It’s hard to juggle a round brush and a hair dryer to smooth out that frizz or add some volume to your hair. Flat irons and curling wands can burn you while you use them. Together, these styling tools can be a frustrating way to get the hair you want. What’s the solution? Try a hot air brush, which can combine all these tools into one. The versatility of these devices takes the stress and pain out of styling your hair. They can curl, straighten, or add a bit of volume. Hot air brushes also smooth out the frizz, leaving you with the glossy hair you crave. Best of all, since they produce lower heat levels than some other tools, they are safer to use on your hair. For the best hot air brushes in 2021, keep reading.
Short On Time? Here Is The Bullet List:
- Hot Air Brush for Fine Hair: Revlon One Step Hair Dryer and Volumizer
- Hot Air Brush for Short Hair: Vidal Sassoon Hot Air Styler
- Hot Air Brush for Long Hair: John Frieda Hot Air Brush
- Rotating Hot Air Brush: InfinitiPro by Conair Black 2” Spin Air Rotating Styler
- Dual Voltage Hot Air Brush: TESCOM Dual Voltage Hot Air Brush
- Hot Air Brush for Volume: Babyliss Pro Nano Titanium Rotating 2” Hot Air Brush
- Hot Air Brush for Straightening: Revlon One Step Dryer & Styler
**Below are our more detailed reviews. Click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.
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What is a Hot Air Brush?
A hot air brush is exactly what it sounds like, a hair dryer combined with a brush. Hot air is blown through vents in the barrel to complete the drying process as you style your hair. These aren’t meant to replace a hair dryer, though, as it isn’t designed to start with wet hair. But with hair that is mostly dry, it can complete the job while giving it a great finish at the same time. It is great for shorter hair that is at most shoulder-length, smoothing the frizz, giving it some volume, and adding in some gentle curls.
What is a Hot Air Brush Used For?
This styling tool combines the detangling ability of a brush with the heated air of a blow dryer. It separates the hair as it combs, which helps to dry it faster. It also allows you to style your hair as it dries, the same way you would with a hand-held blow dryer and a round brush. But because it is all on one device, it is not only easier to use, but can save you time when styling your hair. Keep in mind, not all hot air brushes work for every hair type, so check out the specifics carefully before you buy. Here are a few different types of hot air brushes for you to choose from:
Curling Hot Air Brush: Curling brushes are like curling irons in shape and size. The difference is that there are vents that allow the air to pass through for added drying power. They heat up fast, maintain their temperature, and let you style your hair fast. They also have bristles, so you can detangle while you curl. Hot air brushes are safer since they don’t cause damage or create any split ends. Instead, they leave behind smooth curls with less frizz and a style that will last all day long.
Straightening Hot Air Brush: A straightening brush takes the waves and curls out of your hair as it dries it. These come in a few different shapes to choose from. One looks like a normal paddle brush with a cord. Some are circular like a curling brush, while others are more oval-shaped with a brush on each side. A straightening brush is safer on your hair than a flat iron since it produces lower heat. This heat is distributed over a wider section of hair, protecting it from damage.
Rotating Hot Air Brush: A rotating hot air brush has a round barrel like a curling brush. The difference is that the barrel has the ability to rotate in one or two directions. Some favor these hot air brushes since there is less strain on your joints while you style your hair. Another benefit is that it is more versatile than the other two. This is because it can both curl and straighten your hair. No matter your hair type, the rotating brushes can meet your needs. It can also give your hair some volume, so flat hair will never be an issue with one of these in your hand.
Benefits of a Hot Air Brush
There are many benefits of adding a hot air brush to your normal daily styling routine. First, your hair doesn’t need to be completely dry when you start with it. It finishes drying your hair as you style, so less blow-drying is necessary.
A hot air brush uses lower temperatures than hair dryers or curling irons, so it won’t cause as much damage to your hair as you use it. This means it is also safe to use on hair that is already damaged without making it worse. These styling tools can even be used daily.
Another benefit is that it can be used on all hair types, though it works best on fine hair that is in need of some volume. You can get right up to the roots, which isn’t possible with a piping hot curling iron or straightener, so the volume is fuller and your hair has more life to it. It can also help thick or curly hair by reducing the frizz and smoothing out those strands, even in humid weather. They can even help give your hair a boost between washings or touch up your style right before a special outing.
Hot air brushes are lightweight and easy to use once you get the hang of them. Using them can speed up your styling time, so you have more of it for fun. Best of all, they are convenient for travel since you don’t need to take an array of styling tools along with you.
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How to Use a Hot Air Brush
Once you have your hot air brush, you’re going to need to follow a few simple tips for salon-quality results.
Wet or Dry?: Some hot air brushes can be used on wet hair, while others work best with dry hair. Check out the directions on your chosen tool before you start to be sure you’re using it correctly. But don’t assume wet hair means you can start styling right after you step out of the shower. Make sure it is about 80% dry first. This will speed up your styling since there will be less moisture in your hair for the hot air brush to deal with.
