What is the best starter stripper pole? There are probably quite a few right answers to that question but I will help you sort through the most popular poles available and choose the one that is right for you.
When I first chose my pole, I didn't do a lot of reading or research. I bought a pole just like the ones I had been using to learn on in the studios that I went to. Lil' Mynx. Plain and simple. No further reading, no research, no questions.
Why I Purchased a Lil' Mynx
I was sold because:
I liked it, I was learning just fine on it in my classes
The quality was good
It held my weight (155 lbs) just fine
I could put it up in any room in my home
I was even able to put it up when we moved to a home with vaulted ceilings
I bought the adapter, installed it myself (I'm not a handyman either!) and it held beautifully.
It was affordable. I paid, after taxes, about $250 for my pole. And it has been worth every penny.
Now, after trying out a friend's titanium gold X-pole, I want one of those! I was able to more easily perform advanced tricks on it because my skin could grip the metal finish better.
I tried a brass pole at Venus Pole Fitness and liked how easily I could become Spiderwoman on it (!) but didn't like how I could not spin so easily on it. It sure has some real grip!
How to Choose for Yourself
I suggest, if you can, try a pole first. Find a local studio that has a couple of different sizes and finishes. You will then know how the metal feels and how you feel on it, how it holds your weight. This will help you to decide which type of finish to purchase.
Do not buy a Carmen Electra, Peekaboo or some of these other flimsier poles if you intend to really learn tricks and spins. These poles are best for just holding onto with your hand and dancing around, not on. You can injure yourself if you try and climb, invert or spin on these. If you just want a novelty to try and learn some transitions or dance moves, then these are ok.
Look at your budget. A good pole is going to cost you between $200-$400, depending on what brand you decide on. Lil' Mynx are the best bang for your buck in my opinion; you can purchase one of the painted finish poles for about $200 and they work just as well as the stainless steel.
Do you want it to have a spinning function? All three of these brands also offer the spinning mode on some of their poles.
What about the diameter? There are both 50 mm and 45 mm sizes (there are some even smaller, but I wouldn't recommend them unless you try them out first). Mine are all 50 mm and my hands are not huge, in fact they are kind of small. But I recently tried a 45 mm and LOVED it. If felt like I could hold onto the pole better. So try out both sizes as well before deciding on where to invest.
As you can see, look at the various features that you are looking for. But if you are just looking for something basic to start your journey on, I would still choose a Lil Mynx because of the price, value, quality and if I learn everything I can on stainless, then the other finishes will be a piece of cake to perform on!
But if your budget allows, go for a Titanium Gold finish that will have more "stickiness" to it or even brass, which has an even higher level of "stick". If you really get into pole, like a lot of us, you'll probably end up with a few poles - chrome finish, TG and brass! (And even both 50 and 45 mm sizes haha!)