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Cheap Vs. Expensive Flat Irons: Which One Provides Better Value?

When you’re in the market for a flat iron, you need to pay attention to both quality and price. Generally speaking, you’ll have to pay more for a higher-quality flat iron.

However, a tight budget doesn’t mean you’ll have to settle for an inferior product. Comparing a cheap flat iron vs. an expensive flat iron should be about more than price. There are other qualities to consider.


Should You Spend Much On A Flat Iron?

Your Intentions Matter

Flat Irons Guide

Do you want to give your hair a professional-grade makeover, or do you merely want to make it look straighter? Your results may depend on the cost of the flat iron. A cheaper one is good for getting your hair in order in a pinch. However, an expensive one can do a lot more.

That said, you might be fine with a cheaper but still-effective flat iron. They can help you practice without being committed to a pricey product. Once you’ve grown comfortable with straightening your hair with the cheap flat iron, you can graduate to a more expensive one.


Heating Power

A big discrepancy between cheap and expensive flat irons is how hot they’ll get. Shoddy hair straighteners might cost less. However, they can end up stealing your time through a lack of heating ability. As a result, your hair is still left a little frayed, and it loses its straightness over time.

Conversely, an expensive flat iron gets very hot and keeps your hair straight. You can operate it much more effectively. The frustration of having to go over the same spots over and over again is absent.


Plate Quality

The plates are another essential part of a flat iron. High-quality, expensive flat irons will tout their tourmaline or nanodiamond-infused plates. They’re right to do so. These materials don’t just add a sense of luxury to the product description. They also provide consistent and effective heating.

It doesn’t even have to be a particularly exotic material. Some of the best flat irons have ceramic plates. With that in mind, you should be wary of ones with ceramic coating. They may seem the same, but they’re much cheaper and wear down much faster. Many champion titanium flat irons for their efficiency and results. However, these tend to be the costliest.

Negative ions are another reason to value plate material. Components like tourmaline emit negative ions, crucial for helping straight your hair and keeping it moist. A strong flat iron will straighten your hair, but it will also give it a special shine and glow that cheaper plate material, such as glass, can’t.



You might love how your flat iron straightens your hair but long for some curls. Lucky for you, many flat irons double as curlers. You just need to know the proper technique for making curls. While cheap and expensive flat irons might look similar, the latter are better equipped to handle this task.

Curls need lots of heat to form. As discussed above, the lack of heating power is one of the biggest drawbacks to cheap flat irons. You could be using the perfect technique and still not get the curls you want when using a cheap flat iron. Either get yourself an expensive flat iron or spring for a curling iron.


Your Hair

flat irons for all hair type

Hair comes in different lengths, colors, and textures. If you have coarse hair, you might worry it’ll be impossible to straighten. Where there’s a will, there’s a way. However, an expensive flat iron is better at dealing with different hair textures.



The phrase “you get what you pay for” applies to flat irons. If you want to save money on a flat iron, that’s fine. However, you might think twice about purchasing a cheap flat iron if you have long-term plans to straighten and otherwise style your hair.

Buying an expensive hair straightener once is a lot better than going through a bunch of cheap ones.


What Are People Saying?

 Flat Irons Buying Guide

Remember buying things based on gut feelings or advertising claims? Thanks to customer reviews on retail sites, you can know if a flat iron is worth it or not, beyond the price. It’s impossible to please everyone, and even the best-performing flat irons will garner jeers. However, reading even a small sample of reviews can help you make the right buying decision.

The best reviews are detailed, talking about the customer’s intentions with the flat iron and including before and after photos to give you an even better idea of the flat iron’s performance. Pay special attention to middling reviews too. These can give you the clearest idea of both pros and cons.

Words on a screen from a stranger can feel rather impersonal. However, the rise in video content creators is very useful for informed shoppers like you. If you’re curious about a flat iron but are concerned about the quality, look for videos about it. You should find reviews where people break down their experiences with the device.

Pay attention to how they talk about the product. Social media influencers are obligated to disclose if their endorsement of a product is based on a brand relationship. Someone saying a flat iron manufacturer is sponsoring them and then gushing about the flat iron’s quality might give you pause.

However, that doesn’t mean the flat iron isn’t worthwhile. They might do an on-camera demonstration that shows how effectively it works. Look at a mix of videos, especially ones from people with hair like yours.


Do What You Need To Do

Are expensive straighteners worth it?  A flat iron can be cost-effective without being low-quality. You shouldn’t feel obligated to spend more than you can afford to. You might just need a cheap but still good flat iron in a pinch or to practice. You may also have styling aspirations and need the best-quality product possible.

Take your time before buying a flat iron. Think about what you need from a flat iron, and see if a given product matches those needs. You won’t know precisely how well works for you until you use it. However, this helps you to be as informed as possible.