that flat iron. As an example, if you have frizzy long hair you would want to buy a flat iron that has a feature to combat frizzy hair otherwise it will not be a good hair straightener for you.

The most basic features to look for in a hair straightener are;

Heat Up Time – A good hair straightener would have a shorter heat up time to the desired temperature and be able to maintain the temperature constantly while in use.

Operating Temperature – It is important to know the hair straightener heat temperature. The best way to straighten hair without damage is when the temperature is just right, so if you buy a hair straightener without knowing how high or low it can heat up would not be a wise decision. Know the right temperature for your hair and look for a straightener that has its range covering that temperature.

A hair straightener with adjustable temperature settings is ideal because you can adjust the temperature of the plates.

Other features become basing depending on the type of your hair. A thick curly hair will need a hair straightener with built-in comb teeth or as an attachment and steam function to be able to tame this type of hair. However, you will need a hair straightener with different features for another type of hair.

So the most basic features are heat up time and temperature the flat iron can operate at! Having said that it would be difficult to separate or class them as basic and convenience features.

Convenience Features

The second category would a category of nice to have features or convenience features. Convenience features are features that are not critical to giving you the best results from the flat iron. In the example above, a flat iron designed to handle frizzy hair is expected to have ionic straightening or have far infrared heating.

So this would be a basic feature for this flat iron but in addition if it also has digital display or dual voltage these could be considered nice to have features. They make it more appealing or a better choice than a similar item designed to tame frizzy hair.

Features are one are that will contribute to qualities of a good hair straightener. Features are the cornerstone of determining whether the straightener is the best choice for you or not. However, basic features should take precedence over “nice-to-have” features to avoid wasting your money.

In summary when you want to buy a straighteners, do not let the many brands of hair straighteners to overwhelm you. You should be looking for some of the following features that make up qualities of a good hair straightener, and you should be able to tell which ones you would consider basic depending on your hair!

Heat Up Time​

Heat up time will be the time it takes to heat the hair straightener to the desired operating temperature.

Operating Temperature ​

It is important to know the right temperature to use on your hair so that you may buy a hair straightener that operates at the right temperature of your hair.

Adjustable Temperature

A hair straightener with adjustable temperature settings is a nice to have feature that adds convenience to the use of the flat iron, allowing you to set the hair straightener at the temperature you desire.

Auto Shut Off

A hair straightener with auto turn off is a good to have feature to add a safety feature especially when the tool is left for a while without use.

World Wide Voltage

Hair straighteners with universal voltage is ideal when you are a traveler to different areas that use different voltage to your country of residence.

Ionic Straightening

A hair straightener with ionic properties produces shinier smooth hair with less freeze. Ionic feature is actually a property of the material being used.

FAR Infrared Heat

Infrared heat is another property found in Hair Irons

Swivel Cord

A hair straightener with a swivel cord means you can work with hair tool flexibly without risk of tripping over it. 

Retractable Cord

n addition to the cord being able to swivel, the cord can also be retractable. A hair straightener with a retractable cord is nice to have because when the tool is not in use it can be stored away easily without the cord being all over.

With Attachments

A hair straightener with attachments would be nice to buy because it means it can multi-task. It can perform several tasks like combing, straightening, curling, etc.

Floating Plates

A hair straightener with floating plates improves how the plates glide through your hair. They also help to protect hair against breakage and damage by adjusting to each strand of your hair and lessen the risk to overheating or pulling hair. 

Digital Display

A flat iron with digital display has an added advantage of being to tell what temperature you are heating your hair at.

Curved Plates

Hair straighteners with curved plates are more preferred than the ones with edged corners. The advantage of a curved plate is that it is less likely to leave bends on your hair.

Guide Teeth

When you have thick curly hair especially, the guide teeth in the flat become handy. As you pass the plates with guide teeth through your hand, the teeth tend to guide or hold your hair strands in position.


A flat iron with steamer will wet your hair as you run the iron through your hair. Moistening the hair this way tends to reduce damage that is normally caused by heat from the plates.

Consider Your Hair Type

When you are in the process of buying a hair straightener especially when looking for the best on the market that can give you your desired results, you should start with your hair.

What Type Of Hair Do You Have?

Depending on whether you have thick, curly, fine, short, frizzy, damaged hair, etc there is a particular hair straightener for you. Flat irons do not have one-size-fit-all so to speak concept.

A thick hair is well suited for a particular hair straightener while fine hair is best you use a different type. So you will realize that before you can make your purchase the type of your hair is at the forefront and should be addressed first.

So let us look at the type of hairs and in a section below we will look at suitable flat iron types for them.

