Heat styling technology has greatly improved over the years, and now we have more control over the styling tools and the results they produce. However, different styling devices call for different temperature settings, and the highest temperature doesn’t necessarily guarantee the smoothest and straightest results.
Achieving the best hairstyle will need an adequate straightening tool and knowing how to straighten using the appropriate temperature is also important. The best flat irons are among the most versatile tools where some temperatures can get as high as 450℉. Below is the ultimate flat iron temperature guide to help your heat styling needs.
1. Thin, Fine or Damaged Hair
Fine hair is the most fragile hair meaning it is the most prone to damage, and the hair cannot withstand high temperatures without damage.
The high-temperature setting cannot be used with any heated tool to style any fine hair, and it’s unnecessary since fine hair can be easily styled at a low temperature as low as 300 °F. It’s always better to allow your fine hair to air dry before styling using a hot tool since the less heat exposure, the better.
2. Normal, Medium, Wavy
Normal hair is the most common hair type, and it’s quite easy to style. The highest heat is not necessary to achieve the best results. One will need to use a mid-range temperature.
The most appropriate temperature to flat iron normal hair is between 300°F and 350°F. In addition, normal hair can be styled in any form with minimum effort.
3. Thick, Coarse, Curly
The thick, coarse and curly hair types can withstand high temperatures and need high temperatures to achieve a smooth style efficiently. However, the heat protectant should not be neglected.
Titanium will give you intense and quick heat, and it’s perfect for long-haul jobs and any hair type that is not as responsive to Ceramic and Tourmaline Ceramic. In addition, ceramic and Tourmaline Ceramic will be gentle on your hair and will have great smoothing and anti-frizz capabilities.
Therefore, the thick, coarse hair’s appropriate flat iron temperature is 350°F – 400°F. However, if your hair responds to a lower temperature setting, you should take advantage of that. You will know which flat iron temperature setting works best for your hair when you achieve results in one or two passes.
Notably, curly-haired people should be cautious as consistently flat ironing your hair at high temperatures can cause your curls to deconstruct. It may take several months to revamp your curls back to their original form.
What are the Possible Results of Inaccurate Flat Iron Temperature Settings?
Heat damage is not reversible and can only be rectified with a haircut. The major cause of heat damage is excess temperature settings. This doesn’t mean you won’t be able to use a flat iron on short hair. Hair damaged from heat is difficult to style.
Heat damage in hair is seen as:
- Dry and rough split ends
- Dull hair in color
- Frizzy and frazzled
The whole intention of using styling tools is to make your hair look better and not worse. This is why it’s important to use heated tools with caution, know the appropriate temperature and know your hair type.
What are the Factors that Determine the Ideal Temperature?
a). Hair Type
The first step to hacking any hair care journey is understanding your hair roots, and determining your natural hair type only solves half the problem. If your hair is processed, it will affect the level of heat you should use. This means that a natural 2B and a bleached 2B will not use the same heat setting.
b). Hair Condition
Once you determine your hair type, it’s necessary to know the condition of your hair, whereas, with virgin hair, you won’t need to worry about breakage or heat damage. However, color-treated hair, especially bleached hair, will be more fragile than untreated hair when you are heat styling.
Nevertheless, even if you have natural hair, you should consider your moisture level or lack of it in your hair. Beauties with dry hair with split ends may need to observe more caution when heat styling.
Therefore, untreated healthy hair can withstand more heat than colored or chemically treated counterparts. All in all, approach the heat settings with some caution and style on the lowest setting to get you the results you will want to achieve.
c). Plate Material
Although falt irons have similar heat settings, different plate materials produce different results and choosing the plate material that works best for your hair is a good place to start. Ceramic makes a great option thanks to its gentle properties, which will be effective for most hair types.
Nevertheless, most people prefer tourmaline ceramic material since it has the advantages of traditional ceramic plus tourmaline’s frizz reducing properties. On the other hand, titanium produces intense heat, making it suitable for hard-to-manage hair types and professionals. Regardless of the plate material, always opt for pure and non-coated plates.
What are Some Tips for Using a Flat Iron Without Damage?
- Ceramic is the most suitable material for achieving consistent temperatures while straightening, ensuring no hot spots. However, hot spots cause damage, so you should choose a straightening tool with ceramic plates to get consistent heat. Consistent heat will mean few passes, and this guarantees faster results.
- Choose a styling tool with a temperature lock that prevents accidental temperature change while straightening your hair. This is important because accidentally changing your temperature when flat ironing can be dangerous for your strands.
- Avoid using heat daily since several times a week will likely cause a loss of moisture and breakage. However, it’s okay to use your flat iron to straighten your hair several times a week.
- Try to clean your flat iron after a few uses, which will remove the sticky, nasty grime that usually builds upon the flat iron.
- Always use heat protection, and there are many different heat protectants for different hair types, such as oils, creams, serums, and sprays, whether your hair is dry, oily, or anything in between. A heat protectant protects your hair from heat damage and, as a result, preserves the quality of your hair.
Image Credit: salonworthyhair.com