Cosmopolitan July 25, 2023



15 Best Hair Straighteners of 2023, Tested and Reviewed


For every hair type, budget, and preference (yeah, I really did that for you).

ven if you only straighten your hair once or twice a month, it's absolutely worth investing in a quality flat iron. Using a subpar hair straightener can seriously mess with your hair and lead to excessive damage, hair breakage, and split ends. That doesn't mean you need to spend $$$, but a good hair straightener should be tailored to your hair type, straighten in one pass without pulling, and have a few heat settings to choose from.

And those are just the basics. You've also got the choice between auto shut-off features, wide or thin builds, and ceramic or titanium plates (fyi, ceramic = softer heat that’s better for finer, straighter hair; titanium = stronger heat that’s better for curlier, coarser hair). I know it sounds overwhelming, so to make the shopping experience easier for you, I researched, tested, and reviewed the top hair straighteners on the market right now. Here's a sneak peek at some of my favorites:

P.S., This is new, up-to-date info, bb. We updated this article in July 2023 to add new hair straighteners the internet won't stop talking about, delete outdated oldies, and check in with new experts for the latest in hair straighteners, just for you.

Our top picks for best hair straighteners of 2023:

Now keep reading for the full breakdown of my favorite hair straighteners—from drugstore-priced straighteners to flat irons for curly hair types and more—along with explanations on how to minimize heat damage, how to choose the right flat iron for your hair type, and whether price really matters when it comes to quality, according to two expert hairstylists.

Best Durable Hair Straightener

CHI Original 1'' Ceramic Hairstyling Iron



  • Numerous testers say their tool lasted 10+ years
  • Affordable considering how long the device lasts


  • Temperature setting is not adjustable

I first bought a CHI in college and have been obsessed every since First off, it's the most durable hot tool I've ever tested. No exaggeration I used mine multiple times a week and it lasted me 10 years. Plus, it quickly straightened and smoothed my frizzy hair without making it look or feel plastered to my head. The ceramic plates are "floating" too, so you can easily adjust the amount of pressure you apply to your hair, something I find super helpful when straightening my roots vs my ends.

  • Auto shut-off: No
  • Plates: Ceramic
  • Plate size: 1 inch
  • Heat settings: 392 degrees

THE REVIEW: "I bought this flat iron in 2008 and it just now started shorting out. I immediately ordered a new one. It's the only iron that will straighten my frizzy curls in record time. CHI flat iron for the win! Here's hoping I get 15 good years out of this one!"

Best Hair Straightener for Wet Hair

Dyson Airstrait Straightener



  • Takes hair from wet to straight without damaging your hair
  • Works on all hair types and textures


  • Most expensive option on the list
  • Bulky design isn't the most travel friendly

I tested the Dyson Airstrait for the first time a few weeks ago and it was love at first sight. You can use it on wet or dry hair (a major time saver, IMO) since the device uses hot air instead of traditional hot plates to style your hair. It's a pricey one, but testers (including multiple Cosmo staffers) all agree it's deserving of the hefty price tag since it helps streamline hair routines (no more blow drying before you straighten) and creates less heat damage than traditional flat irons too.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: No hot plates
  • Plate size: N/A
  • Heat settings: 175, 230 and 285 degrees

THE REVIEWS: "If you regularly straighten your hair, this is for you. The technology here is amazing, no high heat, no hard plates squeezing your hair just perfect airflow and a sleek hair style in a quick amount of time. Dyson does it again."

Best Hair Straightener for Fine Hair

Conair InfinitiPro Tourmaline Ceramic Flat Iron



  • Extra-long plates can cut down on styling time
  • One of the more affordable options on the list


  • Might take a few passes to straighten wavy or curly hair

This hair straightener is a dream for anyone who's absolutely terrified of destroying their damaged or fine hair with heat tools. It has 30 heat settings (so it's suuuper customizable for fine or damaged hair), and its tourmaline/ceramic combo means your hair gets straighter with fewer passes and less heat. If you don’t want to spend a bunch of money on more heat tools, you truly can’t go wrong with this one.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Tourmaline/Ceramic
  • Plate size: 1 inch
  • Heat settings: 248 to 455 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “The Infiniti Pro does a great job of straightening my fine, wavy hair,” writes one tester in a review. “I have a short/medium bob, and it leaves my hair smooth and shiny in no time at all! My hair looks like I just came from the salon in just minutes.”

