In this article, we are going to recommend the best flat irons for African American hair, as well as provide a few tips on how to choose and use them.
African American hair is unique and varied, ranging from tight coils to loose waves. The texture of African American hair is often described as being “kink”. No matter the texture, African American hair is beautiful and deserves to be treated with care. In order to maintain healthy hair, it’s important to use products that are specifically designed for African American hair types. One of the most common hair styling tools is the flat iron, which can be used to create a variety of looks, from sleek and straight to curly and voluminous. However, it’s important to use the right type of flat iron to avoid damaging your hair.
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7 Best Flat Irons for African American Hair 2022
These flat irons below are rated by real customers on one of the most reputable e-commerce platforms, you can check out the reviews and decide which one is best for you.
Best overall flat iron: CHI G2 Titanium Hairstyling Iron
- Fewer passes to get the job done compared to other straighteners
- The smart design prevents accidental button presses while in use
- Unbeatable price-performance
- Heating-resistant gloves are not included but are a must if using high temperature
If you are finding a good hair straightener, chances are you heard about the CHI company. CHI is a very popular hair care company that makes a lot of different kinds of hair products. Their most popular product is probably the CHI flat iron. And the CHI G2 Professional Titanium Hairstyling Iron can be considered their flagship product.
There are 2 versions of this straightener: the 1-inch plate and the 1.25-inch plate. If you have African American hair, I suggest you get the 1.25-inch version because it will be better for your thicker hair.
This titanium straightener has a lot of features that make it a great choice for anyone who is looking for a high-quality hair straightener.
First of all, this hair tool is made with titanium-infused ceramic plates. This means that the plates will heat up quickly and evenly, around 40 seconds to reach the maximum temperature (425°F/218°C). And they will also retain that heat very well. So, you can straighten your hair faster and with less damage. Due to my own experience and many other customers’ opinions, you take fewer passes to get the job done compared to other hair straighteners. This alone can save you a lot of time. In fact, every flat iron can get the job done; however, the factor that differentiates one from the other is the time it takes and how easy it is to do so. This CHI flat iron definitely achieves both of those.
Another thing I love about this product is that it is snag-free. My hair is very delicate, so I have to be careful with the products I use. This CHI G2 Flat Iron has rounded edges, which means that it won’t catch on your hair and damage it. The rounded edges also allow me to curl my hair with this straightener, so you can style more than just straighten your hair with it.
Regarding the temperature, there are 3 temperature ranges to choose from: low, medium, and high:
- Low: 0°F – 370°F
- Medium: 375°F – 395°F
- High: 400°F – 425°F
There is a mode button that you can use to choose the preset temperature, which should save you some time instead of having to adjust the temperature each time.
For Afro hair, you may want to use the high setting. But if you have thinner hair, I suggest you use the lower or medium setting to avoid damaging your hair. The 3 ranges of temperature should be enough for you to find the right setting for your hair type and style. The temperature is displayed on a digital screen, which is a plus since you know exactly what temperature you are using.
This hair straightener also comes with an 11-foot-long swivel cord. This is really helpful because you have a lot of freedom to move around while you are straightening your hair. IMHO, long and swivel cords should be the new standard for hair straighteners. No one wants to be tethered to the outlet while they are trying to style their hair, right?
Talking about the safety feature, This CHI hair straightener will automatically shut off after 60 minutes (so that it prevents you from leaving it on all day). So, you don’t have to worry about forgetting to turn it off. This is a great function, especially if you have kids at home. Also, the dual voltage means that you can use it anywhere in the world, which is great if you travel a lot.
All in all, this is definitely the best overall flat iron for African American hair, if you have no idea which to choose, just pick this one since you cannot go wrong with it.
Best professional flat iron: Skin Research Institute Infrarose Styler Flat Iron
- Never pull or snag your hair thanks to the smart design
- The control buttons are positioned on the inside of the handle, keeping you from accidentally altering the temperature.
