The two worst things that someone can do to their hair are flat iron straightening it and bleaching it. Sure, we love the way the CHI makes our strands long, shinny, and pretty darn straight - but the long term consequences are not worth it.
What's a good alternative? Invest in a decent large round brush and an ionic hair dryer. ALWAYS spray some type of hair protectant before blow drying out your hair. TRESemme Heat Tamer is one product that can do so, and is affordable as well. For straighter, less frizzy hair, you want to start blow drying your hair while it is still pretty damp. Try to reserve this only for special occasions. Otherwise, to minimize breakage and the effects of heat, wait until your hair is around 60- 80% dry. The result may not be as straight and sleek- but you will have more volume.
The same holds true for curling irons. Put them away! Although it takes more effort - loose curls can be created with round brushes of various sizes. The impact of high heat - sometimes reaching 300-400 degrees is torture for your locks! Ceramic, metal, or whatever else is coated on the iron makes minimal difference! Remember the ends of your hair do not repair themselves. The only way to treat split ends it to get a trim - contrary to what drug store products may try to sell you.