Best Hair Straightener for Thick Hair

T3 Lucea 1 ½” Professional Straightening and Styling Iron



  • Reviewers love the sleek design
  • Has nine different heat settings


  • Have to manually click a button to increase temp settings (which can take awhile)

Thick hair + flat-ironing can equal an hour of arm-exhausting, damage-ensuing labor. Enter: this tourmaline-and-ceramic straightening iron with one-and-a-half-inch plates. The wider plates (with softer ceramic heating) help straighten thicker hair types with fewer passes and less heat damage.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Tourmaline and ceramic
  • Plate size: 1.5 inches
  • Heat settings: 260 to 410 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “It heats up super quickly with several adjustable temperature settings,” writes one reviewer. “It glides through my curly hair quickly, and best of all, my hair stays straight for days—even on hot, humid summer days."

Best Hair Straightener on Amazon

Vanessa Pro Flat Iron Hair Straightener



  • Has round edges and a curved design to minimize creases
  • Great choice for curly and coily hair types


  • May need to press down on plates to straighten super-fine hair

Okay, even though this straightener doesn't come from a big-name brand, I've personally tested it and can confirm the hype (i.e., 10,000 reviews on Amazon) is legit. It had no issues straightening my curly hair, and, in fact, many reviewers also loved it for its ability to easily straighten coarse, 4b hair without a zillion passes. It's also available in two plate widths—one inch and two inches—depending on how thick your hair is.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Titanium
  • Plate size: 1 inch or 2 inches
  • Heat settings: 265 to 450 degrees

THE REVIEWS: "I used heat setting 430 and I literally only have to glide the iron like once to get a silky-straight outcome," one reviewer writes. "Highly recommend. The side-by-side picture speaks for itself if you don’t believe me."

Best Hair Straightener for Curling

Kristen Ess Hair 3-In-One Titanium Flat Iron



  • Looks v luxe on your vanity
  • Rounded edges make it easy to add body and movement to hair


  • Reviewers say the iron sometimes auto shuts off while using

You know when you try to curl your hair with a straightener, and you're left with creases, bumps, and snags? Yeah, that won't be the case with this rounded-edge hair straightener. It's smoothly curved to allow you to clamp, twirl, and twist your hair without crimps, so your flat-iron waves and curls look genuinely good, not just good-for-a-flat-iron good.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Ceramic
  • Plate size: 1.25 inches
  • Heat settings: 280 to 440 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “My hair is fine and straight, and this tool does a fantastic job putting a little ‘bend’ in my usual blow-dry style,” writes one reviewer. “Very easy to use, and I really like the temperature control feature.”

Best Value Hair Straightener

Hot Tools Radiant Blue Digital Flat Iron



  • Heats up very quickly and evenly


  • Easy to accidentally hit the “off” button while using

This titanium iron heats up fast, bringing its plates back to the ideal temperature quickly after each pass, so you won’t need to go over each section multiple times and destroy your hair. To get your hair extra sleek and straight, brush through each section with a fine-tooth comb while following right behind it with the straightener.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Titanium
  • Plate size: 1 inch
  • Heat settings: 300 to 450 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “From the moment I took this out of the box, I was impressed,” writes one tester. “It heats up quickly, it's easy to use, looks sleek, feels great as I grip the iron, and doesn't snag as I run it through my hair. It did not take me long at all to get my hair straightened, and I have naturally curly hair.”

Best Hair Straightener for Coarse Hair

Revlon Salon Straight Copper Smooth XL Flat Iron



  • Locks shut for easy storage and travel
  • Testers say it won't snag or pull on long, coarse hair


  • Comb attachment can get too hot to touch

Copper is famously known for being an even heat conductor (just ask any cook), which is why I love this flat iron for coarser hair: Its copper-infused plates will straighten hair with fewer passes, which means less heat damage for you. Bonus: The detachable comb also smooths and distributes your coarse hair evenly over the plates, so you’re left with stick-straight hair on the first pass.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Copper and ceramic
  • Plate size: 1.5 inches
  • Heat settings: 180 to 455

THE REVIEWS: “I straightened my very coarse, thick hair quicker than I ever have before,” one review writes. “It warms up fast, and the copper plates glide across my hair without snagging.”

