Packing for a trip and you’re wondering if you’re allowed to bring your hair straightener? Then you’re definitely in the right place because this detailed guide will tell you everything you need to know about bringing hair straighteners (and other hair styling tools) on an airplane!
Should you pack it in your carry-on or checked bag, will it work internationally, and what other hair styling tools you can bring on an airplane is explained in this detailed guide. So, keep reading to see if you’re allowed to bring a hair straightener on a plane, and everything else you need to know about flying with hair styling tools!
Yes, you’re allowed to bring a hair straightener in your carry-on bag. All corded hair straighteners are allowed in carry-on luggage – the brand, size, and all other details are entirely irrelevant. If it’s electric and it has a cord, it’s allowed on a plane.
It’s not the same with cordless hair straighteners, but we’ll get into those details a bit later. For now, we’re focusing on classic corded styling tools that are the most common.
One thing to note is that you should always protect your hair straightener or curling iron when you’re packing it. Don’t just throw it in the carry-on – make sure you put it in a heat-resistant bag and that all the heating elements of the device remain protected.
Also, consider when you’re most likely to use the hair styling device. If it’s immediately before checkout, you will need to pack it in your bag while it’s still hot, which is why it’s important to have a heat-resistant bag for the device.
Electric hair straighteners are allowed in checked luggage as long as they have a cord. The same goes for flat iron or a curling wand – if it’s electric and it has a cord, you’re allowed to pack in both your carry-on and checked luggage. Just make sure that the device is protected and that the heating element remains covered in transit.
Hair dryers and other corded styling tools are allowed in checked luggage. It’s recommended to protect the device from impact when you’re packing it, mostly for your own sake. Baggage handlers are rarely gentle with checked baggage, so there is a possibility that your hair styling tool could get damaged in transit.
Butane, battery, and gas-powered hair straighteners are not allowed in checked luggage, so keep that in mind. These are devices that are flammable and could potentially explode, so they are not allowed in checked baggage. But you can bring them in your carry-on, so keep reading.
Butane or gas-powered hair styling tools are allowed only in carry-on luggage. You can’t pack them in checked luggage because butane and gas are both highly flammable and there are special instructions for packing these cordless hair styling tools in your carry-on luggage.
It’s best to place the device in a heat-resistant pouch because the TSA requires the heating element to be covered during transport. The device also needs to be protected so that it can’t turn on accidentally in your luggage.
Another thing to note is that passengers are allowed to bring only one butane or gas powdered hair styling device. So, if you’re packing a butane curling iron you can’t pack a butane straightener.
Additionally, you should know that the same rule applies to cordless curling irons and hair straighteners that use lithium-ion batteries. They’re not allowed in checked baggage because it’s possible they might explode, and you’re not allowed to have more than one such tool in your carry-on or personal item.
Loads of other hair-styling tools are allowed on a plane! You can bring hair dryers, electric hair rollers, and flat irons in both your carry-on and checked luggage. In general, you can bring any electric hair styling tools with a cord, plus you’re allowed to bring whatever products and travel accessories you might need for hair styling.
It’s worth noting that you can easily bring a hair dryer in both your carry-on and checked luggage. There aren’t even any special instructions for packing them and you’re allowed to bring as many hair dryers are you might need during your trip.
Hair gel, hairspray, and all sorts of hair creams are allowed in both carry-on and checked luggage, but there are certain restrictions to keep in mind. The TSA 3-1-1 rule applies to both liquids and aerosols, so if you’re packing hair products in your carry-on luggage, they’ll all need to fit in a quart-size plastic bag.
Also, you can’t have more than 3.4 oz of a single product, so make sure you’re picking up travel-sized versions of your favorite hair styling products!
You could certainly try and see what happens. There aren’t any specific rules about straightening your hair on a flight, but honestly, that’s most likely because it hasn’t occurred to people yet.
You could technically use a hair straightener on a plane, especially if you brought a cordless one. But you really shouldn’t just casually use it while you’re in your seat because you might alarm other passengers and get booted from the flight as a consequence.
If you’re just curious and you need to know the answer, it would be best to ask the flight attendants on your flight. They’re the ones who have the power to boot you from the plane for misbehaving, so if they say it’s not okay to use your hair straightener, just don’t. If they say it’s fine, go ahead and do it.
They will most likely say it’s not okay. It’s unlikely you’ll get booted from the flight, but if you get caught straightening your hair on an airplane, the flight attendant will most likely approach you and tell you that you can’t do that and confiscate your hair straightener.
In case of a serious hair emergency, you could try being sneaky about it and going to the bathroom to straighten your hair, although this will work only with cordless devices since most planes don’t have outlets in the bathroom.
They most likely won’t, but it’s important to check anyway. You need to check the voltage on your devices, plus you should check if any of your hair styling devices are dual voltage. This is especially important if you’re flying from the US to Europe or vice versa because of the entirely different voltage grids.
The United States uses a 110V voltage grid while the EU uses a 220V one. So, even if you get an adapter for the plug, if you go ahead and plug a 110V device into a 220V socket you’ll just fry it pretty much instantly.
Dual voltage devices can be used safely with plug adapters, and you can get a voltage adapter for your hair styling tools so that you can safely use them internationally. Just be sure to check what the voltage situation is in the country you’re traveling to and what your devices are using – otherwise, you might regret your decision to bring hair straighteners on your trip.
In conclusion, you are allowed to bring a hair straightener on a plane. You can pack any corded styling tool in your carry-on luggage, but you must ensure that it’s properly packed and that the heating element is covered. You’re also allowed to pack these tools in your checked luggage.
It’s a bit trickier with cordless styling tools, whether they work on butane, gas, or have a lithium battery. These tools are flammable and they’re not allowed in checked luggage at all. You can have only one of these tools in your carry-on, but it must be secured so that it cannot be turned on by accident and the heating element must be covered.
It’s probable that your hair styling tool won’t work internationally, so be sure to check the voltage of the tool and the voltage grid of the country you’re visiting. When it comes to traveling between Europe and USA, you will need an adapter for the voltage and for the plug.
In case you’re wondering if you’re allowed to use the hair styling tools on the plane, you’re not. You can try, but it’s extremely probable you’ll get told off and your curling iron or hair straightener will get confiscated. If you try to argue with the flight attendants about this, you’ll probably be kicked off the flight.
Anna is the co-owner of expert world travel and can't wait to share her travel experience with the world. With over 54 countries under her belt she has a lot to write about! Including those insane encounters with black bears in Canada.