Back in July 2016 this gorgeous hairdryer launched and it seemed that the whole world inhaled with awe and intrigue and decided immediately to buy it… before gasping again with horror when they heard the £299 price tag and reconsidered the purchase.
I have had so many conversations about this hairdryer, and it really seems to have caught the imagination of the public – not without huge effort and spend from Dyson’s PR department, it must be said.
And now, I have one and can’t wait to tell you all about it!
So, let me first address the extortionate price tag off the bat. Nothing at Dyson comes cheap, but at £299, this costs more than double, often three times the price of the most highly regarded hairdryers on the market.
So why does it cost so much? Well, Dyson are keen to make it known that they spent $71million developing this product, building new dedicated beauty testing labs, employing expert engineers, and the in true age-of-social-media style, hiring top stylists with massive social media presence – Jen Atkin, the hugely influential hair stylist who works daily with the Kardashian clan – and acquiring 1,000 miles (this is the actual true figure, not an exaggeration!) of real human hair in order to effectively test some 600 prototype dryers.
So, I think we can all accept that it hasn’t been cheap to produce Dyson’s latest offering but is it twice as good as the world renowned session stylist favourites like the GHD or mighty Parlux, who are a mere fraction of the price? Or are we paying the overheads of a million unnecessary engineers, social media influencers and the seemingly endless Dyson patents they are always advertising?
Well, the new kid on the hair drying block certainly looks beautiful, because in true Dyson style, they’ve thrown out the rule book when it comes to design, and given us something that looks like something only Dyson would create. So, as soon as you clap eyes on it, you are struck by how different, and how special it looks.
Unlike the run-of-the-mill circular fan, L-shaped hairdryer models of yore and present – let’s face every dryer you’ve ever owned probably differ in only colour and brand name – Dyson’s dryer looks like a piece of magnificence technology, that hides its fan in the handle and the ‘body’ of the dryer basically looks like it has a big hole punched out of its centre.
In the same fashion that their large bladeless floor fans work, the cylinder of this dryer makes use of the brand’s so-called ‘Air Multiplier technology’, which apparently steals air from all sides, multiplies its power, and pushes it out onto your hair through the ring in the centre.
Dyson boast that their hair dryer is six times smaller and three times lighter than your average hair dryer, despite delivering airflow powerful enough to half your dry time.
I can agree that it did almost half my drying time and it is beautifully weighted, with the weight being situated in the handle, instead of on top, like other dryers. I have really weak arms that grow tired easily with most hairdryers and I definitely find this reduces that happening.
This reduction in drying time seemed unlikely to prove fruitful when I first tried this dryer, given that it can’t get nearly as hot as other dryers. The device is fitted with a temperature gauge that tests the temperature twenty times per second (mind boggling for someone like me – I’m definitely not a math-lete!). This dryer won’t burn your hair, where most dryers will be doing this at their hottest, whether you feel (or smell) the burning.
While it won’t get as super hot as some people like, you do get to control the heat using four digital temperature settings and three airflow settings, so you will be able to find the perfect level of ‘blow’ for your exact hair type and preferences, safe in the knowledge that you’re hair won’t get heat-damaged. If you want a prolonged period of ‘cool’ to set your style, you can use the cool shot or else put all the digital buttons controlling air flow and temperature down to the lowest and it works really well. I have a sensitive scalp and avoid using hairdryers sometimes to avoid irritating my scalp, but with the Dyson my scalp is in much better, more comfortable shape than normal. It didn’t irritate it whatsoever.
The attachment nozzles and diffuser are held on magnetically. This is so pleasing and oddly satisfying and clipping them on and off is completely seamless.
The filter is another feature that is easy to twist off and clean without burning yourself if it’s still hot from use. Most filters aren’t easy to access, which is a shame because when the filter is full of dust, we are unlikely to get a good blow dry.
One of the selling points is that the Dyson Supersonic is so quiet you can have a conversation while it’s in full flow. Now, it is relatively quiet and has a much more pleasing tone than most hairdryers, but it wasn’t as quiet as I was expecting. I wasn’t expecting a miracle, but can’t deny that this still made hearing the TV or holding conversations a little difficult.
I think it left my hair more decidedly smoother, more shiny and sleek, and with fewer fly away hairs than ever before. Unfortunately it was flatter than normal too – and as a girl who is currently shedding hair at a rate of noughts, and battles flatter-than-a-pancake hair at the best of times, I need all the volume I can get.
So, is it as amazing as they say? Is it worth the hefty price tag? Is it the pinnacle of hair drying?
Those questions are difficult to answer. Because in many respects the answer is: yes. I think it looks incredible. I find blow drying my hair faster and less of a bicep workout (I know, pathetic…!) than I ever did with any traditional L-shaped hair dryer.
But does the beautiful aesthetic, the savings in time and reduction in arm strain mean it’s worth buying? Or is it a largely a case of style over substance?
I think it all depends on how skilled you are at blowdrying. In some respects it will suit skilled hair stylists and in others it will suit novices. Let me explain…
On one hand, if you aren’t great at hair styling and have very thick or curly hair, this is like a hairdryer and straightening iron in one (only without the heat damage!) and will make drying your unmanageable mane a walk in the park and I think you will adore it. On the other hand, if like me, you have fine hair and not much blow drying skill, then you’ll find creating volume very hard with this. If you’ve got a good technique and fine hair or are a hairdresser then you’ll have no problem giving yourself or your client the great volume to go with the sleek, shiny hair and this will be worth every penny.
If you are in the market for a new hairdryer and can easily afford £300 or have a kind benefactor who will gift you it for your birthday or Christmas, then I don’t think you’ll be disappointed but I’m not sure it’s worth scrimping and saving over for ages because the Parlux does as good a job in my opinion and is much cheaper. If you already have a fantastic hair dryer then I don’t think you have to make the change immediately.
It’s not a ‘must-have’, but it is a ‘lovely-to-have’.
And don’t worry if you miss out now because surely the next Dyson hairdryer is bound to be a stunning, battery-operated, cordless, clear version, with visible technology in an ode to their vacuum cleaners!
And that, would be a game-changer worth the price tag!