Warm it up First: Like your other styling tools, a hot air brush needs to warm up for a consistent style. No matter how big of a rush you’re in, leave it for a few minutes before you start running it through your hair. Using it cold will not save you time since you’ll have to redo those first sections or suffer from uneven hair.
Section Your Hair: You need to section your hair before using your hot air brush the same way you would with any other styler. These sections should be small enough to dry quick, but thick enough to keep to reduce damage. Start at the back, working your way over to the sides, and then to the top of your head. Once the sections are created, it is time to start styling.
Start Brushing: When you start using your hot air brush, begin at the roots and work your way down to the ends. If using a straightening brush, run it down your hair, keeping the strands straight. If curling your hair, run the brush through from the roots to the tip. Then wrap the ends around it, rolling it back up to your roots again. Hold it in place for about 5 seconds. Then, if your hot air brush has a cool shot setting, turn this on to lock in your curls. Pull the brush out, and move on to the next section.
Cool It Down: As important as it is to let your brush heat up before using it, you should also cool your hair down as you style. To do this, your hot air brush needs to have a cool setting on it. Wrap the hair around the brush for about 5 seconds, then use the cool setting for about 10 seconds. This will help hold the volume or set your curl before you remove the brush. Your hair will then hold this style for longer, with more definition. Do this for each section until you’ve completed them all.
How to Choose a Hot Air Brush
When deciding which hot air brush is for you, keep the following features in mind.
Cheaper models of hot air brushes use chrome to coat the barrel. Despite the low price, these are not the best option, since the chrome takes longer to heat up. It can also be a bit rougher, causing painful snags in your hair. Ceramic is a better choice because it is smoother and heats more consistently.
When it comes to hot air brushes, ionic technology is the best option. This is because your wet hair will be full of positive ions. The ionic heating will generate negative ions that will balance out your hair. Not only will this speed up drying time, it will reduce the frizz and static in your hair. Infrared heating is also a good option. It will dry your hair fast without stripping it of its natural moisture. This type of heating will also reduce frizz, leaving smooth, glossy hair behind.
Having more than one heat setting can be helpful, especially if more than one person is using your hot air brush. A high setting is better for those with thick hair. Lower temperatures are best used on fine or thin hair, to limit any damage. A cool shot setting can set your style. This will help to lock it in so it will last all day long.
Hot air brushes usually use either nylon or boar hair bristles. The boar hair is stronger and causes less damage to your hair, but they are a bit pricey. The nylon bristles are cheaper and usually have a coating of rubber or plastic to make more durable.
The barrel size you need depends on your hair length and what you want to do with it. Larger barrels are better for long hair or those who are trying to create large curls or waves. Those with short hair may prefer a smaller barrel since they don’t have as much hair to work with. Smaller barrels can also give you tighter curls.
Best Hot Air Brushes on the Market in 2021
Best Hot Air Brush for Fine Hair: Revlon One Step Hair Dryer and Volumizer
The unique oval shape of this Revlon hot air brush has wide edges for smoothing out your hair. Rounded corners give you the volume your fine hair may be lacking. The ionic technology heats up safely, reducing static and leaving your hair silky. Ceramic coating on the barrel keeps your fine hair from suffering any damage. The bristles are a mix of nylon pin and tufted to glide easily through your hair. But they still grip the strands firmly when curling or volumizing. There are two heat settings and a cool shot for locking in that style. This hot air brush is light, with an ergonomic handle that is comfortable to hold.
- It has a cool tip for more control when styling
- It speeds up drying time
- It can be used for straightening or making large waves
- This hot air brush is easy to use, even for beginners
- Despite having a large 2” barrel, this hot air brush works on all hair lengths and types
- It is a bit expensive at almost $60.00
- The high setting is a bit loud when compared to other models
Best Hot Air Brush for Short Hair: Vidal Sassoon Hot Air Styler
This Vidal Sassoon styling tool is a blow dryer and a curling iron in one. It has a 1″ barrel for making soft, gorgeous curls. It locks into place to hold the hair while curling and then releases it with an easy click of a button. The bristles are tangle-free, so there will be no struggle to release those strands. There is a cool tip to make it easier to hold onto while curling your hair. If your hair is thick, there is a high heat setting to make curling a breeze. For thinner hair, the low setting will lessen any heat damage you could otherwise sustain.
- Barrel is removable for easy cleaning
- It is lightweight
- At less than $15.00, it is a good option for those on a budget
- Can be used to add waves or curls to fine or thick hair
- 2-speed settings that change along with the heat settings
- Ball-tipped bristles are flexible and comfortable on your head
- Low power at 250 watts, so it could take a while to dry damp hair
- The 6’ cord is a bit shorter than some other model
Best Hot Air Brush for Long Hair: John Frieda Hot Air Brush
This John Frieda styling brush uses advanced ionic technology to safely dry your hair. It is designed to produce about 50% more ions, which will reduce static. Your hair will be smooth, glossy, and free of frizz when your style is complete. The 1 1/2″ barrel is coated with titanium ceramic for beautiful curls and volume. The bristles are both anti-static and tangle-free, so your hair will only go where you want it. A contoured handle and swivel cord make this salon quality tool comfortable to hold and to use. Along with the two heat settings is a cool setting, so you can set your style to hold all day long.
