Straight hairstyles are a look that never goes out of fashion. Not all of us, however, are blessed with naturally straight hair. But luckily for those of us who are straight hair challenged, there are styling aids that can help us to achieve this sought after look and using a hair straightener is one of the most popular and effective.

Ceramic Straighteners

Ceramic irons are the 'new technology' when it comes to straightening irons and are better at smoothing, straightening and even adding shine to the hair then previous stainless steel straighteners. Some companies even claim that their ceramic plates will smooth and straighten better than any other hair straightener on the market and are non-damaging to the hair when used correctly. Our advice is to shop around and ask as many questions as possible. Ceramic straighteners will vary in price but also vary in quality, so make sure you are thinking about what is best for your hair strands rather than your hip pocket.

Stainless Steel Straighteners

The stainless steel irons have been around a lot longer than ceramic irons and take longer to heat up, longer to straighten and are a lot more damaging to the hair. I have found through personal experience that my hair becomes drier and it takes a lot longer to get a straight and smooth result with stainless steel plates. Stainless steel straighteners also don't run through the hair as smoothly and can leave grip lines across the ironed area.

Which Kind is Better?

Definitely the ceramic. The technology that is put into ceramic straightening irons these days is unbelievable and you can do almost any style with them and keep your hair undamaged as long as you follow the directions carefully.

A lot of the new ceramic irons also have a feature that allows you to control and change the temperature of the irons. Wet to dry features are also popular but should be used with caution as the heat of the straightening plates must be extremely hot to take your hair strands from wet to dry. This not only leaves you open to the possibility that you may burn yourself on the plates, but can cause damage to your hair if the instructions are not followed correctly.

To make sure that you get the best from your straightener (and do the best by your hair), always follow the manufactures instructions and always use thermal protecting sprays or hair moisturizers before even touching your hair strands with the hot plates.

The next time you're with your stylist, ask which straightener will be best for you and what products will help to keep your hair healthy and in the best condition possible.