The 10 Best Hair Straighteners for Waves, Curls, and Coils

We like the Vanessa hair straightener because it heats up in 15 seconds and is available on Amazon.

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The Best Hair Straighteners for Waves, Curls, and Coils
Courtesy of Brands

While some curly tops love sporting their natural coils, there come times when you may want a different look – and sometimes that look calls for a hair straightener. Using heat to style your hair isn't the end of your curls nor does it mean automatic damage to it either. But there are things to consider to keep your hair free from damage—like a good heat protectant and the right tool for the job.

Every coil, curl and ringlet has different needs, so finding a hair straightener that works best for your curl type can be its own scavenger hunt. However, knowing your texture, plus your hairstyle needs and wants will help you narrow down exactly what to look for. Thanks to its rapid heat up time, lightweight construction, and auto shutoff, the Vanessa Pro Hair Straightener is our pick for best overall.

To help you on your hair straightening journey, we peeped the best hair straighteners for curly hair types.

Best Overall: Vanessa Pro Flat Iron Hair Straightener

Vanessa Pro Flat Iron Hair Straightener

Amazon

What we love: This straightener heats up in 15 seconds

What we don't love: The thin titanium plate will take a lot longer to style thick and long hair.

For under $50, this Pro Hair Straightener works wonders and is super lightweight for traveling. It's ideal for both special occasions and everyday use. The automated shut-off is great if you tend to forget to unplug your tools. Plus, the edges of this straightener are curved for creating easy flat-iron curls. However, it could be a half-inch wider for thicker and longer hair types.

Plate Width: 1-inch | Plate Type: Titanium | Max Temp: 450 F | Weight: 12 ounces

Best Value: Remington Pro1" Flat Iron with SmartPRO Sensor Technology

Remington Pro1" Flat Iron with SmartPRO Sensor Technology - Charcoal - S8599

target

What we love: The 30-second heat-up time and multiple heat settings.

What we don't love: The plate could be a half-inch wider for quicker styling.

This pick is where smart tech meets beauty. To help prevent heat damage, this flat iron can sense heat patterns and will change temperatures to avoid fizzing anything off. Shoppers love this bad boy for its anti-frizz capabilities and helping to fight against humidity.

Plate Width: 1 inch | Plate Type: Titanium | Max Temp: 450F | Weight: N/A

Best Durable: Ghd Original Styler - 1 inch Flat Iron, Classic Original IV Hair Straightener

Ghd Original Styler - 1 inch Flat Iron, Classic Original IV Hair Straightener

Amazon

What we love: It's a go-to for travel, day-to-day touch ups, and special occasions.

What we don't love: It's up there in price.

Though hair tools aren't cheap and you're willing to invest in your hair care routine, GHD's Classic Original IV Hair Straightener is a bit pricey. On the flip side, it is one of the more durable options on the market that you can count on to not clock out on you early. It doesn't snag on your ends, plus it uses auto safeguards so you're hair isn't reaching super-hot temperatures.

Plate Width: 1-inch | Plate Type: Ceramic| Max Temp: 360 F | Weight: 1.32 Pounds

Best for a Silk Press: Deogra Tourmaline Ceramic Ionic Hair Straightener

Deogra Tourmaline Ceramic Ionic Hair Straightener

Amazon

What we love: It allows you to craft easy styles in no time and at a great price.

What we don't love: The lowest setting starts at 360F, which may still be too high for some hair types.

According to shoppers, this flat iron is great for a silk press. Customers say this flat iron gets through the thickest and curliest all-in-one sweep. For your safety and others, the flat iron locks shut for when it's not in use and has a max temperature of 450 degrees. Plus, the flat iron includes a safety glove and hair clips for precision.

Plate Width: 1-inch | Plate Type: Ceramic | Max Temp: 450 F | Weight: 12.32 Ounces

Best Splurge: Dyson Corrale Hair Straightener

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Dyson Corrale Hair Straightener

Dyson

Also available at Sephora

What we love: Everyone from tighter textures to looser ringlets can enjoy this.

What we don't love: Dyson is quite the splurge.

Dyson products have led in innovation when it comes to hair tech, and the Corrale is no exception. It was also well-received among testers in this one-pass test against a variety of hair types and textures. Though it's not the most budget-friendly, a plethora of curl types agree that it works wonders.

Plate Width: 1.6 inches | Plate Type: manganese copper alloy | Max Temp: 410 F | Weight: 1.23 lbs

Best for Tight Textures: MiroPure Enhanced Hair Straightener Brush

MiroPure Enhanced Hair Straightener Brush

Amazon

What we love: It's a brush, so it straightens and detangles.

What we don't love: Thicker hair types need to be more diligent with combing.

While this is both a brush and a straightener, running your hair through this once may not be enough if you have a thicker texture. You may find it easier than doing a blowout with a separate blow dryer and a brush, but getting it done might take up more time for bone straight tresses.

Plate Type: Ceramic heater | Max Temp: 450°F | Weight: 12.64 Ounces

Best for Frizz: MKBOO Hair Straightener

MKBOO Hair Straightener

Amazon

Why we love it: The steam makes for an effortless finish and frizz-free shine.

What we don't love: Filling it with water before using can be a hassle.

When it comes to beauty tech, there is always the next best thing to experiment with. Thankfully, using steam alongside your straightener is more than a fun experiment. It's great for taming frizz as well as getting through thicker and tighter curls, the steam opens up space for water to penetrate the hair shaft, and it's particularly helpful for hair with low porosity.