Best Straightener for Frizzy Hair

BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Ultra-Thin Straightening Iron



  • Available in three plate sizes (one, one-and-a-half, and two inches)
  • Extra long 5 inch plates are great for thicker hair


  • Some reviewers say the blue coating on the iron chips off after a few months

If your hair tends to just look poofy and dull after a flat-iron session (been there), you need to try this hair straightener. It’s designed with titanium plates that heat up quickly and powerfully to quickly smooth your hair for a silkier finish. And because the tongs are ultra narrow, you can easily maneuver them close to your scalp to straighten curly or wavy roots, or to help lay frizz and flyaways.

  • Auto shut-off: No
  • Plates: Titanium
  • Plate size: 1, 1.5, and 2 inches
  • Heat settings: 240 to 450 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “I do my hair so fast now,” writes one tester in a review. “It used to take me about 35 minutes because I have a lot of hair and it's thick. Now it takes me between 15-20 minutes. This is the best straightener I've ever purchased.”

Best Travel Hair Straightener

BaBylissPRO Mini Straightening Iron with Travel Pouch



  • Compact size is ideal for traveling
  • Comes with a protective travel pouch


  • Smaller size means more time straightening, especially if you have thick or coarse hair
  • Only has one non-adjustable heat setting

This is hands down my favorite travel-size flat iron. It easily fits in a duffel or carry-on and is ultra lightweight too so don't need to worry about it making your bag weigh a million pounds. While testing, I found the smoothing and straightening results to be comparable with the original BaBylissPRO straightener, which is pretty impressive IMOs since it's legit half the size.

  • Auto shut-off: No
  • Plates: Titanium/ceramic
  • Plate size: .5 inches
  • Heat settings: 430 degrees

THE REVIEW: "This iron is small. The plates are approximately 5 inches by a half an inch; however, it is perfect for travel. I have straight thick hair and my ends turn outward—I can use this to turn them under without the need to carry a larger flat iron or curling iron," reads one tester's review.

Best Cordless Hair Straightener

Dyson Corrale Hair Straightener



  • Comes with a charging stand for easy storage
  • Wireless/cordless design makes it easy to straighten on-the-go


  • Cordless charge only lasts 30 minutes
  • Some testers say it's a bit bulky

Yup, this is a Very Expensive Flat Iron. Yup, this is something you'd definitely splurge on, save up for, or beg for from the person who loves you most, but it'll be worth it. This cordless/corded—you can do both—flat iron uses flexible copper plates that subtly move with your hair to evenly distribute heat across every strand, leaving you with less damage and smoother hair. I've tested it, and it really is a freaking thing of the future.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Copper
  • Plate size: 1 inch
  • Heat settings: 330 to 410 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “I am SHOCKED at how freakin’ awesome this straightener is,” writes one reviewer. “After I completed the first section of hair my only words were ‘damn.’ My hair was done in half the time and looks better than it has before using the other higher-end straighteners out on the market.”

Best Hair Straightener for Bangs and Short Styles

GHD Mini 1/2'' Styler



  • Narrow plates are ideal for styling smaller pieces of hair
  • Easy to maneuver along the roots and hairline


  • Not the best choice for long, thick hair

I had blunt bangs for years and this was the *only* flat iron that made it easy to straighten and smooth them without burning my forehead. The plates are just a half of an inch wide, so you can easily maneuver and glide them through shorter, smaller pieces of hair. This one is also great for straightening hairs close to the roots or smoothing short styles, like a sleek Hailey Bieber bob or pixie cut.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Ceramic
  • Plate size: .5 inches
  • Heat settings: 365 degrees

THE REVIEW: "I have bangs and can't live without the 1/2 inch iron to get them straight as can be," writes a tester. "I would not recommend this iron if you are wanting to do mid-to-long length hair, but for my shoulder length bob and bangs it works like a charm!"

Best Hair Straightener for Damaged Hair

GHD Platinum+ Professional Performance Styler



  • Isn’t overly hot for fine-to-medium hair types
  • Adds tons of shine to dull, fried hair


  • Can’t control the temperature

Ceramic flat irons are excellent at straightening, smoothing, and adding shine at lower temps—but they can also take longer to heat up. But not this one, which only needs 20 seconds (yup!) to reach its maximum temperature of 365 degrees. According to the smarties in research and development at GHD, this is the optimal temperature for changing the shape of your hair with as minimal damage as possible. You’ll get straight hair in one single pass and save a lil heat damage in the process.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Ceramic coated aluminum
  • Plate size: 1 inch
  • Heat settings: 365 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “This is the best hair straightener I’ve ever used, and I’ve been straightening my hair regularly for 20 years,” writes one tester. “It glides through my hair, makes my hair unbelievably shiny, and in one pass, I get a sleek style that lasts all day, even when it’s humid.”

