I do not really want to use a straighter that often, so I did not wish to invest in a very expensive one. I more wanted to deal with the occasional cowlick or funny frizzy piece of hair so I got this one. I like that there is a long cord with a swivel feature that does not tangle, so it makes it easier not to touch the actual hot parts. The handle gets a bit hotter than I find comfortable to use. There are several heat settings, but not a temperature control. It will heat up in about a minute, but it will not be hot enough to really style with for about 10 minutes.
Once it heats up, I turn it down so that it does not get too hot since there is no automatic shut off. If you use this a few times to see if you like a straight style, your hair will be fine, it will style well and not get damaged, but if you use this particular iron regularly, you should make sure to use a thermal protectant leave in product.
The ceramic plates are a good feature and make that ionic property that seals your hair and is a good feature for the price. If you use a straigthener daily, you might wish to invest in a more expensive iron. I was pleased for the price and how often I use it. Do place this on a flame retardant surface next to nothing flammable (including your hair styling products and bottles) it does get hot, and do be careful when holding it on your hair since the heat is not regulated. I found it to be sturdy. For the price you cannot beat this iron, but the only iron that is like CHI is CHI or FHI irons.