Jan 26, 2024

Dyson Airstrait review: How the tool worked on 3 hair types



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Just when we thought Dyson couldn’t top itself after its waitlist-inducing Airwrap — the multipurpose hair tool that turned into a beauty phenomenon overnight — it whipped out another time-saving, sleek styling device.

Designed for those who love the look of tame, polished and straight hair, the new Dyson Airstrait launched on May 11 as an homage to those who detest the stress of straightening their frizzy, hard-to-manage and lusciously curly-locked hair.

“Having a strong understanding of how to manipulate and realize the potential of powerful airflow is fundamental to the performance of the Dyson Airstrait straightener,” James Dyson, founder and chief engineer of the company, exclusively told the New York Post (that’s right, speaking with the founder of Dyson itself was a must). “This expertise, which we’ve gained over the last 25 years, is what has enabled us to deliver our first wet to dry straightener, with no hot plates, and no heat damage.”

More, delivering the ease-of-use that people love about straighteners but with high-velocity air blades helps “save time, maintain hair strength and achieve an everyday natural straight style,” he adds.

As a beauty aficionado, you already know that I had to get my hands on the Dyson Airstrait, committing to doing whatever it took: cartwheels, acrobatic stunts in Manhattan, you name it (OK, I didn’t have to do any of those things, but with how quickly it was selling out upon launch day, I almost thought I had to).

Once I unboxed the Dyson Airstrait, I was eager — more than ever — to assess if this smooth-styler was just so smooth at making any type of hair polished and primmed to perfection as it claimed to be.

Below, you’ll find my review, testing the straightener on three different hair types (with the help of two of my friends; how can you deny an at-home pampering session using a new Dyson tool?!), along with an overview of the Airstrait’s benefits, more of my interview with the Dyson team and how it compares to competitors on the market.

Click to jump to the review:

To truly capture every feature, benefit and functionality of the Dyson Airstrait, I not only tested the device on my naturally wavy and oftentimes frizzy hair (medium thickness) but also two of my friends’ hair types: naturally curly (very thick) and naturally straight with a bit of bend (very fine). So, not only were all hair types assessed but all hair thickness levels.

I’ve personally been using the Dyson Airstrait for more than one month, allowing myself to become acquainted with one of beauty’s most-talked-about stylers. My friends have used the device less frequently, though I made note of their first impressions and thoughts on use for the purpose of this review.

Before diving into the review itself and more on the Airstrait’s benefits, here are some testing criteria I kept in mind to discern if it deserved all the hype it’s been getting:

We tested the #dysonairstrait so you don’t have to. Check out our review & shop the viral product at the link in our bio 🤩🛒💁‍♀️

“Dyson has been researching the science of style for over a decade and is investing half a billion GBP to expand and accelerate research and technology development across the beauty category,” Kate Craft, reliability engineer at Dyson with two years of experience in the haircare space, told The Post. “We’re a company founded on solving problems that others ignore. Our engineers have studied in detail everything from the structure of hair to airflow dynamics whilst understanding thermal, mechanical and chemical damage – and the subsequent effects on hair health.”

To change your hairstyle, hydrogen bonds within each hair strand must be broken and reset to hold a new shape, the Dyson team described. This can be done with heat or moisture, too. “Styling with powerful airflow from wet hair results in less need for high heat, creates less frizz and flyaways and protects natural shine.”

Why the revolution of the Airstrait? When the hair is wet, water naturally weakens these bonds. “In this state, the bonds are more elastic and can be reset as hair dries, without using extreme temperatures,” Craft explains. “By using the optimum level of heat and controlled airflow, we’ve found a way to style hair with less damage. Styling with air allows for the creation of straight styles whilst maintaining volume and movement.”

So, once the hair is dry and aligned, the bonds are reset in different ways, locking the new style in place.

Not to mention, the Dyson Airstrait has two unique features: Idle mode and Auto Pause. “Idle mode changes the airflow based on the arm position,” she says. “If the arms are closed, either while locked into a pre-styling dryer or during a styling pass, the airflow will ‘ramp up”’ o your chosen setting. When the arms are opened, the machine will reduce the airflow so as to not blow the hot air when it’s not needed.”

Its other feature, the Auto Pause, automatically pauses the motor after three seconds of inactivity, like if you are in-between passes or sections. “It will turn on again when you pick it back up to continue,” she adds. “The machine will also enter stand-by after three minutes of inactivity with the arms open. Just press the power button to continue when you return.”

Because of its modern, high-level technology, this tool perhaps goes against the grain of what we’ve been taught — in a good way. Naturally, I wouldn’t use a blow dryer unless it was about halfway towel-dried, simply because it’s not healthy for your hair to apply upwards of 500-degree heat on your hair directly following your conditioner rinse-out. While you should never style your hair with sopping-wet hair, you can use the Airstrait when your hair is quickly towel-dried (and no, it doesn’t damage your hair).

