Good ceramic hair straighteners don’t come cheap, and if you’re anything like me, you use yours all the time. Because forking out for a new one every year or so is just not feasible, it’s important that you treat the one you’ve got carefully so that it doesn’t decide to break down. In addition, you’ll find that a little straightener TLC every now and again will improve the performance of your appliance, and might even play a role in protecting your hair from inevitable heat damage. To help you keep your hair irons in good shape, I’ve put together a list of 7 tips to care for your ceramic straighteners.
1. Store Correctly
A ceramic straightener should always be stored lying flat. Never hang your product up by its cable, for example: this will eventually loosen the wire connection so that the straightener won’t turn on. If yours came with its own specially designed case, keeping it in that is a good way to ensure it’s stored correctly.
2. Get a Heat Proof Mat
Because ceramic straighteners get very, very hot, it is obviously important that they don’t come into contact with the surface on which they are lying. This is especially true of plastics and other meltable materials – if the top of the table on which your straightener is lying dissolves, not only are you left with damaged furniture, but with a hair appliance covered in liquefied plastic (or whatever). A heat proof mat is the simple answer to this problem: it will protect both surface and straightener.
3. Consider Your Shampoo and Conditioner
If you are using a shampoo and conditioner which tend to leave a lot of build up in your hair, it might be a good idea to consider changing brands. Not only is build-up the enemy of shiny, voluminous locks, it’s also quite bad for your straightener. Residue from your washing products stays on the paddles where it heats up and can even cause the plastic around them to melt.
4. Do Repair
If by some chance a piece of the plastic casing cracks or breaks on your ceramic straightener, it is always a good plan to get that panel fixed. If you leave it, the flaw may get worse and interfere with the appliance’s performance. Most good straighteners come with a product guarantee: contact the manufacturer and check whether the damage is covered.
5. Avoid Use in the Bathroom
Many People do straighten their hair in the bathroom; often the countertop and mirror set up makes it the ideal location. However, bathrooms are invariably damp places. The chance of your straightener coming into contact with water here is greatly increased. Be on the safe side: find a new, drier straightening station.
Because protective heat styling sprays and straightening balms are a must when using your ceramic straightener, it is inevitable that product will build up on the paddles. If it’s left, this reside can cause significant damage to your hair: it creates a sense of drag that snaps strands and encourages ends to split. To prevent this from happening, simply wide down the straightener after use. Unlplug it, wait until it is completely cool, and then using a (very slightly) damp cloth, clean away the traces of product.
7. Buy a Cleaner
In addition to wiping down your straighteners every time you use them, it is also a good idea to buy a cleaning product especially created with the ceramic iron in mind. Use this once every couple of weeks to give your appliance a serious seeing to: this will make doubly sure than no residue remains to ruin your straightening sessions.
For many of us, a ceramic straightener is an important element in our daily hair routine. Because these fab appliances don’t come cheap, and because we do use them pretty much every day, it is a good idea to make sure that we keep them in excellent working order. My list of 7 tips to care for your ceramic straightener should help you to do this: got any suggestions of your own to add to it?
Top Photo Credit: justusbluemer