Even though you love your natural hair, sometimes a change of style is what you need. However, you must do it safely to avoid hair damage. Furthermore, without knowing the proper technique, you might ruin your hair forever.
To straighten it properly, you need a fantastic flat iron. But, how to pick the right one? Here are some of the best flat irons for natural hair currently on the market.
5 Best Flat Irons for Natural Hair
1. HSI Professional Glider Titanium Flat Iron
Rank: #1 best flat iron for natural hair
2. CHI Original Ceramic Flat Iron
CHI is a famous brand, so it’s no wonder their flat iron ended up on our list.The main reason behind this is the fact that the plates are thin. That way, they can straighten thick hair. For best results, you should focus on one section at a time.
If your hair happens to be dry, then you’ll get an added bonus when using this flat iron. The plates use infrared heating which helps combat frizz and static.
Rank: #2 best flat iron for natural hair
3. BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Plated Flat Iron
Rank: #3 best flat iron for natural & curly hair
4. HSI Professional Ceramic Tourmaline Flat Iron
If you have thick, curly hair, you’ll love this flat iron. The plates can straighten anything without causing any damage and have auto adjusting technology so the plates adjust to your hair thickness and type.
Furthermore, you can easily control the temperature and avoid burning your hair.
Rank: #4 best flat iron for natural hair
5. CHI PRO G2 Digital Titanium Infused Ceramic Flat Iron
You can use this flat iron even if you have processed or relaxed hair.
Rank: #5 best flat iron for natural hair
Comparing Iron, Titanium and Ceramic Flat Irons
Before investing your money in a top-notch flat iron that doesn’t fry your follicles, you first have to determine your hair type. Afterward, there are certain factors you should consider before buying the product:
Temperature Change. If you do not have the option of changing the temperature, you are at risk of frying your hair. Most flat irons have preset temperatures at 350 to 400 degrees. While that works well on type 1, it will burn type 4 hair.
Nano-ceramic doesn’t mean anything. If you find a flat iron that boasts with its nano-ceramic properties, chances are the plates are made of cheap metal and a bit of ceramic coating. Furthermore, that means that the ceramic will flake off, and then you will be left with metal plates that can easily burn your hair. Opt for 100% ceramic flat irons or those that have thicker layers of the ceramic coating.
Tourmaline or titanium are your friends. Titanium flat irons are efficient, and they can straighten even the curliest hair. Moreover, tourmaline flattens out hair follicles with just one swipe. It also leaves a beautiful shine as well.
Does Straightening Damage Your Hair?
It doesn’t matter if you pick a high-quality flat iron for natural hair or a cheap one. If you do not have the proper technique, you can easily burn your hair. Keep these suggestions in mind when preparing to straighten your hair:
Deep Conditioners. You cannot straighten wet hair, but it’s best if you keep it hydrated. That will allow you to keep it gorgeous and healthy, and the follicles will withstand the heat better.
Use a heat protectant. Before you do anything with your hair, make sure you are protecting it. Even if you are just using a blow dryer, heat protection is essential for reducing the damage. The best heat-protectant sprays can be found in hair salons.
Detangle it beforehand. Use your fingers to detangle your hair before applying heat to it. Otherwise, you might be left with a knotted mess and even more damage.
Keep the temperature low. It might be tempting to raise the temperature up to 400 degrees. However, if you do that, you might lose your curls forever. Keep it low and only straighten your hair at 300-320 degrees. If you must, you can turn it up to 350, but don’t go over that number.
Which Heat Protectant To Use?
Here are some of the best heat protectants to use while using your flat iron for natural hair:
It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-in. This product does more than just protect your hair from heat. It also detangles, nourishes, combats frizz, and adds shine to your strands.
HSI Professional Thermal Protector. One spritz of this and your hair will have the strongest hold. Furthermore, it also prevents build-up and oiliness.
Tresemme Thermal Creations Heat Tamer. This product tames your frizzy hair, and leaves it soft and protected.
If I have type 4a, 4b, or 4c hair, do I need a different flat iron?
Choosing a flat iron for black hair mainly depends on the type of curls you have.
If your curls are loose, then a ceramic one should do the trick. This type also works for fine hair as well.
