If there is one hair tool that ought to feature in your beauty arsenal, it’s a straightener. This wand wields the immense power to grant you salon-ready tresses from the comfort of your hair. No fuss, no frills! Only smooth, sleek, and shiny locks with a nuanced movement of the hand. But that’s not all – a hair straightener a.k.a. flat iron, when used strategically, can also create beach waves, soft curls, and crimped waves amongst other ‘dos. Yeah-uh. The versatility of this tool is uncontested – and you get to reap its benefits at a pocket-friendly price. Does it get better than this? We think not.
If you whip out this tool often, you need to be well-versed with some tricks to care for it! While a hair straightener is a low-maintenance tool, it isn’t immune to wear and tear over time. And that’s exactly why we are bringing forth a guide to cleaning and caring for straighteners, ensuring longevity. But before we jump to this list, ahead is a quick refresher on how to use a straightener.
How to Use a Hair Straightener
Safety must be your top priority while using a hair straightener at home. Follow these steps and buy hair straightener for gorgeous locks!
- Ensure that your hair is clean before straightening it. As we know, the mane bears the brunt of pollution, dirt, and grime, which make it greasy and unmanageable. So use a thorough cleansing shampoo and hydrating conditioner before you style your hair. This li’l maneuver minimizes the friction caused between your tresses and the wand.
- Never use the straightener on damp hair. We recommend blow drying the tresses to help minimize the irksome frizziness and flyaways.
- Use a protectant before you start straightening your tresses to prevent heat damage. Ensure that you apply/spritz the concentrate a few inches above the roots.
- Make smaller sections of your mane with the help of clips. This will allow you to cover the entirety of your volume with ease.
- Select a temperature setting for your hair type. For example, if you have fine hair, 70-140 degrees Celsius is the ideal range. For coarse or thicker hair, you may dial it up to 180 degrees Celsius.
How to Clean and Care for Straighteners
There are a few simple steps that you can follow to ensure that your hair straightener lasts longer without any wear and tear. Keep scrolling.
- Clean the Plates Regularly: There is an accumulation of product residue on the ceramic plates of your straightener with prolonged use. This may directly impact the efficiency of your tool – with the straightener taking longer to heat up and style. To prevent this problem, use a damp cotton pad or a soft cloth to wipe down the plates regularly. Ensure that your device is unplugged while carrying out this activity.
- Storing the Straightener: Always wait for the straightener to cool before you put it away in its case or your vanity. Store the straightener lying flat and avoid wrangling it with the cable.
- Avoid Using in the Bathroom: Using the straightener in places like the bathroom increases the risk of the tool coming into contact with water. We recommend using it at your vanity station or the dresser to avoid such problems.
- Practice Caution with the Cable: Don’t hold or hang the straightener with its cable. This can loosen the connection or cause wear and tear to the cable.
- Immediate Attention in Case of Wear: If you notice any signs of stress or strain on the cable, address it immediately. Additionally, any cracks or dents on the casing should also be repaired.
What to Look for in a Hair Straightener?
If you are looking to invest in a good hair straightener, here are some of the factors you should consider. While there are newer formats of this heating tool available (read: brushes and combs), we are focussing on the traditional flat iron today.
- A Good Grip: Before parting ways with your money, make sure that the hair straightener (in question) offers you a good grip. If it is too hefty or slips as you try to close the paddles together, you will stand a risk of hurting or burning yourself during styling.
- Choose the Plates: There are several straighteners available in the market with mainly two types of plates – ceramic and titanium. Ceramic plates take longer to heat up and work on the shafts from the inside out. On the contrary, titanium plates heat up instantly and work on the surface of the mane. So, before you decide, factor in your hair type and the intent of use.
- Adjustable Heat Settings: Contrary to popular belief, more heat on the hair doesn’t equate to perfect styling. Applying continuous heat to thin or fine hair can lead to irreversible damage. Therefore we recommend straighteners with clear and distinct temperature settings.
Investing in a straightener will save you many trips to your nearest salon and the big bucks. This versatile, beginner-friendly tool can help you master a sleek ‘do, beachy waves, and soft curls at home. If you whip out a hair straightener frequently or want to bag one ahead of the festive season, here are some clean and care tips to ensure the tool’s longevity. Always store the hair straightener in its case after wiping down the plates with a damp cotton pad or soft cloth. Store it in the case, lying flat and avoid wrangling it with the cable. If you notice any chipping or wear on the cable, get it repaired immediately. Last but not least, avoid using your hair straightener in the bathroom, as it increases the risk of damage due to water.