- Infrared technology gives salon-quality result
- Digital screen displaying temperature
- A little pricey
Skin Research Institute (SRI) produces many great products for skincare and haircare, including the Infrarose Styler Flat Iron. I have used this product for about two weeks now and I am very pleased with the results.
The Infrarose Styler Flat Iron is considered a professional-grade product, which is evident in its features and performance. The product warranty is also a big selling point, as it offers a 1-year warranty and a 60-day money-back guarantee.
One of the most advanced features that make this flat iron professional is infrared technology. This feature heats hair from the inside out and locks in moisture, which means that it causes minimal to zero damage to the hair overall. The temperature can be adjusted from 250° to 450°F, which is displayed on a digital screen, so you can find the perfect heat level for your hair type. Also, heating time is only 30 seconds to reach any temperature, even the maximum (450F).
These standard 1-inch plates, which are made of tourmaline and ceramic, generate negative ions that eliminate frizz while also enhancing shine. I have found that my hair is much shinier and smoother after using this flat iron. This standard tourmaline-ceramic material along with the infrared heating technology makes this one of the best professional flat irons for African American hair types.
It is known that Afro hair is usually more difficult to style than other hair types since you need more passes to get the job done. However, this flat iron should give you an easy time thanks to the 360-degree swivel cord which is tangle-free. Honestly, one of my own standards for African American flat iron is the swivel cord, which should make you feel comfortable while styling.
As a professional flat iron, it has 2 important safety features: an automatic shut-off that kicks in after 1 hour and a closing lock that allows for safer cooling and easy storage. Overall, I think that the Infrarose Styler Flat Iron is a great product for anyone looking for a professional-grade flat iron that won’t damage their hair. It is also a good option for those with Afro hair, as it will help you achieve sleek and shiny results without too much effort.
Best steam flat iron: MKBoo Professional Steam Hair Straightener
- Steam helps to style faster, and easier and gives healthier-looking hair
- 3D-comb helps to detangle hair, which can be removed if you don’t want to use
- Titanium plates are perfect for Afro hair
- Small water tank means that you need to refill it often
A new way to get straight, shiny hair is with a steam straightener. This type of straightener uses steam to help tame frizzy hair (which is usually the case of Afro hair) and give it a sleek look. The steam helps to moisturize the cuticle, which allows the straightener to glide through the hair more easily. As a result, you can achieve straight, shiny hair in a fraction of the time it would take with a traditional straightener. Plus, the steam also helps to add moisture to the hair, giving it a healthy shine. If you’re looking for a new way to style your African American hair, then Dorisilk a steam straightener is definitely worth trying.
The specific feature of this flat iron is that it comes with a 40ml removable water tank. This means that you can add water to the tank, and the steam will be released as you straighten your hair. In my opinion, this feature fits well with African American hair because this hair type needs more passes to be straightened. Thus, with the water added, it will take fewer passes and your hair will be easier to style.
Another interesting about this hair tool is that it comes with a 3D comb that can be attached to or removed from the plates. This means that if you have curly hair, you can still use this steam straightener by attaching the comb to the plates. By doing so, the comb will help to detangle your hair as you straighten it. This feature is great for African American hair since this hair type is usually very curly and can be difficult to straighten.
The 1.25-inch plates of this straightener are ceramic and titanium-coated. This means that they will heat up quickly and evenly. The ceramic helps to distribute the heat evenly, while the titanium helps to seal the hair cuticles. The compound effect of the steam and the titanium should help to give you straight, shiny hair in a fraction of the time it would take with a traditional straightener.
There are 5 different temperature settings on this straightener, ranging from 150°C (300°F) to 230°C (450°F), which is great because you can adjust it according to your hair type. I have Afro hair, so I usually use the highest setting (230℃/450℉). However, if you have finer hair, then you can use a lower setting. I think this is a great feature because it allows you to customize the straightener according to your hair type, or this flat iron can be used by family members with different hair types. The temperature is displayed on an LCD screen, which makes it easy to see and adjust. In my experience, this straightener heats up in 30 seconds, which is considered fast and saves me some time.
