This is a styling iron that comes with different settlings and interchangeable plates. You can style your hair using steam and ion technology, steam only, or heat only while you straighten, crimp, or curl. The crimping and curling plates are metal, by the way. Because of the options, I wanted the Vidal Sassoon Ion Ceramic Steam Multi Styler to be the tool for me. It was working well enough, leaving my hair shiny and straight after one or two passes of the iron, but imagine my dismay when the heat and condensation of steam caused the ceramic coating to chip off! Yes, they are ceramic-coated plates. It would only be a matter of time before I had a metal straightener on my hands. This brought back memories of the Conair Steam Straightener and HOLY RETURN POLICIES, BATMAN it was back to Wal-Mart for this bad boy. I really wanted to experiment with the crimper, though. It was very good.