Stylist flat ironing a woman’s hair

Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on Pexels

When it comes to hair, sometimes we feel the grass is always greener on the other side – for straight hair, we want texture. For curly hair, we wish it was straight. To us, a bad hair day is when our hair doesn’t do what we want it to do, despite the natural textures or hair types we might be born with. Humans have devised various ways to style hair, from complex chemical processes at the hairdresser to different tools and devices we use every day at home. If you have curly or wavy hair, you might own a straightener or “flat iron” so you can quickly achieve smooth hair. The best flat iron should be able to tame your hair with ease regardless of how curly or unmanageable it might be.

If you style your hair every day before you leave the house, you might not realize just how much that time adds up. Most modern women today find that the time spent on self-maintenance or beauty routines eats into their day, leaving very little personal downtime when combined with daily duties like a full-time job, housework, or childcare. A survey of 2,000 American women finds that women need an average of 82 extra minutes a day to get everything done. Most wish that they could spend less time on things like styling their hair in order to leave more time for important activities like exercise, hobbies, or even rest. A new tool like a flat iron might be just the thing to cut down on hairstyling time!

There are methods to “permanently” straighten your hair for a more lasting change. Chemical hair straighteners usually utilize sodium hydroxide to break down protein bonds in the hair called disulfides, which help give hair its shape. The curlier the hair is, the more disulfides the hair will have and the more product will be needed. After hair reaches the desired shape a neutralizer is applied to reset the bonds and hold the hair’s new texture. However, chemical hair straightening may have some adverse effects. A study from the Boston University School of Public Health finds that chemical hair straighteners may have an impact on a woman’s ability to conceive due to endocrine disrupting chemicals in hair straightening formulas.

If you’re looking for a way to straighten your hair without chemicals, a flat iron is a great choice – you can also use the tool to achieve waves or curls if you desire. StudyFinds rounded up the best flat irons on the market to help give you some options in case your hair is looking for a refresh. Did we miss one? Let us know in the comments below!

A girl with very dry, frizzy hair
A girl with frizzy hair (Photo by Roman Samborskyi on Shutterstock)

The List: Best Flat Irons, According to Experts

 

1. Dyson Corrale Straightener

Dyson is known for creating some of the most innovative technology, and the same can be said for their hair tools. The Dyson Corrale Straightener has flexing manganese copper alloy plates that move in order to gather your hair. “True to the Dyson name, this flat iron features some of the coolest technology we’ve ever seen in a straightener,” writes Byrdie. “It boasts unique flexing plates that conform to the shape of your hair to straighten it in less time and with less damage. Another perk? It can be used cordlessly for up to 32 minutes (don’t worry—we tested it until the battery ran out), making it easier than ever to style your hair wherever you are.”

Dyson Corrale Straightener
Dyson Corrale Straightener

The major gatekeeper for this tool is the price – this is a big investment on one tool for most and is definitely a luxury buy, although most Dyson products are built to last and come with a five-year warranty. The iron also comes in blue and pink or gold and silver variations. “During our lab tests, the iron took 35 seconds to heat up to the maximum temperature and turned off automatically after five minutes of not being used — which is especially great because it preserves battery life,” writes People. “As far as durability goes, there was no damage at all after dropping the iron a couple of times.”

“The cordless design was a total game changer as it meant we could speedily work around our heads without being tethered to a cord. And the iron automatically adjusted to the thickness and length of our hair, too, so we never worried about overheating our strands,” explains InStyle. “While we love an innovative design, we applauded the less flashy features as well, like the clear dinging sound to let us know when it reached our set temperature and a five-minute automatic shut off.” 

2. ghd Platinum+ 1-inch Professional Performance Styler

The ghd styler is preset to 365 F, the ideal temperature for styling hair without damage. This will leave you with shinier and smoother hair, with reduced breakage and less color fading. “Since my hair is naturally quite straight, I wasn’t sure how much I would appreciate the tool, but it is, after all, called a styler, and I found that it was just as useful for adding beach waves to my hair as it was for straightening it,” writes a reviewer at The Strategist. “I was also relieved to find that my hair didn’t feel fried afterwards, since the iron is preset to 365 degrees, and that the straightener heated up incredibly quickly.”

