A number of weeks ago, I spent $30 for a flat iron.
It really works, although it takes me at least 30 minutes to do a decent job, and really 45 minutes is better. I have a lot of hair, even though my hairdressers always thin it out as much as possible. So I have to do something with it, or I'll end up with hair like Mia's before her makeover in Princess Diaries.
Now, I am not accustomed to spending 30+ minutes on something as idiotic as straightening out my hair. I'm insufficiently 'girlie' to arrange my schedule so that I can spend such an inordinate amount of time without inconveniencing everyone else (like children who want breakfast, or lunch.) I mean, really. More than a half-hour just to have straight hair? Not something I'm going to do on a regular basis, but it's nice to have the option handy.
In the meantime, I'll just tie it back in a ponytail while it's wet, and let it dry that way. The results are indistinguishable, and it's a heckuva lot quicker.