Plate Width: 1 1/4" | Plate Type: Titanium | Max Temp: 450°F | Weight: 2.27 Pounds

Best Cordless: Conair Unbound Cordless Titanium Flat Iron

Conair® Unbound Cordless Titanium Flat Iron

bedbathandbeyond

Also available at JCPenney

Why we love it: It's cordless and can still heat up to at least 400 degrees F.

What we don't love: There's only 25 minutes of use time, but takes three hours to recharge.

When it comes to cordless, it's not the same as having energy from a plug-in unit. However, many cordless flat irons don't have high heating properties, but this one does. While this nifty device is ideal for touch-ups on curls and flattening the occasional flyaways, it's not made for doing a thorough press through your hair more than once.

Plate Width: 1 inch | Plate Type: Titanium | Max Temp: 400 F | Weight: 0.52 lbs

Best for Damaged Hair: L'ange Le Duo 360 Airflow Styler

Le Duo 360 Airflow Styler

ulta

Why we love it: The straightener's airflow helps maintain consistency in heat.

What we don't love: The small buttons are located where you hold the iron and easy to accidentally turn off.

You don't have to worry about damaging your ends further as this flat iron pays attention to the details for you, like the built-in fan that cools the hair with every press. The curved ends allow you to create straight hair, beach waves, or tight curls with a sleek shine and finish. There is also an auto-shutoff at 60 minutes.

Plate Width: 1 inch | Plate Type: Titanium | Max Temp: 460F | Weight: 0.8 lb.

Best for Fine Hair: Hairitage Straight To It Flat Iron for Hair Straightening

Hairitage Straight To It Flat Iron for Hair Straightening

walmart

What we love: The 30-minute auto-shutoff means this will be turned off before you ever leave the house.

What we don't love: There are only four settings.

There are a few reasons to love this straightener besides the fact that it stays put on your countertops thanks to the finish on the outside of the plates. With its perforated outer layer, the straightener distributes heat evenly and has settings up to 420 degrees F. The straightener also has an auto shut-off after 30 minutes and it even comes with a cap to make sure the plates aren't exposed when the iron isn't in use.

Plate Width: 1.64 inch | Plate Type: Ceramic | Max Temp: 420F

What to Keep in Mind

Plate Type

Product descriptions give a lot of information, but knowing some details upfront will help you navigate your options. There are typically two types of plates on a hair straighter: titanium and ceramic.Celebrity Curl Expert and Founder of Curl Queen, Nai'vasha, explains that, "a titanium iron can usually hold higher temperatures, while ceramic ones offer a smooth working surface for hair to glide on. Ceramic is better for fine hair, while titanium is better for thick hair." She also notes her preference is for titanium irons on medium heat for thicker and curlier textures.

Temperature

All hair is different, and when you get into naturally curly hair, the differences are more nuanced. When we asked the experts, the answers skewed towards lower temperatures, no matter your texture. "The temperature setting is based on texture and needs," Nai'Vasha adds. "It's important to understand that higher temperatures don't equate to better results. My general recommendation is 400F max." InStyle asked celebrity hairstylist Kendall Dorsey on the best temperature for straightening hair and she said, "for coarse or curly hair – 400. For more dense, coiled and dryer textures – 450."

Matrix Artistic Director, Michelle O'Connor also notes that the right temperature is dependent on one's texture. "Texture is defined as fine, medium, or coarse regardless of if the hair is curly, wavy or straight. Fine hair can set the temperature anywhere from 300-325F, medium chair can be in the range of 325-375F, and coarse hair can be in the range of 350-400F."

With a few different experts sharing their takes, it makes sense for finer hair types to use lower settings between 350-375. However, thicker coily hair can withstand up to 450 degrees. Plus, depending on the look you hope to achieve, you can determine how much heat you actually need to use on your curly tresses.

Your Questions, Answered

How to protect curly hair while straightening?

Your first line of defense against damage should be a heat protectant. If you think for a second that heat protectant is just another step in your hair care routine, using one can be the difference between a sleek shiny set of locks and giving yourself permanent heat damage. Curls founder and licensed hairstylist Mahisha Dellinger explains that prior to straightening, you want your hair to be fully dried as well. Damp hair can get fried from the direct heat of a flat iron.

"The main thing to remember is to always ensure the hair is completely dry before applying heat, consistently protecting your strands with heat protectants, treatment oils, and deep conditioners, while also starting at the lowest setting and steadily increasing as needed," Dellinger notes. "You will want to ensure you're taking breaks between styles that require high heat. This can be easily done through rocking your natural curls and coils or protective styling. I also find that oil-based treatments & deep conditioners help to revive and nourish strands to ensure your tresses remain healthy."

Luckily, heat protectant comes in many different forms. Whether it comes in the form of an oil or an easy spray application, like Gabrielle Union's Flawless Shine Enhancing Heat Protection Hair Spray, it keeps your hair from damage and leaves a mean sheen behind when you do use heat on your head.

What should curly-haired and coily hair users look out for when it comes to searching for a straightener?

Not every product will work for every type of curl and coil. However, finding something with adjustable heat is the best starting point to avoid exposing your strands to too much heat. As well, think about the time it may take you to straighten your hair while also being conscious of the temperature you plan to use. A wider plate can handle larger sections of hair, so may be a better pick for long or thick hair types. Some irons also have curved plates, which are ideal for creating flat-iron curls, as well as straightening. With enough prep time, you can get a sleek finish without heat damage, no matter the type of iron you choose.

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