Whether you have straight hair and you want to add some curls to give it some body and a different look, or your hair is naturally curly, but you want to give some definition to your tresses, a curling iron is a great tool to have. With a curling iron, you will be able to style your hair in a multitude of ways, giving it a fresh look and adding some definite interest.
If you are on the market for a curling iron, you are going to find that there are a lot of options to choose from. While having a lot of choices is a good thing, it can make it difficult to find the best curling iron for your needs. In order to help you on your quest for finding the best curling iron, we have put together this handy buyer’s guide. In this guide, you will find out everything you need to know about curling irons so you can find the best one for your needs. This guide highlights the types of curling irons, the factors to consider when choosing a curling iron, the features these tools can offer, and the best curling iron brands. After reading this guide, you will be well on your way to finding the best curling iron possible.
Types of Curling Irons
The purpose of all curling irons is to add definition and body to the hair by creating a curl; however, curling irons differ in their design, the ways that they are used and the curls that they create. In order to find the best curling iron for your needs, the first thing you need to do is understand the different types that are available.
There are six main types of curling irons, which include:
- The clipped curling iron
- The clipless wand curling iron
- The marcel wand curling iron
- The bubble wand curling iron
- The double barrel curling iron
- The spiral iron curling iron
Below, you will find a detailed description of each type of curling iron, and the benefits that they offer.
The Clipped Curling Iron
If you are looking to achieve a more structured spiral curl, the clipped curling iron is the right choice for you. This type of curling iron creates curls with great definition. It creates strong curls at the ends of the hair and is a great pick for a more polished hairstyle. In addition to creating great curls, the clipped curling iron can also be used to straighten the hair. Simply attach a section of your hair to it and pass it through the strand, from top to bottom.
The Clipless Wand Curling Iron
The clipless wand curling iron lacks a clamp, which means it creates great definition and creates less creases than other types of curling irons. This is the most versatile of all types of curling irons, as It can be used to create defined curls, or soft, textured waves. The curls that are created with a clipless curling iron also look the most natural, as you can use it to create subtle changes in your hair, depending on the way you wrap your tresses around it, or how you angle the rod.
The Marcel Wand Curling Iron
The Marcel Wand curling iron gives you more control over the hairstyle you are trying to create, and it offers more versatility than other types of curling irons. Because it lacks a spring, you have to manipulate it properly to get the style you desire. When using this type of curling iron, you start at the root of your hair and work it down to the ends. There is a reduced risk of creating your hair with this type of curling iron, which is why so many people find it appealing. However, do note that it can be difficult to use, as you have to really master working it in order to create the curls that you desire.
The Bubble Wand Curling Iron
If you are trying to achieve beachy waves, than the bubble wand curling iron is an excellent choice. It is equipped with a textured rod, which gives you a sort of template in terms of placing the curling iron in your hair. The ball- or bubble-like pattern guides the hair in between creases to create even waves, creating the perfect beach look. You can find a bubble wand curling iron with our without a clip. On the downside, this type of curling iron doesn’t work well with short hair, as you need to have hair that is long enough to pass it through in order to create those beachy waves.
The Double Barrel Curling Iron
The double barrel curling iron is a great choice for creating soft, touchable, natural looking curls. Wrap your hair around each of the barrels in a figure eight pattern and you will create textured, ripple-like waves in your hair. To create the best look, start at the roots and work your way down your hair. On the downside, since you have to wrap your hair around both barrels, there is an increased risk of burning yourself. Wearing a protective glove while using the double barrel curling iron will help to prevent burns.
The Spiral Curling Iron
If you are longing for the curls that Old Hollywood starlets wore in their hair when they walked the red carpet, than a spiral curling iron is a great choice for you. This type of curling iron has a cylinder shape, which creates beautiful waves that have an S pattern. The cylinder shape of this curling iron creates a large to small curl in one area, perfect for those vintage waves.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Curling Iron
There are a number of factors that you should take into consideration when choosing a curling iron in order to find the best one to create the hairstyle you want to achieve. By taking certain factors into consideration, you will be able to choose the best curling iron to create the perfect waves or curls that you desire. Some of the most important factors to take into consideration when choosing a curling iron include the size of the barrel, the amount of time it takes to heat up and the material of the curling iron. To learn more about these and other factors that we consider to be the most important when choosing a curling iron, please keep on reading.
