Why some hair tools are more expensive than others...

So you will notice hair dryers, curling irons and flat irons seem to have a VERY large price range. Why is that? Are the inexpensive ones any good? And are the costly ones really worth it? 

Here are a few things to consider when making your tool purchase:


If you're looking to use it every once in a while or for special occasions only, you can probably get away with less expensive models.  The higher end tools are intended for daily use and undergo all day, everyday use by hairdresser professionals, so they will stand the test of time with a warranty, reinforced plugs and cords and stronger materials. 

For the Infrequent User
Hot Tools is my go to brand for affordable but reliable tools. You can find them at Ulta. Remember, with tools like these you will probably have to replace them slightly more often.

Top Features:

  • Direct Ion Technology for reduced frizz
  • 1875 watts for a powerful airflow to help reduce styling time
  • Newly designed and engineered lightweight motor and quiet operation
  • Six heat/speed settings for full styling control
  • Cool shot feature to set hairstyles for longer lasting hold

For the Daily / Weekly Users or Professionals
We love GHD tools both in the salon and at home. The GHD Air is lightweight and has a 2 yr warranty. 

Other key features: The professional AC motor makes it much more powerful than a normal hairdryer, while the body itself is shaped to give you a faster blow-dry. The ghd air® doesn’t just dry your hair, it uses advanced ionic technology to lock in moisture for softer, shinier results that last longer, with far less frizzing. Variable power and temperature controls, plus the choice of two nozzles, allow you to tailor your blow-dry to your hair type, while a cool shot button helps set your style in place with a blast of cold air. The ghd air® is also a breeze to use with its ergonomic design for easy handling and an extra long cord that gives total flexibility as you blow-dry.

If you just want the best, most fanciest dryer (I have heard it is in fact worth it):
Dyson has got you covered with the futuristic fast drying, light weight, will last you a lifetime hair dryer. 

The Dyson Supersonic™ hair dryer is engineered to protect hair from extreme heat damage, with fastest drying⁺ and controlled styling to help increase smoothness by 75%, increase shine by up to 132% and decrease frizz and flyaways by up to 61%.*


If your hair is fried… you're already pushing your luck using heat so you need to get whatever is the most gentle on damage. Reach for tourmaline and ceramic.  Resistant hair? You need something that gets hot and stays hot metal and smart heat technology tools are great for that.  

Hot Tools metal curling iron: This gets hot fast and stays hot. It is a great choice for resistant hair.

GHD Soft Curl Iron: this iron is great for hair that needs a more gentle touch. With smart temperature technology that avoids damaging fragile ends.

Tourmaline adjustable temperature iron from Bioionic. Tourmaline is able to produce negative ions while straightening, and the presence of those ions makes it possible to straighten hair with less heat. The negative ions actually trap moisture into the hair, combining reduced heat with a higher moisture level to make hair look shiny.


Some dryers and irons have universal voltage and even fold up without compromising the quality of the finish. If you’re all over the place make you life simple and reach for these travel buddies.

GHD Flight Travel Blow Dryer. Small in size, light in weight and compact, this travel dryer features luxe gold accents and is the ideal partner for those holidays away and city breaks. With a foldable handle and luxurious black travel case, the travel hair dryer is easily stowed in your suitcase, while the powerful professional motor and dual voltage ensure that you can take your style across the globe.

Mini Flat Iron. Mini Flat Iron delivers professional smoothing results on the go. It is working to help you achieve super-sleek, straight hair, polished curls or cascading waves, and the styling iron with floating plates helps you to create gorgeous looks.

Universal Voltage Flat Iron. Don’t blow up your hotel just to get a sleek look for your hair. These flat irons have universal voltage so it’s easy to travel from one country to another without fear of ruining your tool or your hair!
Kristin Ess 3-In-One Flat Iron
GHD Gold Flat Iron



When selecting the size of your iron, the rule of thumb is the larger the barrel the softer and larger the curl. 

For an extra large barrel, go for this Hot Tools iron.

For a medium sized barrel, the GHD Classic Curl Iron (1”)  and the GHD Soft Curl Iron (1.25”) are both great bets.

For a small barrel, the Hot Tools ¾” is a favorite.


Typically, a marcel iron is a “loose”, springless tong of the iron typically used by professionals that are using it on someone else and moving quickly.  The benefit of no spring is that you can rotate the barrel faster between your hands and manipulate the pressure of the tongs.  But this requires experience and can be challenging to do on yourself.  The spring clamp is easiest for self-use but can be challenging on hair that creases easily (when the heat from the iron leaves a mark on the hair)

Hot Tools Marcel Iron

GHD Spring Clamp Iron - Classic Curl Iron


An iron that has a clamp on it has an extra piece of metal that holds your hair in place on the barrel of the iron. A wand is just the barrel and you use your hands to wrap your hair around it and hold it in place while it is heating.

Beach Waver Wand 

Amika Interchangeable Wand Set

GHD Classic Wave Wand

So next time you’re on the market for a new tool, take some of these things into consideration. Do you need something to satisfy a quick need and you're ok that it might not last as long or be as healthy on your hair? Or you want a tool that you invest in and will be with you for quite a while all while keeping your tresses healthy and in check! The choice is yours!

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