GHD Platinum+ 1-inch Professional Performance Styler
GHD Platinum+ 1-inch Professional Performance Styler

You can create all types of looks with this tool, anywhere from pin straight locks to beachy waves or spiral curls. The heat is monitored 250 times a second across the plates by sensors, ensuring consistent heat. “GHD was a pioneer of the ceramic hot plate and is still considered a hair tool leader,” writes Wired. “It sells a range of straighteners to suit different budgets, and the best of the bunch is the Platinum+. Design-wise, it’s sleek and comfortable to hold, which makes it great for creating curls and flicks as well as straight styles. This is thanks to its curved edges and cool tip.”

“The sleek white barrel grip feels comfortable and satisfying in the hand, and a wishbone-style hinge is one of the iron’s trademarks,” writes Forbes. “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 happens 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.”

3. Kristin Ess 3-in-One Flat Iron

This iron is a great mid-range pick that can still achieve the same looks as a higher priced device. The curved plates allow you to create straight, wavy, or different types of curls, while a digital display lets users control the temperature. “Compared with all the fancy flat irons, this one is a great value,” writes The Cut. “And Target reviewers agree. It’s called a ‘3-in-1’ iron because the iron has curved plates, so you can use it to create smooth waves, curls, and sleek, straight styles. It heats up quickly, and has a long (nine feet) cord so you can maneuver with dexterity.” 

Kristin Ess 3-in-One Flat Iron
Kristin Ess 3-in-One Flat Iron

The iron has titanium plates that help lock in moisture while still delivering enough heat for styling that lasts. “You can use this tool, which has a 4.5-star average rating from over 850 reviews on Amazon, to create straight, wavy or curly hair while also locking in moisture, reducing frizz and enhancing shine, according to Kristin Ess,” explains NBC News. “Reviewers say it’s easy to use because it heats up quickly, glides without any snagging or pulling of the hair and has a long cord that doesn’t get in their way.”

“During our test trial, we were most impressed by how quickly it warms up and how well it clamps onto strands without tugging and pulling, making for an effective style in just one pass,” writes People. “We also found this works on all hair types — it was easy to both straighten and curl the strands of the four different hair types we tested on.”

4. BaBylissPRO Nano Ultra-Thin Straightening Iron

The BaByliss is great for professionals or those who want to cut their styling time in half with an iron that’s easy to maneuver. The lightweight feel and thin construction combined with wider plates make straightening larger sections of hair a breeze. “The BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Ultra-Thin is another hair straightening iron that thoroughly flattened the competition,” writes Tech Gear Lab. “This top-tier iron glides easily across thin and thick hair, leaving it silky-smooth with just a few passes. It heats up very quickly and has a listed maximum temperature of 450°F. This iron is available with titanium plates in 1″, 1.5″, and 2″ widths and has a fairly long cord that pivots.”

BaBylissPRO Nano Ultra-Thin Straightening Iron
BaBylissPRO Nano Ultra-Thin Straightening Iron

This iron eliminates frizz easily and has 5 different heat settings for different hair textures. The product already comes with a five-year warranty, but you can purchase additional warranty on the site. “Because the titanium iron is so thin and the plates go all the way to the edge of the clamp, it’s able to nab frizz right at the root of the hair, making this iron perfect for stubborn frizz or super-curly and natural hair,” explains Good Housekeeping. “One Amazon reviewer who says she has ‘very, very curly hair,’ claims that this flat iron cuts her styling time in half and gets rid of frizz in one pass.”

“This highly rated, ultra thin iron is perfect for getting bobs, lobs, and bangs stick straight,” writes The Cut. “Its long, slim plates also make it easy to reach frizz that sits at the roots of naturally curly hair, along with any baby hairs that hang 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.”

5. Dyson Airstrait

The Dyson Airstrait is another luxury tool that uses heated air to simultaneously dry and straighten hair, perfect for those who want to prioritize saving time with minimal damage. “Designed with five heat settings, it has a tiny fan built-in that quietly emits a cool breeze on hair that prevents damage,” writes Time. “It has ceramic floating plates and a tourmaline-coated barrel that uses ionic tech to seal in the cuticle and keep hair shiny looking. Made so that it doesn’t clamp down on hair when using this flat iron for short hair, you won’t have to worry about weird bends or creases.”

