Choose the Perfect Hair Dryer for You

By | November 17th, 2017

Ionic, tourmaline, wattage, diffuser: Hair dryer equipment, terminology, and technique (not to mention the muscle) to mimic perfect salon blowout results at home sometimes feels like the hair version of a tongue twister.

But having the right tools can help lead you to polished, smooth success, so we turned to Gareth Palmer, academy trainer and facilitation specialist for Keune, to find out how to best choose a hair dryer to suit your needs.

Focus on the Features

The hair-tools industry has expanded as technology has exploded. New materials, features, and bells and whistles have made finding a hair dryer…well, hairy. But Palmer says that there are just a couple of primary considerations as you start your search.

“I think the most important thing for someone is weight,” he says. “If your new dryer is too heavy, you’re not as likely to use it, and you won’t get your desired look.” Either that, or start doing some bicep curls.

But he acknowledges budget is also a major consideration. “Price is always going to be a factor,” he says. “I tend to direct my own clients to a professional-grade dryer, because if it works for me, then I know it will perform at home for them.” He adds that while he always recommends professional dryers, there is still a range of prices available. “A dryer priced in the mid-range will have all the features you will need and won’t break the budget.”

Finally, to get technical, all you really need on a hair dryer is heat, a nozzle to direct air flow, low and high speed. Super simple. If you have or want texture or curl, then make sure you have a diffuser and a cold button option.

Master Techniques

Palmer also says that results from adding materials to hair dryers such as tourmaline, titanium, and others is still open to debate, so they may not really help you reach your hair goals or necessarily be worth the investment. “My personal belief is that if you concentrate on the technique that the dryer and brush require, you can achieve any desired finish,” he says.

Wattage is also not as much of a consideration as skill. “It’s more important to be able to control your hair on the brush,” he says. “That determines whether you use any hair dryer at any level, on either low or high speed.”

Maximize Hair Dryer Life with Maintenance 

Hair dryers don’t last forever, but with a little bit of care, Palmer says dryers can last four to five years, or more. “Like any purchase, generally, if you take good care of it, it will last longer,” he says. Keep air flow at top speed by regularly cleaning out the screen on the back of the hair dryer. Don’t wrap the cord around the dryer when you store it—it puts stress on the cord where it joins the dryer. And of course, try not to drop it.

And, Palmer says, take advantage of the warranty option. “Make sure you submit the warranty to the company. If you do have any issues, that will give you some recourse and protect your tool,” he says.

Tap the Experts 

Don’t be afraid to take a peek at what’s holstered at your salon stylist’s station. Or conduct your own Q&A and ask your stylist to recommend a couple of hair dryers for you. “Their insight into the industry and their experience using hair dryers multiple times every day is a great resource,” Palmer says, not to mention they know your hair, and how you care for it, well. Since we’re on the subject… what’s his favorite? “Hands down, the Babyliss Ferrari Dryer. It’s the best that I’ve ever used for performance, comfort and durability.”

Trying to get your in better shape this holiday season? Ask your stylist about the Keune Care Miracle Elixir treatment—a luxurious, hair-boosting mask that can be done after your next blowout, color or cut service. Find out more about it here.


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