If your hair dryer has packed up for the holidays or you’re hoping for a new pair of the very best straighteners this Christmas, behold our guide to the best hair tools for 2021.
Most of us will admit that we love to make a little bit more effort with our hair and makeup for the festivities, and this year’s high-tech tools are taking any fuss out of the “getting ready” affair.
From new hot brushes to the best hair curlers and dryers, these are the tools of the moment to know about. Race you to the checkout…
The best hair tools 2021 has to offer
Come on Barbie, let’s go party! L'Oreal Professionnel has teamed up with an all-time hair icon for this limited edition version of its Steampod styler,£235 here. We’ve also got one up for grabs here in our £1500 beauty giveaway!!
If you’ve not used this gadget before, the clue is in the name – you fill the little water tank, slot it into the barrel and voila, the plates pump out steam to whip your style into shape.
We say: As well as being seriously cute, this is a brilliant way to get your hair shiny and sleek with less damage – and that’s not all. The cord is also designed to rotate without tangling up so you can easily twist the Steampod and curl with it too. Substance and style, what more could you want?
Five years ago, a certain well-known vacuum cleaner brand launched a hairdryer which proved an instant hit in both design and efficiency. Now Shark have just released one too; the STYLE iQ, £229.99 here, which emits “high-velocity heated ionised air” to dry hair with minimal damage.
We say: “High velocity” is certainly correct; the ultra-powerful performance buffets your barnet dry in minutes, at a cooler temperature than usual. It’s hard to measure hair damage, but this combination certainly feels better for the hair. It’s great for blasting volume into limp roots, and the compact, lightweight design is fab.
Do you have long hair (or tumbling extensions) and find it hard to wrap their length around a regular curling wand? Then the Turbo Tong, £135 here , is what you’ve been waiting for – with a 19cm wand, it’s the largest on the UK market.
We say: Size matters! We found that this tong really makes short work of styling mermaid-length locks, as there’s no need to overlap as you wrap or redo sections. It heats up super-speedily too.
ghd’s Christmas gift sets are always stunners, to the point you want them even if you’ve got the irons already. This year's Desire collection is as covetable as ever, with a choice of either the Platinum+, £199 here, or Gold styler, £159 here, in a gleaming silver finish and a very luxe-looking emerald velvet case.
We say: ghd celebrated its 20th anniversary this year, and there’s a reason why the brand is still at the top of its game. All its irons feature a smart adaptive technology, ensuring hair is always styled at the optimum temperature of 185 degrees. That means there’s no fiddling around with different settings, just great results. In our opinion, ghds are often imitated but never bettered.
Mark Hill’s Pick n Mix is certainly living up to its name, with no fewer than five tempting new styling options to drop into your bag. Once you’ve invested in the basic Curling Handle, £17.99 here, you can now add on five new styling attachments, all very reasonably priced at £16.99.
We say: Talk about spoilt for choice. There’s a straightener and round brush, or for something a bit more unusual check out the Glam Bar (a rectangular rather than round wand), the 80s retro Crimper, or the Zig Zag tool which creates unique angular waves. If you want an eye-catching party look you’ve found it.
Does a traditional curling wand wind YOU up better than it does your hair? You may well appreciate Revamp Progloss HollywoodWave, Curl & Advanced Shine Automatic Hair Curler, £119.99 here. There’s no clever wrist action required, and no risk of singed fingertips; all you have to do is place a section of hair into the spinning styling head, which whirls it and curls it.
We say: Once you’ve got over the initial trepidation (OMG: spinning gizmo!) this is easy. Helpfully for nervous types, you can see right into the rotating head and keep an eye on exactly what’s going on, rather than fretting your hair is getting tangled up and burnt off. Salon curls without the skill? Yes please.
Cheat the look of a blow dry, any time, any place, anywhere – no plug socket required. BaByliss has just extended its cordless range with a Hot Brush, £180 here, which gives you 40 minutes of styling power once it’s been fully charged.
We say: It’s excellent for adding lift and flicky waves, especially on layers and curtain fringes (think casual K-Middy), and it does a nifty bevelled end on bobs too. The bristles grip onto hair nicely without tangling so it’s a cinch for even novices to use.
Upending all the old rules about how to use straightening irons, it’s Remington’s new Wet 2 Straight Pro Straightener, £100 here, which lets you dry AND smooth in one step. You can glide the plates directly through damp locks thanks to a venting system which lets water evaporate, and a sensor which adjusts the temperature according to how wet your hair is, so it dries, not fries.
We say: We’ll be honest, we didn’t find it quicker than just using a dryer (we left hair to air dry, as it was taking a while), but couldn’t fault the sleekness of the finished result. It really does leave hair feeling super-silky, in a “can’t stop flipping it” way. It’s no one-trick pony either, as the irons can also be used in regular mode on dry hair.
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