Talking about safety, this straightener has an automatic shut-off feature kicking in after 60 minutes of not in use. I think these are great safety features, especially for those who have kids at home.
This steam flat iron has a 360-degree swivel cord, which means that you won’t have to worry about the cord getting tangled. Also, the dual-voltage feature (110V-240V) is great for those who travel often. IMHO, this is the best steam flat iron for African American hair that you can find in the market.
Best ceramic flat iron: Paul Mitchell Pro Tools Express Ion Smooth+
- Heat up very fast
- Stable temperature
- Burning smell when starting up
Ceramic plates are now the standard for flat ironing, as they distribute heat more evenly and efficiently than other materials. This results in less damage to your hair and fewer flyaways. If you are finding a ceramic flat iron for African American hair, then the Paul Mitchell straightener should be on your radar.
Paul Mitchell Pro Tools Express Ion Smooth+ is a straightener with 1.25-inch ceramic plates. This size of plate is wider than the standard 1-inch plate, which means it can straighten hair faster. It is designed to give you shiny, sleek hair with less damage. The ceramic plates have ionic properties that help to seal in moisture and protect your hair from heat damage. Also, the plates are slim-designed, so you can get close to the roots for a more precise straightening. I can notice that the rounded edges help to add waves, curls, or bends with ease.
This ceramic straightener can go up to a maximum of 410°F. It heats up quickly, in just 60 seconds. The thing I love most about this tool is that it offers 5 seconds of heat recovery time. This means that the temperature is stable enough to straighten your hair without causing too much damage. The digital display makes it easy to see the temperature, so you can adjust it accordingly.
Safety is always a priority when using styling tools. The Paul Mitchell straightener has an automatic shut-off feature that kicks in after 60 minutes of inactivity. This is a great safety feature to have, in case you forget to turn off your straightener.
The cord on this straightener is 9 feet long, which is the comfortable length for most hair straighteners. The cord is also swivel-mounted, so it won’t get tangled easily. There is also a velcro strip on the cord, which you can use to keep it neatly wrapped and organized.
Lastly, this tool is a dual voltage straightener, so you can use it anywhere in any country. If you wanna buy the best ceramic flat iron for African American hair, this is the one.
Best titanium flat iron: Nition Professional Salon Hair Straightener
- No-button design prevents accidental temperature changes
- Fast heating time: from 0 to 450F in less than 10 seconds
- LCD display so you know exactly what temperature you’re using
- Heat-resistant gloves (included in the package) are a must to use since the heat transfer around the tip is quite high
Nition is a company founded in 2013 that produces salon products for hairstylists, such as hair straighteners, motor airbrushes, wave stylers, curling irons, attachments, and hairdryers. Their hair straightener is one of their most popular products and has gotten great reviews from both professionals and regular users.
The Nition Professional Salon Hair Straightener has a minimalist design without any buttons. This is a plus as it gives the hair straightener a sleek look and prevents accidental button presses that can change the temperature or turn it off. The temperature is controlled by a rotating knob that you turn clockwise to increase the heat and anticlockwise to decrease it. When unboxing, this flat iron comes with a travel pouch bag, a heat-resistance glove, a comb, and 2 hair clips.
There is also an LCD screen that displays the current temperature, which is useful so you can see exactly how hot the plates are. This flat iron offers a wide range of 6 temperature options: 265/300/340/375/410/450°F, which are more than enough options for most types of hair. Another notice-worthy feature is the auto temperature calibrating, which ensures that the straightener is always at the temperature you set it to, even after long periods of use. Also, it takes only 10 seconds to heat up to the max temperature, which should save you some time.
Talking about the plates, they are made of ceramic with a tourmaline coating. The ceramic ensures even heat distribution while the tourmaline helps to emit negative ions, which in turn reduces static electricity and makes your hair look healthier. The width of the plates is 1 inch (2.54 cm), which is a good size for most people as it can straighten large sections of hair at once.
