This Smart Straightener Takes the Guesswork Out of Heat Settings
If you’re like us, you love the look of freshly straightened strands every now and then. What we don’t like? Frying ends to a crisp with a flat iron. Luckily a new heat tool from ghd claims to self-adjust temperatures for fine, medium, and thick hair to make fried ends a worry of the past.
The Platinum+ ($249) uses sensor technology to adjust its heat based on the size of the section you’re working with, the thickness of your strands, as well as the speed at which you are passing the tool through your locks. And, it doesn’t assess your styling situation once, but 250 times per second to create safe temperatures that never exceed 365 degrees F (AKA the ideal temp for styling without causing damage). “[This temperature] is called the glass transition phase at which glass melts and can be reshaped without breaking,” celebrity hairstylist and ghd brand ambassador Justine Marjan tells Brit + Co. “The same idea can be applied to hair. [This heat level] can reshape the hair without blowing out the cuticle layer or causing damage that leads to porosity problems, color fadage, and breakage.” As a result, the aluminum styler, which is coated with ceramic instead of tourmaline thanks to its powerful heat-conducting properties, offers up to two times more color protection than a classic flat iron, not to mention 70 percent less breakage and 20 percent more shine, according to studies conducted by ghd.
Sounds too good to be true, right? I put it to the test to find out if this self-heating hair device is worth the hype. Let’s just say I wasn’t disappointed.
First things first, let’s talk about my hair. Without any heat styling, it’s naturally straight with the slightest wave (as seen above), so long as I don’t continually brush it as it dries. Beyond its air-dry abilities, it’s fine… like, very fine. I have a lot of it, but the girth of each strand makes for some interesting (read: anything but long-lasting) styling situations. While most people only have to worry about their straight hair falling flat post-blowout or curls, ironing my hair often ends in the same lifeless result, with roots that look far from lifted. In addition, straightening tends to make my hair appear so shiny that it looks greasy. While I love the way flat ironing my hair elongates my strands, I’ve steered clear in favor of blowouts and brushed-out waves.
The tool is designed to heat up in just 20 seconds, so I was able to dive right into my styling experiment.
Typically flat irons come with an indicator that clearly shows the temperature of the tool. This one, however, has no such thing. While I wish I could’ve seen how the heat fluctuated between different hair types, this design forced me to work off blind faith — which, if you’ve seen that video of the girl accidentally frying her hair off with a curling iron, was a bit of a beauty thrill.
Nerves aside, after the tool heated up, I passed it over my hair, hoping for the best and doing everything I could to not fear the worst. With each stroke, I grew more and more sure that this new straightener is the real deal. Where other smoothing hot tools introduce a greasy finish for me, this one created the swoon-worthy shine I’ve been seeking all along without going overboard. As for my roots… they fell flat. To find out if my technique was to blame for my perpetually deflated crown, I turned to the expert. “Keep the iron off the roots so that they still have lift,” Marjan told me. “Try using the ghd air hairdryer to smooth the hair first, then using the platinum+ on the mid lengths and ends.”
While you can absolutely achieve the silky-smooth strands of your dreams with this hot tool, it’s worth noting that you can create waves and curls too. “My favorite way to use the styler is to create flat-iron waves,” Marjan says. “This is done by bending the iron one way as you rotate your wrist, then releasing the strand, placing the tool back in the hair, and bending it in the opposite direction.” Depending on how big or small the desired effect is, drag the iron farther down the section you’re working with. Noted for next time.
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