For the uninitiated, a hair straightening brush may seem like nothing more than a glorified flat iron, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. While the end result is straight hair, they function quite differently and the impact they have on your hair over time is quite different as well. With this guide, we’ll help you find the best hair straightening brush for your hair.
The benefits of buying a hair straightening brush
The main benefit of buying a hair straightener brush is hair health. Flat irons straighten most hair types perfectly well. However, because the hair is in constant contact with the hot surface of the iron, it’s exposed to the brunt of the heat. Over time, that damage takes its toll. Initially, after extensive flatiron use, hair will become dull and dry. As time goes on, breakage and severe damage will occur. If that worst-case scenario ends up happening, depending on how bad your damage and breakage is, you may have to cut your hair, which can be terribly upsetting to someone who has always had long hair.
A Hair brush straightener, on the other hand, protects your hair. Yes, they use heat. And many of them can reach higher temperatures than flatirons. (More on that later.) However, the bristles on the straightening brush keep your hair from being directly exposed to the heating plate. Because your hair comes into less direct contact with the heat source, it doesn’t get damaged. And on that note, there are those who use a traditional straightener only three days a week (the max recommended amount) and accrue major hair damage; while, many who use a hair straightening brush everyday never get any damage at all, and when they do, it’s not only unusual, but the damage is usually very minimal at most.
Safety is one of the major benefits of buying a hair straightening brush. The best hair straightening brush is one that is equipped with an automatic shutoff timer, so if you forget to switch it off, you don’t risk burning your house down.
And while we’re talking about burns and safety, there’s the topic of burning yourself. Flatirons are notorious for burning your fingers, wrists and scalp; because, again, the heated surface is exposed and comes into direct contact with your hair, which means it can come into direct contact with other parts of you too.
Hair straightening brushes greatly minimize burn risk. The bristles keep the heat away from your scalp and also prevent you from accidentally burning your hands or arms as well.
Another benefit of buying a hair brush straightener is it’s a 2 in 1 product by nature: it straightens your hair while it brushes it. Flat irons require you to brush your hair thoroughly before straightening it. With a hair straightening brush, you can get going right away without any prep; already, this cuts down on your overall time spent doing your hair.
And on that subject of time, because of the fact that you’re brushing your hair straight, instead of meticulously ironing sections, you can cut your time by half; moreover, the brushes get hotter, which also helps with speed. (And again, this is without damaging your hair, because your hair never comes into direct contact with the heat source.)
Straightening brushes are quite popular for parents of little girls with super-curly hair. Often, parents are (quite understandably) afraid to use a straightener on young children, because there is a high burn risk for kids who are too young to understand just how high that burn risk is. Many parents whose daughters are black or mixed race use straightening brushes, because their child wants straight hair, but they know that flatirons cause a lot of heat damage, and that a child’s hair is far more sensitive to heat damage than an adult’s, which is why straightening brushes, which are much healthier for hair and for heavy use, are a very popular choice for families of color.
Finally, straightening brushes also have some unexpected yet positive benefits compared to flat irons. A straightening brush ionizes your hair, giving it body and shape, while still keeping it silky and straight like you like it. Flat irons, on the other hand, leave hair looking…well…flat. And as you brush your hair with the brush straightener, the bristles massage your scalp. This stimulates circulation, which decreases pain and stress, while promoting new hair growth for an overall healthier scalp.
What to look for when buying a hair straightening brush
The first thing to look for in a hair straightening brush is whether or not it is MCH (metal ceramic heat) or PTC (positive thermal coefficient). While both are good choices and are greatly superior to older technologies, MCH is the newer heating technology. It heats faster and gets a lot hotter. Because of this, devices that use MCH may have heating caps and shutoff timers so that the device doesn’t melt. Even though MCH is known for its high heat, it’s still perfectly safe heating for hair straightening brushes, because, again, unlike flatirons, your hair and scalp never directly touch the heat source.
Because you’re dealing with a heated tool, it’s important that the hair straightening brush you ultimately go off have an automatic shutoff timer, so you and your straightener can be protected in case you forget to turn it off.
Also on the topic of heat: Ideally, there should be variable heat settings. The reason for this is that we all have our own unique hair types. Some of us have fine hair, some have coarse hair, some have bleached hair, some have super curly hair. Each hair type responds better to different heat levels. For instance, if your hair is only slightly wavy and fine, there’s no point in using a high heat setting, because the lower settings will straighten your hair with ease. On the flipside, if your hair is super thick, coarse and curly, you’re going to need the higher heat levels to straighten it. That is why adjustability is so important. Especially if you share the straightening brush with a roommate or sibling with a different hair type from yours.
Because of these temperature variables, a heat lock feature is always a plus. This makes it so you can’t accidentally change the heat setting from the one you wanted. Because let’s be real: taming your mane takes two hands; it’s very easy to accidentally bump your free hand into the settings panel. That’s why this feature is so crucial.
Check the voltage that your prospective straightener is compatible with. Different parts of the world support different voltage level. While most brands try to accommodate them all, not every brand does, so this is important to consider.
