what the heck are the differences? Ceramic, Titanium, Basic, and Tourmaline.. blah blah?... Read on for some tips on choosing the best plate type for your hair.
Does the types of plates used in Straightening Irons make a big difference?
You probably never figured out all the minor differences. Merely that that it's "better" than the oh so-boring and plain metal plate irons from the past because some Youtube "guru" said so and she had a discount code.
Well, today I'll tell you what the differences are, straight out of the Professional and licensed Hair Stylist's mouth, who's been doing hair for the past 10+ years.
Not much. The difference is THAT small, but your hair will be a tad shiner. The Hair Product companies claim that their irons are "healthier" - which is is debatable...
What you really need is just one solidly made hair iron that gets REAL fucking HOT, and something with a life time warrant - you don't need to buy one every year like they want you to believe.
A Flat iron or a curling iron like this will keep you happy for many years - you can freely leave it on your will for your great-grand daughter.
Every year, the big companies like CHI, GHD, T3, Cortex and etc, come out with the next "new" plate of curling irons that we all MUST go out straight away, right this second to buy, or we'll just go COMPLETELY frizzy - then of course, we need to grab another gallon or two of the strongest heat protectants hair gel in the market , because they keep making the curling irons hotter than lava .... I'm waiting for these hair styling companies to come out with a hair primer next....
I will take some photos of my new fancy-spancy curling iron that I bought this year for work from the International Beauty Show in NYC down below.
I, of course, buy them up because clients like to see their stylist using the latest, which I completely understand. Moreover, I want to test them out foe myself, because it's my job to test out new trends and playing with toys like these do keep things fresh.
But honestly, guys, my clients all leave my chair looking pretty much the same, fabulous .. I never see any profound reason to push anyone to buy a new iron when they already have 1-2.
I do notice that the hair being a little smoother without the hair serum ( Moroccan Oil). But I think that has more to do with my Twin-Turbo Ceramic-Ionic Pro Blow-Dryer that kills static in the hair than the iron itself...
The BEST Hair Dryer. Bar None.
Rule of Thumb
If you have fine to normal hair, especially if you have hi-lighted/chemically processed hair , then you're perfectly fine using a hot straightening and curling iron like GHD that heats up to around 375 degrees. You do NOT need a 450 degrees curl killer! You will seriously damage your hair if you don't know what you're doing.
Most Asian hair (unless it's very chemically processed from too much Ombre and highlights!), anyone with kinky hair, or coarse unruly curly hair: An iron that can get HOT (around 450), like the Cortex and T3 will work brilliantly. Just make sure you go slowly. I use this heat settings on my own hair...
The key to a fiercely smooth hair has more to do with how hot the iron gets than all the fancy-spancy spin they put on a piece of metal.
Let me just recommend this Hair Protectant I discovered few months ago and am now am completely obsessed over before I forget - you might have seen it in some of my photos -- Alterna
Bamboo Smooth Kendi Oil Dry Oil Mist - You spray it on WET hair and your hair is going to SHINE after you flat iron straighten or curl it on DRY hair. Thank me later /nod.
Knowing your hair texture,
Making sure that your iron is heating up evenly and distributing the heat correctly,
Knowing what temperature to use for your hair type,
What products to apply before and after is what gets you that smooth, silky Victoria Secret's model's sexy mane.
Lets go over the different types of irons out in the market right now.
If I mention an hair iron here, please believe me when I say it's a great iron because I've either personally used it or a close colleague have raved about it among our circles.
Basic Curling or Flat Irons
Special tricks: None - It gets hot.
Price Range: Dirt cheap ($20~30)
CONS: Don't buy the FLAT irons. These will promptly start pulling on your hair as you run it through. Still, it gets HOT and it's cheaper than dirt.
I still have Gold N Hot Tools Curling iron that I bought when I wa in the friggin MIDDLE school, people!! I'm in my mid 30s now! It's still works great (taped up and all haha) and it's only $20, what could you possibly complain about?...
I'm gonna take a photo of this. It's like my "blankie"... it's completely falling apart, my clients laugh at it when I whip it out but I refuse to let it go...
Ionic Curling or Flat Irons
Special tricks: Simply put, it kills static.
Price Range: $100
IMHO - Go buy a great Ionic & Ceramic blow dryer like mine. It will cut down on your drying time by half and no static in the hair to worry about when you're ready to curl or flat iron your hair.
Ceramic Curling or Flat Iron
Special tricks: A non-metallic material which is baked onto the plates in thin layers. Most Ceramic Plates are made out of Aluminum plates coated in Ceramic.
They HEATS UP SUPER fast (GHD Flat Irons), distributes heat more evenly, it kills static, makes your hair shiner than your traditional curling iron. They "claim" it's healthy for the hair, which I call complete bullshit lol. I think it's more accurate to say, looks healthier. Anytime you apply intense heat to your hair, its bad - don't be a sucker.
Price Range: $100~200.
IMHO If you're going to spend 100~200 on a iron, get Titanium.
Tourmaline Flat Iron or Curling Iron
Special tricks: Made out of crystals that is finely grounded and applied over the plates. It is believed that the crystals allow the hair to be straightened faster, thus producing less heat damage to the hair. To me this sounds very logical. Less heat always means less damage to the hair shaft.
Price Range: $100~300
CONS: Price. PRICE.
IMHO If I was willing to spend $100+ on a iron, I would grab something like this or Titanium.
Titanium Flat Irons Or Curling Irons
Special tricks: This is the Bentley of all Flat Irons as of 2012. It gets hottest, shiniest, heats up the fastest, the plates are more lightweight, its more durable so it's great for the Pro, distributes heat more evenly, straightens hair faster, thereby cutting down heat used on the hair cuticles (LESS damage) - If only it would cook and clean out my toilet for me....
I've been quite happy with my irons.
Price Range: $100~300
CONS: Price. PRICE. Price. Price.
IMHO It's worth it *if* you curl or flat iron your hair almost everyday, other wise, I would suggest you look into getting the Ceramic or Gold and Hot hair irons.
Do you see that taped up curling iron at the top? I was aiming at it but apparently, my aim was off...
The silver irons are my new Cortex Professional Digital 4-in-1 Titanium Clipless Curling Iron - I LOVE them. I'll do a few tutorials later with those...
My irons are pretty expensive but it's also some of the best in the market right now...and I see that prices have gone down by a lot! Completely worth the money.
I'm so God awful at taking photos...
I have to put my name on all my gear like I am in Pre-school because walk-in clients keep stealing it!.
My Recommendations Below
I'm only listing the hair irons that I have either personally used or a real life Hair Pro friend has raved about below.
GHD Flat Irons (I'm not 100% sure but I think GHD only goes up about 375 degrees)
T3 73522 Ionic Ceramic Tourmaline Flat Iron - 450 degrees! ( Great for people with COARSE hair)
http://www.folica.com/tools/curling-irons/cortex-professional-digital-4-in-1-titanium-clipless-curling-iron ( My irons from the photo above)
And as usual blogging has taken way longer than I expected...
Thanks for reading! I hope you had a good weekend, and make sure to Sub, leave behind your blog/youtube site! xox
You might want to check out my blog about Cutting Your Own Bangs at Home, or the DIY Ombre Dip Dye extension next ...