We’ve all struggled with bad hair days – those mornings (or evenings) when we’ve tried, unsuccessfully, to tame an unruly mane into perfectly smooth, supermodel waves. First, a good shampoo and conditioner can get your style off to the right start. Second, a great blow dryer will ensure that your hair is completely free of moisture so that step three goes smoothly. Finally, having the right hot tool is key.
One great solution to those hair woes, especially if you have thick or long hair, is a 2 inch curling iron. Seems huge, doesn’t it? In this case, bigger is definitely better. The larger barrel is incredibly effective at smoothing frizzies and straightening wavy or even super curly hair. And if you have straight or somewhat wimpy hair, you’ll achieve lots more body, along with big silky curls.
Many curling irons offer different heat settings, attachments, and barrel finishes, from ceramic to 24K gold. Worth noting – the best of them will heat up quickly to extremely high temperatures, so be sure to choose the make and model best suited for your hair type.
Another consideration is what those high temperatures do in terms of damage to your hair. I highly recommend a heat protectant spray that can also help your hair to hold its style.
For your best hair days yet, check out our list of the best 2 inch curling irons that deliver professional results and shiny soft curls.
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1. Hot Shot Tools Ceramic 2 Inch Curling IronPros:
- High heat temperatures up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit used by professional stylists
- Ceramic surface gives off far-infrared heat for frizz free styling
- Highly rated by Amazon reviewers
- Great for body and big, swoopy curls
- Quite expensive compared to similar curling irons
- Temperature control can be accidentally moved higher or lower
- High heat settings can burn fine hair
- No automatic shut-off
The Hot Shot’s high heat makes it a great choice for medium length and longer hair, and its tourmaline finish assures you’ll get silky smooth, static-free curls. This curling iron delivers shiny, beautiful curls by emitting gentle far-infrared heat and negative ions, sealing the cuticle and locking in moisture.
The narrow, easy grip handle is friendly for all hand sizes, and the built-in stand protects your countertop from burns. One more great feature to note, this curling iron is Canadian-friendly, so take it across the border anytime.
Hot Shot also makes a super cool Nano Ceramic Deep Waver that can give your hair a completely different, more casual look.
2. Hot Tools Supertool 2 Inch Curling Iron with Multi-Heat ControlPros:
- Temperatures adjustable up to 430 degrees Fahrenheit
- 8 foot swivel cord for tangle free operation
- Includes two extra easy-to-replace springs
- High heat can burn hair so it’s imperative to read instructions
- Handle with care as the hot iron can blister skin
- Consumer pays shipping charges to return warrantied item
- Mostly metal handle can have a tendency to bend
This Hot Tools Supertool curling iron is great for creating gentle curls, straightening hair and pumping up hair volumes even at the roots. Plated in 24K gold, this iron heats up in 60 seconds, and stays hot. Better yet, the box has instructions for proper heat settings.
Ultra lightweight, your arm won’t get tired even if you have big hair. As an added bonus, this curling iron has temperature memory, so you can set it and forget it. Just plug in and you’re on your way to smooth, swoopy curls.
If you have extra-think hair, it can be really helpful to section it out using alligator clips. That way, you can carefully curl each section without creating bends or crimps in the surrounding hair.
And, if you’re a little clumsy and have a tendency to burn your tender fingertips, consider getting a nifty heat resistant glove to save your pinkies.
3. Kristin Ess Soft Bend 2 Inch Curling IronPros:
- Titanium barrel delivers even heat from base to tip
- Four temperature settings
- 9 Foot swivel cord resists tangling
- Auto shutoff feature
- Heavier than others
- Handle gets hot during use
- Barrel takes a long time to cool down
Everyone who knows about the damage any hot tool can do to your hair, wants to ensure they can use it for as brief a time as possible to get their desired results and this 2 inch curling iron from Kristin Ess truly delivers the goods. The titanium barrel delivers heat quicker which means you get faster curls with less damage. It also helps to eliminate frizz and enhance shine. We’re all about that.
