How To Clean Hair Straightener Without Rubbing Alcohol

Does your hair straightener smell or feel crusty? Then it’s time to clean it: cleaning your straightener is a quick and easy task that improves and extends the life of your styling tool.

Here’s how to clean your hair straightener, even without alcohol, and how to clean your steam hair straightener and its tank.

How to Clean Hair Straightener Without Rubbing Alcohol


The hair straightener is an indispensable and widely used tool because it allows you to have perfect styling not only for straightening hair but also for the creation of waves and hairstyles.

Made of ceramic, titanium, or tourmaline, it is an object that can last even many years in the case of the best models, but that needs constant maintenance.

Does your hair straightener smell, or is it encrusted? It is the fault of lack of maintenance, but also the use of heat protection sprays and other styling products that tend to encrust and ruin the plates.

Dirty straighteners don’t do a good job and may even ruin your hair, so it’s important to clean them periodically.

If you use this tool every day, you should clean your straightener at least once a month, while you can do it once every two months in case of occasional use.

Here is a guide on how to clean your hair straightener with or without alcohol, with a part dedicated to how to clean your steam hair straightener.

Read: How To Clean Hair Straightener Plates At Home

Does your hair straightener smell? Here’s how to clean it

If your hair straightener smells when you turn it on or use it, it means that it is absolutely time to clean it.

In this case, it will be almost essential to use alcohol: it is, in fact, an extraordinary cleaning because if the straightener stinks, it means that it has reached its limit.

Before seeing how to clean the hair straightener step by step, it is necessary to make a very important recommendation: you should never devote yourself to cleaning the straightener while it is running or is very hot.

Having taken this precaution, here are all the steps to clean your straightener and turn it like new:

  • Get a cloth and moisten it with water that is not too hot.
  • Gently wipe the cloth over the two plates, being careful not to scratch them in the case of ceramic plates.
  • The cloth can not clean the smallest spaces: for the cracks and the most difficult parts, use a cotton bud moistened in warm water.
  • Get another cloth and soak it with a little denatured ethyl alcohol, then wipe gently on the plates.
  • Take a clean cloth and dry everything.

Stubborn Dirt

In case of stubborn dirt and encrustations, instead of the microfiber cloth or cotton, you can use a toothbrush in order to have a deeper and more effective cleaning (but be careful not to scratch the plates!).

As an alternative to alcohol, you can choose to use hydrogen peroxide mixed with baking soda: once you reach creamy consistency, apply it on the plates of the plate with a toothbrush and then dry it well using a clean cloth.

Another way to clean the straightener is to use the hair relaxer, apply it on the plates, and then heat the straightener; just unplug it once you reach a medium temperature, and clean the straightener with a slightly dampened cloth to remove the detergent.

Read: How To Clean Flat Iron Plates The Right Way

How To Clean Your Hair Straightener Without Rubbing Alcohol

Do you want to take the time to clean your straightener but don’t want to use alcohol and generally want to avoid chemicals?

Detergents or alcohol are used in case of stubborn dirt when your straightener hasn’t been cleaned for quite some time.

If you want to know how to clean your hair straightener without alcohol, you will necessarily have to devote yourself more frequently to cleaning this tool.

However, it is a simple and fast operation that does not require special efforts or loss of time, and in the case of the best hair straighteners can give you great satisfaction.

For ordinary cleaning, all you need is lukewarm water, with which you can choose to moisten a microfiber cloth – for a “lighter” action – or a toothbrush – for “stronger” action.

Preventative Measures

To ensure that your hair straightener lasts as long as possible, the following rules should be adhered to.

  1. When cleaning the straightener, you should start with the gentlest means, and only after making sure of their ineffectiveness move on to the strongest ones.
  2. After each use, the device should be wiped with a cloth soaked in clean water. Such a simple procedure will prevent the accumulation of plaque deposits and, as a consequence, many problems in the future.
  3. Do not use the iron with dirty hair; you must first wash your head.
  4. After cleaning, the iron must be dried well and only then reused.
  5. Do not wipe the ceramic with hard paper – you can scratch it. The maximum you can afford is a paper towel.
  6. A melamine sponge will help with very heavy soiling, but do not get too carried away with it after every use.

How to clean the steam iron

The steam straightener for hair is cleaned in the same way as all other types of straighteners, but in the case of this model, you need to take an additional step, which is to clean the water tank.

As we know, tap water contains micro-impurities that can, in the long run, damage the appliances, and the same can happen to steam iron.

If you live in an area with a large percentage of limescale in the water, it is ideal to directly use demineralized water for the tank of the steam plate.

An alternative to demineralized water can be to clean the tank with a cloth soaked in water and limescale remover, making sure to remove all detergent residue in the final stage of cleaning.

All the steps for perfect maintenance of your straightener

The hair straightener is undoubtedly one of the most popular and widespread tools in hair care.

By now, those who want quick and easy styling can no longer do without it, also because the latest generation of straighteners is increasingly versatile and attentive to the welfare of the hair.

The best hair straighteners

Perhaps not everyone knows, however, that hair straighteners, like all household appliances, require a bit of maintenance.

Over time and use, in fact, not only dust but also residues of styling products such as gels, foams, serums, and oils can accumulate on the plates, eventually compromising its operation.

Beyond maintenance, when it comes to hair care, we recommend that you buy quality products that guarantee high performance and are made of safe, long-lasting materials.

Among the many hair straighteners on the market, we suggest below some models that have convinced us in terms of reliability and practicality of use:

  • Straightener with extra large plates for long and/or thick hair
  • Hair Straightener with automatic setting of the most suitable temperature
  • Straightener with ceramic coating and ionizer
  • Straightener with ceramic coating and keratin


To proceed with the cleaning of your plate, you will need to get:

  • Two clean, soft cloths, preferably microfiber;
  • A cotton swab;
  • A basin of lukewarm water;

Before going on with our advice, we remind you not to carry out under any circumstances the cleaning of the plate when the plates are hot or even just lukewarm, and also, for your safety, it is essential that the instrument is disconnected from the power outlet.

But let’s see now in detail the three simple steps to be taken so that your hair straightener will shine again.

How to clean your hair straightener in 3 easy steps

1) Dampen the cloth with water and pass it on the plates

Wipe the cloth moistened with water. After making sure that the straightener is cool, moisten one of the two cloths with a little warm water and rub it gently on both plates.

In case the plates are coated with ceramic, be very careful not to insist too much: this material, in fact, scratches very easily.

2) Remove stubborn dirt with a dry cotton bud.

Where the dirt is most stubborn, or in hard-to-reach areas such as the buttons and levers on the control panel, wipe with a dry cotton swab to remove accumulations of dust and other residues.

3) Dry the hotplate well with the dry cloth

Finally, take the second cloth and wipe the entire plate: carefully wipe not only the plates but also the corners and edges, to finish cleaning.

Before using it again, make sure that your hair straightener is completely dry.