There are quite a few materials used in the production of flat irons and it pays to do some research if you are in the market for a new straightener/flat iron. Sometimes the less expensive piece of equipment might not be the bargain you think it is. Saving a few, or even a lot of, dollars might come back to haunt you if you have to replace that “bargain” over and over. Investing in a better quality iron that lasts years is the real bargain should you measure the cost over the life of the appliance.
For example, if you purchase an iron from the local discount store for $15, but wind up having to replace it every few years that is no bargain. Cost is only one part of the equation that you need to consider. There is the consideration of longevity that we mentioned, but you should seriously take into account the toll repeated heat styling can have on your hair. Fried locks are definitely not a good deal. Consider also the time factor. There is only a certain amount of time you have to get ready to face your day in the morning, and each step must be time-conscious and can make or break your day before you ever step out of your house.
For example, a flat iron with wide paddles causes fewer passes to complete your hair care and that equals more time for something else. Wider plates on your iron, especially if you have long thick locks, take much less time than the standard one-inch plates.
Investigate what your local hair specialist uses in her profession. She is a valuable source of information because she is hands-on every day and knows what appliances work best. Spending a little extra to get a salon-quality result is a wise choice. Chrome irons are popular because they are on the low end in terms of cost; however, they heat unevenly, meaning too hot (which burns and damages hair) in some spots and too cool in others, which causes you to have to go over certain sections again, resulting in wasted time and less than acceptable results.
Ceramic is a good choice because the plates heat up quickly and evenly, but beware of irons that are only ceramic coated, because this coating will wear off, causing you to have to replace the iron. Think of it in terms of gold – solid gold is better than gold plated. Titanium, along with gold tools, is the top of the line both in performance and cost. It heats the fastest and yields a just-stepped- of-the-salon style and the investment is worth it in the long run.
Bridging the Gap
You want to buy the best flat iron you can afford, but suppose gold and titanium tools are beyond your current budget? An excellent choice for those on a moderately conservative budget is tourmaline. What exactly is tourmaline? Tourmaline is a mineral similar to quartz and produces a semi-precious stone that comes in many different colors such as pink, red, green, blue and even black and is widely used in jewelry that fetches a moderately medium price between a precious stone like diamonds and costume jewelry that can tarnish, stain your skin, and flake off showing the copper- like finish under the silver or gold plating. In addition, tourmaline gemstones are also used for medicinal purposes. It is said that no two tourmaline stones are alike and in the past the stones were revered and thought to protect those who wore it by magic.
The ancients were on to something even if they did not know what. Tourmaline emits far infrared rays, also called waves of energy and negative ions that have a positive effect on mood and soothe the body through a higher level of oxygenation to the brain. Tourmaline helps the body detoxify, relieves stress, and boosts the immune system. For this reason, people wear tourmaline jewelry or simply keep uncut crystals in the home.
So, how is tourmaline used in a ceramic tourmaline ionic flat iron? The tourmaline crystal is ground and used to coat flat iron plates. Why is it good for your hair? Tourmaline for flat irons gives the same benefit to hair as the crystals and stones do when worn or strategically placed in the home.
The negatively charged ions, when they meet frizzy dry hair’s positively charged ions are neutralized causing the hair to lie flat, sealing the cuticle, retaining moisture, and adding shine to the hair shaft. For straightening curly hair which needs more heat and passings, experts recommend purchasing a tourmaline flat iron to prevent burning or stripping moisture.
Although you may think skipping the shower and washing your hair before using the iron is better, but it is best to shampoo and condition for protection from heat styling using professional protective products that infuse your hair with moisture that the flat iron will seal inside the cuticle for a healthy shine and smoothness. It is possible to straighten your hair yielding gorgeous shiny hair every day when choosing the right flat iron paired with the right hair products.