This iron delivers even barrel heat from end to end to give you consistently great results as you work through your hair. It’s the perfect tool to use for a quick smooth down after blow drying and gives you the ideal way to touch up the tips of your hair if you’re looking for a classic straight style. The ergonomic thumb grip and heat resistant tip prevent snagging and catching.
This iron gets hot – up to 425 degrees Fahrenheit, but it also offers four total heat settings – 325°F – 365°F – 400°F – 425°F to give you complete control, and options that work well even on fine and thin hair. An automatic shutoff after 30 minutes of non-use give you the ultimate peace of mind. The nine foot swivel cord is another bonus that’s hard to beat, especially when you’re working around the back of your mane.
4. Hot Tools 2 Inch CeramicTi® Tourmaline Spring Iron Model 2111Pros:
- Rheostat heat control up to 430 degrees Fahrenheit
- Comfortable soft grip handle with extra-long cool tip
- 8 foot swivel cord for tangle-free operation
- Excellent value for the price
- Ceramic coating wears off with use
- Plastic tip can melt with consistent high-heat use
- High temperature settings can burn fine hair
- Can rust with use
The Hot Tools 2 Inch CeramicTi® Tourmaline Curling Iron is another great option for making this a good hair day. Ceramic coated barrels are a plus because they heat up faster and create less friction on the hair. Less friction means less frizz for you.
With temperatures up to 430 degrees Fahrenheit, this curling iron is great for straightening thick, curly and wavy hair. Its patented pulse technology keeps the barrel temperatures consistent throughout the curling process.
A great addition to your frizz fighting tool kit is heat protecting spray. These sprays literally give your hair follicles a coating that protects them from the intense heat of your curling iron without affecting its curling power.
To stray away from curls and go for that super straight, supermodel look, try the Hot Tools Ceramic Flat Iron.
5. InfinityPro by Conair Platinum Hot Curl BrushPros:
- Combines the best features of a brush and curling iron
- Five temperature settings
- Ionic generation minimizes frizz
- Maintains even heat throughout styling
- Doesn't deliver as much volume as a regular curling iron
- Not suitable for a really curly look
- Some shelf life issues reported
If you’re looking to get smooth, swoopy curls and waves, but you hate to subject your hands to a hot barrel, this curling brush is what you might be looking for. It combines the best 2 inch curling iron and a brush into one easy to use unit that’s fast and efficient.
With super ionic generation, it actively eliminates static and tames frizz. It also features five adjustable temperatures and has an easy to see digital LED readout, so you know exactly what setting you’re at.
Nylon bristles keep hair tangle-free, minimizing split ends and staving off heat damage.
Why Are 2 Inch Curling Irons So Hard to Find?
To be honest, hair technology and stying tools have gone through quite a transormation in the past decade. While I got my first 2 inch curling iron some 20 years ago, now tools are more focused on versatility, efficiency, and speed, as you'll note in this article from Harpers Bazaar.
Plus, there are just a lot more choices these days, and we all like to style our hair differently from time to time, so you likely have a flat iron, a variety of curling irons, and several round brushes in different sizes to achieve a variety of straight and curly styles.
We think the biggest change has come, however, with the acceptance of less formal hair styles in the workplace. Today, your natural curls don't have to be quite so tamed. Your butt length mane doesn't need to be pulled up or back. You have the freedom to be as funky and fun with your hair as you want to be. We celebrate that.
If you still love to use a big barrel curling iron to create that smooth and swoopy look you love, you'll want to snag one of our featured irons pretty quickly as they are becoming harder to find all the time, and many professional beauty supply stores don't even carry them any longer.
I, for one, don't intend to give mine up. It's still my favorite for giving an overall smooth and shiny look to my normally wavy and frizzy long mane.
- Best Professional Blow Dryers
- Best Professional Flat Irons
- Best Round Brushes for Blowouts
- Best Dryers for Curly Hair
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