The best straightening brushes tend to have a swiveling power cord, because it makes it easier to get the angle you need to keep your hair on point.
Look for straightening brushes with mentioned benefits like “anti-frizz” or “anti-scalding”; these technologies should be automatically build-in to any straightening brush of good quality.
Tips on how to choose the best hair straightening brush for your needs
There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing the best hair straightening brush for your needs:
- Make sure the voltage is compatible with your country’s system
- Go for a straightening brush with multiple heat settings so you can find the best one for your hair
- Look for an automatic shutoff switch
- Go for nice features like a swiveling cord to make life easier
- “Anti-scalding” should be a major feature of any straightening brush you choose, because this means its bristles are specifically designed to keep you from getting burned—this is the critical technology that makes straightening brushes safer than flatirons
Hair straightening brush reviews
#1- MiroPure 2 in 1 Ionic Hair Straightener Brush
Winner, Best Hair Straightening Brush 2017!
An MCH hair straightening brush
The MiroPure is an MCH (metal ceramic heater) hair straightening brush, which is the latest generation in heating technology when it comes to straighteners. MCH is faster, hotter and more efficient than PTC straighteners. The MiroPure can reach its full heat in only 60 seconds. While MCH straighteners can technically heat faster, many products purposely heat slower, because it protects the integrity of the product, which gives it a longer life.
The Double Ionic Generator in the MiroPure imbues hair with positive ions, which seals your hairs cuticles, and gives you that silky, smooth hair that’s frizz-free and manageable.
16 heat settings
There are 16 variable heat settings on the MiroPure, ranging from the lowest of at 302F and the highest at 450F. Those numbers sound astronomical, but remember that your hair and scalp don’t touch the heat source with a hair straightening brush, so the higher heat isn’t a problem here—it’s a good thing! Also, with the 16 different settings, you can fine tune your regime for your perfect look, and also change it up based on what your hair is doing that day as a result of weather or other factors.
Because there are so many temperature settings, and you want to keep your ideal one, MiroPure features a temperature lock, so that there’s no way you can accidentally change the controls while styling your hair.
The automatic shutoff is a great safety feature, because forgetting to turn off straighteners is a major issue when you’re in a hurry to get to work or school. With a 60 second timer, you can be sure your straightening brush won’t be left on all day.
What to like about the MiroPure 2 in 1 Ionic Hair Straightener Brush:
- A 2 in 1 product that cuts brushing and straightening time in half
- Safe to use daily
- Anti-scald technology prevents burns
- Anti-static technology reduces frizz and flyaways
- Massages scalp
- Automatic shutoff timer
- Swivel cord
- 16 heat settings for ultimate control
- Works on 110V to 220V
What to consider:
- You can’t use it with wet hair. However, you can use it with damp hair, providing that it’s thoroughly toweled off and free of any obvious water droplets.
#2 AsaVea Portable Electric Hair Straightening Brush 3.0
Runner Up, Best Hair Straightening Brush 2017!
The AsaVea Portable Electric Hair Straightening Brush 3.0 is made of high-grade Dupont components and its exclusive PTC heating system is patented, and designed specifically to prevent scalding or contact with skin.
The slim profile of the AsaVea 3.0 allows you to have more control over your styling than with bulkier models.
Liquid crystal display
The liquid crystal display is easy to read and clearly tells you what your temperature settings are, so you know when you’re on target.
6 temperature settings
The variable temperature settings are in six levels, designed to accommodate and straighten most hair types.
Auto shutoff and temperature lock
The auto shutoff feature kicks in after 30 minutes of disuse for safety while the temperature lock ensures you don’t accidentally change your temperature setting while your hair straightening brush is engaged.
What to like about the AsaVea Portable Electric Hair Straightening Brush 3.0:
- Easy to use
- 30-minute auto shutoff timer
- 6 temperature settings
- Temperature lock
- Slim design with swivel cord
- High quality construction
What to consider:
- The biggest complaint with this hair straightening brush is a lack of consistency with results; however, it’s important to make use of the 6 temperature settings to find the best for you, and lock that one in when you find it. That’s why the temp lock feature is so important.
8x faster than a flatiron
Depending on how coarse your hair is, straightening with a flatiron can take up to an hour—sometimes more. However, The Original Hair Straightening Ceramic Brush by DAFNI boasts the ability to straighten hair flawlessly in as little as 3-5 minutes.
Easy to use
One of the main benefits of having a hair straightening brush like the one from DAFNI is that straightening your hair is as easy as brushing it. Unlike with straighteners, you don’t have to fuss with clumsily trying to clip your hair into sections.
One of the unique things about this straightener is that it only has one temperature setting of 365F. Before anyone becomes alarmed by the lack of temperature variability, there is a big ringing benefit to this: It allows the temperature to be more even, which produces smooth, frizz-less results.
Should you rush out the door and leave your straightener on, it will automatically shut off, leaving you with peace of mind.
