How do I use my hair straighteners in Afghanistan?

Afghan power outlet

Will my hair straighteners work in Afghanistan?

First check that your hair straighteners can work in Afghanistan:

If not then:

  • Use a power converter [7] (or voltage transformer) - this will enable you to use your existing hair straighteners and other applicances with an 220 volt Afghan power outlet, however this is significantly bulkier, heavier and more expensive than dedicated travel hair straighteners. A voltage transformer will change the voltage but won't change the actual physical shape of the plug on your hair straighteners to fit in the wall outlet used in Afghanistan, so check that your power converter [7] includes a suitable power adapter for Afghanistan otherwise you will still need to bring a seperate power adapter. Note that your domestic hair straighteners might not be suited for travel and you could risk damage in transit.

Warning: If your hair straighteners won't handle 220 volts used in Afghanistan you run the potential risk of damage to your hair straighteners, an electrical fire hazard or a blown fuse. Before attempting to use your hair straighteners in Afghanistan check the instruction manual first to ensure safe operation.

Using hair straighteners in Afghanistan

Will my hair straighteners work in Afghanistan?

It depends on if your hair straighteners can handle the 220 volts which are used in Afghanistan. If you're using either dual voltage hair straighteners or your hair straighteners can operate using 220 volts and you have the appropriate plug adapter then you should be able to use it in Afghanistan. If not then then you will need to consider purchasing either a power converter [7] or dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2]. Read the section on can you use a power converter with your domestic hair straighteners in Afghanistan for help deciding which option is more suitable.

Can I use my US hair straighteners in Afghanistan?

The instructions on this page assume that you're an America reader travelling to Afghanistan and will provide advice on using your US hair straighteners with an Afghan power outlet.

Afghanistan power outlets and plug sockets

What frequency is used in Afghanistan?

The frequency used in an Afghan power outlet is 50Hz.

What is the mains voltage in Afghanistan?

The normal voltage used in Afghanistan is 220 volts.

Which travel adapter do you need when using  hair straighteners in Afghanistan?

Type C and F power outlets

Which travel adapter do you need when using hair straighteners in Afghanistan?

There are two types of power outlets used in Afghanistan, types F and C with the primary power outlets being type F:

  • Plug Type C - You can recognise this wall socket by two holes next to each other.
  • Plug Type F - You can recognise the wall socket by the two large round holes 19 mm apart from each other, plus two thin grounding clips above and below.

A recommended plug adapter to bring when using 220 volt hair straighteners in Afghanistan is a Type F power adapter [6], read the simple guide below for full details of using hair straighteners in Afghanistan using a power adapter. Note that unless you that have dual voltage hair straighteners you will need to see if you also need to use a power converter.

Dual voltage hair straighteners

Are my hair straighteners dual voltage?

Dual voltage hair straighteners

Are my hair straighteners dual voltage?

A simple way to tell if your hair straighteners can accept dual voltage is to look for either a sticker or numbers printed on the plug or the handle. The location might vary depending on the make and model of your hair straighteners, it could also be written on the box or in the instruction manual. Some dual voltage hair straighteners might change automatically but other straighteners will have a button or switch which allows you to operate between different regions depending on which country you are in.

  • A specific number such as 110V indicates single voltage hair straighteners. If this number matches the 220 volts used in Afghanistan then you should be able to use your hair straighteners with an Afghan power outlet.
  • A small voltage range with a dash such as 100-120V also indicates single voltage hair straighteners which can accomodate small voltage fluctuations. If the 220 volts used in an Afghan power outlet falls within the range shown on your hair straighteners then you should be able to use it in Afghanistan.
  • A large voltage range separated with a dash or slash such as 100/240V indicates dual voltage hair straighteners capable of being used in Afghanistan or any other country.

Travelling to Afghanistan with hair straighteners

Can I bring hair straighteners in my carry on luggage to Afghanistan?

Travel hair straighteners with heat protective cap

Can I bring hair straighteners in my carry on luggage to Afghanistan?

According to the TSA guidelines for hair straighteners [10] there is no restriction on carrying mains powered hair straighteners in your carry on hand luggage through airport security in the US. The TSA also suggests that you should check that the airline which is taking you to Afghanistan will allow hair straighteners onboard and that they will fit in the overhead bin or underneath the seat of the aircraft. Packing the hair straighteners in a dedicated heat resistant protective hot tools travel case [12] leaves them easily accessible by airport security, they can be packed away quickly avoiding a tangle of power wires in your carry on luggage (the TSA advices wrapping wires tightly around hair straighteners). If you intend to bring fragile or expensive hair straighteners in your hand held luggage then it is advisable to bring hard carry on luggage [13] as this provides the most protection against drops and knocks during your journey.