One more thing that I love about this hair straightener is the extra-long power cord. It’s 9 feet (2.7 m) long and has a 360° swivel design, which means you won’t have any problems using it, even if the power outlet is far away or in an inconvenient place. And the 360-degree swivel also prevents the cord from getting tangled, offering you more freedom of movement. This is a big plus for African American hair because this type of hair is often thicker and more resistant to straightening, which means you need more passes in order to style it. So, a free-moving cord offers you more flexibility and saves you time.
This flat iron also has a few safety features, such as automatic shut-off after 60 minutes of inactivity, which is great for those who tend to forget to turn off their hair straightener. Besides that, the lock on the back keeps it closed when you are not using it, so you don’t have to worry about accidentally turning it on and burning yourself.
Lastly, this is a dual-voltage flat iron, so you can use it when traveling overseas without having to worry about the power adapter. I believe this one is the best titanium flat iron for African American hair that won’t disappoint you.
Best tourmaline flat iron: Vibrastrait Pro Vibrating Flat Iron
- Unique vibration feature helps style perfect straight hair easily
- 3-year warranty
- Short handle (12.5 inches in total length)
A tourmaline straightener is a hair styling tool that uses a flat ceramic plate to straighten hair. The tourmaline stone is a natural source of negative ions, which help to smooth the hair shaft and reduce frizz. This makes it an ideal choice for those with curly or unruly hair. Tourmaline flat irons heat up quickly and evenly, making them ideal for use on both wet and dry hair. In addition, tourmaline helps to protect the hair from damage caused by the heat of the iron. If you are seeking for best tourmaline flat iron for African American hair, then the Vibrastrait Pro Vibrating Flat Iron should be your top pick.
There are 2 versions of this hair tool: 1-inch and 1.75-inch. The size of the plates will determine how much hair you can style at one time. If you have thick, coarse hair, then the 1.75-inch version will be better suited for you. If you have thinner or finer hair, then the 1-inch version will be just right.
The unique feature of this straightener is the vibration function. This is designed to help the hair slide more easily through the plates, resulting in less damage and fewer split ends. The vibration also helps to evenly distribute the heat by shuffling the hair through the plates. This means that each strand of hair is exposed to the heat for a shorter period of time, resulting in less damage, so that your hair is straightened more efficiently. There is an on/off button for the vibration function, so you can choose to use it or not.
This hair tool offers a wide range of temperature settings that you can control exactly, from 190 degrees Fahrenheit to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. I love this feature! Other straighteners may allow you to only change the temperature range, but with this one, you can be very precise. If your hair is fine, then you’ll want to use a lower temperature to avoid damage. For thicker, coarser hair, you’ll want to use a higher temperature to get the job done quickly. There is also a LED digital display so that you can see what temperature you’re using.
Also, it heats up very quickly, in just 8 seconds to reach any temperature. I believe fast heating should be the new standard for those who wake up too late for their hair styling routine (like me!).
The Vibrastrait Pro comes with a 360-degree swivel cord. This is really helpful because it prevents the cord from getting tangled. Besides that, the cord is long enough so that you can move around freely while you’re styling your hair or client’s hair.
Regarding the safety features, it has a 50-minute automatic shut-off. This is very important to me because I have a habit of forgetting to turn off my hair tools. We’ve all done it! But with this straightener, you don’t have to worry about that because it will turn off automatically after 50 minutes of inactivity.
Lastly, it comes with a 3-year warranty, which is much longer than the average standard 1-year warranty. This shows that the company is confident in their products and stands behind it.
Best cheap flat iron: Deogra Silk Press Flat Iron
- 6 temperature options, which is enough to cover all hair types
- The button design may cause accidental changes in temperature
If you are on a budget and seeking a straightener that is both affordable and of good quality, then the Deogra Silk Press Flat Iron may be the one for you. Although the price is inexpensive, this flat iron can get the job done, leaving your hair looking silkier and straighter than before.