Best Hair Straightener for Curly Hair

Bio Ionic 10x Pro Straightening & Styling Iron



  • Reviewers say it straightens their wavy and curly hair very fast
  • Tapered tip makes it easy to straighten your roots and hairline


  • Hair can get caught and snag a little bit if not detangled first

Don’t let the light vibrations in this iron surprise you when you clamp down. The oscillating plates encourage your curls and waves to spread out evenly between the plates to help you get the smoothest, most even finish all the way down the length of your hair.

  • Auto shut-off: Yes
  • Plates: Ceramic
  • Plate size: 1 inch
  • Heat settings: 300 to 450 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “Hands down, this is the best flat iron I've ever used,” writes one tester in a review. “It's a little pricey but well worth the money and makes my hair shiny and smooth.”

Best Steam Hair Straightener

Kim Kimble Vapor Infusion Iron with Silk Argan Oil



  • Can be used with or without the argan oil steam
  • A great choice for type 4 hair


  • Refilling the argan oil cartridge can be messy

Steam-based hair straighteners can be tricky. Even though they can be magical for straightening 4c hair, they can also be hella drying (the steam attaches itself to the water in your hair strand, pulling it out and evaporating it). But this one from Kim Kimble uses a mix of steam and argan oil-filled cartridges to smooth and moisturize hair with fewer passes. And that means way less damage for you.

  • Auto shut-off: No
  • Plates: Tourmaline-infused
  • Plate size: 1.25 inches
  • Heat settings: 300 to 450 degrees

THE REVIEWS: “This product left my hair completely straight, shiny, and very soft,” writes one tester. “I liked it so much that I bought one for my friend’s birthday. She also loved it.”

What size hair straightener should I get?

The best size hair straightener really depends on a few things: your hair type, your hair length, your hair texture, and how you're using your straightener. If your hair is thick, coarse, and/or long, a hair straightener with 1.5 to 2 inch plates will be the best option. Finer hair types can get away with using a 1 inch iron. And if you have bangs, a short bob, or cropped cut, an iron with .5 inch plates will be the easiest for you to work with.

Are ceramic or titanium hair straighteners better?

Neither ceramic nor titanium is necessarily better or worse—it's just that one plate is likely better for your specific hair type. “Ceramic plates are often ‘safest’ for dry, damaged, or fragile hair,” says hairstylist Amy Abramite, adding that these plates, in general, don’t get overly hot, so the overall temperature of ceramic irons stays in a relatively safe range.

The only potential downside? Ceramic usually takes a little longer to heat up. Meanwhile, titanium plates heat up very quickly and can reach higher temperatures than ceramic irons, which is why they’re recommended for thick and curly hair that requires extra heat to get smooth.

But those aren’t the only type of plates out there. Here’s a quick breakdown of the four most common types of plates in a hair straightener:

  • Ceramic: Heats evenly and slowly and can be less damaging on fine and fragile hair because it often doesn’t reach high temperatures
  • Titanium: Heats very quickly to high temperatures, so it requires fewer passes, making it great for thick, curly, and coarse hair
  • Tourmaline: A coating that can be added on top of ceramic plates that heats quickly, adds shine to hair, and is good for all hair types
  • Copper: Plates get an even amount of heat very quickly, so it’s suitable for all hair types

All of these will straighten your hair, but the type of plates on the iron you choose should align with your hair type and goals. When in doubt, a tourmaline or copper iron can work for most all hair types, while titanium should be reserved for hair that is hard to straighten.

Which straightener is best for damaged hair?

Before we get into the “best” straightener for damaged hair, you need to know that all hair straighteners can be damaging to some extent, especially with repeated use, so there’s no magical hair straightener that will inflict zero damage on already damaged hair. You’re putting your hair in between two super-hot plates, and if it’s not a good iron, you’re likely going over and over the same piece of hair to flatten it. This can all lead to dryness, split ends, dullness (especially if your hair is color-treated), flyaways, and hair breakage.

