I tested 6 flat irons and found the CHI Original 1″ Flat Iron to be the best overall.
Throughout my years as a hair stylist, I have had the pleasure to test and try many styling tool brands. What I have come to learn is that price doesn’t always determine the quality of the tool. In fact, some of the best tools I have used had been affordable or budget-buys.
That said, I am a massive advocate for the CHI brand and the styling tools they produce.
With this in mind, I have rounded up some of their best selling flat irons to determine my favourite.
Based on several factors that I will explain below, the CHI Original 1″ Flat Iron was a clear winner for the best overall CHI flat iron.
I realize some of their irons might be better suited to different hair types and conditions and have noted this in my roundup.
Read on to see my picks for the best CHI flat irons.
Whats to love about the CHI brand?
Before we get into the review, I wanted to briefly explain why this is well regarded styling tool brand:
- The flat irons are made of high-quality materials which means that they are sturdy and durable.
- You will be spoiled for choices because you can choose from flat irons that are made from ceramic, tourmaline, titanium, or a combination of these elements.
- These flat irons are designed to accommodate different types of hair from thin, curly, to thick.
- They heat up real quick so no need to wait for the flat iron to be ready for use.
- They have an auto shut off feature which does come in handy in instances when you are in a rush to leave your home and forgot to unplug your flat iron.
6 Best Chi Flat Irons Reviewed
Best Overall: CHI Original 1″ Flat Iron
Of course, we’re starting our list with the brand’s original product! Whether you are new to at-home hairstyling or you style your hair regularly, this is one flat iron that you really shouldn’t be without and I’ll tell you why: This flat iron is the one that put the CHI brand on the map!
- Ceramic Heaters
- Infrared Technology
- Ionic Technology
- Slim barrel for hair straightening and curling
- Ergonomic design
- Floating Plates Design
- 392° Non Adjustable Temperature
- Flash Quick Heating Feature
The Chi Original Flat Iron features a pair of ceramic heaters that apply healthy heat on the tresses. You know me and my love for ceramic/ceramic-tourmaline curlers and straighteners. I swear, there are days when my hair just refuses to cooperate and unfortunately, most of these times happen just as I was rushing to get out of the house! I find that some flat irons do not get hot enough to straighten my naturally wavy, coarse, long hair; the CHI Original flat iron has no problem transforming these unruly locks into a lustrous, well-behaved mane.
The CHI original flat iron looks just like an average hair straightener but this product has these thick ceramic plates that produce deep penetrating infrared heat. The heat seeps deep within each hair strand, straightening or curling the mane in seconds. The ceramic material also produces negative ions that give the tresses high shine, softness, and bounce. My hair never feels dry with the CHI Original flat iron.
Overall, the CHI original flat iron an excellent product to get if you are just starting to get into hairstyling if you need a basic workhorse of a hot tool. The original is the brand’s flagship product and it’s a solid choice if you need an all-around flat iron that does it all.
The only con I can think of is the non-adjustable heat setting. The CHI original flat iron’s temperature is only set to 392° F, which might not be hot enough for some. However, this temperature is ideal for all hair types, including those with thick hair like yours truly. Still, having more temperature options would be nice especially for users who love experimenting with different looks.
Best for All Hair Types: CHI G2 Ceramic and Titanium Straightening Hairstyling Iron
The G2 is second only in popularity to the CHI original flat iron. The G2 Ceramic and Titanium straightener is a no-nonsense styling product is designed for professional use. It’s a favorite among hair stylists because of its outstanding performance and fabulous features. The G2 Ceramic and Titanium straightener feature high-quality titanium heaters that are infused with ceramic material.
The titanium heater makes the G2 incredibly durable. This is the kind of flat iron that could survive a couple of drops but don’t do that on purpose! The ceramic material, on the other hand, produces negative ions that smoothen the hair cuticles, giving you smooth, frizz-free results that last. The curved edges of the barrel offer more flexibility as far as styling goes. You can experiment with this product and come out with great results every time.
- Titanium Heaters
- Ceramic Infusion
- Ionic Technology
- Quick 40 Second Heat Feature
- Large LCD
- 425°F Maximum Temperature
- Floating Plates
As you know, titanium gets really hot really fast and if your hair is as stubborn as mine, you’ll need all the help you can get. This straightener reaches up to 425°F, transforming stubborn, ragged locks into straight, silky hair! It’s an excellent styling product to get if you love a good silk press or if you’re in the mood for luscious curls. I love the compact, slim design because it gives me optimum control over the flat iron. I could really get closer to the roots to pump up the volume.
This flat iron also features a fast, sub-minute heat up so there is no downtime in the mornings when you’re in a rush to style your hair. There are lots of room for customization too. The smart control lets you choose the ideal temperature for curling or straightening fine, coarse, and medium hair. It also features a sizable digital display so you can always keep an eye on the temperature as you straighten your hair and prevent heat damage.
The G2 boasts an excellent balance of features and performance. However, it’s not the most affordable flat iron out there and this product is definitely one of the priciest CHI flat irons on this list. But if you feel like splurging and you want the best from CHI, you cannot go wrong with the G2.
