As a beauty journalist, I've tried my fair share of hair tools over the years. As someone with thick, wavy hair, I've always been on the hunt for the best hair straighteners, and after years of testing, I believe I've found some absolute winners. You see, although I love to embrace my natural texture, some days I wake up wanting that sleek, smooth finish that only a pair of hair straighteners can achieve.
So which ones do I turn to, I hear you ask? Luckily for you, I've rounded up my top picks below, including all the info on why I love them so much. I've even asked some of the Who What Wear UK team which hair straighteners they can't live without, so there are options to suit a range of hair types.
Plus, I've spoken to the experts to find out exactly what to look for when choosing the best hair straighteners for you. Keep on scrolling for everything you need to know in order to get your silkiest hair yet…
Which Straighteners Are Best For Each Hair Type?
I spoke to Samantha Cusick, UK ambassador for GHD, who says, "When it comes to choosing the best straighteners for each hair type, it's essential to consider a few factors. For fine or thin hair, I recommend a tool like the GHD Platinum+ Styler, as it's designed to provide optimal heat and reduce hair damage, perfect for delicate strands. For thick or coarse hair, you want something that can handle higher temperatures to deliver smooth, long-lasting results. Lastly, for curly or wavy hair, opt for a straightener with wider plates that can easily tackle larger sections, making styling quicker and more efficient. Always prioritise features like temperature control, ceramic plates, and advanced technology for the best results, no matter your hair type."
What Features Should You Consider When Buying A Hair Straightener?
As mentioned above, there are a couple things to consider before investing in a new pair of hair straighteners. One of the main things to look into is the plates. "As a creative artist for GHD, I understand the importance of different plates on hair straighteners and how they cater to various hair types and styling needs," explains Cusick. "Ceramic plates are excellent for even heat distribution, ensuring smooth and consistent results whilst minimising damage. Floating plates are a must-have feature for versatile styling as they adjust to the hair's thickness, allowing you to create curls, waves or a straight finish with ease. Whatever your hair type or styling preference, choosing the right plates on your hair straighteners can make a significant difference in achieving the perfect finish."
The next thing to think about is the temperature settings. Some people might prefer a range of temperature options to see which one suits their hair the best. Others might prefer the straighteners to be set at an optimum temperature, as consistent and controlled heat can help reduce excessive heat damage.
There are other aspects to consider too, such as whether you want wireless straighteners for styling on the go, or a pair that plug in if you need to use them for longer. You can also look for straighteners with advanced technology that may help tackle things like flyaways, so definitely read up on all the information before investing,
To make things a little easier, I've rounded up lots of different options below for you to browse in order to find your perfect pair of straighteners.
The Best Hair Straighteners To Buy Now:
1. GHD Original Styler
Key specifications: 185ºC temperature, ceramic plates, 2.7m cable
Best for: Creating a range of different looks
Pros: Quick to heat up, easy to use and leave your hair looking shiny
Cons: Not the best option for long or thick hair.
Who What Wear UK beauty editor Eleanor Vousden loves the original GHD hair straighteners. They have floating plates so you can create a range of different looks, and they're set at the optimum styling temperature of 185ºC.
"So many consider these their holy-grail straightening irons. These were the first hair straighteners I ever tried and it's not hard to see why they're a crowd-pleaser. They leave hair super sleek and with an amazing shine. I've recently had more face-framing layers cut into my hair and they're ideal for quickly adding shape and hold. If you're deciding between these and the Max size [see below in this edit], I'd recommend going for the former if your hair is shoulder length or shorter and naturally straight, and the latter if you have longer or thicker hair."
2. Dyson Corrale Hair Straighteners
Key specifications: Three heat settings, flexing plates and 360ºC charging cable
Best for: A unique styling experience
Pros: Easy to use, can create a range of looks and 30 minutes cordless styling time
It wouldn't be a roundup of the best hair straighteners without the Dyson Corrale. These are some of the most impressive hair straighteners I've tried, and I wouldn't expect anything less from the brand. Not only are they beautiful to look at, but they come with flexing plates that actually shape around your hair, making the whole process so much easier. They also come with three heat settings and have been designed with all hair types in mind. The curved ends mean that you can create range of curly and wavy looks, so you're never short of options. Oh, and you can also get up to 30 minutes of cordless styling time, which is a definite bonus.
