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Phenomenal . . .
Life, Growth, and Connection (This sunflower was nourished by my hands.) 2010; Photography by Benita Blocker. Please become a follower of this blog.

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Thursday, November 24, 2011

Flat Iron recommendations from year 2010

I stumbled across this article in a Woman's Day magazine dated November 17, 2010, page 50. Can you believe that it says "Whatever you do, never set the (flat) iron over 400 degrees - it can cause hair to dry out and break."? The kinkier the hair; typically, the higher the heat that is used; but this article says high heat like "450 degrees" is damaging to all hair.

I remember some of the adjustable Chi (Farouk) Turbo flat irons did not get hotter than 356 degrees. This temperature was not hot enough to straighten kinkier hair, but it makes sense now that the flat iron was not designed to damage hair. The hair industry kept asking for higher heat temperatures for styling purposes; however, maintaining the health of the hair took a seat on the "backburner." Not good.

If you are still using a flat iron, then hopefully, you are using it for minor touch-up on the ends and on low heat!


  1. This is interesting. I have to set my flat iron to 380+ to straighten my hair. I have tried to flat iron on a lower temp with no success. I can say I havent had any heat damage. I flat iron no more than once a week and no more than 1-2 times a month, if that. At that point there is no need to touch up. My hair stays straight for the whole week.

  2. LaQT/Ty, you bring up some valid points and many people share your same thoughts. So let's talk about a microwave. Have you ever cooked a roll, bagel, or pizza in a microwave too long? If you have, then you know that by looking at the "bread" that you can not tell that you overcooked it. When you go to consume it and the bread is tough and rubbery, then you know that you left it in the microwave too long. There is no burn marks on the bread; just the consistency is too tough to chew. So you have to trash the overcooked bread. There is no burn marks because the microwave is "indirect" heat. Ionic flat irons are also "indirect heat." So I believe you when you say that you do not see any damage to your hair. Typically, fine hair should see damage in about one and a half years. Medium to coarse hair should see damage in about two years and a half years. If you maintain a short haircut, then it is not a real big deal. However, if one grows their hair to "bra strap length" and one day, two years later their lovely long lengths start breaking to just below shoulder length, then one will know that the hair "finally got overcooked." (just my perspective here . . . there can be exceptions to every rule.)

    On a separate note, you are also correct about the temperature setting. Many kinky hair women need 380 degrees or more to even make a difference in straightness of their hair. That is why I truly recommend that consumers read the operating manuals that come with their flat irons. Most manuals have a warning section that cautions consumers that when using higher temperatures, then you are using at your own risk (in a nutshell.) I wrote an article featuring snapshots of some of the flat iron manuals that caution about high temperatures. Please check out that article. Also, based on this information, if the flat iron only works for your hair on high temperatures, then based on my experience and my years of observation, then the ionic flat iron was not designed with kinky, curly hair in mind. This is my perspective. Please keep me posted as you approach a two to three year period of flat ironing; I really would love to get others' feedback. Thanks for writing. I love receiving questions. Hopefully, I gave you food for thought. I don't mean to scare you; I benefit in no way if you use a curling iron or a flat iron. I just prefer that black women keep their hair healthy. Happy Holidays! Thanks again for the feedback!

  3. "Ionic flat iron literature review" article was posted in March 2011. You can use the search word:"croc" (a flat iron brand) to also find the article. Happy reading about the flat iron operating manuals.