If you've got the budget, the Cloud Nine The Original Iron are among the best straighteners you can buy.
- Slim, easy-to-use design
- Adjustable temperature
- Leading straightening and curling performance
- Glides well through hair
- Get a little hotter than ideal on the outside
- Review Price: £139
- Adjustable temperature, from 100-200 degrees
- Floating mineral-coated ceramic plates
- 3m cord
- Protective cover and carry case included
What are the Cloud Nine The Original Iron?
As the name suggests, The Original Iron is Cloud Nine’s original and longest serving hair straightener, and it’s the most expensive in the range at almost £140.
Aimed at all hair types, it offers the brand’s signature mineral-infused floating ceramic plates, accurate and adjustable temperature control, and a reputation (and awards tally) to rival its GHD competition.
Cloud Nine The Original Iron – Design and features
Despite being one of the priciest hair straighteners you can buy, you won’t find much that’s fancy with regards to The Original Iron’s design. In fact, if anything, we’d say the slim, matte-black plastic body is rather understated.
It feels sturdy, though, and the slightly rougher finish compared with others gives good grip, so you won’t find them slipping out of your hand during use.
There are other nice subtle touches, too. The textured tips at the end of the barrel provide extra grip and control during curling, while the subtle ridge at the bottom of the plates gives you somewhere to nestle your thumb for extra pressure or support when required.
The controls are found on the inside of the straighteners. They’re simple enough to use, if not the most tidy. An on/off switch sits on one side, with a temperature gauge and high/low rocker for controlling what it’s set at on the other.
The Original Iron is capable of five different temperatures between 100-200ºC, going up in 25-degree increments, with an LED light to signify each one. There’s an auto-off function that cuts in after 30 minutes of inactivity.
Once you’ve selected your desired temperature using the controls, you can watch the LEDs turn green as they move up towards it. Once the light at your chosen temperature goes from flashing to static, you’re ready to go.
The straighteners weigh just 247g, but feel similar in the hand to the heavier GHD Gold. However, the barrel is ever-so-slightly slimmer and so therefore ever-so-slightly easier to handle by comparison.
The plates here are apparently mineral-infused and solid ceramic for keeping hair protected, and measure 9cm long and 2cm wide. They’re floating units, which ensures excellent contact with the hair at all times, and therefore better results.
They’re not the largest plates you’ll find, granted, but the brand does have a wider iron available for the same price, should longer or thicker hair find they require it.
Other features of note include a generous 3-metre cable, which both swivels and pivots for good freedom of movement, and a European plug hiding inside the UK plug casing for adaptor-free travel.
As for accessories, The Original Iron comes with a quilted carry case and a blue plastic shield. This keeps warm plates away from fingers if you need to straighten and go, but also protected when you’re travelling.
Cloud Nine The Original Iron – Performance
The Original Iron offers a straightening performance to challenge them all, starting with their fast heat-up time.
We measured just 24 seconds from turning the straighteners on to them hitting the hottest temperature – it isn’t quite the 20 seconds quoted, but it’s close and easily among the fastest we’ve tested.
Using The Original Iron through the hair is a superb experience – there’s no snagging whatsoever, with the hair gliding through without issue. The experience is the same when gripping even fine hair tightly.
The plates appear to heat evenly from top to bottom, and we found that going over hair only once was enough to give it a slick, consistent finish – which means straightening time can be easily reduced.
Curling is equally impressive. Despite not having as curved a barrel as the GHDs, we actually preferred the curls achieved with the Cloud Nine straighteners. They were tighter and better formed, thanks to a smooth, even motion through the hair.
The top of the straighteners can become rather hot during extended use, though. Not to the extent of Lee Stafford’s Rainbow Shine, but enough that you’ll want to take care. The textured tips at the end of the barrels help in this regard, so you can keep your fingers protected while exerting any extra pressure for snug contact.
Adjustable temperatures also get these straighteners extra points, and we recommend trying out the lower temperatures to see if you can protect your hair from heat it doesn’t really require.
Why buy the Cloud Nine The Original Iron?
They’re not cheap, but the Cloud Nine The Original Iron offers an outstanding performance that gives the excellent GHD Gold a run for its money. These straighteners offer a fast heat-up time, adjustable temperature and a long-lasting straightening and curling performance. They even come with a carry case, where the GHD Gold does not.
The outside of the straighteners can get a little hotter than we’d like, but other than that – and their considerable price tag, of course – these are a pair of straighteners to be reckoned with. In fact, in a premium brand face-off, they could even have the edge over the GHDs.