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An honest Dyson Airwrap review from a frizzy-haired shopping pro — plus, save $100 at Amazon

We're all familiar with Dyson vacuums, but did you know the brand can also work miracles on your hair? I'd heard that the popular Dyson Airwrap — a multi-use styling tool designed to blow-dry, curl, smooth and shape hair of all types — was essentially like having a hair salon in your home, and was dying to know whether it was worth the hype ... and cost. With a retail price of almost $600, it's not cheap — but you can snag it at Amazon for $499 now. (Still not necessarily inexpensive, of course, but $100 off is $100 off!) Even at full price, you are getting six styling products in one, and Dyson has an excellent reputation for a reason, right? Well, I finally got my hands on one of these babies, and here's my honest review.

At $100 off now at Amazon, it's not exactly inexpensive, but it's certainly a better deal.

$499 at Amazon

Before I get into the nitty-gritty, some quick backstory: I have curly/wavy hair that goes past my shoulders and gets frizzy at the mere mention of humidity. I've had some success with other heat styling products (read my Revlon Hot Air Brush review), but keep in mind that I'm 100% learning as I go and by no means a hair expert. In short, if I can get good results with the Airwrap, anyone can.

dyson airwrap and attachments
Multitask much? The Dyson Airwrap has no shortage of attachments. (Britt Ross/Yahoo)

My immediate thought upon unboxing the Dyson Airwrap was, "Okay, this is a luxury product." From its sleek ovoid case to its rich blue and copper design (it also comes in nickel/copper), it was clear that design was a priority. That's all well and good, but would it also deliver in terms of performance?

As far as accessories go, let's just say the number of attachments this thing comes with would put your boss' emails to shame. It includes not one, but two curling barrels (1.2-inch and 1.6-inch), a firm smoothing brush, a soft smoothing brush, a round volumizing brush, a smoothing dryer and a filter cleaning brush. (You can also add a wide-toothed comb attachment at checkout if your hair is curly or coil-y.) I'll admit, it seemed a little complex for my taste, and while my impatient self would love to say that you'd fare well skipping Dyson's online tutorials and just winging it, I'd be lying. The good news is that the videos are super short, and they're really helpful in terms of illustrating what each attachment is used for. They also demonstrate how to use the attachments on different hair types depending on the style you're going for, whether your hair is fine and straight or thick and coiled.

the author holding a phone showing different styling tutorials on the dyson app
Voluminous blow out? Loose mermaid waves? Bouncy ringlets? The limit (almost) does not exist! (Britt Ross/Yahoo)

For my first attempt, I opted for the firm smoothing brush recommended for frizz-prone hair. I figured I could dry and smooth out my naturally crimp-y waves, then use a barrel attachment to test out some curls. I'm not very tech-savvy, so I was relieved to find that the Airwrap is quite user-friendly. Just snap each attachment into place and choose your settings (there are three each for heat and airflow).

It's usually best to heat-style your hair when it's 70–80% dry, so that's where I started. I got all of the tangles out with my beloved Wet Brush, applied my favorite heat protectant and clipped the majority of my hair back so I could focus on small pieces at a time. After turning on the Airwrap, I was surprised by how much quieter it was than my other drying tools. It probably wasn't even loud enough to wake up my husband!

Thanks to the intelligent heat control, which tracks the airflow temperature 40 times per second to keep the device from overheating, the heat also felt more diffused, even on the highest setting. Probably a lot less harsh on my frizzled ends! That said, it was still powerful enough to dry my hair in a fraction of the time it takes with a blow dryer (there's that 13-blade Dyson digital motor for ya!), and the bristles from the brush glided right through. To seal things off, I swapped out the brush for the smoothing dryer to tame flyaways, which resulted in a sleeker finish.

author's hair before using the dyson airwrap / author using the airwrap with a brush attachment
Yup, that's my bedhead hair in all its glory. The things I do for journalism! (Britt Ross/Yahoo)

I would have been content to wear my blowout for the rest of the day, but I wanted to test the curling function, so I snapped on the thicker barrel to give my ends a wavy look. What's ingenious about the Airwrap is that you can change the airflow's direction by twisting the curling attachment when switching to a different side of your head. And, true to its name, the air coming from the tool actually wraps a small section of hair around the barrel, meaning there's no clamp to leave a crimp in your hair.

back of author's hair with waves from the dyson airwrap / front view of author's hair
I still have some practicing to do when it comes to the back of my head, but I was pretty happy with my first test run! (Britt Ross/Yahoo)

It took me a few tries to get the hang of placing my hair in such a way that the Airwrap could take charge, but I caught on quickly enough. Before unwinding each section of hair from the barrel, I used the cold air function to set it — and it worked great. My hair was left with more body and larger waves with minimal frizz. And the best part? It looked the same many hours after I'd left my house on a particularly humid day (check out the photo above on the right!).