Best Hair Straighteners For Thick Hair
If you have thick hair, the best hair straighteners for thick hair include;

  1. Babyliss Pro Nano Titanium Straightening Iron
  2. T3 Single Pass X Wide Iron
  3. Cloud Nine Wide Iron Hair Straightener
  4. Beachwaver Co Coast Pro Ceramic Styling Iron
  5. MISS UNIVERSE Style Illuminate By Chi 1 Flat Iron

Best Hair Straighteners For Fine Hair
Fine hair needs a flat iron designed for it. If you have fine hair look at the following flat irons from some of the top brands.

  1. FHI Brands Heat Runway 1-Inch Pure Ceramic Digital Hand Touch Hair Styling Iron
  2. Karmin G3 Salon Professional Ceramic Flat Iron
  3. BaBylissPRO Keratin Straightening Iron

Best Hair Straighteners For Curly Hair

  1. Sultra -The Diva Pressing Iron
  2. Beachwaver Co Coast Pro Ceramic Styling Iron
  3. BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium-Plated Straightening Iron
  4. CHI Turbo Ceramic Flat Iron 1 inch

Best Hair Straighteners For Damaged Hair

  1. Sultra -The Diva Pressing Iron
  2. Remington S8510DS Flat Iron, Frizz Therapy
  3. Remington S8510 Anti Frizz Therapy Straightener

Best Hair Straighteners For Short Hair

  1. KIPOZI Pro Flat Iron with Titanium Plate 1Inch Hair Straightener for All Hair Types 450 Degrees Heat Up Fast Anti Frizz Black
  2. AmoVee Mini Flat Iron Smart Ceramic Tourmaline Hair Straightener Negative Ionic Technology for Travel
  3. MHU Professional Travel Size 0.5 inch Mini Flat Iron Tourmaline Ceramic Hair Straightener
  4. DARKIRON Salon Titanium Flat Iron Hair Straightener
  5. BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Mini Straightening Iron

Best Hair Straighteners For Thick Curly Hair

  1. Sultra -The Diva Pressing Iron
  2. Beachwaver Co Coast Pro Ceramic Styling Iron
  3. BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium-Plated Straightening Iron
  4. Sedu Revolution Tourmaline Ionic 1″ Styling Iron
  5. CHI CHI Turbo Ceramic Flat Iron 1 inch

Best Hair Straighteners For Coarse Hair

  1. T3 Single Pass X Wide Iron
  2. Sultra -The Diva Pressing Iron
  3. BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium-Plated Straightening Iron
  4. Beachwaver Co Coast Pro Ceramic Styling Iron
  5. MISS UNIVERSE Style Illuminate By Chi 1 Flat Iron

Best Hair Straighteners For Frizzy Hair

  1. Sultra -The Diva Pressing Iron
  2. Solano Sleekheat450 Professional Flat Iron
  3. Beachwaver Co Coast Pro Ceramic Styling Iron
  4. CHI Air Expert Classic Tourmaline Ceramic Flat Iron
  5. Cloud Nine Micro Iron

Consider Intended Use

A flat iron can perform several purposes in addition to straightening your hair. It can be used for curling or it can come with attachments to expand its use. You can buy a flat iron with curling attachment or brush attachment. Some are designed as multi-use in 1 .e.g you can have a 2-in-1, 3-in-1, etc.

An example of a 3-in-1 hair styling tool is the xtava Hotness 3-in-1 Ceramic Hair styling tool. It is a curling iron, round hair rush and flat Iron all in one.

It is not only a 3-in-1, it is also a high end tool because it features ionic ceramic tourmaline plates to protect hair health while styling. The plates are 1-inch in size with 4 temperature settings between 300-410 degrees Fahrenheit.

It features a swivel cord to add that convenience you need from your hair straightening tool.

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Flat Iron With Attachments

Remington S8670NA Multi-Styler with 5 Interchangeable Styling Attachments, Curl, Crimp, Straighten, Professional Style
Remington S8670NA is a multi-styler, it is a flat iron with curling attachment as well as other attachments that allow you crimp your hair, comb it, etc.

  • 5 in 1 Multi-Style Hair Tool: ¾” curl barrel; crimper plates; 1” straightening plates; spiral sleeve; and, combed brush sleeve
  • Advanced Coating includes ceramic, ion-generating tourmaline, and a smooth glide formula for easy styling and dynamite results
  • Five Heat Levels range from 230-375°F, with indictor lights that flash until the perfect temperature is reached
  • Cool Tip stays cool during use to make use easy and comfortable
  • 60 Second heat up lets you style almost immediately

Disclosure: When you buy through links on our site we may earn a commission at no cost to you

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