Available at ulta.com; $159.99
The pitch: “Superior European design joins technology and sensibility. With Rowenta’s exclusive Auto Sensor technology, this professional dryer turns on when it’s in your hand and off when set down — saving time, energy and hassle. It features two speeds, three heat settings, and a built-in ionic generator for 35 percent more airflow, 20 percent faster drying and beautifully shiny, frizz-free results.”
The skinny: I don’t really mind the styling tools I use at home — until I go to the salon. Whenever I see what the stylists are working with, I always promise myself I’ll get a better blow dryer, a better flat iron, etc.
So when I got a chance to try the new Rowenta Expertise Inspiration Pro, I jumped on it.
This blow dryer is the real deal — with ionic ceramic tourmaline technology that leaves hair smoother and easier to style; auto sensor technology that turns the dryer off when you release your hold; two speeds and three heat settings, and a shot of cold air to set your hairstyle; an extra-long cord; and concentrator and diffuser attachments.
So much to love.
If you’re looking for a dryer that will help with the frizz as we roll into the humid time of year, this is a great addition to your toolbox. If you’re wondering if all that “ionic ceramic tourmaline” stuff is the real deal, it is. My hair is shinier and smoother when I use this dryer.
It dries your hair fast, too, even though the hot setting isn’t scorching. And the cold air shot is the best I’ve ever used. The auto sensor? Brilliant.
And yet ...
It seems odd to me that no one noticed how easy it is to accidentally switch the speed or the temperature on this thing; the buttons are right where your fingers land when you hold the handle. It took me a week to adjust my grip.
And this dryer is very, very heavy. Yes, I have arthritis, but I also lift weights three days a week, and handling the Rowenta for any length of time could substitute for doing curls.
If you have a weak old dryer, it may take some time to adjust to the powerful airflow from the 1,875-watt motor. Of course, you can start at a lower setting, but if you want to get done fast (and because of the weight of this dryer, I do), the top setting will blast you dry in no time.
Overall, it’s about the health of my hair, and this dryer is fantastic for keeping damage to a minium and helping to make my aging helmet of hair more humidity-proof. It’s an investment, but one that I think is worth it.