Best for Fine or Thin Hair: CHI Air Pro Expert Classic Tourmaline Ceramic Flat Iron
If your hair is prone to frizz, if it’s sensitive to heat, humidity, or is prone to damage, you need a flat iron that provides gentle, healthy heat to minimize the styling damage like this product. The CHI Expert Classic Tourmaline Ceramic Flat Iron provides innovative technologies that transform delicate tresses sans the heat damage. This sleek, ergonomically designed flat iron features high-quality tourmaline-ceramic material.
- Tourmaline-Ceramic Heaters
- Double Ionic Technology
- 180°F to 410°F Maximum Temperature
- Slim barrel for hair straightening and curling
- Curved Floating Plates Design
- Adjustable Temperature Dial
- LED Indicator Light
- 30 Second Quick Heat Up
The tourmaline and ceramic material produces double the negative ions so your hair gets a healthy dose of gorgeous shine! This product banishes dullness and prevents hair breakage/split ends so your hair is not only looking fabulous; it’s also stronger and less prone to damage.
I love the versatility of a skinny flat iron because you can straighten, curl or flip your hair with it and if you feel the same way then the CHI Air Pro Expert Classic Tourmaline Ceramic Flat Iron will give you the styling freedom you crave. It only takes 30 seconds to heat up so there’s no waiting when styling in the morning. It heats up so fast and styling is so quick too so you get the work done in half the time.
Another feature that I love about the CHI Pro is the adjustable temperature dial. It makes the customization so easy and convenient as you style your hair. This beauty has a temperature range of 180°F to 410°F so whether your hair is delicate or coarse if it’s thick, thin, medium density, the CHI Expert Classic Tourmaline Ceramic Flat Iron will satisfy your styling needs.
My only gripe is that this product does not come with any safety features so you cannot afford to be absent-minded after styling. Also, the temperature dial feels durable but I won’t be surprised if it breaks at some point especially if your hot tools get a lot of use. Temperature dials are quite prone to damage, something to consider when looking for any kind of hot tool.
Best for Travel: CHI Tech 3/4″ Travel Ceramic Hairstyling Iron
Those who love to travel or have on-the-go lifestyles, don’t have to compromise on perfectly styled and straight hair. The CHI solution is a 3/4″ Ceramic hairstyling iron. You can expect the same CHI quality in a mini iron.
One of my favorite features of this flat iron, is the ceramic plates. We know that ceramic is one of the best plate materials when it comes to styling tools. The ceramic technology provides a consistent temperature and moist heat, resulting in shiny, straight and healthy hair.
The quick heat-up and dual voltage makes it a perfect companion for travel or touch-ups.
- 3/4″ Ceramic Floating Plates
- Dual Voltage
- 6.5ft (1.98 m) swivel cord
- Convenient size for travel or on-the-go styling
- 30-second quick heat up
Best for Thick Hair: CHI Onyx Euro Shine Styler
When you’re all about the high shine, you need a flat iron that restores the hair’s natural brilliance while maintaining the softness and silkiness of your hair. That’s the kind of results you can expect from the CHI Onyx Euro Shine Styler!
This versatile, all-black hot tool features an advanced ion generator that gives the hair amazing brilliance and life! The pair of onyx ceramic plates boast double the ionic power compared to other flat irons. The sleek design means you can straighten your hair with this beauty, create curls, waves, whatever hairstyle rocks your boat. Choose the lowest settings for delicate tresses or go all the way up to 450°F if you have coarse, wavy, thick, and naturally curly hair.
- Double Ionic Technology
- Floating Plate Design
- Adjustable Heat Settings
- Extra-long Ceramic Plates
- Large LCD
- LED Light Indicators
- 370°F – 450 °F Maximum Temperature
Each floating ceramic iron plate is about 4-inches long with beveled, rounded tips that offer “seamless rotation” for maximum versatility. Since the heating plates are longer than your average straightener, you can work on larger hair sections at a time, cutting the styling time in half! This flat iron is designed to be user-friendly; the LED neon light bar lets you keep an eye on the perfect temperature while the large temperature display lets you choose the ideal temperature according to your hair type, texture, and the desired style.
Overall, the CHI Onyx Euro Shine Styler has all the fabulous features that you would expect in a high-end flat iron. The only downside is the price. This is a pretty expensive flat iron and if you are looking for a basic hot tool, look elsewhere. But if you want an investment piece that will serve you well for years, I think the CHI Onyx Euro Shine Styler is worth the price.
Best for Damaged Hair: CHI Lava Infused Ceramic 1″ Straightening Hairstyling Iron
You read that right, CHI created a straightening hair styling iron that is infused with volcanic lava! What prompted them to come up with this wild idea? It seems that their goal here is to help style your hair with minimal heat while achieving your desired results. This way, you won’t end up frying your hair strands when styling it. The CHI Lava Infused Ceramic 1” straightening flat iron is quite promising as the plates give off steady heat even at low settings to keep strands from getting burned.