What to like about The Original Hair Straightening Ceramic Brush by DAFNI
- Made with high quality heat-resistant materials like those used by NASA
- 3D ceramic technology
- Anti-static outer bristles
- Even temperature
- Fast results
What to consider:
- The main complaint is that some of these straighteners have arrived damaged. This is a shipping issue; contact the company for a resolution
- Some find it doesn’t control frizz enough; it’s important to remember that everyone’s hair is different, and some require more temperature control than others.
Using the floating ceramic plate, you can straighten your hair to a silk smooth sheet of glossiness.
The rolling barrel attachment smooths and curls hair simultaneous for lustrous tresses.
Tourmaline ceramic floating plate
The tourmaline ceramic floating plate attachment that straightens hair is without making it flat and lifeless, because it straightens without damaging.
If mornings are always a rush for you, you can still style your hair like a boss, thanks to the rapid 30-second heat up.
The auto shutoff feature engages when the iron hasn’t been used in a while to keep you and your loved ones safe.
What to like about the InStyler Original Rotating Hot Iron:
- You can curl or straighten hair depending on which attachment you use
- 30-second heat up
- Tourmaline ceramic floating plate prevents hair damage
- Straightens and curls
- Four rows of bristles
What to consider:
- The brush end is more like a flatiron/straightening brush hybrid with a heating element in the center bristles around the edges; if your hair is easily damaged, but for most it won’t be that big of an issue.
See our Instyler Reviews for a full review of this product
Ceramic ion plates
The positive ions put off by the ceramic plates reduce frizz and leave your hair smooth and straight.
You can set the temperature anywhere from 350F to 450F to get the ideal temperature setting for your specific hair type.
Traditional paddle brush-like design
This hair straightening brush looks like a traditional paddle brush most of us ladies have in our hair arsenal, so it gives you an idea about the size and movability; for instance, you can straighten bangs with it while still being able to cover large areas of hair quickly.
Easy to use
The HSI hair straightening brush heats up quickly and has been redesigned with a new and improved ergonomic grip to reduce wrist and arm fatigue. Also, it has a swivel cord, so you can maneuver easier.
Travel Size Argan Oil Leave-in Hair Treatment
This straightening brush comes with a travel size sample of Argan Oil Leave-in Hair Treatment. Argan oils is one of the best natural heat protectants out there, because it makes hair shinier and more manageable while moisturizing it in a non-greasy way.
What to like about the Professional HSI Flat Iron Ceramic Brush Straightener:
- Easy to use brush-like operation
- Swivel cord
- Ergonomic handle
- Heats fast
- Argan oil sample included
- Temperature adjusts from 350F to 450F
- Ceramic ion plates reduce frizz and promote sleekness
What to consider:
- While experiences are usually positive, some have found that it’s hard to get the heat properly adjusted to higher levels. However, HSI has great customer service; they can help troubleshoot the problem, or, if it turns out to be a defect, refund or replace the straightening brush.
Broad temperature range
The operational temperature range on the Apalus Hair Straightening Brush is one of the broadest out there: The lowest setting is 180F while the highest is 450F. With a temperature range like this, it can handle anything from a little girl’s wispy curls, to the coarse, curly hair of a grown woman, all with perfect ease. The recommended setting is 365F, so that’s a good starting place if you’re an adult.
180F is reached within one minute while the maximum temp of 450F is achieved in three minutes. This not-to-fast, not-to-slow heat-up is perfect for longevity of your straightening brush.
The keys autolock after five seconds of use, which prevents you from accidentally changing the temperature settings while styling your hair.
One of the big selling points of the Apalus Hair Straightening Brush is that it comes with a lot of safety features. For starters, it has the (should always be) standard automatic shutoff after 60 minutes of disuse, while the aforementioned autolocking keys stop accidental temperature changes from occurring. The plug, which is US-compatible, features both leakage and short-circuit protection. Like all of the best hair straightening brushes on the market, it features anti-scald technology, so burns are practically impossible. Finally, it has one of the most important yet oft-forgotten features out there: temperature control for the case (120F-140F), which protects the case from damage and helps it maintain its integrity, so you can use it safely for years to come.
Free bonus accessories
Heat protecting gloves and hair clips are included.
What to like about the Apalus Hair Straightening Brush:
- Massaging tips boost scalp circulation
- Autolocking keys
- Automatic shutoff
- Case temperature control
- Short-circuit and leakage protection on the plug
- Swivel cord
- Fast heating
- Broad temperature range
- Accessories included
What to consider:
- Most hair types handle this straightener well; however, those with fine hair have had issues with the bristles not being close enough together, which makes it harder for fine hair to straighten. However, for average and coarse hair, it works great. Those with coarse hair seem to get the biggest benefit.
Winner- MiroPure 2 in 1 Ionic Hair Straightener Brush
While there were so many great hair straightening brushes in this roundup, the best hair straightening brush is easily the MiroPure 2 in 1 Ionic Hair Straightener Brush. It has all of the necessary safety features, as well as a broad temperature range with 16 temperature settings. It doesn’t get more comprehensive than that in terms of temperature control. It’s an MCH straightening brush; the results are fast and look amazing, which is why it’s ultimately the winner.
Not convinced? See the rest of our Hair Straightening Brushes and find the one that’s right for you!