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What Temperature to Curl and Flat-Iron Hair

How Hot Your Heat Tools Should Be Based on Your Hair Type

What Temperature to Curl and Flat-Iron Hair
Image Source: Illustration by Becky Jiras

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  • If you've ever found yourself wondering what temperature to curl your hair with, you're not alone.
  • The temperature you use your hot tools depends on your hair type.
  • The temperature to straighten hair and curl hair also depends on other factors.

There's a very good reason a lot of your hairstyling tools have specific heat settings meant for you to switch around and control. But when it comes to straightening, curling, or adding any kind of heat to your hair, chances are you've sometimes just coated your head in a heat-protecting spray and hoped for the best without actually considering the temperature that's best for your individual hair type and needs.

To get the full scoop and finally learn the best curling-iron temperature and flat-iron temperature, keep reading. A celebrity hairstylist gave us the full rundown.

The Best Curling-Iron and Flat-Iron Temperature

The specific heat setting you should use is very dependent on your specific hair, and there are a few things to consider beforehand. Is it curly or straight? Is it coarse, or is your hair fine? Do you chemically treat or color it regularly? Generally speaking, and according to celebrity hairstylist and T3 stylist ambassador Laura Polko, 350 degrees Fahrenheit is a good baseline, but there are certain hair types that may need a higher (or lower) heat setting for their hair to curl or straighten properly.

"It's all about finding out what is right for your specific hair," she tells POPSUGAR. "Always start low, and you can increase if you need to. Especially if you are not skilled at using a flat iron or curling iron, you're going to want to start with a really low heat and keep your passes slow, and repeat them if you need to."

When determining how much heat your hair can handle, you should not only consider your hair or curl type but also its health. Consider the last time you got it colored or chemically treated: "Ignoring these factors can mean you are overexposing your hair to heat," Polko says. "This can result in breakage, damaged hair, and styles that don't last."

To help you better determine the best heat setting for your specific hair type, read on.

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