“We recommend starting with towel, dried hair,” Craft advises. “Lock the Airstrait’s arms in the closed position to use it as a pre-styling dryer to pre-dry the roots. Section the hair for styling. Use slow, steady passes on each section until the section is dry.”

The hair tress is contained by two arms, from which a precisely angled high-pressure blade of air is forced downwards and into the hair, both simultaneously drying and straight styling, with one machine.

“Finish off the style with a cold shot to set everything in place,” she instructs. “The Airstrait can also be used on dry hair for touch ups and to refresh your style.” Side note: no more waiting for your hair straightener to heat up; it’s instant!

Let me preface with this: I know using too much heat on your hair is bad for you (which is why you should always use a good heat protectant, but that’s another story). However, if I’m opting to use tools to style my hair instead of letting my wavy and curly hybrid of a mane air-dry, then I’m doing the full service.

That means, using some of my favorite styling products, using a blow-drying brush, following up briefly with a hair straightener to tame the cowlicks that have always been the bane of my existence (if you have them, you know the struggle) and then giving my hair a nice bounce with a curling iron. Sounds like a lot of steps? Yes. Does the Dyson Airstrait help me knock out the blow-dryer brush and hair straightener in one, full sweep? Thankfully, yes.

“Engineered for multiple hair types, the Airstrait can achieve a natural straight style, with body and movement, while maintaining the strength, along with the healthy look and feel, of their hair. “

Additionally, the Airstrait is simple to maintain, thanks to its quality make and essentially scratch-proof exterior (in short, you can kind of get away with tossing it in the bin with your other hair tools and brushes like I do).

The Dyson Airstrait straightener has a removable filter in the handle of the machine, for easy cleaning, whenever you want to treat your hair products with some extra love. “The filter should be washed in warm, soapy water, preferably with a clarifying shampoo or dish soap,” Craft instructs. “We also recommend regular cleaning of the tension bars and removable diffusers, to maintain optimum performance. The diffusers are removable for easy cleaning.”

Following, use a damp, lint-free cloth to remove any product residue or a soft-bristled toothbrush for stubborn residue. “For any stubborn residue on the tension bars we recommend using a soft-bristled toothbrush and drying with a dry, lint-free cloth,” she adds. For more information, you can view the maintenance films on and the MyDyson app.

As for the Dyson Airstrait, I became impressed with it once I got the hang of using it (for reference, this was about my third time taking my hair from wavy-curly to smooth and straight. It has almost a mind of its own when it comes to heat settings — the powerful airflow and thoughtful engineering showed face here — and I didn’t have to think about overheating my hair, thankfully.

When you press the two clamps together, you can wave the Airstrait above your head, toward the base of your scalp and at the sides of your head to serve as a blow dryer. As a proud owner of the Dyson Airwrap as well (aka, the Airstrait’s younger sister), this functionality is similar to its predecessor’s blow-dryer attachment. However, something to note is that, while the Airstrait is New York Post Shopping-approved to be effective for all types, it may not be the best for those with weak or arthritic hands; it’s quite heavier than most other hair tools I own, and the constant pressing — both to blow dry and to straighten in a few passes in one-inch sections — can be tiresome to your wrists.

Once my hair was halfway blow dried, I took about a one-inch section of hair and worked the Airstrait from root to tip. For best results, go slow. It may take up to three passes, maybe more depending on your hair type, but you want to go about straightening as a seamstress with hand-iron a garment.

What I will say is that it may be more difficult to reach the back of your head, around the crown area. This isn’t a deal-breaker for the Airstrait; this can go for any hair tool you may use. However, it may take extra time to style, depending on the nature of your hair.

With my wavy and Goldilocks hair — not too thin, not too thick — the Airstrait effectively straightened and made my hair going-out ready in about 20 to 30 minutes. Otherwise, the trio of a blow dryer, straightener and curling iron could take me close to one hour, if not longer.

Not only that, but it lasted for three days straight (ha, ha, there’s a pun here). I didn’t apply any hair oil or product to refresh my hair, either. I usually wash my hair every two days and usually apply dry shampoo on the morning of the second day but, because there was a healthy amount of lift and volume at the root, that wasn’t even necessary.

The most important part? For my particular hair type, it was incredible at mitigating frizz. I didn’t have straw-like ends or a blowout that lost its shape. It stood perfectly in tact — a feat in and of itself given how humid the east coast has been lately. However, it’s pretty fantastic for any touch-ups, foregoing the need to actually “heat up” beforehand (the shining star feature, in my opinion).