The unique combination of ceramic plating and lightweight body makes this ultra glidable on your hair strands so you don’t end up with tangled, fried, or frizzy hair. Getting salon-like results have become easier when you choose this volcanic lava infused hair straightener from the leading brand!
- 1” Volcanic Lava Ceramic Plates
- Dual Voltage for International Traveling
- 11 ft cord
- Quick Heat Up
- 395 ° F Maximum Temperature
The combination of volcanic lava and ceramic on the plates helps deliver that gentle but steady heat to your hair strands thus minimizing the risk of damaging your mane. If you are worried that you are constantly exposing your strands to high heat just to achieve that straight mane, then this is a good time to switch to CHI lava infused ceramic hair straightener.
Although it doesn’t have the usual auto shut off features, or even a temperature control setting, you can still expect that the heat being produced by the volcanic lava powder mixed with ceramic will do the trick. I think that this is a safer way to get your mane styled with ease with each stroke of the extended plates.
Why volcanic lava, you ask? The volcanic lava powder provides durability while working as an effective conductor of heat. When mixed with ceramic, it creates ions that remove excess water molecules in your hair and at the same time, keep the cuticles sealed as well. This is the promise of this model from CHI.
Buying Guide: 5 Reasons to Choose CHI Flat Irons
Design and Features
You’ll notice that most, if not all, of the flat irons we’ve listed above could straighten and curl the tresses. If you are all about versatility, CHI flat irons will get a lot of use in your kit. The brand is known for its multipurpose hair styling products and clearly, the flat irons are not an exception. Even the most basic hair straighteners come with practical features, features that will optimize hairstyling on a daily basis. The design of the flat irons is always compact and lightweight so they are travel-friendly and easy to pack. The colorways are also stunning; some come in bright pink or va-va-voom red!
Great quality flat irons aren’t cheap so it pays to get a hot tool that you can use for a long, long time! Thankfully, the CHI brand is known for its hardy hot tools. The basic flat irons are not as resilient as the brand’s higher-end hot tools but these are ideal for newbies and everyday use too. The high-end flat irons and curlers, on the other hand, are durable so expensive as they are, they will give you fabulous hairstyles for years to come!
I will say, however, that titanium hot tools are more durable than tourmaline or tourmaline-ceramic hot tools, something to keep in mind when you are shopping around. Ceramic and ceramic tourmaline materials are quite brittle so these have to be handled with care. They’ll last for years as long as you are careful with these. Titanium material is virtually life-proof so it won’t damage easily. That translates to a long life.
As much as I love a hot tool with all the bells and whistles, some days, I just need a flat iron that can do one job and do it well: straighten these stubborn locks. CHI has a wide range of flat irons to choose from, some have many features, others are a little stripped down for beginners or for people who hate the complicated controls. Depending on the price point and your personal preference, you can choose between a high-end CHI flat iron with cool features and an entry-level flat iron with basic controls. You can get the original flat iron if you need a high-quality flat iron with not-so-basic features. You could opt for the G2 if say, you are willing to stretch your budget for a feature-rich styling tool.
CHI flat irons are efficient hot tools and they create waves, curls, and silk press that last. The hot tools are not only intuitively designed, they are also optimized for specific uses. For example, the Miss Universe Style Illuminate is designed for those who love playing with different hairstyles while the Onyx Euro Shine Styler is meant for restoring brilliance on dull, lackluster locks. The G2 is perfect for users who style their hair every day and need a flat iron that could keep up with their changing style while the original CHI flat iron is best for anyone who needs a straightforward hair straightener.
CHI Flat Iron vs GHD Flat Iron
Two of the most popular hot tool brands in the beauty community are CHI and GHD. Both brands have been in the business for years although CHI had a 15-year head start. CHI and GHD offer a diverse selection of hair care and styling products.
Generally, GHD flat irons are more expensive than CHI. If you want to splurge, opt for GHD products. CHI has a more diverse collection of hot tools and styling products. The brand has a great range of versatile flat irons like the original flat iron, which works for all hair types. If you want to shop for hair care products along with a flat iron, the choice is obvious.
GHD has a great selection of limited edition straighteners so if you’re into these products or you want a specific model that can’t be found anywhere else, opt for GHD. CHI flat irons are quite popular way before GHD came in the picture so if you’re looking for a well-priced flat iron with standard features, CHI is your best bet.
In the end, your choice will depend on your styling needs, your hair type, and your budget so choose wisely!
CHI has been in the business for decades and it’s one of the most trusted hair styling tools in the beauty industry. If you’re treating yourself to a new flat iron, I highly suggest looking into CHI’s extensive selection of flat irons! From the original flat iron to the G2, you’ll definitely find something that will satisfy your styling needs.
Other Recommended Best Chi Flat Irons
About the AuthorLeah Williams is the founder of Lucky Curl and has been in the hair care and styling industry for the last 15 years. Since then, she has developed incredible expertise and a deep understanding of how to treat and style the most difficult hair types and is passionate about sharing her knowledge with the readers of Lucky Curl.
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