I'm Obsessed With Protecting My Fine, Damaged Hair—These Flat Irons Pass My Test

As a millennial, I have lived to see some of beauty's greatest hits when it comes to trends, from butterfly clips and frosted pink lipgloss to messy buns and, of course, the era of stick-straight hair. And as an aspiring beauty editor, I followed the trends almost religiously. I woke up every morning before school and refused to leave the house until every strand of hair was straight—I even had a double mirror to check the back. (My mom helped, too). Looking back, I cringe at the number of times I would straighten the same section of hair, ultimately damaging my already fine, soon-to-be-highlighted hair. 

As I've gotten older and continued to educate myself in the beauty industry, I've come to one conclusion: In order to achieve your beauty goals, you have to first understand what you're working with. For example, I now understand I have thin and fine hair, which means a little product goes a long way. I understand that my color-treated hair can be easily damaged, so I opt for hydrating hair masks and supplements that promote hair health and growth. I also understand how to properly use heat tools to achieve the look I want without causing permanent damage. Though avoiding heat is the greatest gift you can give your hair, I've realized you can't avoid heat forever—some days, you crave that flat-ironed look or a soft wave. 


(Image credit: @littleblackboots)

How to Use a Flat Iron While Minimizing Hair Damage

I have mastered the art of flat-ironing hair while maintaining its health—yes, it can be done. I follow a few simple guidelines:

1. Keep the heat on the lowest setting

2. Always use a heat-protectant spray 

3. Invest in flat irons that evenly distribute heat throughout the hair

And let's be real—it can be scary to test which flat iron is best for damaged hair because it's a major risk to your hair's health. Fortunately, over the last decade or so, I have put in the dedication and research to prove you can indeed use a flat iron on fragile hair.

Keep scrolling to discover the best flat irons for damaged hair. Your strands will thank you later.

GHD Platinum+ Hair Straightener Ceramic Flat Iron

Best Overall

T3 Lucea Id 1-Inch Smart Flat Iron With Touch Interface

Dyson Corrale Straightener

Bio Ionic 10x Pro Straightening & Styling Iron

Amika The Conductor 1 Inch Precision Geranium Flat Iron

Harry Josh Pro Tools Ceramic Flat Styling Iron

Revlon Salon Straightener Copper + Ceramic Flat Iron

L'Oréal Steampod Flat Iron & Styler

L'Ange Le Duo

HSI Ceramic Tourmaline Ionic Flat Iron Hair Straightener

BaBylissPro Nano Titanium Prima Ionic Straightener

Kristin Ess Defining + Detailing Mini Flat Iron With Travel Bag

The Best Heat Protectants to Use With a Flat Iron


(Image credit: @adriennefaurote)

Repeat after me: I will not use a flat iron without a heat-protectant product. Consider heat protectants non-negotiable when it comes to using flat irons on damaged hair. Ahead, discover some of my favorite heat protectants that leave my hair sleek, shiny, and, most importantly, healthy after using flat irons. 

This article was originally published at an earlier date and has since been updated. 

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Freelance Editor