Should I get a Tourmaline or Ceramic flat iron?
This question plagued my mind for quite some time. Is there really a difference between these two types of straightening irons?
After extensive research and product testing, I have found the perfect solution.
This article will provide you with all you need to know without over-complicating anything.
Which is intended for what?
Continue reading to learn more.
Ceramic Flat Iron Overview
What is a Ceramic Flat Iron?
A ceramic flat iron is a hair styling tool that is used mainly for straightening hair.
Unlike other types of flat irons, ceramic irons make use of ceramic plates – a metal plate that is coated with ceramic material.
However, when used as a coating on metals, ceramics improve thermal conduction (3) resulting in better heat distribution.
Benefits and Drawbacks
The ceramic coating on the metal of ceramic plates has both advantages and disadvantages.
Remember I mentioned that ceramics are poor thermal conductors?
This works in a good way as a coating over metal since the heat from the metal is tempered, thus protecting hair cuticles from exposure to intense heat. This protects the hair from heat damage.
The gentle, low, infrared heat emitted from ceramic irons helps lock in moisture, which results in shiny hair.
Improved thermal conduction means that heat is equally distributed to every hair strand. This works for better frizz control resulting in a smoother kind of straight.
Recent technology has seen the development of nano ceramic hair irons which is an upgrade from ceramic irons of the past.
Nano-coatings (4) are additional layers of ceramic that help in repelling dry particles, oil, and dirt from hair. These help seal in moisture for even silkier hair.
They are even better heat conductors than plain ceramics so the straightening process is made quicker with nano-ceramic irons.
Among all hair straighteners, ceramic hair irons turn out to be the most affordable option too! This is probably one of the best advantages since you get quality at a lesser price.
Ensure that the ceramic iron you plan to buy makes use of the quality ceramic coating. Cheaper straighteners may easily get damaged since ceramic coatings do tend to chip or scratch. (5)
Once they do, they may even lead to hair damage.
READ MORE: Does Steampod Damage Hair?
What Hair Type is it Best For?
Ceramic hair straighteners work best on fine, thin, delicate hair.
Fine hair is damaged easily. The gentle heat from ceramic hair straighteners protects hair from damage caused by excessive heat.
Tourmaline Flat Iron Overview
What is a Tourmaline Flat Iron?
A tourmaline flat iron is actually a ceramic flat iron that has ground tourmaline-infused in the coating.
Tourmaline (6) is actually a compound mineral in crystal form. Tourmaline is piezoelectric in nature which means that whenever it is subjected to heat, it is able to emit electrical charges while releasing ions (7) in the process.
Benefits and Drawbacks
A greater degree of ionization due to tourmalines is one of the better features of tourmaline irons. Imagine a super-charged ceramic iron that releases more ions to improve moisture retention.
Having a ceramic plate also assures you of better heat conduction that is equally distributed even through a thick head of hair.
Extra moisture and superb but gentle heating simply mean glassy, frizz-free hair on all types of hair with minimal hair harm.
Another great thing about tourmaline-infused ceramic hair straighteners is that they are quite smooth to use.
They barely snag during use so you lessen the chances of causing unnecessary breakage that is associated with older types of hair straighteners.
Tourmaline hair straighteners are the gold standard for hair straighteners these days. In fact, using one gives you results akin to hairstyling done by professional stylists.
A major disadvantage of tourmaline hair straighteners though is that they are quite are prone to chipping and scratching, much more than plain ceramic straighteners even.
They aren’t cheap hair straighteners either so you will need to spend a bit if you plan on getting one yourself.
What Hair Type is it Best For?
Tourmaline works best for any hair type. This includes coarse hair, curly hair, thin hair, and even dry hair!
Tourmaline-infused hair straighteners lock in moisture so well while gently exposing your hair to heat. This is good news for those with dry hair or thin hair that can easily be damaged to heat.
Thermal conduction is so efficient with these types of hair straighteners so you can straighten at half the time it would take with a normal hair straightener.
This is pretty good news for those with thick hair strands that don’t easily respond to hair straightening procedures.
If you also want to learn the difference between a ceramic and titanium flat iron, here’s a great video explanation:
Is Tourmaline Better Than Ceramic?
If I were to choose between a tourmaline flat iron v a ceramic one, I would probably go for the tourmaline one.
While a ceramic flat iron is already considered to be a good buy when it comes to flat iron hair straighteners.
Tourmaline-infused ceramic hair straighteners just up the game and do a much better job in keeping your hair smooth and hair shiny.
Tourmaline hair flat irons work for all kinds of hair texture, afro-textured hair, coarse hair types, thin hair, etc. The results are amazing and are comparable to work done by professional hairstylists.
Between the two, tourmaline is a far better flat iron for hair.
Take a look at this video review:
Is tourmaline good for your hair?
Yes. It distributes heat more efficiently and it does better in sealing moisture during straightening.
What type of iron can you use for thick, coarse hair?
If your hair is thick and coarse, definitely go for a tourmaline flat iron.
Advances in hair technology have made it possible to develop better styling tools, especially hot tools, that can be used regularly without resulting in extremely damaged hair.
Tourmaline and ceramic flat irons are some of the better choices these days for those who can’t do away without having extra straight hair.
There are steam irons that can serve as another option if you are really thinking about a really good hair straightening tool.
In fact, the best steam flat irons may even offer more protection for your hair than tourmaline and ceramic irons.
The bottom line is to be mindful of your hair type and let that guide you in getting a good buy.
Whether it’s a tourmaline flat iron and a ceramic one v a steam flat iron, there is always one that is perfectly matched for your hair.
- 1. What are ceramics? [Internet]. Science Learning Hub. Science Learning Hub; 2010. Available from: https://www.sciencelearn.org.nz/resources/1769-what-are-ceramics
- 2. Nondestructive Evaluation Physics : Materials [Internet]. www.nde-ed.org. Available from: https://www.nde-ed.org/Physics/Materials/Structure/ceramic.xhtml
- 3. Sreenivasa Rao KV, Girisha KG, Pooja Shree R, Kumar M. Effect of Surface Coatings on Thermal performance of steel Substrates. Materials Today: Proceedings [Internet]. 2017 [cited 2022 Jan 28];4:10249–53. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2214785317311616
- 4. What is Nano Coating? – An Introduction to Ceramic Coatings [Internet]. www.twi-global.com. Available from: https://www.twi-global.com/technical-knowledge/faqs/what-is-nano-coating
- 5. published AB. Ceramic hair straighteners: are they bad for your hair? [Internet]. Woman and Home Magazine. 2020 [cited 2022 Jan 28]. Available from: https://www.womanandhome.com/us/beauty/are-ceramic-straighteners-bad-for-hair/
- 6. Tourmaline: The mineral Tourmaline information and pictures [Internet]. Minerals.net. 2019. Available from: https://www.minerals.net/mineral/tourmaline.aspx
- 7. Ions | Introduction to Chemistry [Internet]. courses.lumenlearning.com. Available from: https://courses.lumenlearning.com/introchem/chapter/ions/
What about you, do you prefer tourmaline or ceramic flat iron? Let us know below!
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Lusine is a fresh young writing enthusiast who loves to share tips about beauty, skincare, and so many other things. When she’s not writing, you can find her snuggled up with her dog Benji binging on Netflix. She’s also into cooking and yoga. Follow her on FACEBOOK and TWITTER. Learn more about her HERE.