The Best Must-Have Dryer Brushes of 2021
See which styling tools made our Top 3 List
Since the beginning, humans have been looking for ways to make their lives easier. The same instinct has made its way, unsurprisingly, into the beauty industry. Our daily routines can take up a significant amount of time, especially if we’re trying to get out the door under a time crunch, so anything that comes along that will shave any time off our morning routines is more than welcome.
Enter, the dryer brush: an amazing tool designed to combine the power of a blow dryer with a round brush or other styling head, making daily routines simpler and much, much faster.
When dryer brushes hit the market, the at-home styling experience was transformed. Finally, we had the ability to dry and style our hair immediately after showering, bypassing the extensive, often long and complicated routines that ruled our mornings.
Some of us bought one and never looked back. Some others are just now making the switch and finding a sea of variety that might be overwhelming.
There are countless options available, many with various attachments, features, and power ranges, but how can consumers differentiate a quality dryer brush from a waste of money?
Let’s make this as simple and painless as possible– much like your routine is about to become.
Here are the main things you should look for when shopping for a dryer brush…
1) Temperature Range: Checking the heat range on tools when you shop is imperative. Any dryer brush you select should have a broad enough range to handle thicker, coarser hair as well as thinner, finer hair which needs a far gentler touch. Any tool you choose should have settings that work for both.
2) Versatility: Dryer brushes were created to help making things easier, so it’s not a bad idea to shop for one with options to provide as much versatility and variety as possible. This is an optional point, but a good one nonetheless. Most dryer brushes on the market come with one, maybe two heads. A select few come with multiple options, which can provide endless styling options.
3) Weight: One of the longest struggles in the at-home styling world is the weight of our hair dryers. Get a lightweight product to save yourself a lot of early morning hassle and unpleasantness. Any tool you buy should be easy to maneuver, offering a wide range of motion as you move around your bathroom or bedroom while not being a pain to hold up as you style.
4) Hair Health: This is a big one. Is well known that hot tools can wreak havoc on hair, but the good news is that in recent years many hair tool companies have made efforts to mitigate the effects of heat damage and heat exposure. It serves you as a consumer to do your research to find tools that include features like ionic technology, which can be hugely beneficial for hair. Often seen in traditional dryers and other hair tool products, negative ions help dry hair faster which subjects it to less prolonged exposure, and helps keep moisture tucked where it belongs– inside your hair, keeping it soft and hydrated.
Of course, weighing all of these benefits against cost is very important. A good product will require some investment, but any good brand will include some kind of warranty on their products, so it’s a good idea to keep that in mind as you shop in case you need replacement attachments or to replace a faulty brush.
The dryer brush market offers a wide range of tools at a variety of prices, but we pulled together three of our favorites that we felt best represented the choices available.
SRI Dryer Brush
Lightweight, includes ionic technology for hydration, multiple attachments provide you options.
Our number # 1 Top Pick: SRI Dryer Brush
New to the market and our top choice for a dryer brush that balances price against benefits. The SRI Dryer Brush has multiple heat settings but is poised to tackle any hair type with its temperature range of 140°F for finer hair and hitting its max at 284°F, making it effective on thicker hair without posing a high risk for damage.
It’s a vastly versatile well-made tool, coming with multiple attachments. Each of its five attachments (which offer a range of possibilities with two curling heads, a multi-use attachment, and even a rotating straightening head for silky, straight looks) have more than adequate ventilation to allow for better airflow and heat distribution. Plus, it’s a super lightweight tool– weighing only 350g or just under 1 pound. Did we mention it has ionic technology? To us, the choice for first place on our list was obvious
For what it offers, the price point is unbeatable. Unlike other multi-attachment options we looked at, the SRI Dryer Brush is retailing for a steal at $199, but if you manage to shop their Black Friday Sale you can get one for a limited-time price of $119
- Variety of attachments
- Even heat distribution
- Lightweight design
- Swivel cord for ease of use
- Not available in stores, online only
- New product, company expects backorder
Our #2 Pick: Dyson Airwrap
Multiple airflow and heat settings, cold shot button, negative ions for taming static, 1.5 pounds
A multi-head tool coming from a well-respected company, but very, very, pricey. If technology and gadgets are your jam (and you’ve got the money to spend) the Dyson Airwrap is a solid contender.
We placed it at number two on our list because of price, which we saw as a major stumbling block to the average consumer, and because it’s slightly heavier than the SRI Dryer Brush. While for some neither might be a dealbreaker, it was enough for us to keep it out of our top spot.
The Dyson Airwrap comes with some neat accessories though, supplementing its 8 attachments (in 5 varieties including smoothing brushes, curling barrels, and a dryer head)– including a nonslip mat and a storage case that shuts with a magnet.
If you’re prepared to spend the money on the Dyson, it’s not a bad choice offering the user a lot of variety.
- Comes in two colors
- Comes with a storage case
- Multiple styling heads
- Frequently out of stock
- Pricey for the average consumer
Our #3 Pick: Amika Blowout Babe Thermal Brush
Affordable, ionic technology, a good beginner brush
The last on our list is the heaviest weighing in at 2 pounds, yet is still lightweight enough for daily use. Though it does not offer the variety of the others on our list, the Amika dryer brush does have some features we thought were beneficial enough for it to be included here.
This brush has both ionic technology and infrared light, which contributes to hair health. While it does not have multiple styling heads, it is equipped with a cool-touch tip to help with easy styling and good-quality nylon bristles.
The heat range on the Amika brush reaches up to 356°F, which is good but keep in mind the higher the temperate used on your hair, the more risk there is of heat damage.
- Good beginner’s tool
- Nylon bristles & cool-touch tip
- Ionic technology & infrared light
- Limited styling options
- High heat levels