Hot Comb VS Flat Iron, What's The Difference?

hot comb vs flat iron

Hair styling has become easy, thanks to tools like the hot comb and flat iron. If you are new to hairstyling or looking for ways to manage your thick hair, these tools are your top picks.

Hot combs, flat irons, what’s the difference? Which one should I get?

Although hot combs and flat irons function on the same principle of heat production, they however produce different results. While they both make the hair easy to manipulate and manage, they are used for different purposes.

Are you confused about whether you should get a hot comb or a flat iron? Keep reading to discover the tool that best meets your needs.

What Is A Hot Comb?

A hot comb is a styling tool that typically features a heated comb. Its designs help to straighten your hair by passing through the strands. It is used to create a sleek and polished outcome.

What Is A Hot Comb

The heat from the comb helps to reshape your hair temporarily, offering you a straightened appearance. It is particularly effective for anyone with coarse or curly hair textures who wants it straightened out.

While there are electrical ones now, the classic hot combs were placed on stoves. They look like the electrical ones but without the wire.

Hot combs are fast and easily get hot. But can they replace a flat iron? Read subsequent sections to find out.

What Is A Flat Iron?

A flat iron is well-known as a hair straightener. (Though it falls into the category, it is not the only hair straightener out there). It is a versatile styling tool with two flat plates that heat up.

These hot elements are so strong that they smooth out and flatten your hair by clamping it between them.

What Is A Flat Iron

They are used for straightening, curling, and even creating waves. That makes it a good tool for your everyday activities. Flat irons have been taking the shine for some time now and most people love them.

How Do I Use A Hot Comb?

How Do I Use A Hot Comb

While using a hot comb is easy, some people get it wrong. Follow these steps to avoid mistakes.

Step 1: Prepare your hair

You’ll want to get your hair ready for the hot comb. Comb the hair gently, and section it if you would work in parts. And if there’s a particular style you want, divide your hair to take that form.

Step 2: Apply heat protectant

It’s safe to say applying heat protectant prevents your hair from the damage heat can cause. So make sure you use one before straightening your hair.

Some women prefer to apply wax sticks before using the hot comb to ensure they can get a sleek look effortlessly. The wax stick is infused with some oil which acts as a natural heat protectant making this product safe for your natural hair and extensions.

In addition, you can also use a hot comb when it comes to parting your wig and shaping your front wig style, they are just stunning!

Step 3: Run through with the hot comb

Get your tool hot, then run through your hair with it. Remember to work in sections because that gives a better result. Start from the top of your hair down to the tip. Be careful not to burn yourself. That’s it!

The hot comb is also used on wigs when styling. If you’ll be using it on a wig, you can also follow the steps above.

How To Use A Hot Comb To Flat Your Wig?

How Do I Use A Flat Iron?

How Do I Use A Flat Iron

It's much easier to use a flat iron. Here’s how:

Step 1: Comb out your hair

Prepare your hair for the heating process by combing your hair. You do not want to have gallops while you are using the straightener.

If you have 4c hair, you may need to comb the hair with the help of the blow dryer and hair brush.

Step 2: Make use of a heat protectant

It’s advisable that when you need to use a straightener or other styling tools, apply a heat protectant. It’ll save you from hair damage.

Step 3: Use the flat iron

Gently use the flat iron on your hair. Remember to plug it into electricity. Let the tool run from the top to the tip of your hair. A trick is to use a comb as you work with the flat iron. You’ll get stunning results.

Step 4: Repeat for all sections

You should smoothen each section of your hair till you stretch every part.

Here is a video tutorial you can learn to use the flat iron correctly!

What Are the Differences Between A Hot Comb And A Flat Iron?

What Are the Differences Between A Hot Comb And A Flat Iron

You might assume that the hot comb and flat irons are the same (considering their definitions and uses). While they are similar, they are different. Let’s see some of the differences.

1. Materials

The flat iron and hot comb are made of different materials. These materials are used to aid their performance and reliability. 

  • The common material for the hot comb is metal, metal steel is solid and does not rust. That proves it to be the best material for the hot comb.
  • Flat irons are made with materials like tourmaline, ceramic, and titaniumTourmaline with ceramic will help keep the hair moist. On the other hand, titanium gets heated fast, saving time and energy. It is the same for ceramic plates as well. They make up the perfect properties for a flat iron.
  • People with coarse hair can use the titanium plates since they heat up fast. But if your hair frizzes easily, you could choose the tourmaline plates with other materials. That's because it helps to shine your strands.

2. Design

The design of the flat iron and hot comb are in no way similar. Hot combs look like regular combs made with metal, but flat irons have two heated plates that come together.

The hot comb has teeth that go through your hair strands. In contrast, flat-iron heated plates work in larger sections.

3. Hair Type

Your hair type decides which of these straightening tools is best for you to use. Though flat irons work with all hair types, sometimes, you may need to use a hot comb.

Coarse hair will need a titanium-made flat iron. Medium hair can take the hot comb as a friend.

4. Work Method and Application

The work method and application of the hot comb is by using its prongs on each section of your hair. It makes the area sleek and gives you the desired result. You can get some waves with its teeth, which is not difficult either.

On the other hand, flat iron heated clamps straighten the hair in a broader form. It's more versatile and gives diverse styling options.

5. Difficult to Use

The level of difficulty depends on whoever is using these tools.

  • Flat irons are much easier to use even for beginners.
  • Hot combs, conversely, though, require patience. So you don’t burn your hand and scalp or overheat your hair.

6. Styling

  • When it comes to styling, the flat iron gives you the floor to create whatever you want. It's a tool you can use to straighten your hair, giving you that silk press you've always wanted. You can likewise create some curls with this tool. It depends on how you can manipulate it to achieve what you want. Waves are not left out either. You can create some gorgeous-looking waves with it.
  • Hot combs can take your afro-textured hair and sleek it. It's very effective if you’d love to achieve a polished look with well-defined sections. You can also use it to create waves on your hair. It's easy and simpler to use than using flat irons for this.

The choice between the two depends on your desired hairstyle and how well you can handle them. You might use both while styling your hair too.

7. Styling Time

Each of these tools takes a different amount of time to get your hair styled. Since flat irons are easier to use, styling won’t take as long as when you use a hot comb.

But other factors will contribute to how much time you use. Factors such as your hair type, outcome, and proficiency in using the tools.

Are there any Similarities?

In materials and design? No, they are not. But in general function, these tools serve similar purposes.

The hot comb and flat iron can help to straighten your hair, giving it a sleek look. These are tools widely used among African Americans and Africans for straightening purposes.

However, their similarity in use does not end there, they are both versatile in their styling capabilities. This means you can get the desired look based on your preference.

The last will be that both are heating tools.

Hot Comb vs Flat Iron, Which one Wins?

This part is quite tricky. But let's end it.

Both devices offer grand solutions to styling problems. They are safe to use and simple to master. However, when your hair type comes into play, one might be preferable to the other.

● Use a flat iron if your hair is thin.

● A hot comb will straighten out curly hair.

● It's best to use a hot comb for your medium hair.

In terms of features, the flat irons offer more. It has straight plates, curved plates, and an auto shut-off feature that's life-saving. Some also come with a feature that helps with heat distribution.

Regardless, while the flat iron is more advanced than the hot comb, it doesn't necessarily fill the position of the hot comb. The hot comb has temperature control, with degrees to how hot it can be, and superb safety measures. It does a perfect job of straightening your edges which is hard for a flat iron.

Still, both are perfect tools that win in varying aspects. So, experiment with these tools and decide which suits your preferences and needs.

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