Which side do you like best? On the left side, you have hair straightened with a $20 (on sale) ceramic only flat iron. On the right side, you have hair straightened with a $120 ionic/ceramic flat iron. Same strand of hair. However, the left side still has more body along with its straightness. The right side looks more stringy to me. It is sleeker but more lifeless. So which side do you like best? The infrared heat in the ionic technology makes a difference. Is this difference good? Healthy? In my opinion, "no."
To eliminate the fact that the cuticle could be upside down with the previous flat iron test on the same strand, I cut three strips of hair wefts. The first curl strip on the left was completed by the ionic flat iron. It was a sleeker, thinner look. The middle curl strip was from a large barrel curling iron. The curl strip on the right was completed by the ceramic curling iron. The curling iron and the ceramic flat iron really delivers more body and thickness than the ionic iron. Some people are trying to eliminate body and volume. For short time, the ionic iron can serve that purpose.
I just purchased this Conair ceramic straightener/flat iron for $18.79 on sale at a CVS drugstore. Regular price around $28.00. I trust this ceramic only flat iron.
If you prefer a flat iron over a curling iron, then look for this ceramic only technology. It is only $20 with 25 heat settings. It takes longer to heat up since it is NOT Ionic. It is a healthier flat iron option.
As far as the Ionic blowdryers, which I still use heavily, I am undecided on whether I should discontinue using them. Since only the air flow is hitting the hair and scalp, I feel the concentrator nozzle is blocking any potential damage that it could cause. Again, I am undecided. I do have a twin turbo hairdryer that is not ionic. I may put it into service as my main hair dryer. Decisions, Decisions, Decisions.
Please see my flat iron free pledge/article.