Still, there are a few features in a straightener that is best for damaged hair, specifically a hair straightener with ceramic plates, super customizable heat settings, and excellent reviews backing up claims that it really does straighten in one pass, since more passes = more damage, even at low heat, says hairstylist Anthony Dickey. And when you do flat-iron your hair, keep the temp low (under 350 degrees) and dial-up the temp little by little. Final reminder? Always, always use a heat protectant first to help your hair resist some of the damage.

Are more expensive hair straighteners better?


How much money you spend on a hair straightener definitely comes down to preference. Expensive hair tools aren’t necessarily “better;” they often just have more accessories and controls—basically, the difference between a five- and three-star hotel. If you want a tool with unique features (like cordless, “smart” technology, copper and ion-infused plates, etc.), you can expect to pay a bit more.

But if you just want to efficiently straighten your hair on a budget, give it a beachy wave once in a while, or use your hair straightener four times a year max, you can absolutely find an excellent iron for less than $50 (ahem, see the options above).

How to choose the best hair straightener:


I wish the only factor to take into account when buying a new hair straightener was the price, but that's really only a fraction of the decision. Of course, the price tag might help you narrow down the selection, but you still gotta decide between all the devices within your budget. So while shopping, remember to:

Consider your hair type and condition.

The best hair straightener will depend on your hair's thickness, texture, length, and condition. Thin, fragile, or damaged hair should stick with flat-irons with lower heat settings. “Hair that's finely textured, or compromised by chemicals, or already damaged may not be able to handle hot temperatures and still remain healthy,” says Abramite, so instead look for a hair straightener with adjustable controls and low-heat options (like 350 to 375 degrees). But hair that’s coarse, curly, and thick will likely need an iron that heats to 400 degrees or higher.

Long hair that takes forever to straighten will appreciate an iron with extra-long and wide (like one-and-a-half or two-inch plates) plates that can fit larger sections of hair to cut down on styling time. But if your hair is short, you’ll maybe prefer a shorter, narrower iron that can get close to the root. Think about what you love and hate about straightening your hair (give me low heat that doesn’t fry my fragile hair all day, pls)—choose your hair straightener based on those parameters.

Compare the features.

If you’re still overwhelmed by the options, look for added features that you’ll actually use, like an auto shut-off if you're always forgetting to unplug it, ion technology for extra shine and silkiness, vibrating plates if your hair is coarse or curly, or floating plates for less tension and breakage. You might have to pay a little more for a tool that has more than just the basics, but hair pros argue that a nice design can really be worth it.

“A well-designed flat iron should close evenly on the hair to prevent pulling or uneven tension,” says Abramite. “It should glide smoothly through the strands and feel comfortable when maneuvering.” So if you try a hair straightener and it snags, pulls, or leaves your hair feeling anything but good on the first try, check the return policy (Sephora and Ulta will always let you return within 30 days, even if the box is opened, but check your Amazon seller before purchasing as they can have varying return policies).

Choose the intended use.

Are you wanting a hair straightener for both straightening your hair and curling it? Are you using it to style bangs or a short pixie cut and need something that can get close to the root? Are you planning on traveling with your hair straightener? These are all questions to ask yourself before clicking that “Place Order” button so you don't end up with a device that doesn't fit your needs.

Because at the end of the day, even the best hair straightener won't do you any good if it doesn't have the shape, design, features, and modes that you're looking for.

Meet the experts:


  • Amy Abramite is a hairstylist and the creative director at Maxine Salon in Chicago, IL. She’s an expert in hair cutting, styling with flat irons and curling irons, and blowouts.
  • Anthony Dickey is a hairstylist and the founder of Hair Rules salon in New York, NY; Los Angeles, CA; and Atlanta, GA, and Hair Rules, a line of hair products for every texture. He is known for his ability to work with and enhance all hair textures through haircutting and styling.


Why trust Cosmopolitan?

Lauren Balsamo is the deputy beauty director at Cosmopolitan with 10 years of experience researching, writing, and editing haircare stories in print and digital, including the best leave-in conditioners and the best hair thickening shampoos. Her hair straightener picks were based on product reviews, ratings, and personal testing, along with information from experts.

Chloe Metzger is the deputy beauty director at Cosmopolitan with 10 years of experience researching, writing, and editing haircare stories in print and digital.