Dyson Airstrait
Dyson Airstrait

Easily towel dry and then use the device to achieve a straight style that has a little more  natural bounce and volume compared to a traditional flat iron. The only downside is paying so much for a tool that limits you to one style, unlike the traditional model you can also use to style waves or curls. “If you’re a fan of the Dyson Corrale, just wait until you try the brand’s latest hair-straightening innovation, the Airstrait,” writes Allure. “This wet-to-straight flatiron takes damp strands and transforms them into a silky-smooth waterfall of frizz-free hair in minutes. The beauty of this tool is that it relies on the velocity of hot air instead of heated plates, so its highest temperature is a gentler 285 degrees Fahrenheit.”

“Using one focused jet of air that moves downward, it dries your hair with a natural, smooth finish,” writes Wired. “You’ll also have the option between two main styling modes (wet and dry) and three temperature settings for each. WIRED product reviewer Brenda Stolyar typically uses it on wet mode to fully dry her hair and switches to dry mode to flatten any puffiness. The entire process, which normally takes her about 45 minutes, now only takes 12 to 15 minutes.”

6. T3 Smooth ID Flatiron

The T3 Smooth ID uses technology that allows you to enter your “Hair ID” with information about your hair type and texture, and it will automatically switch to the correct temperature and remember your settings every time. The iron also had additional gentler heat settings for second day styling. “Overall, the pièce de résistance of this smart tool was the technology — after evaluating our specific hair type and texture (including whether we colored our hair or not), it selected and heated to the perfect temperature to style our strands for a totally custom experience,” writes InStyle. “From there, we never needed to re-enter our information — the iron remembered our unique settings and automatically heated up to that temperature with every use.”

T3 Smooth ID Flatiron
T3 Smooth ID Flatiron

The T3 iron has ceramic plates for a smooth style and an ion generator that reduces static and frizz. “When using a straightener to curl strands, you can achieve the most gorgeous loose curl and waves,” writes People. “Our top pick for this is none other than the T3 Smooth ID Flat Iron, which features smart technology that uses an algorithm to personalize and adjust the temperature based on hair texture and length. The smart straightener also has plenty of slip, making it easy to achieve a beautiful loose and effortless curl.”

“The Smooth ID has special tech that heats the iron to your specific hair texture and length (as well as any color treatment) and has precise temperature controls so the plates don’t get any hotter,” explains The Cut. “This makes it safe to use for coarse, curly hair but also thin, fragile, or damaged hair. Like the Platinum+, it also has curved edges for waving and curling, and it shuts off after one hour.”

7. Amika The Confidante Moisture Maintenance Styler

Amika is known for creating specialty hair products, but this tool is ideal for creating straight, glossy hair or sleek waves and curls that are shiny and precise. The negative ions combined with penetrating heat seal in moisture for smooth strands. “If you want to take your iron with you overseas, you’ll want one that’s dual voltage like this Amika styler, which resident Project Runway All Stars hair consultant Linh Nguyen recommends as a one-pass iron with 25 percent longer plates,” writes The Strategist. “He notes that since it has ‘ion technology that helps seal the hair cuticle with negative ions’ and ‘an infrared light beam that gets deeper into the hair to keep out frizz,’ it’s ideal for smoothing hair without any flyaways or for creating a wavy, shiny look.”

Amika The Confidante Moisture Maintenance Styler
Amika The Confidante Moisture Maintenance Styler

This styler also comes with dual voltage for traveling, a one-year warranty, and a worry-free auto shutoff feature after 60 minutes. “Apart from the titanium infused with infrared wavelengths that Amika says penetrate the shaft more effectively, the plates are also just a smidge longer than your average iron, making your straightening time more efficient,” writes The Cut. “We also love the large digital screen and heatproof coating for the handle — a necessary feature for a straightener that can reach a high temp of 450 degrees.”

“The hi-tech tourmaline plates of the Amika The Confidante Moisture Maintenance Styler don’t just straighten your hair (though they do do that quite adeptly),” explains Allure. “They also deliver heat more deeply in such a way that it — with the help of cuticle-smoothing negative ions — seals in moisture. Pretty much the exact opposite of what some damaging, drying hot tools have been known to do.”

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This article may contain affiliate links in which we receive a commission if you make a purchase.

About Elsa Lee

Elsa is a freelance journalist, copywriter, and marketer based out of the Los Angeles area. She has been writing for 7 years.

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2 Comments

  1. Juliet Ceniza says:

    How much your hair iron?

  2. Alina says:

    Wich one is best for hairs I want to buy from UAE