Best Hair Dryers

Updated November 2023
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
Bottom line
Best of the Best
Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer
Supersonic Hair Dryer
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Fastest Drying
Bottom Line

Based on our testing, this is the fastest drying hair dryer without extreme heat.


We found that this hair dryer really worked to help give our hair that "salon feel". We also really liked the attachments that it comes with. It decreases the chances of frizz and flyaway hair while drying.


The attachments tend to overheat a bit.

Best Bang for the Buck
Remington Damage Protection Hair Dryer
Damage Protection Hair Dryer
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Simple Yet Solid
Bottom Line

An affordable and effective dryer that promotes shiny, healthy hair.


Designed to protect hair while drying and styling. Offers three heat settings, two speeds, and two attachments for customization and versatility. Uses proprietary micro-conditioner technology to keep hair soft and healthy.


Not as many heat and speed settings as some other models.

Shark FlexStyle Air Styling & Drying System
FlexStyle Air Styling & Drying System
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Most Versatile
Bottom Line

If you like the idea of a hair dryer that can also style your hair in multiple ways, this Shark is the one for you.


Delivers 1,300 watts of power that dries hair without excessive exposure to damaging heat. The twisting design provides easy operation. Doubles as a styler with attachments for creating sleek tresses, body, waves, and curls.


Noisy. Some users found switching the attachments a bit awkward.

Nicebay Ionic Hair Dryer
Ionic Hair Dryer
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59% Off Now
Bottom Line

A professional-grade hair dryer that will produce salon-quality results without being overly loud.


Features a trim design with protective ionic technology. Lightweight and comfortable to operate. Delivers 1,600 watts of power. Its 4 temperature and 3-speed settings fit a variety of needs. Not too noisy.


Takes more time to dry thick hair. Occasional reports of dryers that quit working in a few months.

Dyson Airwrap Multi-styler
AirWrap Multi-styler
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Most Versatile
Bottom Line

We found the Dyson Airwrap helped keep our hair healthy due to its variety of heat-controlling features.


Comes with multiple attachments that make it easier to both dry and style simultaneously. We really love how it controls temperature to ensure that the high heat doesn't damage your hair during use. Has an air-speed setting to help control potential frizz.


Due to the barrel being a bit long, we wouldn't recommend purchasing if you like to keep your hair on the shorter side.


After going through an intensive research process to narrow down our short list of top products in this space, we tested Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer  to be sure that it’s worthy of our recommendation. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter and test to verify manufacturer claims.

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Buying guide for Best hair dryers

While hair dryers may seem like pretty straightforward “they’re all basically the same” type of product, anyone with unruly hair knows the truth: A good hair dryer is worth its weight in gold.

Hair dryers aren’t just full of hot air anymore: The right one can help you achieve new styles, get rid of split ends, and even leave your hair silky and shiny. Unfortunately, the opposite is true, too — the wrong hair dryer can be a giant hassle that leaves you with a bad hair day.

If you’re ready to find your perfect hair dryer, or you just need one that’s going to last more than a year or two, we’ve got you covered.

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The first handheld hair dryer for home use only had a wattage of 100, so it took a very long time to dry the hair.

What are the benefits of a hair dryer?

Most people purchase a hair dryer because they want to be able to dry their hair quickly after they’ve washed it. With a quality hair dryer, you can dry your hair in as little as 5 to 10 minutes, depending on how thick and long your hair is.

If you have curly, wavy, or frizzy hair, a hair dryer can also help straighten your hair. Using it with a round brush can help smooth your locks and boost its shine for a sleek, attractive style.

On the other hand, if you have fine hair that lacks volume, you can use a hair dryer to add body. Flip your head upside down as you dry your hair and focus the dryer at your roots to help lift your hair and give it more volume.

How long does a hair dryer last?

Heat styling tools such as a hair dryer typically last between two and seven years. However, the life of your dryer will depend on its quality.

Inexpensive dryers that are made with inferior materials may only last a year or two. If you invest in a higher-end model, you’re more likely to get five to seven years out of it – possibly more.

Don’t forget to factor in how often you use your hair dryer, though. If you only dry your hair a couple of times a week, your hair dryer will last longer than if you use it every day. Most hair dryers typically have a lifespan of 800 hours.

If you want your hair dryer to last as long as possible, upkeep is also important. You should clean the vents once a week so the lint doesn’t migrate inside toward the heating element where it can do damage.

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Did you know?
The average woman will spend approximately 1.5 years brushing, washing, drying, and styling her hair over the course of her lifetime.

Considerations for hair dryers


The more wattage a hair dryer has, the more powerful it is – and the more powerful it is, the less time it will take to dry your hair. Dryers with a higher wattage are also less likely to burn out than models with smaller motors.

If you have fine hair, a dryer with about 1,800 watts is usually the best option.

If you have thick or coarse hair, you should get a dryer between 2,000 and 3,600 watts.


