When taken care of and used properly, your hair iron/straightener can last for years. The best way to get the most out of the versatile hot tool and not damage your hair? Avoid committing these common no-no's!

Using it on wet hair.

You're not supposed to hear a sizzling sound or see steam come out of the iron plates. Make sure your tresses are completely dry before using it to avoid damage.

Never cleaning it.

Does your hair iron not work as well as it used to? It might be because all the heat protecting oils + serums have built up and the residue hasn't been cleaned off. Remember, after using your iron (wait for it to cool down, of course), wipe a clean cloth over it to make it perform its best.

Using a high temperature on bleached hair.

It's not that you can't iron your mane if it's colored, but you just have to be extra careful. The high heat can fade dyed locks faster. Our tip? Use the lowest heat setting of your iron to prevent your hair from "burning off." Or, if your iron doesn't have a temperature adjuster, avoid using it every day.

Not storing it properly.

A hair straightener with a damaged chord and exposed wires is dangerous because it can cause an electrical spark when plugged in. Prevent this from happening by loosely bundling the chord together. Doing so will avoid straining them. Keep your hair tool in a safe and dry place.

Using the wrong size.

Picture this: You have waist-length hair, but you're using a half-inch flat iron. Not only will it take you longer to smooth out your strands, but it could cause more damage to the follicles because you'll be forced to go over each section multiple times!

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Repetitively running it through each hair section.

For heat styling, one go should be enough. If you constantly have to run it through your tresses, it could be because your tool doesn't have the right temperature setting for your hair's thickness.

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This story originally appeared on Cosmo.ph.

* Minor edits have been made by the Femalenetwork.com editors.

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