How Hair Straighteners Changed Our Hair

Hair straighteners have been around for some years now and for most of us it is a styling tool we can’t live without. Since the moment they were introduced to tame frizzy hair, smooth hair and give an ultra sleek look we have never looked back when it comes to straighteners.

However, buying straighteners can be confusing. With technology improvements, the straightener has advanced to a place where some claim to condition the hair as it straightens. But at the end of the day, applying such intense heat to the hair can result in changing the hairs natural structure, which of course is not particularly good for the hair. The good news it that with the right hair straighteners and using some of the more advanced oils that have become available such as Argan oil or Moroccan oil you can keep your hair healthy AND straight at the same time. So what do you need to consider when buying your hair straighteners?

Plate Material

Today’s straighteners are normally going to come with Ceramic plates or Titanium plates, but which is best? It’s all a matter of personal choice and your price range really.

Titanium – is a strong lightweight natural material that has corrosion resistant properties. Silver in color and non magnetic, its ideal for straightener plates because of its ability to maintain its strength at high temperatures. It is also scratch resistant. Titanium heats very quickly and maintains a very even temperature and titanium plates also give off slightly higher negative ions than ceramic plates. Usually, prices will be higher for titanium plates than ceramic plates and if you do find a cheap titanium straightener its likely to be very thinly coated with titanium.

Ceramic – plates will also provide even heat distribution throughout the plates and is a non corrosive non metallic material that also produces negative ions. Nearly all hair straighteners available today use a metal heating element and base under a ceramic coating. Even high-end straighteners use this method. Although you can get pure ceramic plates that are meant to be better for your hair, these are not normally used as pure ceramic is soft and more prone to damage. Even just clapping the plates together can damage them and may even crack the straighteners. Plus they are going to be more expensive.

With ceramic coated plates the more coats and thin layers applied and baked onto the plates the better the heat distribution and longer the straighteners will last you. Cheaper straighteners are prone to ceramic chipping off, usually because of a poor quality ceramic coating, which in turn can really damage your hair. When it comes to ceramic coatings you are normally going to get what you pay for.

Heat Settings

A good many straighteners come with adjustable heat settings. This should be considered if you have fine hair or damaged hair. Fine hair will usually require a lower temperature compared to thick hair to achieve straight hair results. Temperature controlled straighteners usually give a heat range from 150-250 degrees Celsius. Start on a low setting and work your way up until you find the temperature best suited to your hair, because at the end of the day the lower the temperature the less heat damage to the hair.

Extras in the Plates

Many hair straighteners these days come with added extras built into the plates like anti frizz technology or ionic steam. Ceramic or titanium plates naturally come with negative ions but some brands are now introducing extra negative ions to combat frizz and plates that when activated by heat release conditioners into the hair shafts.

Negative Ions

We hear a lot about negative ions and how these can help our hair look and feel smoother and more conditioned. Ions are molecules that have gained or lost an electrical charge. Basically hair has positive ions caused by everyday life, like air pollution. Even brushing hair can cause static positive ions to build up. Positive ions leave the hair shafts open so the hair will dry out easily and become brittle. The more damaged your hair, the more positive ions it will produce. Negative ions work against positive ions like a magnet to smooth hair shafts and close hair follicles so they are good for protecting our hair.