Are you still using a traditional hair dryer to blow dry your hair? In our research, we have found that prolonged use of high-temperature hair dryers can lead to heat damage to your hair. To keep your hair healthy, we recommend that you switch to a new type of high-speed hair dryer.
What is heat damaged hair?
Heat damaged hair refers to the damage caused to hair when styling tools such as hair dryers, curling irons, and straightening irons are used excessively and overheated. Common signs of heat damaged hair include hair breakage, split ends, dryness, loss of shine, and brittleness. Heat damage occurs because high temperatures alter the natural protein structure of hair, causing the moisture inside the hair to evaporate, leaving the hair dry and fragile. Overuse of styling tools, improper usage, excessive temperature, and prolonged usage can all increase the risk of hair heat damage.
Hair dryer heat causes heat damage to hair
Many people use hair dryers at high temperatures for long periods of time. In our research, we have found that this can cause thermal damage to the hair cuticles, resulting in frizzy and unmanageable hair. Under the microscope, we can see that the higher the temperature of the hair dryer, the more vulnerable the hair surface becomes overall, with the most severe surface heat damage occurring at the highest temperature (see Figure E). Furthermore, we have found that thermal damage caused by high temperatures can also change hair protein, leading to fading of hair color and affecting scalp health.
Natural air-drying is more damaging to hair
If you are concerned about heat damage to your hair, you may want to give up using your hair dryer and let your hair air-dry naturally. However, we have also found that air-drying hair for extended periods of time can also affect hair health. Prolonged exposure to water can cause the substance CMC (cell membrane complex) between the hair cuticle layers to expand and protrude, making the hair more fragile (see Figure B). This harm is greater than that caused by a hair dryer.
Try a high-speed hair dryer!
How can you avoid heat damage? Avoid the harm of air drying. Why not try a high-speed hair dryer? Thanks to its high speed, a high-speed hair dryer can quickly dry your hair even at a lower temperature, avoiding heat damage to your hair while shortening the time water stays on your hair. In addition to enjoying its efficiency, you can also protect your hair from the above-mentioned hair damage.
What is a high-speed hair dryer?
As the name suggests, a high-speed hair dryer has a brushless high-speed motor with an extremely high rotation speed. The rotation speed of a brush motor in a regular hair dryer is usually difficult to exceed 20,000 rpm, while the brushless high-speed motor of a high-speed hair dryer can often reach 100,000 rpm or higher.
- Brush motor: A brush motor consists of a magnet, rotor, brushes, and a commutator. This type of motor generally has a low rotation speed, typically only 10,000 to 20,000 rpm, with a low wind speed, and a shorter lifespan, but a very low price.
- Brushless high-speed motor: A brushless high-speed motor has a more advanced design, and is more efficient and durable than a brush motor. It is also more expensive.
What are the other advantages of high-speed hair dryers?
- High-speed hair dryers have lower noise: Thanks to the benefit of brushless motors without friction, high-speed hair dryers generally have lower noise and emit a softer, more acceptable sound. Here is our recording of a high-speed hair dryer and ordinary hair dryer noise comparison.
- High-speed blowers have a longer service life: high-speed blowers' brushless motors can generally reach 2-4 times the service life of ordinary motors.
In 2023, choosing a high-quality high-speed hair dryer to avoid heat damage to your hair is crucial. After a month of research and over 200 hours of testing, the CG lab recommends the following high-speed hair dryers based on our selection criteria:
📌Our selection criteria
- fast dry hair: the core indicators of a high-speed hair dryer, quickly help you blow dry hair
- hair care function: the new hair care function can further protect your hair
- Other data: noise, weight, line length
1. Top pick for small high-speed hair dryers - ooyee 5th generation
If you need a high-speed hair dryer that is lightweight, portable, stylish and has comprehensive functionality, we wholeheartedly recommend the ooyee 5th generation. In all our tests, ooyee performed exceptionally well, even surpassing some conventional-sized high-speed hair dryers. It has the lowest noise level among the high-speed hair dryers we tested and an incredibly compact size (20cm in length, 304g in weight), making it easy to carry around and reducing the burden on your arms. It also has rich features, including three-speed settings, negative ions, and hot and cold air options. The sleek and modern design is another important reason we recommend it.
