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A flat iron with batteries can be a convenient cordless alternative to a full sized straightener. Although these devices do have their downsides, they’re useful on the go, and there is something to be said about not having to be attached to a wall outlet while styling.
If you’re curious about whether or not one of these heated styling tools will work for you, check out our guide and product recommendations below.
The biggest con with these devices is that they won’t have the same functionality as a corded device. They often have very limited temperature selections, and the max temperature is usually too low for coarse, thick hair. Additionally, they cannot be used indefinitely. Most have a time limit of somewhere between 20-30 minutes, although some have auto-shut off features that cut that time to as short as 10 minutes.
The trade off is that they’re far more convenient for touch-ups and on the go styling. You can keep them in a purse or backpack, ready for whenever your bangs, beard, or any other bit of hair needs to be straightened again. They’re also better for traveling, since you don’t have to worry about voltage or getting a converter for the wall outlet.
While this type of device sounds pretty straightforward, there are actually a few different options you can purchase within this category.
One such options is a device that run on actual batteries, the sort you would put in your TV remote. These are generally cheaper and less functional than other options. The benefit is that they don’t have to be charged though.
Or you can get one that has a rechargeable power pack built in. These devices typically charge with a USB cord, so while you can charge them anywhere, there is the inconvenience of having to leave them plugged in for a long time. The upside is that they’re more powerful.
If you’re ready to start shopping, here are some options to get you started. These battery powered straighteners represent the different types of devices as well as a range of price points.
Rechargeable Flat Iron
Removable. chargable battery pack
3 temperature settings (338℉, 374℉, and 428℉)
While this the most expensive of the devices on this list, it’s also the most functional. It’s got three temperature settings, the highest of which should work well with even coarse, thick hair. That’s pretty rare for a cordless device.
The listing claims that it can heat in 15 seconds and be used for at least 70 minutes, which is also rare. That’s long enough for full styling, depending on your hair type and length. In that regard, it’s a superior option for longer travels.
For added security, it a has a safety lock, which keeps it from turning on unexpectedly wherever you’re storing it.
Overall, this device has a lot of clear benefits, but the price point is on the higher end. For a more budget friendly option, see some of our other product recommendations.
Battery Operated Flat Iron
Ceramic tourmaline plates
1 temperature setting (392℉)
This device runs on AA-batteries, which is both good and bad. It works well for situations in which USB charging is not an option. And it can also be powered longer, assuming you had enough batteries to change out. Like the previous option, it also has a safety lock.
However, this is not a device I would recommend for serious styling. It doesn’t have as long of a use time as the first option, and it also has a lower max temperature. Although 392 degrees is certainly hot, it may not be enough to really style coarser, thicker hair. In that sense, this device is best left for touching up existing styles. It’s also important to note that 392 degrees is too high for fine or delicate hair types. You’d have to be very careful to avoid any heat damage.
The other large concern I have for this device is safety. You never want to heat AA-batteries, since that can cause issues. My recommendation would just be to avoid using the device for an extended time, and to monitor the heat of all portions of the device as you’re using it.
Overall, this option isn’t the most functional, but it’s hard to beat price-wise.
USB Rechargeable Flat Iron
3 color coded temperature options: 160℃, 180℃, and 200℃
Auto Shut off after 15 minutes
This is another option that has multiple temperature settings, although it won’t get as hot as the first one. It does, however, have the lowest possible temperature of the three options, so it’s a good choice for fine or delicate hair.
The most inconvenient part of this device has to be the auto-shut off. 15 minutes is probably long enough for most touch-up needs, but it’s still annoying that you can’t control it. Your only option is to restart the device if it shuts off during styling.
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But this device does fall in the middle in terms of price comparison, so it’s a nice, functional option that’s not going to wreck your budget.
If you didn’t see a device that will work for you on this list, don’t fret! There are plenty of cordless and mini options that have similar features.
With any device like this though, there are a few things to consider before you buy, first of which is the needs of your specific hair type. You don’t want to get a device that isn’t going to style your hair, nor do you want one that will cause unnecessary heat damage.
It’s also important to consider your purpose for the device. If you just want something that you can use quickly for touch-ups away from home, you can get away with a lower quality device. For more serious styling, you may have to spend more money to get something more functional.
Regardless, with so many possibilities, there’s sure to be a flat iron with batteries that will work for you and your needs.