The latest style-perfecting gadget is a hot air brush, which is a hair dryer and a round brush in one device. This versatile product blows hot air through a vented barrel to finish drying your hair while you style it with the round brush.
The hot air brush is not designed to replace your regular hair dryer because it doesn’t have the blow-power to fully and efficiently dry wet hair. The hair should be air/blower dried until it is about 80% dry before you start using the hot air styling brush to give it a nice finish.
The hot air brush won’t make curly hair stick-straight; it is typically used to smooth or add gentle curl to straight hair.
There is a bit of a learning curve to master this tool, but with time and practice, you can get a stunning “just back from the salon” blowout. You can also use it on dry hair for touchups between hair washings.
A hot air hair brush works best if you have short or shoulder-length hair, and people with fine hair will get the most benefit. The blowing hot air delivers explosive volume while the brush provides control and style, making the hair flowing and shiny.
Different Types of Hot Air Brushes
Stationary hot air brush dryers have the brush in a fixed position, so you have to manually roll it to style your hair. Some people prefer stationary over rotating brushes because the hair doesn’t get tangled.
Rotating hot air brushes have a rotating brush head, which gives your hair more volume and makes your styling routine easier. The rotating feature is optional, so you can also choose to use the brush without rotation.
Hot air brushes with the spinning feature do tend to catch the hair more than stationary brushes, and it also takes more time to master a rotating hair brush dryer than the one you rotate manually.
Brushes with dual rotation have two directional buttons, so they can spin either forward or backward, which makes them equally convenient for both lefties and righties—and both sides of your head!
Hot air brush dryers with interchangeable brush heads have one dryer unit and two or more brush attachments to fit different hair lengths and create different styles.
“Tangle-free” drying hair brushes have a release button that allows the barrel to swivel to release a tangled section of hair.
Some hot air brushes (like John Frieda Hot Air Brush) utilize advanced ionic technology to dry your hair faster while eliminating static and frizz.
Brushes typically range anywhere from 250 to 1200 watts of power. 250 watts may be sufficient for baby fine hair, but for thick and coarse hair you will need much more power.
- A hot air brush dryer gives great volume, unlike a flat iron, which can leave your hair too flat. You can get close to the roots, which gives your hair more life and body than you can get from your flat iron.
- It is useful to have it handy in humid weather. It helps tame frizz and gives a shiny finish to your hair.
- With this tool, you can get your ends rolled under beautifully. You can also use it for touch ups between hair washings. A hot air styling brush can be perfect for last touches before a special event.
- A hot air styler is lightweight and easy to maneuver which is great for your wrists. It’s also easier to use than using a hairdryer and separate round brush for styling your hair. Your arms won’t get exhausted and you can use your other hand to hold the section and help with styling.
- A hot air round brush doesn’t get as hot as your flat iron. This is important if you are concerned about the damage that could be to your hair with the high heat from styling tools.
- Hot air styling brush is great for traveling. You can take just one item with you instead overloading your suitcase with several heat styling tools. When you are on the vacation, you can just air dry your hair a bit and then use this hot air brush to finish drying and style your hair.
Results According to Your Hair Type
When shopping for a new hot air brush, it is important to select the tool that will work for your hair type and is also suitable for the length of your hair.
Fine hair: Hot air brushes are great for people with fine, limp hair. They can get close to the scalp to lift the roots and leave your hair fluffed up. If you have super fine hair, look for soft to medium bristles. If your hair is over-processed or damaged, choose a brush with a ceramic heater and use a lower temperature setting. If your hair is frizzy, select a hot air styler brush that has an ion generator.
Thin hair: A hot air brush styler works well for thin hair because it adds body to thin hair, tames frizz, and boosts shine. If you have thinning hair, apply some volumizing mousse prior to styling it with this tool.
Straight hair: A hot air hair brush can be used to give a gentle curve to straight hair and add more body and shine. For more lasting volume, you need to apply a volumizing mousse or hair spray. If you have straight hair, the brush won’t give you a lot of curls, but it can give you a little bit of casual wave or a touch of curl at the bottom of your hair.
