by HSI Professional | Feb 25 2017
When we want locks that are sleek and straight, we know that using a blow dryer on hair alone is not enough to give us that pin straight fierceness. Hair that is so straight it looks like it could slice better than a knife can only be achieved with a hair straightener. A flat iron may sound like an archaic tool of hair and beauty past, but it is an easy and totally affordable way to get hair that stays sleek and straight all day. But what makes using a flat iron for straight hair so much better than a blow dryer?
A Quick History on Hair Straighteners
Before we get into the science behind why a hair straightener is way better than using a blow dryer, we want to give you a little history lesson. Thanks to Lady Jennifer Bell Schofield, a Scottish heiress, we now can get pin straight hair whenever we feel like it. In 1912 she combined two heated metal plates together and achieved the modern hair straightener we know and love today. Of course there were previous efforts to attempt what Lady Jennifer had, as well as a time when women would kindly ask their Mother or friends to literally iron their hair with a hot iron.
Only the bold risked this task solo. Fortunately for women and us everywhere who love straight hair, we do not have to worry about whether to iron our clothes or our hair first. Now that we have given a very brief history lesson on the flat iron we want you to know exactly why a hair straightener is a far superior method for achieving straight hair than using a blow dryer alone. A blow dryer is a device that blows cool or warm air onto wet or dry hair. When hair is wet the hot air accelerates the evaporation of water so that hair will dry faster.
A hair dryer controls the hydrogen bonds in each strand of hair so that style and shape holds better. This means that hair straightened with blow dryer alone will have a more natural and soft appearance. A flat iron will change the structure of hair by breaking down hydrogen bonds. These hydrogen bonds, in excess, are what cause wavy or curly hair.
Are Flat irons a Better Alternative?
A flat iron allows for better overall control of heat temperature, application, tension, and style. Since a hair straightener is thin and small enough to get heat to the root, hair will be straight from literally root to tip. With a blow dryer, roots can be dried using warm air but cannot be flattened smooth by warm air alone. Unlike a blow dryer, a flat iron allows for total control of the temperature level. This is great for ladies who are concerned about hair damage caused by high heat. Another way to prevent excess damage from high heat is by using a professional ceramic flat iron.
A ceramic flat iron is a non-metallic flat iron that allows for even heat distribution across the surface of the plates. A typical flat iron will only heat hair’s surface and rob hair of moisture, resulting in frizzy and damaged hair. Even heat distribution from a HSI professional ceramic flat iron heats hair evenly and the infrared heat penetrates quickly. Women will notice that heat application is minimized and repeated passes over sections are much fewer. This is because hair is being heated from the inside out as opposed to being heated from the outside in like in a non-professional ceramic hair straightener.
Being able to control the tension level of the flat iron on hair allows ladies to control just how straight they want their locks to be; the tighter the tension, the straighter the strand. The level of control one has over just how straight their hair will be can only be experienced with the use of a flat iron. Using a blow dryer in lieu of a hair straightener is still an acceptable method of getting hair straight enough, but sometimes enough is just simply not enough. When we want straight hair that lasts, we always reach for our tried and true flat iron.
Safe and Effective
A flat iron for hair straightening is safe and effective to use on all hair types. Whether hair is thick, medium, or thin, there is a flat iron out there able to execute the perfect straight and sleek look. For thick or coarse hair we recommend choosing a ceramic, titanium, or tourmaline hair straightener. Look for a flat iron that heats up to 380 to 420 degrees. Ladies with medium hair, or hair that is not quite thick but not quite thin can also enjoy a professional ceramic flat iron, titanium flat iron, or a tourmaline flat iron for hair.
Since medium hair is not quite as stubborn as thick and coarse hair, look for a flat iron that reaches temperatures of 360 to 380 degrees. Thick, coarse or medium hair requires stronger heat in order to change the structure of hair. If hair is fine and thin, a professional ceramic flat iron or a tourmaline flat iron is best. For fine and thin hair, make sure to never use a flat iron tool that reaches temperatures over 360 degrees. Whatever hair type may be always make sure to use a heat protectant prior to using a flat iron on dry hair.