If we had to pick just one hot tool to use for the rest of our lives, it would be a flat iron. We know what you’re thinking—what if you don’t want to have straight hair for the rest of your life? Well, it’s summer, and if you’re one of the many people spending the season chilling at home, you’ll be happy to learn that there are so many ways to style your hair with a flat iron. Now’s the perfect time to play around with flat iron hairstyles that you’ve never tried before.
Will using a flat iron damage my hair?
When it comes to styling hair, it’s important to note that heat styling will always cause damage, including flat ironing. However, there are ways you can go about minimizing hair damage and keeping your mane healthy. You can also talk with your stylist about creating a tailored hair care routine to minimize the look and feel of damage, but using a few salon-quality products can also do the trick.
If you’re really concerned about the damaging effects of using flat irons, opt for a steam alternative like L'Oréal Professionnel’s Steampod. This innovative styling tool uses steam to create straight hair or waves on any hair type two times faster, two times smoother*, and with 91 percent less breakage**. The steam technology helps infuse water into your hair cuticle with every pass, ensuring that your mane is retaining moisture as you style.
*Compared to Steampod without steam and comb (heating plates only)
**After 15 uses with steam and integrated comb vs. Steampod heating plates alone.
What should I put on my hair before flat ironing?
Before applying heat to your hair, whether it’s with a curling iron or flat iron, it is essential to always use a heat protectant. We recommend Redken’s Extreme Play Safe Heat Protection And Damage Repair Hair Treatment. This product works to fortify hair while shielding strands from heat up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit to help keep your hair strong and healthy. If you’re looking for a product that will protect your hair while conditioning, we suggest using Biolage’s Thermal Active Heat Protectant Spray. To use the product, simply apply a few spritzes on wet or damp hair before styling. It can also be used on dry hair with curling irons, straightening irons, and hot rollers.
What should I put on my hair after flat ironing?
Once you’re done styling, you should use styling products that help hold your look and control frizz and flyaways. If your mane is prone to frizz, use a taming hairspray like Redken Control Addict 28 Strong Hold Hairspray. For those who need their flat iron hairstyle to stay put throughout the day, opt for a formula with an extra strong hold like L'Oréal Professionnel Tecni.Art Extreme Lacquer High Hold Hairspray.
If you want a frizz control, smoothing, and hydrating combo, a hair serum like Pureology’s Smooth Perfection Smoothing Serum should be your go-to. This formula works particularly well for normal to thick frizzy hair.
The Best Flat Iron Hairstyles To Try Now
Searching for the best flat iron hairstyles to try? Keep scrolling for 18 of our favorites whether you’re looking for short flat ironed styles or ideas for longer strands.
Straight And Sleek
If there is one thing a flat iron does best, it’s creating sleek, silky strands. Watch TikTok creator and hairstylist Cynthia Dhimdis create straight, sleek hair using the L'Oréal Professionnel Steampod.
Looking to add some volume to your curls? To create this style, start at the back of your head and spray 2-inch sections of clean, dry hair with a heat protectant like Redken’s Oil for All Benefit Hair Oil Heat Protect Spray to protect your strands from heat damage and lock-in moisture. Quickly pass the flat iron over one section before lightly clamping down on your hair a half-inch from your ends.
Then, twist the flat iron towards your head, wrapping the section of hair around your flat iron the same way you would a curling iron. Continue curling 2-inch sections until you’ve completed your entire head. Set your style with a medium-hold hairspray.
Flippy ends are a quick and easy way to switch up your go-to straight style. Simply use your flat iron to curl your ends up and away from your face. If you’re going for a more subtle look, invert your flipped ends and curl them up and towards your face. Keep your style intact all day long by using Redken’s Triple Dry 15 Texture Finishing Spray. This spray will ensure a touchable hold and a barely-there feel perfect for your flippy ends.
Are you tired of curtain and wispy bangs? Well, if that’s the case, look no further than this ‘70s-inspired hairstyle. To achieve this look, simply flat iron your bangs up and away from your face. To manage these retro bangs, we suggest using Kerastase’s Fluidissime Anti Frizz Spray to tame frizz and create movement.
These days, there are all kinds of hair tools whose sole purpose is to create flawless beach waves. However, when beach waves first became a staple on red carpets all over the world, they were created by flat irons.
To create these runway-worthy waves, begin at the back of your head, working with 2-inch sections of clean, dry hair. Clamp your flat iron at the base of the section and then twist your flat iron vertically. Then, slowly pass the flat iron over the section keeping a slight bend in your wrist to create the subtle wave. Once you’ve completed your entire head, run your fingers through your waves to give them a tousled final look and set your style with a texturizing spray like L’Oreal Professionnel Tecni.Art Next Day Hair Dry Finishing Spray.
Start at the back of your head, working with 2-inch sections of clean, dry hair. Clamp the base of each section with your flat iron, flip the flat iron down and hold it in place for 15 seconds.
