Anyone with long hair will agree that drying our lovely long locks is a chore we often dread. A hair dryer brush can help us get our hair from wet to dry in a fraction of the time, while leaving our hair smoothed out and styled to perfection (without feeling like your arms are about to drop off!).
Ready to achieve that bouncy blow-dry effect at home? This might be just the styling tool you've been searching for. Here's everything you need to know about hair dryer brushes, from how to use them to the best ones to buy.
How to use a hair dryer brush
If you’ve never used one before, a hair dryer brush or hot air brush as they're sometimes called is a hybrid of a hair dryer and a hair straightening iron, and works to give you voluminous, smooth, blow-dried hair with ease.
The heat from the air dryer dries the hair after you’ve washed it and the bristles grab onto your hair to reduce frizz and smooth out your locks. And they’re not just for long hair, they’re great for all different hair types and lengths including very short hair.
It really couldn't be easier to use a hair dryer brush. They're designed so that you can brush your hair with the dryer, just as you would a regular hair brush. The only difference is that they blow out hot air as you go, so your hair is being styled and dried as you brush.
It's advised to use a hair dryer brush on towel dried hair for best results, so after washing your hair, tie your hair up in a towel, get your skincare routine and make up done before taking the towel down and styling your hair. You want to aim for around 80 per cent of your hair to already be dry before using.
In terms of products, it's a good idea to use a heat protectant product before going in with your hair dryer brush to keep your locks protected. Also, you might want to use a specific hair serum or cream if you tend to struggle with frizz or dry ends to keep your hair looking healthy.
When brushing your hair with the dryer, work in sections (especially if you've got a lot of hair), going over each section of hair in long, smooth motions. When you get to the end of a strand, you can curl this inwards to get a bouncy, salon blow dried appearance.
Here's a brilliant video tutorial on styling your hair with a hot air brush for voluminous locks.
Which hair dryer brush is the best?
There are many different types of hot air brush on the market, from rotating hot air brushes that add volume at the root, to silicone bristles that aim to give your hair serious shine.
The best part? They’re super affordable, so you can get those salon worthy results for a fraction of the price.
In terms of the best, there are three which continuously receive rave reviews from customers.
Revlon Pro Collection One Step Dryer & Volumiser
The popular Revlon Pro is a 2-in-1 styling tool that can achieve three different styles of curl, with two heat settings and a cool shot to help your style last longer. It also features Ionic Technologyu2122 to help condition, smooth and make hair shinier, while reducing frizz and static.
BaByliss Flawless Volume Hot Air Styler
Babyliss are another brand leading the way in the hot air styling market. Their flawless volume hot air styler brush is made with a ceramic barrel for smooth shape and body and can be used directly on damp, towel dried hair.
We know this seems rather pricey for a hair tool, but if youu2019ve ever used a Dyson product, whether itu2019s one of their vacuum cleaners, fans or hair dryers, you know youu2019re getting a very high quality product that works. With 7 different brush attachments included, depending on the style you want to achieve, it allows you to style and dry at the same time, without the use of extreme heat.
How to use some of the best-selling hair dryer brushes
How to use Revlon One Step hair dryer and volumizer brush
We love this tutorial from YouTuber 'Skin Obsessed Mary' who shows us how she styles her hair with the Revlon One Step Hair Dryer to add some volume to her bob.
Her top tips include going from the root and rotating the brush with your wrist to create volume from the underneath. On top, she dries the hair from the crown backwards and the hair at the front forwards to add more bounce on top.
As mentioned in the video, it's always important to use some heat protection spray when styling your hair. And although hot air brushes are much kinder to hair than the very hot ceramic plates on other styling products, it's still important to protect our hair.
How to use BaByliss hot air brush
BaByliss have many hair drying brushes, however one of the most popular is Flawless Volume Hot Air Styler.
Before you begin, use a regular hair brush to detangle and part the hair in the right place, ensuring that your hair is around 80 per cent dry.
Take one section, and start as close to the root as possible, using the brush to lift the hair at the root for extra volume as you go. Move down the lengths of the hair as you go, curling in slightly when you get towards the ends.