3. Babyliss Rose Blush Straighteners
Key specifications: 13 heat settings, titanium ceramic plates and 3m salon swivel cord
Best for: Thick and curly hair
Pros: Affordable, leave a super sleek finish and have lots of different heat settings to choose from depending on your hair type
Cons: The plates can get very hot.
"I have natural 4C hair that's quite thick and hard for me to manage," says Who What Wear UK social media editor Joy Ejaria. "In the last year, I've chosen to wear my hair straight because it cuts down my morning routine significantly. I love a silk press and have found the key to that lustrous silky salon finish is in the tools I use. The Babyliss Rose Blush Straightener promises a super-sleek finish and that's exactly what the titanium ceramic plates and 13 heat settings deliver."
4. GHD Max Hair Straightener
Key specifications: Wide plates, 2.7m cable, 185ºC temperature and dual-zone technology to help with heat distribution
Best for: Long and thick hair
Pros: The wide plates make styling hair so much quicker and leave hair looking silky smooth
Cons: Slightly more expensive than other models.
"Up until recently, I've always had very long and thick hair with minimal layers, and the act of straightening my hair quickly became a chore with standard-size straightening plates," says Vousden. "However, when I first tested the Max straightener, this all changed. It boasts extra-wide plates that allow you to straighten larger sections of hair, making the process far quicker, and it's ideal for those who have thick or curly hair. I also love to use these to add a soft bend to my lengths for undone waves, and they never fail to leave my hair looking shiny and sleek."
5. Keeo Genius Smart-Glide Straightener
Key specifications: Contoured plates, 190ºC temperature and 2.7m cable
Best for: Thin and fine hair
Pros: The contoured plates reduce tension and heat
Cons: Don't work as well on thick hair.
If you want a sleek, smooth finish, but don't want to cause too much damage, then I recommend these hair straighteners by Keeo. They have these clever plates that reduce tension on the hair, and in turn, reduce any pulling and let some movement shine through. The gaps between the plates also mean that less heat is applied directly to the strands (the straighteners are set at 190ºC), so overall they are a lot gentler and kinder. If you have thin or fine hair, then I would definitely recommend these.
6. Hot Tools Evolve Gold Titanium 25mm Styler
Key specifications: Gold titanium plate surface, 27 heat settings and 3m cable
Best for: A smooth, silky finish
Pros: Affordable, come with a long cable making them easier to use and have lots of temperature settings to choose from
Cons: The 25mm model might not be best for thick hair.
Who What Wear UK copy editor Georgia Seago loves this Hot Tools Styler. "I’ve been straightening my wavy hair since before I can remember, so I have a few requirements from a pair of straighteners. They have to get hot enough (around 190ºC for me), the plates have to be coated in something that leaves my hair smooth and silky; the cord needs to swivel and be long enough to manoeuvre around whatever room I’m doing my hair in, and they need to work quickly. These Hot Tools ones tick all of my boxes, and they also have an automatic sleep mode in case you forget to turn them off before leaving the house (one less thing to be anxious about), plus a temperature dial, so you can figure out the optimum temperature for your hair texture and avoid overheating it."
7. GHD Unplugged Cordless Styler
Key specifications: 20 minutes of cordless styling time, dual-zone technology and 185ºC temperature
Best for: Hair touch-ups on the go
Pros: The compact size makes them easy to travel with
Cons: Battery only lasts for 20 minutes.
If you want to be able to straighten your hair on the go, you can't go wrong with the GHD Unplugged Cordless Styler. This clever cordless hair straightener is light and compact, with 20 minutes of cordless styling, making it ideal for travel. I would say that if you have longer or thicker hair it might be hard to do your whole head of hair with this before the battery runs out, but it's great for touch-ups throughout the day.
Grace Lindsay is the junior beauty editor at Who What Wear UK. At the age of 18 she decided to train as a makeup artist before going on to study english and media at Goldsmiths University. It was during that time that she explored her love for journalism by interning at a small beauty start-up based in Shoreditch. Since then, she has worked at a number of publications including Marie Claire and Hello!, where her love for all things beauty continued to grow.
As Who What Wear UK's junior beauty editor, she covers everything from the latest hair trends to the stand-out makeup products of the season.