Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed (that’s four-to-five-star reviews and lots of ’em) products and single out the most convincing. While we’ve written about the best hair straighteners, talked up a certain whisper-quiet hair dryer, and pinpointed a zebra-print curling iron that can help you create Gisele waves, here we’re unpacking even more of the best curling irons that you can find on Amazon. (Note that reviews have been edited for length and clarity.)
Best 1” curling iron
“This is a nice curling iron and does a great job on my thick coarse hair. It heats up quickly and has a turbo function which gets it a bit hotter if needed. I like the choice of 30 heating choices. The swivel cord keeps the cord from tangling. This also had a 60-minute auto shutoff function. It has a protective cover if you need to put it away before it is totally cooled off. Great value.”
Best 1.25” curling iron
“I’ve used lots of curling irons — from high-end to low-end. Despite the low price, this curling iron has the features and handling of a high-end curling iron: quick heat-up, ceramic-plated barrel, temperature settings in 10-degree increments, swivel cord, and cool tip. It grips the hair nicely (not too tightly so as to leave a crease). The barrel is longer than on a normal curling iron, which is awesome for medium and long hair. I’ve used it for several days now, and haven’t found a drawback. Highly recommend!”
Editor’s Note: If you’re looking for something a little wider, this iron comes in a 1.5-inch barrel, too.
Best curling iron for travel
“Have had several of these Conair travel curling irons and love them. This one comes with a heat guard which is nice to be able to throw in your bag while it is still hot. This has a nice side dial to select your heat setting and the dual voltage automatically selects so you don’t need a converter, just the various plug kits for the different countries. I love using it at home as well and couldn’t be more pleased with this iron.”
Best skinny curling wand
“Love, love, love this wand!!! Curls very beautifully and gives this nice big-to-small curl at the end kinda like an ombre. The only con is that it’s very, VERY hot so please be careful when you curl your hair because you will burn yourself and it will hurt. I learned that the hard way. Once plugged in, turn it on and gets hot less than 30 seconds. I’d say it goes up to 450 degrees and no less or higher. I recommend this to anyone who’s interested in buying it.”
Best 0.75”-1” curling wand
“WOW is all I can say. This tool is amazing! I have a lot of hair but it’s very fine, so it’s very hard to curl my hair, get volume, and for my curls to last for at least an hour. I have finally found something that can give my hair volume and curl my hair easily for hours. My curls lasted for 12 hours until I washed it — we went to Disneyland and went on many rides and it was a hot sweaty day yet my curls were still intact and bouncy like I just did them.”
Best 1” curling wand
“I have owned some expensive wands over the years that I gave away or sold because they took too much time and would not hold the curl very long compared to a regular curling iron. I purchased this one because I wanted a smaller size like my hair dresser used on my new shoulder length haircut, but didn’t want to spend so much money. However, I love this wand! It heats up really hot and allows me to curl my hair quickly, and holds the curl all day! Highly recommend, especially for the price!”
Best 1”-1.5” curling wand
“Where has this product been all my life? I have very straight hair and thought it was unable to hold a curl. Usually my hair would lose the curl within an hour or two, leaving a chunky hairsprayed mess. With this product, my hair holds the curl all day and more-or-less the next day as well. It has several heat settings and most cheap curlers do not heat as hot as this one does. I use the highest setting (400-something degrees), set it with flexible hold hairspray and it works great. I now curl my hair all the time.”
Best automatic curling wand
“I am curling-challenged. I own a regular curling iron, and fail spectacularly using it. My curls with that iron are ugly and don’t hold; it’s just collecting dust. So I decided to give this a try for fab wedding hair. Holy. Crap. It’s amazing. No effort at all. I did a trial run the night before to see how difficult it was and they came out beautifully!! It is seriously so easy.”
Best hot air styler
“I really love this tool! I have a hard time with curling irons — either I burn myself or one curl turns out different than the others. This tool eliminates all my challenges. The tool doesn’t get hot on the outside so you will never burn your skin. It has a timer that beeps when time to release your hair, which is great. It allows you to set the temp for your hair type. It has two curl direction buttons that allow you to curl either toward your face or away. I highly recommend this product. Chi outdid themselves with this one!
Best crimping iron
“I am addicted to buying stuff on Amazon but this is by far THE BEST thing I’ve ever bought. I don’t have the patience to curl my hair with a regular curling iron and can’t even make one curl with my flat iron even though my hair stylist has showed me how like 20 times. This was SO easy! This iron gives you beautiful, wavy, sexy, beachy hair. It also gets pretty hot so if your hair is hard to curl, this will do the trick. I wish I had found this years ago!”
Best curling brush
“The Phoebe is exactly the styling tool I have been looking for. Humidity makes my hair frizz, but the clamp on curling irons didn’t work well for me. The Phoebe is a variable temperature-controlled curling tool, which means I don’t have to select between just ‘high’ and ‘low’ settings. Its bristles hold my hair in place and quickly produce the type of soft curl I want. It is well built and easy to use. I also like the fact that it is dual voltage since I travel frequently overseas. I have already recommended the Phoebe to my sister.”
Best curling iron set
“If you’ve ever used a curling wand you know different sizes and shapes will give you different looks. This clever product gives you 5 options in one! The smaller one will give you tighter ringlets while the biggest will give you looser waves, so you can achieve different looks with less space taken up under your sink. I typically use the bigger ones for my hair. The glove it comes with works great but I’ve gotten used to the method of just wrapping my hair around the iron with no need for it.”
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