The Size of the Barrel
One of the most important factors that you are going to want to take into consideration when choosing a curling iron is the size of the barrel. Curling irons come in a variety of barrel sizes, and you will want to pick a barrel size that best fits the curl you are trying to achieve. If you want to create tight curls and definition, a small barrel is the best choice. Medium barrels work on all type of hair, and they create more subtle curls. A large barrel creates the least defined curls and can be used to create loose waves and large curls.
The Material of the Curling Iron
Curling irons are constructed of three different materials; ceramic, tourmaline and titanium. Here’s a breakdown of each of these types of materials:
- Ceramic – A ceramic curling iron offers even heat distribution, which minimizes the damage to your hair and emits negative ions that smooth and moisturize your hair. This material is also less likely to snag the hair.
- Tourmaline – Tourmaline curling irons emit up to six times more negative ions than ceramic curling irons. This smoothes the cuticle of the hair and leaves it nice and shiny.
- Titanium – This material creates even heat distribution and smoothes the surfaces of the hair, leaving it shiny. It also prevents snagging and sticking.
How Fast it Heats Up
Another important factor that you are going to want to take into consideration when choosing a curling iron is the amount of time it takes to heat up. Curling irons that heat up quickly are more convenient to use, as you don’t have to wait a long time to start styling your hair. There are curling irons that create instant heat, which are the most convenient of all curling irons.
The Build of the Curling Iron
You should also consider the build of the curling iron. The more lightweight it is, the easier it will be to manipulate and create the styles that you want to achieve. You also want your curling iron to have a durable construction so that it will last a long time and so that you can rely on it to work the way you want it to.
Your Hair Type
Another important factor to take into consideration when choosing a curling iron is your hair type. Some curling irons only work well in longer hair, as they need to be passed through long sections of the hair in order to achieve the desired look. A bubble wand curling iron is an example of a type of curling iron that will only work well in long hair.
The Length of the Cord
In order to have an easier time using your curling iron, you are going to want to look for one that comes with a cord that is long enough for you to easily manipulate it. With a long cord, you will be able to style all of your hair without having to adjust your position. Also, the longer the cord, the greater the reach you will have, so you will be able to move around with greater ease.
The Cost of the Curling Iron
Lastly, you are going to want to take the cost of the curling iron into consideration. Curling irons can vary widely in price, with basic models costing around $20 and more advanced models costing upwards of $70 or more. The more features the curling iron offers, the more expensive it will be. Make sure you know how much you want to spend before you start shopping so you don’t spend more than you are comfortable with.
Features Curling Irons Can Offer
There are a number of features that curling irons can offer. These features are intended to make the curling iron more versatile and easier to use. As mentioned above, the more features a curling iron offers, the more expensive it will be, so keep that in mind when you are shopping. It is important to understand the intended purpose of these features so that you can choose the best curling iron to fit your needs.
Here is a look at some of the top features that curling irons can offer.
If you want a truly versatile curling iron, look for one that offers interchangeable barrels. You will be able to switch out the barrel to create different looks with ease; for example, if you want tight, defined curls, you can use a smaller barrel, and if you want looser waves, you can switch out the barrel for a larger one.
Automatic Shut Off
A curling iron is a fire hazard when it is left on. In order to ensure that you don’t forget that you have left it turned on when you are done styling your hair, look for a curling iron that features and automatic shut off. With this feature, you will have greater peace of mind.
Variable Heat Settings
Different heats are used to create different styles, and a curling iron that offers variable heat settings will allow you to adjust the heat of the barrel so that you can create the styles that you want to achieve.
The Best Curling Iron Brands
There are several manufacturers that produce curling irons. Here are our picks for the top brands.
One of the most trusted names in curling irons is Conair. This company produces various types of curling irons that boast a variety of features. They are versatile, durable and are easy to use.
Another trusted name in curling irons is Remington. This company uses high quality materials to expertly construct their curling irons. They offer several types of curling irons that boast a variety of features.
Cortex produces a variety of grooming tools, including curling irons. Their curling irons are thoughtfully designed and easy to use, and allow you to create beautiful hairstyles that look as if they were created by a professional.