5 Best Flat Irons For Natural Hair 2024 (Type 4c, 4b And 4a) – We Review And Compare

Best flat iron for natural black African American hair

What Should I Look For When Comparing Flat Irons, Ceramic Or Titanium?

How to compare flat irons

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All flat irons are not made alike. You’ll need to invest in a high-quality product if you want to prevent major breakage. It will also help if you know your hair type. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Make sure you can change the temperature. If a flat iron doesn’t allow you to change the temperature, it will fry your hair. Most preset flat irons are set at 350 – 400 degrees Fahrenheit, which is great for Type 1 hair but will burn Type 4 hair to a crisp.

Don’t be fooled by “nano-ceramic.” If a flat iron claims to be nano-ceramic, then it’s made of cheap metal with just a little bit of ceramic. Why is this bad? Because when the ceramic flakes off (and it always does), then the iron’s metal plates will be exposed, and – you guessed it – they will fry your hair. Invest in a 100% ceramic flat iron or in a high-end iron that is thickly coated.

Look for tourmaline or titanium. Titanium irons are effective; no matter how kinky and thick your hair is, a tourmaline iron can straighten it in one pass, which will reduce the heat damage. Tourmaline is popular because it leaves hair shiny.

Will I Need To Buy A Different Flat Iron Depending On Whether I Have 4a, 4b Or 4c Hair?

Flat Irons for 4a, 4b, 4c

When it comes to black hair, finding the perfect flat iron can be tricky.

If your hair is generally easy to manage, and more on the fine side (Type 3 to Type 4a), then a ceramic iron is probably best for you. It’s good for reducing frizz.

If your curls are very tight (Type 4a and 4a/4b) or if you have relaxed hair that needs ironing out, then choose an iron high in tourmaline. Tourmaline is strong enough to straighten out your thick hair but gentle enough to prevent breakage, which is especially common with 4a and relaxed hair.

If your hair is coarse or your curls are a little less defined (4b and 4c), then pick up a titanium flat iron. These irons usually have a wide range of temperature settings, so you can figure out which one your hair likes best.

Will A Flat Iron Damage My Hair? How Can I Avoid That?

Hair damage is a real issue

No matter how nice your flat iron is, it will fry your hair if you’re not careful, so take these precautions:

Deep condition. When you straighten it, your hair shouldn’t be wet but it should be hydrated. Deep conditioning will not only hydrate, but it will also strengthen your hair, helping your follicles withstand the heat.

Detangle. Never flat iron your hair before you detangle it – the hair will break and you’ll be left with a knotted, curly mess. After you deep condition, carefully finger detangle.

Use protection. A heat protectant is your best friend. Before you straighten or even blow dry your hair, apply a salon-grade heat protectant. We’ll discuss the best below.

Keep it low. If your hair is extra kinky, you might be tempted to turn your iron up to 400 degrees. Don’t do that unless you want to permanently lose your curl pattern! Instead, keep it at 300-320 degrees – 350 at the most.

Which Heat Protectant Should I Use With My Flat Iron?

Top Heat Protectants to use with flat irons

All hair is different, but these favorites are tried-and-true:

It’s A 10 Miracle Leave-In: This is the holy grail of heat protectants. It protects, detangles, conditions, moisturizes, and adds shine while taming frizz. A miracle indeed!

HIS Professional Thermal Protector: This spritz will give you the strongest hold with the least oiliness or build-up.

Tresemme Thermal Creations Heat Tamer: This spray will prevent frizz and keep your hair particularly soft.

For more options, check out this video:

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