Is it safer to bring your travel hair straighteners or domestic hair straighteners to Afghanistan?

Packing dual voltage travel hair straighteners are preferable to bringing your existing hair straighteners as it is safer to assume that they will operate correctly with the 220 volt power outlets used with an Afghan power outlet, provided that you use the correct plug adapter for Afghanistan. It is also worth bearing in mind that bringing expensive domestic hair straighteners might place them at risk because of potential damage or loss in your check in suitcase by airline baggage handlers in Afghanistan. The inconvenience and costs involved in repairing expensive specialised domestic hair straighteners in Afghanistan might be higher than buying cheap dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2] before setting off. If you intend to bring along your own hair straighteners in your luggage either slide them inside a sneaker or boot to protect from light knocks, alternatively use a heat resistant and shockproof hot tools travel case [12] or heat travel mat for hair straighteners and curling irons [14] which will also allow the hair straighteners to be packed immediately after use without waiting to cool down.

Power converters for Afghanistan

What is the difference between a power converter and a plug adapter?

Voltage converter

What is the difference between a power converter and a plug adapter?

A heavy and expensive power converter [7] will convert the voltage of 220 volts from an Afghan power outlet to work with non-220 volt hair straighteners, whereas a smaller and more lightweight power adapter (or plug adapter) will change the shape of the plug on your hair straighteners to slot into a power outlet found in Afghanistan.

Do I need a voltage converter to use my hair straighteners in Afghanistan?

The correct model of power converter [7] (or voltage transformer) allows hair straighteners using a different voltage to operate with the 220 volt power outlet used in Afghanistan. A power converter is more suitable for travellers who wish to bring their own domestic hair straighteners, however it can be more expensive to buy a power converter than it is to purchase dedicated dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2]. Also worth noting, a power converter is noticeably bulkier and heavier than travel hair straighteners making a power converter less suited for packing in luggage.

Hair straightener safety

Are hair straighteners dangerous?

The temperature of the ceramic plates used in hair straighteners can reach over 200 degrees with the potential to burn hair, skin, and even start a fire if not used correctly. According to figures from Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service electrical beauty products have been responsible for an estimated 650,000 fires in the United Kingdom alone.

How can I minimise risk using hair straighteners?

A heat resistant glove

How can I minimise risk using hair straighteners?

  • Skin protection: Wear heat resistant gloves [15] during styling to protect hands from heat.
  • Children's protection: With 10% of children's burns being caused by hair straighteners it is recommended to look for hair straighteners which include a heat resistant end cap [18] to keep the plates closed shut when not in use, making it easier to store out of reach of children.
  • Luggage protection: Placing hair straighteners directly into luggage without allowing them to cool down can risk damage to clothes and heating up combustible or flammable packed items. If your hair straighteners weren't supplied with a heat protective cap then wrap them in a heat mat [14] or use a hot tools travel case [12] to pack them into luggage whilst warm. A travel case will also keep expensive hair straighteners protected from damage during transit.
  • Hair protection: Applying a heat protectant spray [16] prior to using hair straighteners is essential to prevent burning, as well as using the correct technique for your hair type - read our guide on how to use hair straighteners for comprehensive information.
  • Fire protection: It can take up to 40 minutes for hair straighteners to cool down so resting your straighteners on a heat mat [14] could reduce the risk of setting fire to furniture. Forgetting to turn off hot domestic appliances can also cause fires. This risk can be reduced by using a model of straightener with a timer socket [17] which will turn itself off automatically after a certain length of time, you can also add this feature to any basic straighteners by using a timer socket in a power outlet.

How can I add a safety timer to my existing hair straighteners?

Hair straighteners connected to a timer power outlet

How can I add a safety timer to my existing hair straighteners?

1 in 12 owners of hair straighteners admit to forgetting to turn them off after use, unless your hair straighteners have a built in automatic timer then leaving them on could potentially start a fire. However you can add this functionality to any model even if it doesn't have an integrated timer:

  1. Add an automatic timer to any hair straighteners by plugging them into a timer socket [17] then plugging the timer into a power outlet.
  2. Turn on the timer and use the hair straighteners as normal.
  3. After you have finishing using the hair straighteners turn off the power at the outlet.
  4. However if you forget to turn the power outlet off then the timer will automatically switch off the straighteners after a pre-set length of time. Depending on the model of timer this could be 15, 30, 60 or 120 minutes - ideally pick the shortest length of time possible.
  5. For added peace of mind use a power outlet splitter [19] to share the outlet from the timer with both your hair straighteners and a lamp. When the timer is running both the straighteners and the lamp will be turned on, making the lamp a clear indicator that the straighteners are still being heated. When leaving a room it is second nature to ensure all lights are turned off, if the lamp is still on then this acts as a reminder to switch off the straighteners.

