Primarily known for products that suck – calm down, we’re talking about vacuums – Dyson has also proven adept at machines that blow, too (hey now, what did we say earlier?), having refined its jet technology on its Airblade hand dryers and Hot + Cool fans.
Now, the airflow innovator has opened itself up to a completely different market, engineering and creating what it claims is one of the most technologically-advanced beauty products ever, with its new Dyson Supersonic hair dryer.
While it’s undeniably one of the most impressive hair dryers we’ve ever seen, the Dyson Supersonic doesn’t come cheap – the high-end device comes with a high-end price, selling exclusively at Myer and David Jones for $699.
So the real question is whether or not the added technological fanciness afforded by the Supersonic justifies its hefty price tag.
Though hair dryers have been around since the late 19th century, consumer models haven’t really changed much since then. In fact, it’s been over 60 years since the last significant evolution in hair dryer design, and that involved putting the motor inside the casing.
In typical handheld hair dryers, a bulky motor sits in the head of the device. This makes them awkwardly top heavy, and the motors themselves have a tendency to be loud, often overheating and burning out.
To remedy this, Dyson spent roughly AU$67 million in research and development on a new kind of dryer, using dozens of prototypes to dry 1,625kms of natural hair tresses over several years until it settled on the Supersonic design it has today.
So what’s different about it? For starters, Dyson’s engineers have come up with a much smaller and more efficient digital motor, which has the ability to propel 13 litres of air per second. Not only that, it’s moved the motor from the head of the device into the handle, which is why you can see straight down its barrel right through to the other side, much like Dyson’s aforementioned fans.
That’s not to say there isn’t anything fancy going on in the Supersonic’s head; it’s got a microprocessor that monitors temperatures 20 times a second, making sure it never overheats and burns out. Ordinary hair dryers will keep rising in temperature, which is why they give off a burning smell the longer you use them. Thanks to the Supersonic’s microprocessor, the device will actually prevent itself from going over a certain temperature (around 120 degrees Celsius), so you’ll never have to worry about your hair experiencing heat damage.
One of the Supersonic’s neatest and most convenient design elements is also its simplest – magnetised attachments and nozzles. It’s the kind of smart inclusion which makes it difficult to go back to lesser hair dryers, as it allows you to instantly snap on a diffuser, styling concentrator or smoothing nozzle (all included) without worrying about it falling off.
Inside the box, you’ll also find a non-slip mat and a little rope hanger, so that you can hang the Supersonic from a hook in your preparation area.