Heat Up Time
You don’t want to be waiting around forever for your flat iron to heat, especially if you just want to tame your fringe before you hurry out of the door in the morning.
A short heating time generally means a more powerful product, but it does depend on the temperature that the straighteners are trying to reach.
They will take longer to heat up to the maximum temperature if it is over 200C than if they needed to heat up to 100C.
All types of hair need different heat settings to be straightened. Long, thick, frizzy hair requires a hotter temperature than fine, almost straight hair.
If you know that it doesn’t take a lot to style your hair, then you are free to choose from the wide range of temperatures available but are best sticking to the lower end of the scale. However, those with unruly manes may need to get a pair of hair straighteners which reach beyond 200C.
It is still a good option to get a model which has an adjustable temperature, as a high temperature isn’t ideal for finer straightening such as fringes and cowlicks.
This makes a big difference to your straightening experience. Ceramic coated straighteners are often the most popular, and they glide smoothly through your hair and cause little damage and snagging.
Fully ceramic plates heat up even quicker, and diffuse heat better for fuller temperature regulation. There are also Tourmaline and Diamond Ceramic plates available, which give that little bit of an extra moisture boost and shine – perhaps the best choice for anyone with dry, brittle hair.
The larger the plates with your straighteners, the more hair they can generally straighten at any one time. Getting a larger plate size is a great option if you have very long or thick hair that is usually quite a chore and time consuming to straighten.
Most straighteners are a pretty regular size, with the only variation being the size of the plates.
Think about how much hair you will have to look after on a daily basis – a full head will require standard size, but if you only straighten your fringe or touch up small kinks, a small pair such as a travel or mini size may be best.
Bear in mind that the smaller the straighteners, the easier they are to generally manage. Make sure they aren’t too bulky to manoeuvre, particularly if you have a lot of hair and need to focus on the back of your head.