This straightener’s 3D-floating plates are 1 inch in width and made of ceramic & tourmaline, which emits negative ions that help to smooth the hair cuticle and eliminate frizz. The ceramic also helps distribute heat evenly across the hair, so you don’t have to worry about hot spots that can damage your hair. The plates are also infused with keratin and argan oil to hydrate and nourish your strands as you style. I personally think this feature alone is decent given that the price is very inexpensive. Besides that, edges are rounded-designed so that you can create curls, beachy waves, or that sleek straight look. I always love rounded edges straightener since it is much more versatile, for example, you can style your hair in different ways without worrying about snagging your hair like you would with other straighteners that have beveled edges. IMHO, rounded edges should be the new standard for all straighteners.
Talking about the temperature, this straightener has 6 adjustable temperature settings from 330℉ to 430℉. So, you can use it on different types of hair without damaging them. Also, it takes around 30 seconds for the Deogra Silk Press to heat up, which is pretty fast. The temperatures are 330F, 350F, 370F, 390F, 410F, and 430F. With the 20F increment, you can be sure to find the perfect temperature for your hair type. Despite the cheap price, this straightener has a digital LCD display that shows the temperature, so it is easy and straightforward to use.
Regarding safety features, the Deogra Silk Press has an automatic shut-off feature that kicks in after 40 minutes of non-use. This is a great safety feature to have in case you forget to turn off your straightener. I have accidentally left my straightener on before and it is not a fun experience coming home to a burning smell and seeing the burning mark on my wood table. The straightener also has a safety lock button on the side that controls the opening and closing of the iron. This is a great feature to have if you have kids at home as it prevents them from accidentally turning on the straightener and getting injured.
Lastly, this flat iron comes with an 8.2ft extra-long 360° swivel cord that prevents tangling and gives you more freedom to move around while you are styling your hair. It also has the dual voltage, so you can use it internationally without having to worry about damaging the straightener.
All in all, I think the Deogra Silk Press is the best cheap flat iron for African American hair if you are on a budget or you want to buy a second straightener to travel with.
Buying guide: how to choose flat iron for African American hair
If you have African American hair, you know that finding the right hair styling tools can be a challenge. Your hair is unique and requires special care, which is why you need to be extra careful when choosing a flat iron. In this buying guide, we’ll show you what to look for in a flat iron so you can find the best one for your hair type.
Ceramic vs tourmaline vs titanium, which is better for African American hair?
First, let’s start with the basics. A flat iron is a handheld hair styling tool that uses heat to straighten hair. It has two flat plates that are heated and pressed together. The heat from the flat iron straightens the hair by breaking down the bonds that make it curly.
If you have fine or damaged hair, you’ll want to choose a flat iron with ceramic plates. Ceramic plates distribute heat evenly, which helps to prevent damage. But ceramic plates cannot reach extremely high temperatures, so if you have thick or coarse hair, this type of plate may not work well for you since you will need more passes to straighten your hair.
If you have thick or coarse hair, you may want to choose a flat iron with titanium plates. Titanium is a strong material that can withstand high temperatures, making it ideal for thick or coarse hair. However, please note that high temperature is not always good for your hair, it may cause damage as well.
If you have frizzy hair, you may want to choose a flat iron with tourmaline plates. Tourmaline is a gemstone that emits negative ions when heated. These negative ions help to smooth the hair shaft and reduce frizz.
So, choosing which type of flat iron is best for your African American hair depends on your hair type.
Choosing a flat iron size for African American hair
The size of the flat iron plates is important because it determines how much area you can cover with each pass. If you have long or thick hair, you’ll want to choose a flat iron with large plates. If you have short or thin hair, you can choose a flat iron with small plates. Naturally, African American hair is usually thick, so a flat iron with large plates is a good choice.