Then, move your flat iron down the section of hair, flip it up, and hold it in place. Continue twisting the flat iron up and down until you reach the bottom of the section. Once you’ve crimped your whole head, set your look with a flexible-hold hairspray. We recommend Matrix’s Style Link Texture Builder Messy Finishing Spray to hold voluminous and windswept looks together.
Flat irons are known for making your hair look sleek and smooth, but they can also create some killer texture. For this laid-back look, begin at the back of your head, working with 2-inch sections of clean, dry hair. Twirl each section until it forms one big twist and run your flat iron over the twist.
Continue to hold the bottom of the twist for a few seconds until your hair cools down, then release and untwirl the twist. Once you’ve completed your whole head, run your fingers through your locks to create a perfectly unkempt look and set your style with a flexible-hold hairspray.
Crimped Braid Out
Crimped hair has officially made a comeback! If you haven’t seen a crimper since 1998 but you can’t get enough of the trendy style, we have a styling hack just for you. Begin by applying a medium hold styling mousse such as Biolage’s Hydra Foaming Styler throughout your hair to add body and natural movement to your hair.
Working with 1-inch sections of hair, create small braids all over your head. Then, slowly pass the flat iron over each braid until your hair is just heated through. Allow your braids to cool completely before releasing them, then finish your look with a spritz of shine spray.
Braided Out Waves
The technique to create these waves is identical to the crimped braid out style. However, by creating larger braids, you’re left with waves instead of a crimp. To begin, work a medium-hold styling mousse throughout your locks before sectioning off your hair into four to six large segments.
Braid each section and slowly pass the flat iron over it, allowing your braids to cool completely before releasing them. Finish your look with a spritz of shine spray.
The pin curl technique has been around for decades, and flat irons make them even easier to achieve. Allowing your hair to cool down while it’s pinned creates a style that will survive dancing all night long.
Begin at the back of your head, working with 2-inch sections of clean, dry hair. Pass the flat iron over each section, keeping the iron slightly angled to create a curl. Take the warm section of hair and roll it towards your scalp. Pin the curl to your head with a bobby pin before moving on to the next section.
Once you’ve pinned your entire head, allow your curls to cool completely. Remove all of the bobby pins and gently rake your fingers through your curls to break them up. Set your look with a flexible hold hairspray such as Pureology’s Style + Protect Texture Finishing Spray to add a high, soft-touchable feel to your pin curls.
Glass hair has been trending for years, and once your stylist gives you the perfect cut, all you need is a flat iron to recreate the look at home. Begin at the back of your head, working with 2-inch sections of clean, dry hair at a time. Spray each one with a heat protectant and slowly pass over it with a flat iron followed by a comb.
Continue flat ironing your hair until you’ve completed your entire head. Once you finish flat ironing your hair, apply a serum like Pureology’s Style + Protect Shine Bright Taming Serum to add shine and tame flyaways.
To create these retro S-waves, you’ll have to begin with sleek straight hair. Once your hair is straight, start at the front of your head and part your hair horizontally to create 2-inch sections. Working with one section at a time, clamp the flat iron at the roots and slowly feed your hair through the flat iron in an S-shaped pattern. Once you complete the section, set the wave in place with a strong-hold hairspray.
Anyone with bangs knows how tricky they can be to style, but you can have flawless blunt bangs in minutes with the help of a flat iron. Simply clamp your bangs at the root with your flat iron and slowly pass over your fringe until they are sleek against your forehead.
Flat irons don’t have to mean flat hair. If you’re looking to pump a little volume into your flat ironed hairstyles, simply clamp the flat iron at the roots and pull your hair up before continuing to pass the flat iron down the section. For even more volume, prep your strands with a volumizing styling spray such as L’Oréal Professionnel’s Serie Expert Volumetry Anti-Gravity Effect Volume Spray.
Brush all of your hair towards the crown of your head and secure a ponytail with a hair elastic. Take 1-inch sections of hair from the ponytail and twist the flat iron towards your head, wrapping the section of hair around your flat iron the same way you would a curling iron. Continue working with sections of your ponytail until you’ve curled your entire pony. Then, gently rake your fingers through the ponytail to loosen the curls and set your look with hairspray.
Glam Wave Ponytail
For a more sophisticated way to wear a ponytail, look no further than this glam wave ponytail. When it comes to cute flat iron hairstyles, this one is at the top of our list—especially when it’s paired with a hair bow.
Straight Natural Hair
If you’re searching for natural flat iron hairstyles, you can’t go wrong with a classic sleek look. When working with natural hair, however, be sure to stick to a low heat setting and prep your hair with heat-protecting products before you start styling. When in doubt, be sure to ask a salon pro for advice on how to straighten natural hair.
Instead of creating flipped out ends, use your flat iron to turn them inward towards your chin for a sleek, polished finish. This style looks stunning on chin to shoulder-length hair.
Interested in more expert styling tips? Use our salon locator to book an appointment at a salon near you.