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I got this hair dryer from Argos or somewhere like that about a year ago and I just couldn't get on with it at all. The company's own description of the product is 'used by the world's leading hairdressers, the Cord Keeper 2000 is another innovative hair care appliance from BaByliss. One of the leading manufacturers of hair care appliances, BaByliss once again raises the bar with this clever and intuitive new hair dryer design.' To be honest I just didn't see very much that was good about the Cord Keeper other than its cord keeping ability.
This will be a short section, because there really wasn't much I liked about this hair dryer. On paper it seems like a very good idea because it is powerful, it has three heat settings plus one cool shot setting for setting your hair. It has two speed settings. It has a retractable cord for easy storage. It comes with a three year warranty from the manufacturer. However the benefits are far outweighed by the negatives I'm afraid. Having said that I do like the colour of it. Although I am not a girly girl and don't usually go for all things pink, the fuchsia pink colour of this hairdryer is quite nice. It is really bold and bright, almost like a luminous pink colour and it isn't a sickly colour at all.
The cord keeper facility, whilst being a bit of a gimmick is quite funky too. After stereotypically dancing round your bedroom using your hair dryer as a microphone (does anybody actually do this?!), you can instantly switch roles and become James Bond (or, more specifically, The Girl With Fuchsia Pink Gun). There is a fairly big button on the side of the handle which instantly retracts the cord. It is ridiculously easy to use because there is only one button there and it is clearly labelled. Be careful when you are pressing it though because the cord retracts quite quickly which results in the plug swinging around quite erratically. I find that holding the cord to guide it in is a much better option (although it doesn't quite give you the same dramatic Bond impression of course). Obviously this retractable cord makes it easy to store as well and much tidier.
One of the other features of the hair dryer is that is has an easy to remove filter at the back which makes it easy to clean. I have to admit, cleaning my hair dryer's filter is not anywhere near the top of my list of priorities, however I was a bit concerned about the performance of the dryer so I decided to give it a quick clean to try and improve it. I can indeed confirm that this is an easy operation. You just have to slide the filter out at the back and give it a quick wipe and then replace it. The fact that I completed this task by myself and relatively quickly shows how easy it is to do because, if it had've been in any way difficult, I'd have given up because that's the kind of gal I am (in the words of the great Homer (Simpson); 'If at first you don't succeed, give up'). The gumph that comes with the hair dryer says that you shouldn't have to clean the filter very often but that you should do it occasionally to ensure that it continues 'performing at the top level'. I am afraid it really is that vague, but you can do it as regularly as you like because it is easy to do.
It is definitely a powerful hairdryer, but at 2000 watts it is certainly a lot more powerful than the previous one I was using which was a travel style one by Cosmopolitan. I thought this would be a good thing in that it would make the tedious and annoyingly long task of drying my hair slightly less so, but alas this was not the case. There were problems that came with the hairdryer having so much power. Firstly it is very noisy. Now I know hairdryers are noisy by nature, but this one was painfully so and it actually made me cringe whilst I was using it. As if this weren't enough it also gave me numb hands thanks to the incredible amount of vibrating that it does, I have actually never known a hairdryer that is so uncomfortable to hold whilst using it. So with great power comes great discomfort. I found that I could only use it for a couple of minutes at a time because I felt like anything more would cause permanent problems - a little dramatic maybe, but it really is that bad. I found that the vibrating was just as bad on whichever of the two speed settings I used as well. I have actually since noticed that there are many other hairdryers that are actually much more powerful with 2200 watts seeming to be the norm and 2400 watts the top end, which means that I feel even more like this one isn't worth the bother.
I also found that despite the promised power, it wasn't actually that powerful. I have fairly thin hair, although I do have a lot of it, but I generally find that it takes less than ten minutes to dry it completely. Not so with this contraption because, between breaks to let my shaky hands recover, it took ages because it just didn't seem to be drying all that well. You don't get many attachments like a diffuser or anything with it to help along, but even so I thought it should have dried my hair a lot quicker than it did. There is what they call a 'concentrator nozzle' included as an attachment but to be honest I don't see that as an added extra because I think that is what most hairdryers look like nowadays anyway and I wold have thought it would have been part of the hairdryer rather than an 'added extra'.
Adding to the discomfort is the weight of the device. I can't find anywhere how much it actually weighs however on various websites there are lists of specifications and all of them have the lightweight column ticked. I can only assume they are comparing this against a fully grown adult blue whale or an 18 wheeler truck because this thing is certainly not lightweight. Or maybe I am. I thought it was really heavy and I had to keep swapping hands whilst I was drying my hair. I also found that this meant it wasn't as easy to style my hair whilst using it. I found the hairdryer to be cumbersome thanks to the rather chunky handle (this is obviously bigger due to the need to store the cord when not in use).
