How to Successfully Flat Iron Natural Black Hair

As a naturalist, you may want to flat iron your natural black hair at a time. It may be because you want to experiment with other styles or check the length of your hair.

Because natural black hair is prone to damage or breakage, most naturalists are scared of using hot tools to prevent heat damage.

Besides, some naturalists do not get that straightened hair after flat ironing.

This article will give you tips on how you can successfully flat iron your natural black hair and get a great outcome.

Start with clean and moisturized hair

You should flat iron freshly washed hair. Flat ironing dirty hair will only bake the dirt and oil in your hair, and you won’t get the result you want. Hence the need to wash your hair with shampoo before flat ironing it.

Besides, you should ensure your hair is hydrated and well-moisturized. Flat ironing dry hair will eventually lead to a major cut or breakage in your hair.

So, your hair must be moisturized. You can use a moisturizing shampoo when washing your hair; this will retain moisture in the hair.

Use a leave-in conditioner that not only hydrates your hair but also reduces frizz and adds shine.

Pro-tips: If your hair is always dry, use a leave-in conditioner for deep conditioning once a week, even if you are not flat ironing your hair.

Detangle your Hair

As a naturalist, your hair is more susceptible to tangling, and it needs to be detangled so you can get the best result. Gently part your hair into four sections and work through each section with a detangling brush or your finger.

Be patient and take your time through this process because rushing through it can break your hair. Detangling your hair will reduce the flat ironing time.

Allow your hair to dry

Do not flat iron wet locks to get the best result; always allow your mane to dry. Flat ironing damp hair might fry your hair. If you are concerned about using too many heat tools on your hair, don’t be! You can wrap your hair with a bonnet dryer.

Or you can towel dry and leave the hair to air dry till it is about 80% dry. Then run a blow dryer through it. At this point, you do not need to set the heat of the dryer too hot, just set it to cool settings.

Apply heat protectant

Using a heat protectant before using hot tools is essential. Apply the protectant to each section of your hair and start applying from the root to the tip.

Some heat protectants also serve as an anti-frizz agent; hence using it makes the flat iron glide through your hair easily.

However, do not set the temperature of your flat iron to high heat just because you used a heat protectant. Even the top brands won’t resist the power of too much heat.

Use Flat Iron with adjustable temperature settings

Choosing the best flat iron is one of the ways of getting a good result for black african hair. And one of the top qualities of the best flat iron is adjustable temperature settings. This will enable you to set the heat to what your hair needs.

Some naturalists have up to three textures of hair, and thus the heat needed for one section will be different from the other. Having flat iron with adjustable temperature settings comes in handy in this situation. 

Flat Iron your natural black hair

Now that your hair is clean and well taken care of, it is time to go through the process of flat ironing your hair;

  • Part your Hair in Smaller Sections. Even though you have parted your hair into four sections earlier while detangling, you still need to part into smaller portions. You should not expose your hair to too much heat, so part it into segments that will allow one or two passes for your hair to be straightened. Working with a small section makes flat ironing easier and faster.
  • Choose the right temperature setting. Your hair is natural black hair does not mean you should use the highest temperature setting for your hair. The temperature settings you go for depends on the texture of your hair.
  • For natural fine hair: Heat settings of 200F – 325F
  • For medium to coarse hair texture: Heat settings of 350F – 395F/400F
  • Go slow and steady: this is important when flat ironing natural hair. It would help if you did not flat iron when you are on a time limit, be patient and take your time to get the best result. Do not leave the straightener on the spot for long; this can cause damage to that spot. Slowly glide the flat iron down from the root to the tip, thus straightening it with one pass or a maximum of two. 

You can also use the comb and chase method for optimum results. With this method, all you need is to place a brush and comb in front of your straightener.

Gently comb down the hair while gliding through with your straightener. Repeat this process until you have covered every area of your head.

  • Finish with Shine Hair Oil: Once you have straightened and styled your hair, you need to finish the look with hair oil to improve shininess. So you should apply a lightweight oil that does not weigh down your hair but helps reduce frizz.

For long-lasting effects, follow a great nighttime care routine. Cover your straightened hair with a silk head wrap and use a silk pillowcase so that all your hard work won’t go down the drain.

Pro tips: Flat ironing is not supposed to be a daily routine; keep it at a minimum to avoid heat damage. Therefore, flat iron your hair occasionally – maybe once a month.


Now that we have shared these tips with you, we hope you will get it right when you flat iron your hair. All you have to do is invest in a high-quality flat iron and follow the tips in this guide. And you will be a pro at flat ironing your natural black hair.