- Higher heat than some hot air brushes at 500 watts
- It is lightweight
- It can be used for straightening and curling
- The bristles are sturdy and grip the hair well
- Decently priced at about $25.00
- Handle is a bit wide for smaller hands
- Instructions say your hair must be at least 80% dry, but thicker hair should be drier for proper styling
- There is no cool tip to help you control the hot air brush
Best Rotating Hot Air Brush: InfinitiPro by Conair Black 2” Spin Air Rotating Styler
The Conair InifinitiPro combines ceramic and ionic technology for safe heating and static-free results. It uses a multi-directional rotating brush, which makes consistent styling a breeze. The bristles reduce tangling without creating static. This hot air brush is lightweight, with an ergonomic design that makes it comfy in your hand. With 2 heat and speed settings, you’ll always have the ideal temperature you need for your hair type. There is also a cool setting which can set your style perfectly to hold all day. No matter your hair type, you’ll be able to achieve the volume and shine you want. And the removable filter means easy cleaning.
- Adds volume while drying your hair
- 3 heat settings for use with most hair types
- The brush rotates in both directions
- It can curl or straighten damp or dry hair in very little time
- A bit expensive at about $45.00
- Bristles are a bit soft and may bend while trying to grab your hair
- The handle is a bit large for some
- It may take some time to get used to the dual rotating brush
Best Dual Voltage Hot Air Brush: TESCOM Dual Voltage Hot Air Brush
Have no fear taking this TESCOM compact hot air brush when traveling worldwide. It has the 100-120V option for North America, and if traveling to Europe, just switch over to 200-240V. To make things easier, it also includes a C2 plug and a World Voltage Guidebook in case you forget which to use. It uses a wide cushion brush that easily detaches from the handle for compact packing. The motor is quiet, keeping your ears safe while you dry and style your hair at home or on the road. The two heat settings give you the fast drying and gorgeous style you’re looking for in very little time.
- It includes a travel pouch, a C2 plug, and a World Voltage Guidebook
- It is lightweight
- It is good for styling and straightening wet hair
- The motor is very quiet
- It can be used on all hair lengths and types
- An auto-shutoff keeps it from overheating
- The price is a bit high at almost $57.00
- Because it is made in Japan, there are no English instructions
- The power is too to dry thick hair quickly
Best Hot Air Brush for Volume: Babyliss Pro Nano Titanium Rotating 2” Hot Air Brush
With this little Babyliss Pro tool, you should be able to achieve salon quality volume in the comfort of your own home. This is because the Babyliss Pro hot air brush uses a rotating brush, which can spin in two directions. This makes it easy to switch hands without altering your style. The airflow from this styler is calibrated to give you amazing volume. Anti-static bristles take care of the frizz, so your hair stays where you want it. With two heat and one cool setting, you’ll be able to straighten or curl your hair however you choose. And the buttons are ergonomically placed for maximum comfort when using this tool.
- It is lightweight
- It can be used on all hair types, though the 2” barrel is better for medium to long hair
- It has multi-directional rotation
- It has decent heat and airflow for fast drying and styling
- It removes the frizz and leaves hair smooth and shiny
- The bristles are a bit short and soft
- The handle is a bit bulky
- Very expensive at about $100.00
Best Hot Air Brush for Straightening: Revlon One Step Dryer & Styler
Dry your hair fast just by brushing it out with this heated paddle brush. The ionic conditioning technology shrinks water molecules at a high rate. While your hair dries, the frizz and static are also eliminated, leaving you with soft, silky hair. This styling tool is easier to use than a dryer and round brush and causes less damage than a flat iron. The ball-tipped bristles are flexible, massaging your scalp without tangling your hair. The on/off switch and three temperature settings are located at the base of the handle. This reduces the likelihood of accidentally pressing it while you’re styling.
- The swivel cord won’t tangle while you’re styling your hair
- It can be used on damp or dry hair
- It is lightweight and convenient for fast drying
- Though hair may not be stick straight when finished, it will be smoother than with just a normal hair dryer
- It is a bit pricey at over $40.00
- This hot air brush is a bit loud, like a regular hair dryer
- The cord is a bit short
- It is a bit too bulky to use on shorter hair
Best Hot Air Hair Brush Final Thoughts
Because there are so many hot air brushes on the market, it may be hard to choose one to meet your needs. All eight reviewed here today are top quality styling tools for every hair type. But the Revlon One Step Hair Dryer and Volumizer is the overall best hot air brush for a few specific reasons. Like a few other models, it has ionic heating with a ceramic barrel. It also has the heat and cool settings necessary to get the style you want. But unlike some of the other hot air brushes, it can be used to both straighten and curl. Also, though it is under our fine hair category, this tool can work for other hair types as well with great results. And the cool tip makes it easier to control this hot air brush while you’re styling, even at the back – happy styling!
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