If you travel a lot, then you probably frequently run into the problem of your appliances only working part of the time. In fact, plugging in the wrong curling iron in certain parts of Europe has actually been known to short out entire levels of hotels or cause problematic smoke and melting around the outlets. If you do not wish to deal with serious electrical peril just to style your hair, then a dual voltage curling iron may be the right solution for you.
Dual voltage curling irons are designed to function at two or more voltage levels. They use whichever level is available in a given location to power the heating element and warm the barrel of the curling iron. Either way, the result is the same: a warm curling iron that you can use to style your hair however you wish.
Most dual voltage curling irons look identical to conventional curling irons in every way. However, they may have a setting on the side in addition to the temperature controls that allows you to select what voltage the iron should operate at. They also tend to be lighter and more compact since they are mostly used for travel.
Aside from not accidentally burning your hotel down, dual voltage curling irons have some other advantages. For starters, they work abroad, while many other curling irons will not because of the aforementioned hazards. They may also be shaped so as to be extremely recognizable to make airport security an easier experience, and they often come with their own travel pouches and adapters.
When you are purchasing a dual voltage curling iron, be sure to factor in how you plan to use it. Many dual voltage irons do not get quite as hot as conventional models, which can cause styling problems. Make sure that you select a model that will fit your personal styling needs.
Many people do not realize that electrical appliances simply do not work everywhere. They think that they will be able to just "plug in" wherever they go. This is not true, and can make things very difficult if you arrive in a foreign country without the right appliances. Make sure before you leave that your curling iron can adapt to multiple voltages and comes with any necessary adapters.
Any time you have doubts about whether or not a curling iron is meant to be used in any particular setting, you should not use the device. While the effects are generally harmless--the curling iron will simply not work--or at worst inconvenient--the curling iron shorts out part of the building you are in--you also run the risk of fire or electrical shock. Always use electrical appliances like curling irons in the exact manner described in the instructions and safety guide to ensure a safe and stylish result.