Flat Irons Damage Hair When Straightening


Ceramic hair straighteners are everywhere, including my bathroom. It’s not mine, I’d have to use a regular iron if I wanted straight hair. But many women use flat irons to get a sleek, cosmopolitan hairstyle. Ceramic irons are meant to be safer for your hair because they heat your hair evenly.

Flat irons work by breaking the structural bonds in hair, then letting them reform. The heating and cooling alters your hair’s structure making it smooth and straight. Unfortunately, this heating also damages your hair. Repeated use of a flat iron causes hair to become brittle and break. This can lead to hair loss and frayed, fly-away ends. Wet hair, fine hair, and colored or chemically treated hair is more likely to be damaged by straightening.

Minimize damage by following these tips:

1. Use your flat iron at a low setting. Treated hair and fine hair burns easily. Thick hair can tolerate higher temperatures. Temperatures above 350 degrees Fahrenheit will damage most hair after 5 minutes of use.

2. Use on dry hair only, preferably with a hair product designed to be used with a flat iron.

3. Do not straighten your hair every day. Optimally you should use your flat iron only once a week.

4. If you feel that your hair is thinning, that you are loosing your hair, or that your hair is becoming more and more difficult to straighten, then stop using your iron.

5. There is nothing you can do to make your hair grow out faster. If you hair breaks, it can take a year or longer to grow it back to the length you desire, so treat your hair well.

Photo: whatsnextonline, flickr.com

26 thoughts on “Flat Irons Damage Hair When Straightening”

  1. Wow. I straighten my hair every time that I shower. I know it’s not that good for my hair but I don’t really see a good solution. I have fine hair so I really can’t go longer than a day or maybe two at the most without washing it. Would a good solution be chemically straightening it?

  2. Wowowow,this is one cool blog Doc.
    Hopped by here via Susan and thanx a ton to her.
    THis makes me so so glad that i m very happy with my wavy with foft curls hair and its already shoulder lenght now so am enjoying it so so much…
    have to read every article here-a treasure of tips am sure to find…’
    thnax a ton and happy holidays…
    boa fim de semana…

  3. how about the blow dryer? I’m not using the flat iron anymore but i round brush my hair everyday with the blow dryer? how damaging is that????? i don’t get perfectly straight hair with the blow dryer but if its just as damaging as the flat iron, i will go back to my flat iron.

  4. Blow dryers can damage hair(there is a condition called bubble hair from hot hair dryers). When used carefully with an effort to not over-dry or pull hair, most people do not do any damage. @nadia

  5. @SarahF Chemical straightening can also damage hair. Any hair treatment should be done in moderation and with consideration to keep hair healthy. Keeping that in mind, most people can safely use straighteners.

  6. Loved your blog.

  7. can you do a post on keratin hair treatments that are popular right now, my hair dresser keeps telling me these treatmnets are actually good for my hair, i need to know more before trying it out.

  8. can you please so a post o keratin hair treatments??

  9. I have hair that is just wavy enough to look messy. I smooth it with a flat iron–because my hair is baby fine, it takes one pass. I color my hair with a very low peroxide color to cover gray and condition every time I wash, which has to be daily. Blowdrying doesn’t seem to smooth the frizz nearly as well, except in the coldest weather, unless a stylist does it, and it takes a lot longer. Is there a better way to get hair that has some style to it?

  10. Wow! Great information. I used to straighten my hair (that were kinda wavy) almost everytime I shower and lately I have started to notice that my hair has become all brittle and frizzy… totally out of shape. I know that damage has been done. but is there a solution now?

  11. Great stuff.. I found a lot of good information in here…Thanks for all the useful tips about caring for flat irons..

  12. I also used flat irons before and found that my hair was becoming worse day by day. Loved reading this blog, couldnt stop once I started reading it. So many tips..I was searching for solutions for caring my damaged and frizzy hair. Framesi made my hair easy to manage and style.

  13. Sam Robinson, MD says:

    Very interesting post about cicatricial alopecia. I want to let you know of an exciting, upcoming event for medical professionals. Bethesda, Maryland will be hosting the 2011 Cicatricial Alopecia Research Symposium on October 27-28, 2011. This conference will feature world class experts in the field as well as discussion between laboratory and clinical researchers about the etiology and pathogenesis of cicatricial alopecia. Check out: http://www.cicatricialalopecia.org/ for more information!

  14. My hair was flat and my ends used to be dead most of the time.

    I was referred Shielo Hair Products by a friend and I after trying it for a few weeks, I absolutely love it. Specifically, the Shielo Volume Conditioner. My hair looks more full and healthy. I used to lose two handfulls of hair in the shower and now I can barely fill up one hand. My hair is smoother and softer. It even still looks good after using the blow dryer and curling iron on it. I love the way that the conditioner leaves my hair feeling clean without stripping all of the natural oils out.

    My hair isn’t frizzy anymore either. On top of the way this product makes my hair look and feel, the conditioner smells great. My hair smells fresh and clean all day long.

  15. Salon 100 Cypress is one of the best Hair Salons in Fort Lauderdale Florida. We specialize in Manicures, Peticures, straightening, shampoos, Waxing, Hair Styling, Straightening, and much much more! Come on By in Fort Lauderdale!

  16. i think that using flat irons with solid ceramic heater cores is the best.`”

  17. i use a Revlon RV408 hair dryer for myself and i like it better than Conair””*

  18. In recent years my penis hairs have become very brittle and were always breaking off causing excessive itching, not to mention all the loose hairs. I have been applying tsubaki oil aka camellia oil for a couple months now. Not only are they no longer breaking and appear to be much healthier, but the tsubaki oil smells great.

  19. at home, i use flat iron when i want to keep my suit very neat and without wrinkles ,`.

  20. when using hair dryers, it would be better to use those low wattage types because they are not very damaging to the hair ,”`

  21. Ive been straightening my hair everyday for the past 15 years and my hair has been fairly healthy all my life. But at the same time my strands have been dry and brittle at times. Making my hair growth stunt at a maximum growth alittle above my chest. Ive always wanted it longer and never gotten it past that length. Ive recently came across biolustre hair repair treatment and noticed a huge diference in the strength of my hair and the softness and shine id get after use of my straightner. looks like my hair is naturally straight and has surpassed my maximum length. I love it!!!!

  22. Great write-up. I had been looking at this site and I’m impressed! Extremely helpful information specially the last part 🙂 I attend to this kind of details lots. I wanted this certain data for a very long time. Thank you and all the best.

Comments are closed.