The hot air brush can get rather hot, so make sure you select the right heat setting for your hair, and allow plenty of time for the tool to cool before storing away.
The BaByliss Big Hair tool works in a similar way, with the added rotating function and we love this helpful video guide from Lovelygirliebits on YouTube.
How to use Dyson Airwrap Styler
Dyson just know how to get it right, whether it's vacuum cleaners, fans or in this case, hair styling tools. Their Airwrap is an extremely popular tool, despite its hefty price-tag.
With seven different brush heads included, the possibilities really are endless when it comes to how you can style your hair. We're focussing on the round volumising brush for now, which works as a hot air brush for your hair.
Watch to see how Dyson use this tool to add curl and volume to the hair using long, curling motions.
How to choose the best hair dryer brush for your hair type
Firstly, you'll want to consider the length of your hair. If you have a shorter cut, like a cropped cut or very short bob, your hair would be better suited to a thinner barrel. Larger barrels such as the Revlon hair dryer may be far too big to use but they are ideal for longer lengths.
If you struggle with moving your wrists, it's probably a good idea to opt for a rotating brush, as this will do all the curling for you. You might also want to make sure your brush is nice and lightweight too, so check the weight before purchasing.
Lastly, you'll want to look at the bristles. Silicone tends to be the most gentle type, making it great for finer, more brittle hair. More natural feeling bristles are great for smoothing out frizzy or curly hair.
Hair drying brushes are a brilliant one-stop drying tool for most hair types. So if you're on a tight-budget but still want your hair to look perfectly styled, they're a brilliant option.
One downside is that they still heat your hair, and even though you can achieve a lovely salon-style blow dry, if your hair is on the frizzy side, you may want to use a hotter straightening iron too.
Overall, we think they're brilliant for making your hair look like you've just come out the salon with minimal effort and at a very affordable price.
More hair dryer brushes
ghd Glide Professional Hot Brush
Made to be used on dry hair only, this hot brush is an alternative to hair straighteners that smooths your hair quicker than it takes to straighten. This is ideal for those days you need to tame frizzy hair in minutes without having to spend ages on your hair.
BaByliss Big Hair 2885U Spinning Brush
If you think your hair would be better suited to a spinning brush head, the BaByliss Big Hair styler could be ideal. It features a built-in super ionic generator that sends a stream of negative ions which act to neutralise static charges as you dry, immediately enhancing the look and feel of your hair making it better suited to frizzy or more curly hair.
Revamp Proglossu2122 Airstyle - 6 in 1 Air Styler
Looking for a 6 in 1 hot air styler that adds shape and style to your hair? Suitable for all hair types, this hot air brush will certainly do the trick. With 6 different attachments, including a diffuser to lift those curls, this all-rounder is a necessity in your hair routine.
Revamp Proglossu2122 Perfect Blow Dry - Volumiser Hot Air Styler
If your aim is to achieve a glossy hair, this air dryer is a brilliant choice as itu2019s infused with a unique combination of Proglossu2122 super smooth oils u2013 including Keratin, Argan Oil and Coconut Oil to create hairstyles with stunning shine. You also have full control over the airflow and temperature to suit you.
Remington Flexibrush Steam CB4N
If you have a more cropped hair style, you might find most hot air brushes are a little too thick to use on your hair which is why itu2019s ideal to use a thinner barrel on short styles. This one from Remington uses steam to style the hair how you like it, which is a much more gentle way of styling hair, ideal for damaged locks.
Protecting your hair when using a hot air brush
Here are some of our favourite heat protection sprays on the market that are suitable for most hair types.
OGX Argan Oil of Morocco heat protection and blow dry spray for hair
This spray is best for dryer hair to give your hair added shine.
Tresemme Care and Protect Heat Defence Spray
This works brilliantly on frizzy hair in particular.
L'Oreal Elnett Heat Protect Styling Hairspray
From the iconic Elnett brand, this heat protection spray is ideal to use with all kinds of heat styling.