Short hair: A hot air brush is a perfect tool for people with short and medium-length hair. It is especially great for a short bob because it lifts short, fine hair and gives it body. However, be aware that for short hair, you need a small barrel. It can be tricky to get very short hair around the barrel, especially if it is totally straight. For really short hair, choose the barrel no bigger than 1 inch in diameter.
Long hair: Section off your hair and work small sections for a big bouncy look. If you want loose waves, go over each piece a few times while twisting and turning the brush. Do small portions at a time. If you grip too much hair, it might get caught in the brush. For very long hair, look for a “tangle free” brush. You’ll need the release button to untangle sections of hair.
A hot air styler works exceptionally well on shoulder-length hair.
Coarse hair: If you have coarse and thick hair, make sure to pre-dry your hair well, then use this tool to finish your style; a hot styling brush is not powerful enough to dry thick, coarse hair. If you keep trying, the tool gets pretty warm, which causes the bristles to become softer and less efficient in managing your hair. For coarse hair, use stiffer brushes and select a higher heat setting. Make sure to choose a unit with higher wattage that provides enough heat and power to properly dry and style your hair.
Curly hair: A hot air styling brush won’t give you stick-straight hair like a flat iron; it will smooth the hair and slightly turn it under. If you want to make your curly hair straight, you’ll still need to use a flat iron. You’ll also still need to use your flat iron if you want your ends straighter because the round brush tends to curl your ends.
How to Use a Hot Air Round Brush?
A hot air brush is not made to be used straight out of the shower, as it will take forever to dry your hair. Allow your hair to air dry or use a regular hair dryer to pre-dry it. When your hair is about 80% dry, use the hot air styler to finish drying and create the style you desire. Keep your hair sectioned with clips, wrap a small portion of hair around the brush and slide downward. It takes a little practice to get used to it, especially to a rotating hot air brush.
Read the manual and watch a few videos on YouTube to figure out how to use it.
Always use a heat protection spray.
For maximum body, position the brush close to the roots, wrap your hair around the brush and hold the brush in place for a few seconds. Gently pull your hair away from your head, then move the brush down the section. Make sure to select a large barrel if you want more body and fewer curls.
Hot air brush styler does not get hot enough to curl your hair. It is not a good choice if you want to achieve tighter curls. Curls also do not last long as using a curling iron. Depending on the length of hair and the diameter of the brash, you can get some curls or slight natural waves.
To get a curlier style, wrap a portion of your hair around the brush and hold the brush for about 10 seconds close to your head before unrolling hair from the brush. Work on just one small section at a time. For tighter curls, use a barrel not wider than 1”. Use 1.5″ barrel or larger if you want to get more relaxed curls. To get big soft waves, slide the brush vertically.
If your hair gets tangled, press release button that allows the barrel to swivel to untangle the hair. If you use a brush with dual rotation, you need to change directions to let your hair out of the brush. Once you have finished with the hot settings, use the cool setting to set the style and add more shine to your hair.
Choosing the Right Barrel Size
For longer hair, choose a larger diameter of the brush. The 2-inch barrel will probably work perfectly if you have long hair.
If you have short hair, choose the 1″ barrel. Larger barrels will not work on short hair, as hair cannot be wrapped around the brush.
Select 1-1/2″ barrel if you have medium length hair.
The 1-inch will give you tighter curls.
The 1.5-inch barrel gives you more relaxed curls.
The 2-inch barrel provides a straighter style with plenty of volume and also can give you lose, short-lasting curls.
Ceramic or titanium barrels tame frizz and smoothen hair more beautifully than those made of plastic material.
Most hot air stylers have nylon bristles. Plastic bristles transfer heat well, easily pick up the section of hair and don’t have a tendency to tangle hair. Nylon bristles are suitable for styling coarse hair.
Brush bristles are softer than plastic ones and work best for fine hair.