I know what some of you are thinking: OK, but if I’m going to spend $500 on the Airstrait, shouldn’t I cave and spend $100 more and get the Airwrap with all of the attachments? It’s a valid question, and the honest truth is that it depends on your hair type and preference.

The beauty in the Airstrait is that it’ll take your hair from wet to dry in one sweep. No attachments needed, no large oval storage case to lug around. Unlike the Airwrap which has different attachments for different purposes (the spiral cones for curling, certain brushes for smoothing, etc.), the Airstrait is virtually an all-in-one product, sans the ability to curl.

If you prefer the straight, Audrey Hepburn-inspired blowout that’s both polished and healthy, the Airstrait is for you. I typically opt for a bit of a curl, but I still turn to the Airstrait more than my Airwrap now; if I feel the need to add some loose ribbons to my hair’s body, I’ll use the Moroccanoil Everlasting Curl Titanium Curling Iron ($160) for about five minutes afterward. Hint hint, it’s the very best.

My best friend, Zoryana, has the most tame hair out of anyone I know. Never mind that it’s short and easy to style but her hair leans naturally straight, with a bit of a wave, and I was excited to play the role as hairstylist — mostly to see how her hair type differs from mine, and to see how much of a rockstar the tool would be on her gorgeous curtain bangs.

I explained to her the basis of how to use the Airstrait, but I wanted to take notes on her honest reaction during her first time using it. I quite literally called her and said, “hey, I have the Dyson Airstrait, come over” and, because she lives around the corner from me, came at lightning speed.

Impressively, it took only 10 minutes to dry and straighten on fine hair.

When Zoryana started straightening her hair (she preferred to take her hair from wet to dry, instead of blow drying it a bit like I did), her mouth made an “O” shape and she then said, “oh, wow.” For her particular hair type, pin-straight hair was more of an option. This is pretty much what I expected, too; the finer and straighter the hair, the easier it is to straighten, regardless if the Airstrait is used.

Her first impressions? She liked how straight it was, though mentioned the blow dry feature (when she tested it for about a minute or two) was a bit slower to dry than the brand’s Supersonic Hair Dryer ($430), though she likes that it’s an all-in-one attachment to diminish the need for multiple hair appliances in the bathroom.

It’s “less of a hassle, for sure” though “can be difficult to ‘catch’ a section of hair because of the dryer’s powerful airflow” — she notes. It’s a bit more difficult to style the back of the head, but it worked incredibly for her curtain bangs.

She did, however, say it was difficult to switch hands from side to side (if you use both of your hands to style, that is), and it’s easier to section off your hair when the Airstrait is turned off. Overall, she loved the end result and would use it again.

Last but certainly not least, Julia Remillard, social media marketing manager at the New York Post, tested the Dyson Airstrait. I mean, how could she not, with those luscious curls? She’s the epitome of the “Dyson Airstrait tell all: will it work on super curly hair?”

Julia has some of the most beautiful curls I’ve seen. Unlike my hair, her curls hold a consistent, loop-de-loop shape. Mine, on the other hand, has some curly pieces at the front, but is pretty much wavy in other parts.

As predicted, it took the longest to straighten Julia’s hair in comparison to mine and Zoryana’s — 45 to 50 minutes to be exact. However, the end result was beautiful; her thick hair wasn’t compromised in the process and she did a fabulous job at styling the back portion of her hair — something Zoryana and I struggled with a bit more. That said, using the Dyson Airstrait boils down to how dedicated and skilled you are at styling, and how much time you prefer to spend making each section pin-straight.

Julia agreed with the same sentiment Zoryana and I expressed: clamping each press together was a bit tiresome compared to other hair tools we’ve been accustomed to using in the past. However, the finished style is something you can’t ignore, and one all three of us would bow down to.

Ahead, find the comprehensive list of pros and cons we highlighted after testing the Dyson Airstrait:

Overall, the Dyson Airstrait is a pretty nifty tool that, if you’re serious about styling your hair and want to harbor a “quality over quantity” lifestyle, will add value to your hairstyling routine. It’ll help cut down blow drying and styling time, help mitigate frizz and add shine — a triple threat in this all-in-one product.

While the Dyson Airwrap has been dubbed to not be the greatest at holding a curl (for certain hair types), the Airstrait wins the gold trophy at holding its hairstyle for days — on every hair type. So, Airstrait, we applaud you. This hot new launch is one that isn’t just a fad.

Check out the New York Post Shopping section for more content.

Ease of useVersatilityTime spent stylingResultsFor best results, go slow20 to 30 minutesI still turn to the Airstrait more than my Airwrap nowit took only 10 minutes to dry and straighten on fine hairVery curly, thick hair:45 to 50 minutes Get seats. Earn rewards. Experience it live.