However, if you have tighter curls, type 4a and sometimes 4b, you should try to find a tourmaline flat iron. This mineral helps straighten out even the unruliest hair, but it doesn’t cause any damage. If you have relaxed hair, tourmaline flat irons are also the best choice for you.
Lastly, coarse hair with less-defined curls, like type 4b and 4c, require a titanium flat iron. These usually have many temperature settings, which is vital in order to prevent frying hair follicles.
How To Straighten Hair Extensions
Human hair weaves are a popular choice nowadays. If you have fine hair, they are an excellent tool for creating hairstyles you have always wanted. However, after using them for a few weeks, they will lose their shine and shape. Therefore, you should flat iron them in order to make them sleek and smooth again.
Before you do anything to your extensions, make sure you spray them with a little bit of heat protectant. Just like your own hair, extensions can also burn and suffer breakage if you apply too much heat to them.
Do not turn up the temperature from the start. Begin with the lowest setting and go over the strands until they are straight. Even though it might be tempting, it is better to be safe than sorry. Extensions are a luxurious item, and you have invested money into them. Because of that, treat them as if they were your own hair.
However, if you need to adjust the heat, then do not go over 350 degrees. Anything below that is fine, but if you go overboard, you might burn the hair.
After you finish straightening your extensions, it is essential to lock the style into place. Therefore, you should apply a finishing spray or a style sealant in order to make sure all the strands stay perfect.
Flat Ironing Natural Hair Myths, Are They True?
Many of you have probably heard myths about straightening natural hair. However, not all of them are true. Here are some of the most common ones you might have heard of:
Myth: You’ve already damaged your hair if you have straightened it with a flat iron.
That is not necessarily true. As long as you are careful, your hair will stay healthy and shiny. However, it requires you to pay attention to certain precautions. Use a heat protectant every time you flat iron your hair. In addition to that, make sure you are not using the highest heat setting. Otherwise, you might burn your hair to a crisp.
Also, you should be careful about how often you apply hot tools to your hair. Keep it to a minimum – about once or twice per month. Anything above that puts you at risk of damaging your hair.
Myth: If you’re straightening your hair, then your hair isn’t natural.
This is a common myth, yet it is completely false. When you use your flat iron, you are not putting chemicals onto your hair. Therefore, you are not changing the way it naturally is. If this myth were true, it would mean that dreads or twist-outs are also unnatural.
Myth: If you damage your hair by using heat on it, you can easily fix it.
This one is partially true. While you can restore some of its shine and natural texture with conditioners, it would still depend on the damage. If you have straightened it so much that it has lost its natural curl pattern, then there is no way of fixing it.
Can You Keep Your Hair Straight For a Month?
Not only is keeping your hair straight for a month possible, but it’s also easy to do. Some women have kept their natural hair straight for up to six weeks. Here is how you can do that:
Go to a hair salon. If you want to avoid damaging or burning your hair to a crisp, then it is best to leave it to a professional. They know all the tips and tricks, and their technique is often much better than yours. Furthermore, they also have many products that help prolong the results.
Wrap your hair before bed. This is a classic tip you probably have heard of. Once we fall asleep, our hair goes everywhere, and in the morning, we are left with a frizzy mess. In order to prevent this, you should wrap your hair up before going to bed. That way, you will have less frizz in the morning, and you will avoid the dreaded hair breakage.
Don’t apply heavy products to straightened hair. While your natural hair may benefit from creams and lotions, straight hair can get clumpy if you use too much product. Therefore, try to use just a dime sized amount of oil every morning. In addition to that, use lighter oils like jojoba or almond oil.
Humidity is your enemy. If you were thinking about going out while it’s raining, you better think again. Humidity will almost certainly ruin your blow out. Moreover, excessive exercise routines, like marathons, can also cause your hair to develop frizz. After getting your hair done, make sure you are not exposing it to excessive amounts of moisture.
As long as you use a heat protectant and you keep the temperature low, you shouldn’t have any issues with flat ironing your hair. Make sure you take all the precautions seriously, pick the best flat iron for natural hair, and you will soon have beautiful and sleek hair every day.