- Best: Overall and for volume
- Heat settings: Three - up to 110C
- Suitable for: All hair types, including curly and coloured
This blow-dryer brush is absolutely massive, but surprisingly lightweight. When we initially unboxed it we expected to experience arm ache within five minutes, but we were left impressed by how easy it was to use. It has two heat settings and one cool button, which come in handy for ensuring long-lasting hold while reducing heat damage. It’s a brilliant two-in-one tool, as it dries your hair as you style it, and was fantastic on our poker-straight hair, with no tangled knots in sight. Our favourite feature was how fast it sped through strands, adding oodles of volume in less than 15 minutes. The only downside is it’s pretty noisy, but for the volume it delivers and the ease of use, along with its reasonable price means it’s a worthy investment.
- Best: For detangling
- Heat settings: Five - 150C to 210C
- Suitable for: N/A
The most impressive design feature on this hot brush is its retractable 5mm bristles, an ingenious way to ensure your hair never gets snagged. It’s something we wish was on every brush-styling tool. It has five heat settings, ranging from 150 to 210C, and the barrel is infused with coconut, argan and keratin oils for extra shine. Thanks to the retractable bristle, it’s easy to use directly from the root without fear of getting hair tangled. It easily glides through hair while wrapped around the barrel to create a flicky, bouncy do. It’s very lightweight too, and has a lengthy 3m cable. The tool automatically turns off after 72 minutes if not used, so there’s none of the typical panic you may have trying to remember if you’ve switched it off.
- Best: For adding curls
- Heat settings: 185C
- Suitable for : Everyone
One of the most well known hot brushes on the market is by ghd. It’s shaped like a barrel, with 5mm cool-touch bristles that are evenly spaced out across the surface to comb through hair and leave your locks smooth, with added volume and a loose curl. You can also use it just on your ends to create a flicky finish. It heats up to 185C, a temperature which ghd claims is optimal for long-lasting styles without heat damage. It does take a bit of practice to get to grips with this tool – on our first use, we found it often got tangled if you didn’t rotate it quickly enough through a strand of hair and the curls varied depending on how you manoeuvre the brush, but overall, it’s great for adding a bit of body and bounce. Our top tip? Work in sections for the best results.
Read our comparison of the ghd rise brush and Dyson’s airwrap
- Best: Cordless hot brush
- Heat settings: Three heat levels
- Suitable for : N/A
This styling tool is designed to be used on dry hair, like you would with straighteners or a curling wand. It’s part of Babyliss’s newly extended cordless range, and on a full charge (three hours) you can use it for 40 minutes without any cables getting in the way. It has three heat settings – we preferred the hottest setting for the best hold – and the LED light at the base of the wand helpfully indicates the battery life. Heat-up takes less than 10 seconds, and it’ll emit a sound when it’s ready to be used. We pointed it down towards our face, wrapped a strand of hair over the top, and glided it through strands while twisting it away from our face. It delivers a lovely bounce – especially on the ends – and gives that salon blow-dried look within minutes.
- Best: For straight hair
- Heat settings : Three temperature settings
- Suitable for : Wet hair
This brush is shaped like an oval, with bristles of varying lengths which allow you to grip hair right at the root for a quick burst of volume. It’s also one of the more slim-lined blow-drying brushes we tried, making it the easiest to store. It has a ceramic-coated barrel which leaves hair silky soft, even if the settings were a tad confusing. There are three heat and two speed settings, but there doesn’t seem to be a huge difference between them. It also has a cool tip, which comes in handy when twisting it through strands as it helps you to avoid any nasty burns, along with a cool shot button that sets your style in place. This brush is ideal if you want straight, smooth hair. It did take a little longer to dry every strand compared to others we tried, but it’s one of the more affordable hot brushes out there.
- Best: For thick hair
- Heat settings: N/A
- Suitable for: Taming frizz-prone hair and second-day styling
This hot brush, as the name suggests, has a detachable head which makes it easy to store without taking up much space. Boasting a chic black, gold and purple design, the brush head itself is full of combination bristles and offers two heat settings with a cool shot, each of which blast air evenly throughout. It’s faster than a traditional blow dryer, easier to use, keeps hair free from knots, and leaves it silky soft with lots of volume. Thanks to the wide oval-shape, it can brush through thicker strands of hair. It’s a little noisy, but no louder than a hair dryer and is a much more convenient.
- Best: Volumising hot brush
- Heat settings: Three heat and three speed
- Suitable for : N/A
The Dyson airwrap is arguably one of the most popular hair tools on the market since its launch in 2018. There’s a plethora of attachments to pick from – we love the original barrels which encourage the hair to wrap itself around the barrel (without getting tangled we hasten to add) for a soft, voluminous, light curl. It comes with two straightening brushes and a blow-dryer attachment in a chic tan case, but it’s also available in the newer purple and gold colour scheme.
One of our favourite attachments is the rounded bristle brush, which gives your hair an incredibly sleek finish in a matter of minutes. The tool itself is very lightweight, with a slim barrel that doesn’t leave your arm feeling tired, while customisable heat and power settings work extremely quickly to deliver your desired style. We found that achieving a bouncy blow-dry look took just 15 minutes. Extra points go to how quiet the airwrap is, meaning you can use it without disturbing anyone.
Dyson airwrap styler vs ghd creative curl wand: Which hair styler is best?
- Best: On a budget
- Heat settings: N/A
- Suitable for: Tangled hair
You’ll recognise this chunky black device from TikTok, since it achieved viral fame on the app in 2020. Dubbed as a Dyson dupe, its appeal lies in its affordability and the oodles of volume it delivers. In our experience, it works best when you work on hair in sections. Twisting your wrist as you glide through strands gives your locks a speedy volume boost. It doesn’t get tangled or leave hair frizzy, although it is pretty weighty, so bare that in mind. It has two heat settings and a cool shot option, and we found that the tool never got too hot, regardless of how close we were to our scalp. It’s a brilliant budget buy, despite being quite noisy, and is very easy to get to grips with.
Read our full Revlon one-step dryer and volumiser review