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Three Unexpected Ways to Use Your Hair Straightener

Trying to get more out of your straightener? We can help. Try one of these three unexpected techniques

Get more out of your hair straightener with these unexpected uses

Hair straighteners and flat irons are like magic wands for people battling frizzy, wavy, and otherwise difficult-to-manage hair. Paired with the right products, a hair straightener can be a powerful tool in any beauty routine. However, the best straighteners can be useful for other tasks besides achieving sleek, silky hairstyles, making them one of the best items to keep stashed in your beauty collection.

Can You Use a Hair Straightener to Add Curl to Your Hair?

It seems a little counterintuitive, but hair straighteners can actually double as hair curlers. With a slight change of your hair straightening technique, you can achieve large, voluminous waves in a matter of seconds.

To use the hair straightener method to curl your hair, simply wrap a strand of hair at a 90-degree angle near the top of your head and gently pull the angled iron all the way down the strand. Once you reach the end, release the strand to reveal a curl. After you’ve curled all your hair, the style can be held in place with some hairspray. Practice makes perfect—everyone’s hair is different, and after some practice, this hair styling method is easy to achieve quickly.

Besides traditional curls, other styles can be achieved with the hair straightener by a similar angling method. For example, by alternating the angles or making the angle more obtuse, you can create a crimped or beach wave look rather than tight curls. With practice and experimentation, a hair straightener can achieve a host of popular looks.

It may seem silly to curl your hair with a straightener if you already have a curling iron or wand lying around, but this can be a way to save money (you can achieve two different hair looks for the price of one tool) or pack less on your next trip.

Can You Use a Hair Straightener to Add Temporary Color to Your Hair?

Have you ever wanted to try a bright, fun hair color, but didn’t want to commit to having a hot-pink ‘do until your next styling appointment? With the help of a trusty hair straightener, you can add a bright pop of temporary color to your hair that will wash out within one to two showers after the application.

To achieve this look with your hair straightener, you will need one other main component. Rather than a traditional hair dye, you will need to procure some chalk pastels (these can be purchased online or at any crafting store). Simply rub the chalk pastels onto the tips or strands of your hair that you want temporarily dyed. After the chalk is applied, “seal” in the color by running the hot hair straightener over the chalked areas. The direct heat from the hair straightener causes the color to temporarily seal, making the hair vibrant and colorful for a few washes. To remove the color, simply shampoo it away.

Can You Use a Hair Straightener as an Emergency Clothes Iron?

Although it’s a hair straightener, your hair tool can prove to be useful in places besides your head. Under certain circumstances, your hair straightener can be used to banish stubborn wrinkles from your clothes. While this works well for many clothing items, there are some precautions you should take before taking your hot iron to your blouse.

Imagine you are packing for a vacation. You want your outfits to look their best, but you don’t have room in your luggage to pack an iron or steamer to keep your clothes looking crisp. This is where your hair straightener can perform double-duty on your packing list. Once heated, a hair straightener can be smoothed gently over wrinkled clothing to remove stubborn wrinkles, much like a small travel iron.

Before you ever use your straightener as an emergency clothing iron, you need to ensure the wrinkled clothing item isn’t made of any blended or unnatural fibers. Any mixed blend or unnatural fiber may contain a small amount of plastic, and contact with a searing hot hair straightener may lead to unintentional melting or, worse, burns on your skin. It is also best to avoid using the hair straightener to fix any stubborn spots too close to buttons or other clothing embellishments, such as beading or rhinestones.

Resources — Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping