When it comes to determining what size flat iron is best for your hair, you are actually wanting to know what plate width is best for you. To answer this questions, there are a couple of factors that play into making your decision.

First and foremost, the length of your hair is the most important factor in determining what size flat iron will do the best job for you. Secondary to this is what exactly you want the flat iron to do for you, i.e., straighten hair, flip hair, curl your hair etc.

So what is the universal plate width that will accommodate all hair lengths? Generally, the 1-inch plate width can be used for all hair lengths, however, the 1-inch plate width works best with medium length hair. What is considered medium length hair? If your hair length is above your shoulders, and past your ears, you can call your hair medium length.

Ok, we established that a 1-inch plate works best with medium length hair. What about short length hair? Or, what if you have bangs? If your hair is above your ears you have short hair. So, what size plate width works best with short hair or bangs? Well, you need to find a flat iron that has a plate width that is less than 1 inch. These slimmer plate widths are out there and a 3/4 inch plate width works very well with these shorter hair lengths. The issue with short hair and bangs is that you are using the flat iron and trying to style your hair, which is only a few inches from your head. It is for this very reason you need the slimmer plate widths to handle the shorter strands of hair to avoid burning your scalp and lessen the chance of overheating your hair and resulting in dry, brittle hair.

So what plate width do you use for long hair (hair that reaches your shoulders)? If your hair fits this description, or if you have very thick hair, you should be using a flat iron that has plate widths of 1 1/4 inches or larger. Plate widths are available up to 2 1/4 inches. The biggest advantage of using the wider plate flat irons for longer hair is the obvious, which, is that it will save you time as well as reduce the risk of damage by having to go over the same strands of hair multiple times.

Selecting a flat iron is always a personal choice, however, if you are out shopping for your first flat iron, the above recommendations should be helpful until you become more informed and have personally experienced using the different sizes.

You Too Can Have A PonyTail Even If Your Hair Is Short

It has always appeared that when you see someone wearing a ponytail, it is someone who has longer hair. Well, don’t fret because there are ways to pull short hair into a ponytail aka “deertail” due to the shortness of the tail. You can also create a ponytail style using the currently popular hair extensions.

If you can pull your hair back and secure it with an elastic band, you will instantly have a ponytail. The problem with short hair, however, is that you may have a lot of strands that just aren’t long enough to pull back into the band and that is what needs to be dealt with. Thank goodness for the multitude of hair care products available in the marketplace. The two items that are needed the most are bobby pins or barrettes, and some firm holding mousse or gel. However, if you want to leave out the short side hairs of your haircut and only pull back the back of your hair into the tail as shown in the picture above, this too works and actually looks pretty good.

After you have washed and towel dried your hair, the mousse or gel is applied. You will probably want to apply more to the sides of your hair before you actually blow dry your hair. This extra added product will enable you to tame the sides of your hair more as it is pulled back into the tail. You can also use stylish bobbie pins or barrettes on both sides of your head to help hold down the loose hairs.

As for the rest of the style, it is an open book of choices. You may want some of the side hairs that grow in front of your ears to hang down to add a little volume closest to your face. If the strands are not too short, you can use a very small barrel curling iron to create a curl that can be spread apart with your fingers after curling so that you don’t have that ringlet look.

To finish off the style, you will definitely want to use a strong holding hairspray and/or shine spray to give it the hold that is needed as well as that polished shiny look.

For those of you who don’t want to have the “deer tail” type ponytail, but have short hair, why not try a hair extension or synthetic add-on ponytail? Most hair extensions are easy to use and usually just clip right on to your existing hair. You will want to make sure that you use a color that is compatible with yours or has the look that you want to achieve.

When using a hair extension or add-on, it is best that you start out with clean hair. Select the spot that you want to secure the extension and make sure that you have enough of your own hair to pull over the extension so that the appearance is seamless. You may want to also use some type of jeweled pin or barrette to help camouflage where your hair and the extension merge. Once the styling is complete, apply a light hairspray and you are ready to go.

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