Are Ceramic Plates Good for Ethnic Hair?

Using heat-styling tools with ceramic plates is gentler on hair than those with metal plates.

Photo: Ralf Nau/Lifesize/Getty Images

Whether you're straightening or curling it, you often need heated tools to style your hair. Many flatirons, curling irons and even blow-dryers use ceramic plates to bring the heat so that your hair will look H-O-T. While heat-styling in any form is never unequivocally good for your ethnic hair, choosing tools with ceramic plates is better for your hair than those with metal plates.

Bring the Heat Quickly

When using heat-styling tools on ethnic hair, avoiding damage is nearly impossible. Fortunately, ceramic plates keep the damage to a minimum. Ceramic plates heat up quickly and transfer the heat to your hair in an instant, allowing you to set your style -- whether straight or curly -- within a few seconds. You'll decrease the length of time the heat comes in contact with your hair and minimize ensuing damage such as split ends and dry strands.

Bring the Heat Evenly

Metal plates heat up in some spots more than in others, burning your strands. You want to look smokin' hot, but your hair shouldn't smolder. Ceramic tools heat evenly across the plates to prevent overheating. The uniform heat from a ceramic flatiron or curling iron seals the cuticle, smoothing the hair and creating a frizz-less style.

Adjust Your Temperature

You'll gain even more control over the health of your ethnic hair when you use ceramic hair tools with a temperature setting. This way you give your hair exactly the amount of heat it needs to create the style and reduce potential damage. Finer textures don't need high heat, so a lower heat setting is the best option for this type of hair. The coarser and thicker your hair is, the more heat you can tolerate. However, even the thickest hair shouldn't be exposed to temperatures greater than 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

Protect Your Strands

You can never be too protective of your strands. If you want to keep it healthy and vibrant, babying your hair is a must. Ceramic plates minimize the damage to ethnic hair, but you'll get further protection from a heat-protectant spray. It will help shield your hair from some of the damage caused by heat styling. Some heat protectants are heat-activated, maximizing the effectiveness of the spray.

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