In addition to multiple heat settings, most hair dryers come with variable speed settings. That allows you to adjust the heat and airflow levels separately for the most control over the dryer.

Look for a dryer that has at least two speed settings: low and high. For the most versatility, though, it helps to have a third speed setting, medium, as well.

Heating settings

Almost every hair dryer comes equipped with at least two heat settings: low and high. In most cases, it’s best to choose a dryer that’s equipped with more heat settings, such as low, medium, and high, so you have better control over how much heat your hair is exposed to.

It’s also a good idea to look for a dryer with a cool shot setting. That allows you to switch to cool air when your hair is mostly dry to seal the hair’s cuticle for added shine. The cool shot setting can also help lock in curls and waves.

We used FLIR technology to test the hair dryer's temperature output and heat concentration.


The heating element in a hair dryer can be coated with a variety of materials that affect its performance.

Choosing the right dryer material for your hair type is key if you want to banish bad hair days.

Ceramic dryers work well for most types of hair. The ceramic helps keep moisture in your hair and distributes heat as evenly as possible. That makes it an especially good fit for fine or dry hair.

Tourmaline dryers feature heating elements coated with the semi-precious gemstone, which helps trap moisture and shoots negative ions to prevent the positively charged ions in water from saturating your hair and causing frizz. That makes a tourmaline dryer a good choice for frizzy, thick, curly, and hard-to-dry hair.

Titanium dryers distribute heat evenly and steadily, which makes it hotter than other options. As a result, it’s not the best choice for damage-prone hair, such as dry or color-treated tresses. However, if you have a lot of hair or extremely thick hair, it’s an effective option because it can dry your hair more quickly.

While tourmaline dryers naturally produce negative ions to fight frizz, you can find ionic ceramic or titanium dryers as well.

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Did you know?
Hair dryer sales make up 31% of the retail market for hair care appliances.

Weight and ergonomics

You want to choose a hair dryer that’s comfortable to hold, especially if you have long, thick, or any type of hair that takes a long time to dry. It’s also important if you use your hair dryer with a round brush for styling. Look for a lightweight dryer with an ergonomic grip, so your arm and hand don’t get tired when you’re drying your hair.

Keep in mind that professional-grade dryers often weigh more, though many users find that they’re more comfortable to hold because the weight is more evenly distributed throughout the dryer than in lighter models.


For the most versatility, consider what accessories come with a hair dryer before purchasing it.

A diffuser is an important tool if you have curly or wavy hair because it helps distribute the heat over a broader area to help maintain the natural texture in your hair.

A concentrator nozzle focuses the heat in specific areas so it helps control frizz. It’s also an ideal accessory if you use your hair dryer to straighten your hair.

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How much should you pay for a hair dryer?

You can find hair dryers at a variety of price points. Generally, they range from $20 to $400.

If you’re concerned about heat damage, you’ll want to buy a higher end dryer that features higher quality materials and distributes the heat more evenly. Expect to spend at least $50.

Keep in mind that higher end dryers also tend to last longer than budget-friendly options. A dryer that costs around $100 typically lasts five to ten years, while a model that’s only $30 may only make it two years.

Tips and tricks

  • To minimize damage when you’re blow drying your hair, allow your hair to dry about halfway before picking up your dryer.

  • Always apply a heat protectant product before using your blow dryer, too. It coats your hair with extra moisture so the dryer won’t damage your locks while it dries them.

  • Remember to use the lowest heat setting possible to dry your hair efficiently. For example, if you have fine hair, use the low setting. For thick, coarse hair, you may need to use the high setting.

  • If you have a lot of hair or thick hair, dividing your hair into sections before you dry it can reduce frizz.

  • Clip the sections that you’re not working with out of the way so it doesn’t blow around as you move the dryer.

  • For added volume, focus the hair dryer at your roots. Use your hand or a round brush to lift your hair at the roots or bend over so gravity does the work for you to boost volume as you’re drying.

  • To finish off your hair after you dry, always give it a blast with the cool shot feature. That will seal the cuticle so your style is locked in place and it also boosts shine.

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While thousands of patents have been issued for hair dryers since they were first developed, the only real changes have been to the dryer’s exterior. The operating system inside the dryer hasn’t changed much since the 1920s.

Hair dryers FAQ

Q. What features can make a hair dryer easier to maintain?

A. A hair dryer is easier to clean if it has a removable filter on the back. That makes it extremely easy to remove the lint from the vents so it doesn’t damage the heating element or motor.

Q. What type of dryer should I purchase if I’m concerned about noise?

A. All hair dryers make some noise. However, some models are louder than others. While it may seem like more powerful, professional grade dryers would be louder, they actually tend to be quieter than budget-friendly options.

Q. What does it mean if a hair dryer features infrared heat?

A. Infrared heat utilizes longer heat waves than other heating elements. That allows the heat to penetrate the hair shaft and dry it from the inside out. It provides extremely even, consistent heat, so it’s gentler on your hair.

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