Hair straighteners. How did I ever cope without them? Whether I’m smoothing things out after a blast with the hairdryer, or creating waves for an evening out (because the day I realised I could do this with straighteners was revolutionary), they’re a staple in my routine. I have a lot of hair but it’s very fine, and my blow drying skills are poor at best, so I rely heavily on these hotties every other day to tame and tidy my unruly mane. I’ve flirted with a few different models in the past, from high street to high-end, but currently I’m using a mid-range pair which struggle to grip my hair properly and are just ‘OK’, so I thought I’d give the alfa italia Elegante Professional Straightener a go to see how it compared.
Inspired by glamourous icons like Sofia Loren, Monica Belluci and Carla Bruni, alfa italia aims to create high-quality haircare tools that are as aesthetically beautiful as they are functional. And I was really impressed by this one. It has a smooth, soft touch, black finish with gold dots which make it look like it’s been sprinkled with stardust. It wouldn’t look out of place in a fancy salon. The design is sleek and simple, which I love, because it means there’s less technology that can go wrong. We’ve all experienced the pain of our beloved straighteners packing up mid-session when we’ve got an important date to keep. The swivel cord is nice and long, there’s a Velcro loop to keep everything tidy and, well, that’s about it: the beauty of this tool is its simplicity.
The power button and temperature dial are discreetly located on the inside of the plates, which seems awkward at first but actually makes sense: once I’ve set my favourite temperature I very rarely mess with it anyway. Temperature settings range from 60°c – 190°c, with a heat boost setting to go up to 232°c if you have very coarse hair or want to use the styler with keratin smoothing treatments. I opted for 190° because I’ve always found the lower settings struggle with my frizz.
It got up to temperature in around 30 seconds – which was a bonus on busy weekdays, and the smooth, high-gloss plates gripped and glided through my hair beautifully, straightening most of it on the first attempt without the need to re-go over bits. The heat was distributed evenly and there were none of the tell-tale kinks you sometimes get from other models, so you can pretend you woke up with a sleek do and no one will be any the wiser. As curlers they were equally impressive: I managed to create soft, natural-looking waves in around ten minutes which held all evening. Since I tried these straighteners, my original ones have stayed firmly in their box, and I’m in no hurry to see them again. That’s amore!