Larger size plates may style your hair faster, however, it may not always be better since styling a big strand of hair at once may cause uneven heat distribution and your hair is not perfectly straightened. So, it is important to find the balance between the size of your flat iron plates and your styling needs. Usually, 1-inch plates are the standard size and they work for Afro hair just fine, you can increase the size to 1.5 inches or 2 inches if you have really long hair or if you want to style your hair faster.
Steam or non-steam flat iron, which is better for African American hair?
Now that you know what to look for in a flat iron, let’s talk about steam. Steam is often used in hair straightening because it helps to hydrate and nourish the hair. It also helps to open up the cuticle so that the heat can penetrate the hair shaft more easily. This is especially important for African American hair because this hair type is often dry and brittle.
However, if your Afro hair is not too dry, you may not need to use a steam flat iron. A regular non-steam flat iron will work just fine.
How to straighten African American hair with a flat iron
To get the best results, you can follow these best practices:
Condition your hair
To avoid damage and achieve the best results, it is important to use a conditioner before you flat iron your hair. This will help to protect your hair from heat damage and make it easier to straighten.
Do a deep conditioning treatment a week or two before you plan to straighten your hair. This will make your hair soft and smooth, and ready for the heat of the flat iron. This is the preparation step to get the perfect straight hairstyle that you have always wanted.
Wet your hair
Before you start straightening your hair, it is important to make sure that it is wet. Simply take a shower and wet your hair thoroughly, then use a towel to dry it off until it is damp.
Use heat protectant
This is the most important step to take in order to avoid heat damage. Heat-protectant products help to create a barrier between your hair and the flat iron, and can be found in most beauty stores.
Apply the heat protectant to your damp hair, and then use a comb to distribute it evenly. Make sure that you concentrate on the ends of your hair, as this is where heat damage is most likely to occur.
Use the flat iron
Now you are ready to start straightening your hair. Start with sections of about 2-3 inches, and then run the flat iron down the length of your hair.
Be sure to use a slow and steady motion, and don’t press down too hard on your hair. You may need to go over each section a few times to get it straight.
Once you have finished straightening your hair, it is important to give it some extra love and care. Use a leave-in conditioner or a serum to help keep your hair hydrated and soft. Avoid using heat on your hair for a few days, and try to style it with air drying or low-heat methods.
Give your hair a break from straightening every week or two before trying out some different styles. African American hair is versatile and there are many different ways to style it!
Wrap your hair before going to bed
To keep your hair straight as you sleep, you can wrap it in a silk scarf or a satin headscarf. This will help to keep your hair from getting tangled overnight, and will also help to preserve your straight style.
After reading through this list of the 7 best flat irons for African American hair, it is clear that there are a few things to consider when purchasing a flat iron. There are many different types of African American hair, so it is important to find a flat iron that will work best with yours. Hope this little guide helped you in your search for the best flat iron for your African American hair!
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Why does afro hair grow slowly?
The actual length of time it takes for afro hair to reach its full potential length is the same as for other types of hair. The difference is that afro hair often appears to be shorter because of its curl pattern. Thus, you may feel like your afro hair is growing slower than other types of hair when in reality it is not.
How long does afro hair grow in a month?
According to some studies, afro hair grows at a rate of about half an inch per month, which is the same as other types of hair.
When does African American baby hair texture change?
Between 2 and 4 years old, your baby’s hair texture can change considerably. For instance, it could become finer and softer, or coarser and curlier. The changes may be due to genetics or simply the aging process. Whatever the cause, it’s normal for a toddler’s tresses to undergo some transformation.
How often should you wash afro hair?
This really depends on how often you sweat, how much oil your scalp produces, and the products you use in your hair, and the environment you are in. If you don’t sweat much or have an oily scalp, you can probably get away with washing your hair once a week or every other week. On the other hand, if you sweat a lot or have a very oily scalp, you may need to wash your hair daily. Ultimately, it’s best to experiment and see what works best for you.