We all know heat can be damaging to our hair, but not all of us are blessed with the hair of our dreams. If curly is your thing, you can choose from a vast number of curling irons to find the exact curl you are looking for. So why do so many of us think there is a magic one-size-fits-all option when it comes to flat irons?
When looking for a good flat iron, it’s important to search for one that fits your hair type and texture.
If you find yourself playing with heated hairstyles of all kinds on a daily basis, you will need something with a range of heat settings and ion technology to help create that sleek, shiny hair while also protecting it from heat damage.
If you are looking for perfectly chic straight hair, here is a roundup of our 9 favorite flat irons. But first, let's cover a few basics.
You are probably well aware that exposing your hair to high heat can cause serious breakage, especially if you are already prone to dry, frizzy or damaged hair.
Before you begin on your hair straightening journey, you need to make sure you are armed with the right haircare products and knowledge.
First and foremost, you are going to need to find a good heat protectant. We recommend talking to your hairstylist to find the right products for your hair texture. But this one is a good starting place if you need something ASAP.
Another important thing to consider as you think about straightening your hair is the temperature level. Many stylists and brands have their own opinion about the optimal temperature when it comes to hair. But most can agree that anything over 451 degrees Fahrenheit will begin to melt your hair.
So what’s the right temp for your hair?
That’s hard to say, although remember that less is more. It’s easier to straighten some leftover wave than go back and repair heat-damaged hair.
Find a straightening tool that has temperature settings and begin to experiment until you find the sweet spot for your hair. Start low and work your way up to find the best temperature that’s still effective but not damaging.
You will also want to pay attention to your iron’s heat distribution. The more evenly the heat is distributed, the less damaging it will be for your hair.
Best Flat Iron for Short Hair: BaBylissPro Nano
This ultra-thin straightening iron has a slim design that makes it easy to straighten short bobs or pixie cuts.
It also has 50 heat settings that range up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit so it’s easy to customize the heat setting based on your hair texture. Babyliss’s nano titanium technology also helps protect your hair from heat damage.
Available at Amazon for $130
The Best Amazon Flat Iron: HSI Professional Glider
The reviews on this ceramic tourmaline iron don’t lie. With over 40,000 five-star reviews, this hot tool is extremely loved.
It has ion flats to help minimize heat damage and distribute heat evenly, temperate settings that range from 140 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, an extra-long swivel cord, and dual voltage for easy international travel.
At $40, this flat iron is also considered a more affordable option and comes with a heat-resistant glove, travel pouch and argan oil hair treatment.
Available at Amazon for $40
Most Innovative Flat Iron: Dyson Corrale
It’s no secret the Dyson brand is innovative and they have been coming out with some pretty impressive hair tools recently. Their straightening iron, the Dyson Corrale was the most awarded straightener of 2020.
Even though it is the most expensive option on our list, it is also the most versatile. This cordless styler has flexible plates that will shape to your hair, giving you extra control and allows you to straighten with less heat while also reducing frizz and leaving fewer flyaways. You can use it to create a range of styles, from straightening to curls and waves.
Sure, you might pay a bit more upfront. But can you really put a price on good hair days everyday?
Available at Dyson for $500
Best Flat Iron for Thick or Coarse Hair: T3 Singlepass 1.5”
Straightening thick, coarse, curly hair can be tough, so it’s important to find an iron that is specifically targeted for that hair type.
This ceramic + ionic flat iron was designed with thick hair in mind. Plus, the 1.5” wide plates make it easier to tame unruly locks without the snagging that we all know so well.
The singlepass technology and ceramic plates straighten hair in one pass, giving you a frizz-free shine.
Available at Amazon for $230
The Most Affordable Flat iron: Remington S5500 1” Anti-Static
This styling tool has anti-static technology for 50% fewer fly-aways, one-inch titanium protected plates for fast heat up and less heat damage, and 30% longer plates for quicker styling.
Available at Amazon for $18
The Best Overall Flat Iron: GHD Platinum+
When it comes to hair tools, GHD (or “Good Hair Day”) don’t miss. This SMART iron has “ultra zone” technology that predicts the needs of your hair.
It recognizes the thickness of your hair and adjusts heat across the plates accordingly. It works with a temperature of 365 degrees which — according to GHD — is the optimum temperature to style hair in order to protect the integrity of your hair.
It features a 9’ cord that won’t snag as you straighten, curl or wave your hair.
An added bonus? it has an automatic shut off feature so you don’t have to worry about if you left your iron on after you leave the house.
Available at GHD for $250
The Best in the Chi Family: G2 Ceramic & Titanium 1.25'' Hairstyling Iron
There’s no doubt that Chi is a top name in the straight hair world. And while Chi offers several tools, the G2 ceramic and titanium iron has been a fan favorite.
With a digital display and max temperature of 425 degrees Fahrenheit, you can easily find the right temperature for your hair. This styler gets a tad hotter than the Chi original without losing its quick, 60-second heating time.
The G2 also has an automatic shut-off feature after an hour for that extra peace of mind.
Available at Ulta for $130
Best Celebrity-Worthy Flat Iron: Harry Josh® Pro Tools
Part of a line started by celebrity hairstylist Harry Josh, this straightener delivers insta-worthy hair right from your own home.
The temperature features on this iron are ideal for those mornings you’re running late, with the capability to heat up in only 25 seconds and a digital thermometer with settings between 325 and 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
And at just over $100, this is our top pick for that mid-range budget.
Available at DermStore for $115
Best Straightening Brush: Amika
If you want to skip the iron completely, the newest tool to the scene is the hair straightening brush. Straightening brushes help give you that fresh blowout look without having to go to the stylist and are great for curly hair that can be a bit unruly.
We love it because you don’t have to lug around your blow dryer AND straightener for great hair.
The downside? The heat can be pretty intense and you will have to be more intentional than ever about adding some heat protectant.
Available at Sephora for $100
For Your Best Hair Days
There are so many options on the market at a range of price points, from the $20 Remington to the $500 Dyson, but not all are created equally. And from ceramic-titanium plates to irons that replace your hair dryer, you have an endless world at your fingertips.
But no matter what you decide, remember that the best flat irons are going to work with your specific hair type and texture to create sleek, shiny hair without damaging it. And when it comes to temperature, less really is more.
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The 9 Best Flat Irons And Hair Straighteners:
- Best Flat Iron for Short Hair: BaBylissPro Nano
- The Best Amazon Flat Iron: HSI Professional Glider
- Most Innovative Flat Iron: Dyson Corrale
- Best Flat Iron for Thick or Coarse Hair: T3 Singlepass 1.5”
- The Most Affordable Flat iron: Remington S5500 1” Anti-Static
- The Best Overall Flat Iron: GHD Platinum+
- The Best in the Chi Family: G2 Ceramic & Titanium 1.25'' Hairstyling Iron
- Best Celebrity-Worthy Flat Iron: Harry Josh® Pro Tools
- Best Straightening Brush: Amika