I also tested out the thinner barrel on a different day to see if it would yield more distinct curls — and as you can see below, it did indeed (you'll want to start with damp hair for that). Okay, Dyson!

author with wet hair / hair sectioned in buns / hair half dry and curly, half wet / the final curly look
A pretty dramatic transformation, no? Although I think sectioning my hair Princess Leia-style was my favorite step of the process. (Britt Ross/Yahoo)

Alright, it's time to answer the question of the hour: Is the Dyson Airwrap worth the money? In my humble opinion, yes — especially if you're looking for versatility and heat that's a lot more gentle than the more budget-friendly brands. Because I dye and frequently use heat on my hair, my ends start to look fried just a short while after they've been trimmed. I feel a lot better about using the Airwrap's diffused heat on my hair, and it feels more comfortable on my scalp. Plus, I love being able to quickly swap out a smoothing brush attachment for a curling barrel; it's so much easier than dealing with multiple hot tools and waiting for each one to heat up.

Speaking of saving time, the Airwrap has significantly sped up my hairstyling process while making my hair look better than a standard hairdryer ever could. My strands are fine, but I have a lot of them, and I can safely say this tool has cut my drying and styling time in half. In the weeks since I started using the Airwrap, I've noticed my hair looks healthier and feels lighter, and the frizz is greatly reduced. I also love having access to over 20 different hair tutorials (especially now that I know they're short) so I can play around with different looks. While there is a learning curve to using some of the attachments, I think most people will be able to catch on quickly by watching the how-to videos. I did, and that's saying something! And while I wish the Airwrap was a bit more travel-friendly, I could see myself packing it with just one or two of my most-used attachments. (I've grown particularly fond of the round volumizing brush and 1.6-inch barrel.)

the author holding a blue dyson airwrap
I love simplicity — and hey, if I can figure this thing out, anyone can! (Britt Ross/Yahoo)

I'm not the only Dyson convert! Reviewers praise the Airwrap for its thoughtful design. "What a great product for us 'older folks' who have reduced manual dexterity and limited mobility," shared one user.

Don't have a ton of time to spend on styling? No problem. "The ease of use is unparalleled. The intuitive controls and lightweight design make styling my hair a breeze, even on those hectic mornings when I'm short on time," raved a five-star shopper. "While the Dyson Airwrap is an investment, it's worth every penny for the quality, performance, and convenience it delivers. I can confidently say that it has revolutionized my hair styling routine, and I can't imagine going back to traditional styling tools."

Another fan wrote, "What used to take 2 hours, with drying and curling, now takes me 15 minutes! My hair is shinier and softer than it’s ever been. ... It’s absolutely changed my hair and how I get ready!"

Even the pros swear by it. "I am a hairstylist and am on my second Airwrap. It is an amazing tool if you know how to use it," gushed one. "The Airwrap saves my arms, shoulders and back. It saves me also on time."

"Absolutely love my Dyson Airwrap! I've been wanting it for years and it was so worth the wait and the money," enthused an Amazon shopper. "It's super easy to use and gives me healthy, shiny soft curls. I got asked multiple times if I had just been to the salon."

$499 at Amazon

Psst: As I mentioned earlier, the Wet Brush is one of my absolute must-haves for prepping my hair before styling — and it's on sale!

This revolutionary brush has flexible bristles to gently combat tangles without painful pulling and tugging. It was designed for use on every hair type and also helps prevent breakage.

$7 at Amazon
Explore more purchase options
$10 at Walmart$11 at Kohl's

And before you apply heat to your hair, you'll want to use a protectant — I like this affordable Eva NYC Mane Magic 10-in-1 Primer. It smells divine and is sulfate-, paraben- and phthalate-free.

Not only does this lightweight spray offer protection from heat-styling, its argan- and sunflower seed oil–packed formula helps strengthen, shine, smooth, detangle and nourish hair. 

$13 at Target

The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.