I am afraid the negatives just keep on coming. The cord is billed as being full length, but it measures just 1.8 metres, which is considerably less than other dryers I have had in the past. It is not that big a problem for me because I have a plug socket right next to the mirror where I usually dry my hair, but I'd imagine it would be a real issue for many. I understand that the cord has to be shorter due to the storage, but this storage is supposed to make the dryer more convenient, which will be negated by the inconvenience of it not reaching where you want it too.
The hairdryer has some kind of ionic feature which is supposed to help prevent frizzy hair. I am not sure how it does this nor do I care to find out, however I think it is a pretty baseless claim really. I don't have overly frizzy hair but it can get a bit frizzy when I have just washed it and this hair dryer with its magic frizz healing hands has made no difference that I can detect.
I'm not sold on the 'cool shot button' either really because firstly I don't understand how blasting my hair for a second with cool air will set my style and secondly because it isn't that cool. The three heat settings aren't too bad although the top one is very hot so be careful. The speed settings are a good idea, but being that the hairdryer doesn't work that well on top speed, I haven't even bothered with the lower speed to be honest.
I bought the hairdryer for around the £25 mark, which I actually think is pretty expensive anyway (it is really probably about average but I hate spending money on things like hairdryers), but I was drawn in by all the promises it made and the fact that it did have the retractable cord. I have had many a hairdryer that have been much cheaper and much better. If you still want the hairdryer despite all my dire warnings (I know the thought of being James Bond for the day is enough to make anybody sway over to the bad side!), it is available in various places online. The recommended retail price is £30 but you can get it on Tesco.com for £25, amazon.co.uk for about £22 (including delivery) and ebay for less. It is also still available in Argos shops for £24.99.
~*~*Why did I buy it? *~*~
I brought the BaByliss 5223U Cord Keeper 2000 Hair Dryer, which only appears to be available in Fuchsia, as a Christmas present for my daughter last year (2011). The main attraction for me was its beautiful, glossy, bright pink colour. I knew that she would love it. I can't remember how much I paid but it is currently available for £22.20 with free delivery from amazon.co.uk and can also be sourced from other retailers for roughly the same price, I regularly buy from amazon.co.uk as they have never let me down.
~*~* What are its selling points? *~*~
The hair dryer boasts advanced fan technology, delivering a powerful air stream for fast drying. It has an ionic system that releases balancing ions to reduce frizz. The hair dryer has 3 heat settings and 2 speed settings and a cool shot button. Also included is a concentrator nozzle, and a automatic cord rewind and its biggest selling point for me is that it is bright pink.
~*~* So, What is it like to use? *~*~
The hair dryer is pretty weighty, it feels about a kilo in weight so not great for extended drying and styling sessions as my arm soon starts to ache. The handle is comfortable to hold though and the controls are well placed for switching between temperature and speed with out looking once I am used to it.
Despite boasting a 2000w motor the blow from the dryer is pretty lacking (my old Vidal Sassoon dryer is stronger) and seems to take forever to dry my mid length medium thickness hair. My hair does not seem any less frizzy when I use this dryer either so I think the balancing ions may be missing presumed useless.
The lowest variable speed is rubbish and I always use the dryer on the highest speed. The lowest heat setting is too cool and is like trying to dry your hair out the window on a windy summer day. The one I always use is the second heat setting, this is just right. The third heat setting is just too hot, I would not advise using the third heat setting in combination with the slowest speed as over heating will ensue. The cool blast button works ok and delivers a shot of cool air while drying.
Apart from being pink the other selling point for me is that it has a cord keeper function; this is essentially a cord rewind at the touch of a button, like on a cylinder vacuum cleaner. The cord is easy to pull out for use, although the cord is relatively short at roughly 1.5m, and winds back in at high speed when the retract button is pressed. I advise caution when rewinding as the cord has a tendency to flap about like a cornered snake and is not adverse to smacking you on the hands, arms or face.
~*~* Is it recommended? *~*~
In short, yes. Despite being a bit underpowered and the ions have moved out the hair dryer works really well. It is used most weekday mornings by my daughter and son and a couple of times a week by me. We have never had any malfunctions apart from being beaten by the plug when the cord is retracted.
The cord keeper function keeps the hair dryer looking neat even when it is left on the dressing table and the Fuchsia colour is really attractive and does not put my son off using it. We are all sworn to secrecy though.
In conclusion I feel that this is a great hair dryer at a great price.
Thank you for reading.
This is a high performance 2000W ionic dryer with a rewinding power cord for safe tidy storage with no more tangles. Comes with a 3 year manufacturer's guarantee.