2. Classic recommendation - Dyson high-speed hair dryer
If you are willing to spend a lot of money on a high-quality, comprehensive, and well-known high-speed hair dryer, we recommend Dyson. As a famous hair dryer brand, Dyson still performs exceptionally well in our tests, with high wind speeds and low noise levels. The diversified nozzles are still Dyson's unique advantage, allowing it to meet the styling needs of various hairstyles. Its convenient operation and excellent workmanship are also outstanding features. Undoubtedly, this is still an outstanding high-speed hair dryer.
3. Surprise recommendation xCool high-speed hair dryer
If you need a high-quality, comprehensive high-speed hair dryer, we are happy to recommend the xCool high-speed hair dryer. In all our tests, including key factors such as wind speed and airflow, xCool's performance is comparable to or even better than Dyson, far exceeding our expectations and leaving a deep impression on us. It also has excellent functionality, including multiple wind speed and temperature settings, a unique gentle wind mode suitable for children, intelligent temperature control, negative ions, and hot and cold air options, which can further protect the health of your hair. It is also equipped with a smart display for your convenience. Without a doubt, the xCool high-speed hair dryer is our most pleasant surprise in this test.
The xCool high-speed hair dryer will be launched in our store soon, so stay tuned!
Our testing process
How we select test samples
Before testing, we eliminated some unqualified products with safety hazards from a large number of products from various manufacturers, and finally selected the following 10 high-speed hair dryers to enter our laboratory testing based on basic performance, workmanship, heat dissipation, and product positioning. There are six conventional-sized high-speed hair dryers on the left and four small-sized high-speed hair dryers on the right.
1. Hair dryer drying speed test
The speed of a hair dryer to dry hair is mainly determined by three factors: 1. Wind speed: the higher the wind speed, the faster the air takes away moisture; 2. Air volume: the greater the air volume, the wider the hair dryer covers the hair, and the hair naturally dries faster; 3. Temperature: the higher the temperature, the faster the moisture evaporates, and the hair dries faster. It is worth noting that, as mentioned above, the temperature of the hair dryer is not the higher, the better. We tested the above indicators of each hair dryer, and the following is their performance.
1.1 Wind speed test
Step 1. Align the center of the hair dryer outlet with the center of the anemometer, with a horizontal distance of 15cm;
Step 2. Turn on the hair dryer's maximum wind speed mode, test for 30 seconds, and take the final value.
To test the actual performance of each hair dryer more accurately, we placed the anemometer 15 centimeters away from the hair dryer's mouth (which is the distance between the hair dryer and the hair during daily use) and tested all hair dryers at maximum speed.
The results are shown in the table below. From the table, it can be seen that conventional-sized high-speed hair dryers can generally reach a wind speed of more than 14 meters/second, and have better performance. Among the four small-sized high-speed hair dryers, ooyee performs better, reaching a wind speed of 14.23 meters/second
1.2 Wind temperature test
Step 1. Align the center of the hair dryer outlet with the center of the thermocouple, with a horizontal distance of 15cm;
Step 2. Observe the wind temperature performance in different gears.
Wind temperature is a parameter that makes people entangled. Excessive wind temperature can damage the hair quality, while too low a winding temperature can cause excessive drying time. Through some professional research and our actual experience, we believe that 50°C±10°C (122°F±18°F) is a relatively suitable temperature range, which will not damage the hair and is also more comfortable.
The following is a table of wind temperatures for each hair dryer we tested. It can be seen that Jujube JJB-HD01 has basically no heating effect and performs poorly. And the high-temperature mode of DASI reaches 70°C, and we do not recommend that you use it to blow your hair at that temperature.
1.3 Drying speed test
Step 1. Soak the fabric, keep the weight of the wet fabric constant, and fix it;
Step 2. Turn on the highest wind speed and highest temperature mode, and keep the straight-line distance between the air nozzle and the fabric at 30cm;
Step 3. Continue to test for 90 seconds and observe the weight changes of the fabric before and after.
