The problem with hair straighteners is that they aren’t available in almost any hotel, unlike blow dryers. And if your hair tends to get out of control when not taken care of, you need to bring a hair straightener on your vacation.
TSA Rules for Hair Straighteners
TSA doesn’t restrict plug-in, wired hair straighteners – they’re allowed in hand and checked luggage. There also aren’t any packing or quantity restrictions, so you can pack them however you want to.
Wireless hair straighteners powered by lithium batteries or butane cartridges are banned from checked baggage. When packed in hand baggage, you must protect them from accidental activation by putting them inside a storage box. You must also place heat-resistant covers over the heating elements.
Any spare butane refill cartridges are banned in luggage. Spare lithium batteries are limited to two per person and are allowed only in hand baggage.
Traveling With Hair Straighteners Internationally
In Europe, New Zealand, the UK, and some other parts of the world, wireless hair straighteners are also allowed in checked baggage. Otherwise, the same restrictions as for the TSA apply.
The main issue that you’ll face when traveling with hair straighteners internationally is that they might not work in other countries. That’s because while the US runs on a 110V AC electricity grid, most other countries run on 220V. If you’d try to use a regular US hair straightener in Europe, it would most likely fry within seconds.
To make sure that your hair straightener will work in other countries, look at its backside. It should include the following information – “100-240V”, “110-220V”, or “Dual voltage”. Electronics with these specifications will work anywhere in the world. If it says “110V” or “100-120V”, it won’t work in other countries without a 110V-220V transformer. You can buy small travel transformers that will do the job.
Other countries sometimes also use different electrical socket types. For example, instead of two flat prongs, they might use three round ones. You can fix that by purchasing a small travel adapter. They’re usually compatible with all the most popular socket types around the world.
How to Pack Hair Straighteners in Luggage
You don’t need to pack wired hair straighteners in any certain way. Still, it’s a good idea to wrap it in some soft clothing to protect it from accidental damage. Another good idea is to get a heat-resistant pouch. This would allow you to pack your hair straightener in luggage straight after using it, without waiting for it to cool down.
You should put wireless hair straighteners inside a dedicated container, which would protect them from accidental activation. Furthermore, you can only pack them in hour hand luggage. Pack them somewhere accessible because they’ll need to be removed from your bag when going through security.
The Same Rules Apply to Other Electric Hair Styling Tools
Wired hair straightening combs, hair straightening brushes, blow dryers, curling irons, and other plug-in hair styling electronics are allowed in hand and checked baggage without any packing restrictions.
For wireless ones (powered by butane or lithium batteries) the same rules apply. They must be protected from accidental activation and the heating element must be isolated by a heat-resistant material. They’re allowed only in carry-on bags and personal items.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I Need to Take Out My Hair Straightener at Security?
You don’t need to remove wired hair straighteners from your luggage when going through the airport security checkpoint. You only need to remove wireless hair straighteners and place them in separate bins for screening. So it’s advised to pack them somewhere accessible – for example, on the top part of your carry-on or in its exterior pocket.
Are Hair Straightening Creams and Oils Treated as Liquids?
All hair straightening creams, oils, lotions, pastes, and gels are treated as liquids by the TSA. If it moves when turned upside down, it’s a liquid. This means that they need to follow the 3-1-1 rule. All liquids need to be in 3.4 oz (100 ml) containers or smaller, they need to fit inside a single 1-quart bag, and each passenger can have only 1 bag of toiletries.
Can I Travel With a Flat Iron Aerosol Spray?
Hair Straightening aerosols are allowed on planes, but they need to follow the 3-1-1 rule for liquids when packed in hand baggage. Because all aerosols are flammable, additional restrictions apply to checked bags. When packed in checked luggage, all aerosols need to be in 500 ml (17 fl oz) bottles or smaller. In total, you can have up to 2 liters (68 fl oz) of aerosols.
What Other Hair Styling Tools and Products Are Allowed on Planes?
Sharp hair styling tools are banned from hand luggage, but you can pack them freely in checked bags. This includes scissors and rat tail combs.
All liquids, pastes, gels, and aerosols need to follow the 3-1-1 rule for liquids in hand baggage. In checked bags, they’re allowed in larger quantities. Aerosols are limited to 500 ml (17 fl oz) containers. This includes hair pastes and gels, hair straightening oils, hairspray, dry shampoo, regular shampoo, and similar products.
Only plug-in hair styling tools (curling irons, hair dryers, etc.) and solid products (hair wax, regular brushes, bobby pins, etc.) are allowed without any restrictions.
Are Travel Hair Straighteners Worth It?
The best thing about travel Hair straighteners is that they’re dual voltage. It means that they’ll work anywhere around the world. They’re also much smaller in size, which saves some space in your luggage. And lastly, most of them come with heat-resistant travel pouches, which allows you to pack them away quickly. The only downside is that they heat up slower and reach lower temperatures due to their limited size.
Summing Up: Traveling With Hair Straighteners
If you’re traveling with a regular plug-in hair straightener, then you don’t need to stress about packing it in your luggage. But even though they’re allowed, they might not work in other countries. So getting a small travel hair straightener is a worthwhile investment. It will keep your pack size low and you’ll be able to have perfectly straight hair on your vacation.
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