Hands on: Dyson Supersonic hair dryer

Julian Chokkattu

The Supersonic produced a nice shine, but it didn’t feel any different from using a normal hairdryer. Still, it’s nice knowing your hair isn’t getting damaged.

Dyson’s new hair dryer is no joke. It’s pretty, doesn’t look like a regular hair dryer, is quieter than most, and it’s purportedly better for your hair. The stickler? It’s $400.

The company announced the Supersonic back in April, but the hair dryer is only making it to market now. It’s launching exclusively at Sephora stores on Friday, but it will make its way to other retailers later this month. It’s available for purchase right now on Dyson’s website.

Dyson is known for its vacuums, but the company seems to have an affinity for products that can suck or blow out air. It’s spent four years, more than 100 engineers, and nearly $67 million to develop the Supersonic.

Dyson spent $56,000 buying real hair — about 1010 miles of natural hair and “created a worldwide shortage in the process.” The point was to vigorously test the different ways heat impacts hair, and the different ways people dried their hair.

The end result? The company went out of its way to “rethink” the hair dryer.

So how does it work?

So what makes the Supersonic unique, and apparently worth a $400 price tag? There’s an “intelligent heat control” system that helps protect your hair from heat damage. That’s thanks to the glass-bead thermistor and the microprocessor.

Hair damaged from excessive heat loses its shine, and that’s what the Supersonic is trying to prevent.

dyson supersonic hair dryer hands on
dyson supersonic hair dryer hands on

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

dyson supersonic hair dryer hands on
dyson supersonic hair dryer hands on

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

dyson supersonic hair dryer hands on
dyson supersonic hair dryer hands on

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

dyson supersonic hair dryer hands on
dyson supersonic hair dryer hands on

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

The thermistor checks the heat leaving the Supersonic 20 times per second. If it’s getting hot enough to damage your hair, it relays that information to the microprocessor. This processor adjusts the “double-stack heating element” to protect your hair, so you don’t have to worry about scorching your locks.

There’s also a digital motor in the handle, which Dyson calls the V9. It spins up to 110,000 times a minute and has one inaudible frequency. The addition of extra blades in the motor and acoustic silencers help reduce the sound the Supersonic emits.

Does it work?

You’ll be pleased to know that the Dyson Supersonic does dry your hair. Jokes aside, it’s a well-built, ergonomic hair dryer that powerfully blows out hot air with quite a bit of range.

There are four buttons all together. The two on the circular part of the hair dryer adjust the airflow and the heat. Push up the button on the handle below to turn the Supersonic on, and if you press and hold the last button, you’ll get a blast of cooler air.

It certainly is a lot quieter than hair dryers we’re used to, but it’s far from silent. There’s still a decent amount of noise coming out of the Supersonic, but what Dyson has done to minimize it is impressive.

Dyson also includes three magnetic attachments for the Supersonic: a smoothing nozzle, for drying; a styling concentrator for “fast, precise airflow for controlled styling”; and a diffuser, to disperse airflow and reduce frizz for people with curly hair. These magnetic attachments are pretty neat, as it’s incredibly easy to take them on and off quickly.

The Supersonic produced a nice shine, but it didn’t feel any different from using a normal hairdryer. Still, it’s nice knowing your hair isn’t getting damaged.

Warranty information

The Supersonic comes with a limited two-year warranty for parts and labor from the date of purchase. Dyson offers a 30-day money back guarantee if you don’t like the hair dryer.

Hands on: Dyson Supersonic
Hands on: Dyson Supersonic

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

The warranty covers original defects from the manufacturing process, and it’s only valid if you use the machine in the country you bought it from.

It does not cover damage from electrical outages, power surges, the weather, lack of maintenance, and normal wear and tear.

Conclusion

Dyson’s launch in New York had all the hoopla of an Apple event. Even the packaging and look of the device really goes to show the lengths the company is going to try and make owning the Supersonic “cool.”

It certainly is a novelty, and if you’re ever seen in public using it you’ll get some questions. But how often are you using a hair dryer in public? Even if you wanted to take it out of the house, it’s tricky thanks to the lack of a carrying case.

Related: Dyson’s 360 Eye vacuum is so complex you need a special engineer to set it up

Regardless, the Supersonic is a sleek-looking hair dryer, one that Dyson says is safe for your hair. If that’s important for you, perhaps it’s worth it. But at $400, it’s clear this hair dryer isn’t meant for the average consumer.

Highs

  • Well-built
  • Responsive buttons and useful LED notifiers
  • Protects hair from heat damage
  • Comes with three magnetic attachments for different hair styles

Lows

  • Expensive
  • A carrying case should come included