To comprehensive data (wind speed, air volume, temperature) to explore the limit of each hair dryer drying speed, we use the fabric soaked to simulate the hair after washing, using the blow dryer blowing directly against the fabric, record the weight of water evaporation in 90 seconds, to simulate the real use of scenarios of dry hair speed performance.
We can see that Radialight, DASI, has better performance with high temperature of 60 ℃ and 70 ℃. And xCool, Dyson, Amos, ooyee hair dryer performance close to several.
2. Other Tests
2.1 Noise Test
Step 1. Place the decibel meter 15cm away from the side of the hair dryer;
Step 2. Turn on the maximum speed setting and test for 30 seconds, observe the highest decibel value.
Noise is also an important indicator when choosing a hair dryer. Excessive noise not only affects others but also affects the user's experience. The noise level depends on the power of the hair dryer and the working mode of the motor. Generally, the higher the power, the louder the noise, and brushless motors have lower noise levels than ordinary motors (based on working principles). Some high-end hair dryers undergo noise reduction processing to reduce noise.
The performance of the 10 high-speed hair dryers we tested is shown in the table below. It is important to note that noise is a very comprehensive indicator, and even if the noise level is the same, some sounds may be more piercing or rough, mainly reflected in sharpness, roughness, etc., resulting in completely different feelings during actual use. Based on our actual experience, the noise performance of all 10 high-speed hair dryers is superior to that of ordinary hair dryers, with no piercing sounds and lower decibel levels. The best performer among them is the ooyee high-speed hair dryer.
2.2 Weight Test
We measured the weight of 10 high-speed hair dryers with and without cords. Our actual performance is shown below, with SYLPH AB100 and Xiao Zao JJB-HD01 having lower weights.
2.3 Cord Length Test
Cord length is also a factor that affects the choice of hair dryer. If it is too long or too short, it will affect the experience. These are the specific performances of the 10 high-speed hair dryers we tested. You can refer to them based on your own needs.
3. Hair Care Functions
3.1 Negative Ions
The negative ion function of a hair dryer is mainly generated by a negative ion generator (built-in or external). When the hair dryer is working, it produces negative ions, which neutralize the ionization of hair generated by hair drying, thus smoothing out frizzy hair and achieving a silky effect. The actual effect of negative ions is still controversial, but we still recommend that you choose products with negative ion function, but it is not necessary to make negative ions your primary purchasing criterion.
3.2 Constant Temperature Capability
The wind temperature of a hair dryer will gradually increase with usage time (although the power remains the same). An excellent constant temperature function can always control the air outlet of the hair dryer at a suitable temperature that does not damage the hair. However, how the constant temperature function is implemented in high-speed hair dryers on the market varies. Based on our experience, we recommend that you choose products with intelligent temperature control, which can detect the temperature of the air outlet in real time, adjust the machine's power, and achieve a true constant temperature effect.
Hair Care Tips
📍 If your hair has already suffered from heat damage, you should use hair care products that contain protein and moisture to replenish your hair's moisture and protein. In addition, try to avoid exposing your hair to intense sunlight or dusty environments; do not use elastic bands to tie up your hair, as this will loosen the scalp. Do not make hairstyles that tightly fix hair behind the head, such as tight braids or ponytails, which can damage the hair roots and loosen the scalp. Try to avoid methods such as perming, straightening, and dyeing.
📍 If you are still using a traditional hair dryer, we suggest that you use a lower temperature setting to reduce heat damage to your hair. In addition, we also suggest that you evenly blow-dry your hair to avoid concentrating on hot air in one location, which can cause heat damage to your hair.
📍 If you find that the wind speed of the hair dryer has slowed down or the noise has increased, please clean its dust screen (if any) in time. Long-term use can cause the hair dryer to become blocked, affecting its effectiveness, so regular cleaning is necessary.
📍 Do not rub your hair too hard with a towel, as this will damage the hair cuticles, causing the hair to become rough and easily breakable. The correct way is to gently press the excess moisture out of the hair with a towel before blow-drying, which can effectively reduce hair damage.
📍 When your hair reaches 80% dryness, you can switch the hair dryer to the cool air setting, as cool air is more conducive to hair styling.