How to treat a hot iron burn

If you accidentally burn yourself run cold water under your burn and if it is severe it is advised to seek medical attention from a doctor or hospital.

How to use hair straighteners in Afghanistan using a type C power adapter

Learn how to use hair straighteners in Afghanistan with a 2 pinned Type C power adapter.

  1. Check that your straighteners are either dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2] or can work with a 220 volt power supply - if it doesn't then don't continue as you may create an electrical fire hazard, damage your hair straighteners or blow a fuse. Before using a travel hair straighteners which can toggle between different voltages make sure the switch is set to the 220 volt setting to use in Afghanistan, please refer to the owners manual to find out how to do this.
  2. You'll need to buy a Type C plug adapter [4] if the shape of plug used on your hair straighteners isn't the same shape as the power outlet used in Afghanistan. The power adapter is designed to fit plugs from other countries into a power outlet in Afghanistan simply by changing the shape of the plug, however it doesn't change the voltage of your hair straighteners to work with a 220 volt supply.
  3. Start the process by taking the Type C plug adapter and inserting it in the Afghan power outlet. You can identify the wall supply by the 2 circular adjacent holes where the twin pins go.
  4. Plug in your hair straighteners into the Type C plug adapter.
  5. Turn on the Afghan power outlet.
  6. You can now turn on your straighteners for use in Afghanistan.
How to use  hair straighteners in Afghanistan using a type C power adapter

How to use hair straighteners in Afghanistan using a type F power adapter

How to power your hair straighteners in Afghanistan using a two pronged Type F travel charger.

  1. Check that the straighteners are either dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2] or can work with a 220 volt power supply - if not then don't continue because you may create an electrical fire hazard, damage your hair straighteners or blow a fuse. Before using a travel hair straighteners which can toggle between different voltages make sure the switch is set to accept 220 volts to use in Afghanistan, please refer to the user guide to find out how to do this.
  2. You will need to buy a Type F plug adapter [6] if the shape of the power outlet which is used in Afghanistan isn't the same shape as the plug of your hair straighteners. The Type F plug adapter is designed to convert different plugs from other countries for a power outlet in Afghanistan simply by changing the shape of the plug, however it doesn't change the voltage of the hair straighteners to work with a 220 volt supply.
  3. Start by plugging the Type F plug adapter in the Afghan power outlet. You can recognise the wall outlet by the two large round holes 19 mm apart from each other, plus two thin grounding clips above and below.
  4. After that plug in your hair straighteners into the Type F plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Afghan power outlet.
  6. The straighteners are now ready for use.
How to use  hair straighteners in Afghanistan using a type F power adapter

See also

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Afghanistan - Afghan Wikipedia web page
  2. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Huachi-Straightener-Straighteners-Temperature-Straightening/dp/B06XSG9D5D/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&qid=1519849921&sr=8-1&keywords=Dual+Voltage+Titanium+Flat+Iron+Hair+Straightener&linkCode=ll1&tag=wikiconnectio-21&linkId=d631f2dbe4c8cea042c38ac0fe4bf011 - dual voltage travel hair straighteners
  3. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeC.htm - Type C power outlet
  4. Type C plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type C power outlets without converting voltage
  5. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeF.htm - Type F power outlet
  6. Type F plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type F power outlets without converting voltage
  7. Power converter - A step up step down power converter converts 110-120 volts up to 220-240 volts and 220-240 volts down to 110-120 Volts
  8. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_electricity_by_country - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country
  9. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/list_bylocation.htm - IEC World Plugs by location
  10. https://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/cib_results.aspx?search=hair%20iron - TSA guidelines for hair straighteners
  11. Dual voltage travel hair dryer - Folding handle hair dryer with dual voltage suitable for international travel
  12. Hard case for hot tools - Hard case designed for storing and protecting a flat irons, curling irons and hair straighteners..
  13. Hard carry on luggage - Example of hard cases, suitcases and luggage suitable for airline carry on.
  14. Heat travel mat for hair straighteners and curling irons - Protects surfaces from hot hair irons and wraps around the appliance allowing instant packing into baggage.
  15. Heat resistant gloves for hair styling - Heat resistant glove recommended to protect skin against the risk of heat from a curling iron, flat iron or hair dryer
  16. Heat protectant spray - Thermal protector spray used prior to styling with heated tools such as blow dryers and flat irons.
  17. Energy saving outlet with timer - Automatic power shut down of a connected appliance after a preset length of time.
  18. Hair straighteners which include a heat resistant end cap - Example of hair straighteners with a protective cap suitable for travel.
  19. Power outlet splitter - Splits a single power outlet to multiple power outlets, allowing multiple appliances to simultaneously use a single wall outlet.