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When I was l looking for a new hairdryer a year or so ago I wanted something that wasn't too big and bulky but I didn't want to pay the earth for something that really just dries my hair. I understand the need to have something suitable for your hair type but for me a hairdryer is something that simply just dries my hair - I don't need to worry so much about how it styles my hair as I do this after my hair is dry. Another key thing for me was cost I didn't want to pay a fortune, something reasonably priced was what I wanted. Surely an easy task!
The market for hairdryers is vast from the basic hairdryer to the ones that are all singing all dancing. I read a few reviews on various types but like most products you get the good and you get the bad. After browsing Amazon I came across the Toni & Guy Joystick Control Hairdryer. Apart from coming from a brand that is well known in the hair industry I was impressed with the design and that it didn't cost the earth. The reviews were fairly mixed but this certainly didn't put me off as I only really use a hairdryer several times a week so it never gets heavy use.
The Toni & Guy Joystick Control Hairdryer was the winner of the Pure Beauty Award 2007 for "Best Electrical Innovation" - at the time it was the latest in digital technology which as they put it "incorporates a funky I-pod style feature" in a very design oriented aesthetic. I've never really been sucked into the whole product award buying which I know some people do the fact that it has won an award is neither here nor there with me but obviously having this award must mean it is relatively good quality or you would at least hope so!
To look at the hairdryer looks like any other. It is a deep grey colour made out of slightly metallic/glittered formed plastic. There is of course the Toni & Guy logo branding the item. There is a sufficiently long wire and plug which is great as my nearest plug in the bedroom isn't as close to my mirror as I'd like. Overall, the appearance is perfectly fine. It does come in a decent sized box together with a guarantee and a little leaflet with the usage instructions as well as any warnings you may want to adhere to. I did find that when I opened the box that the hair dryer is light weight making it ideal especially if you go on holiday or for a weekend away as although it is not travel size it is light and quite slim.
So, the hairdryer itself has the LED display which indicates which temperature you are using and at what speed. The LED changes colour depending on the temperature too, orange being for heat and blue being for the cooler temperatures. The LED display is located next to the handle so it is easy to see. The LED is only on the one side of the hairdryer which makes no difference really but if you are left handed you won't be able to the display. It does clearly display which temperature and at which speed setting is on. The only thing I don't like is that there are four silver type buttons around the LED display which do absolutely nothing and I do find them a bit pointless.
The joystick control is on the handle and by pushing it upwards or downwards you can control the speed and temperature which is incredibly useful. However, the negative is that because it is on the handle you can find yourself changing the settings without deliberately doing it which is rather annoying as I have spent many minutes blow drying my hair, wondering why it wasn't drying as quickly only to release I have changed the temperature from hot to cold. It does take a bit of getting used to and despite owning this for some time I still do mistakenly change the settings.
The hairdryer itself has 7 different speed settings - I tend to use the one that gets my hair the driest the quickest but it is perfect when I do have the time to straighten my hair using the hair dryer as the different speeds can make a difference. Also useful if blow drying a child's hair! Not just content with 7 different speed settings it has varying temperature settings again making it ideal for styling hair as well as having a 'cool-shot' which helps to set your hair style. According to the booklet it is also safe to use with hair extensions - now I don't have hair extensions but I can imagine if you do not all products are suitable so this is definitely a point worth making.
Apart from its varied temperature and speed settings the hair dryer does benefit from tourmaline technology. Tourmaline naturally released negative ions to help smooth the hair right from the top of the hair shaft whilst at the same time helping to eliminate static and lock in your colour whether it is natural or coloured. The aim apart from smoothing the hair is to add shine and make the overall look of the hair shiny and the colour intensified. Toni & Guy use the tourmaline technology in every product of their core range which the joystick controlled hair dryer is apart of.
The hair dryer is supposed to be suitable for all hair types, I have naturally wavy hair which is currently in an angled bob just past my chin so it does need to be styled somewhat and then finished off with the straighteners. Now I do admit that if I am short of time I will whack the hair dryer on full heat in order to get my hair dry as quickly as possible and this hairdryer does the job easily but I have found that when I am wanting to do my hair properly (when I have enough time) the different speed settings really do make a difference and my hair's naturally wavy locks are tamed into straightness without too much hassle.
I do also find that my hair is left incredibly soft when I have finished using the hair dryer with a lovely shine which is of course great. Whether it is just a combination of looking after your hair i.e. cut regularly, washed using suitable products but it does leave my hair looking healthy even before I have started using my straightners. One thing though it isn't the loudest of hair dryers that I have owned but it is sitting happily in 2nd place as it is quite loud, now I don't expect any hair dryer to be silent but this does sound quite loud which doesn't exactly bother me but can sometimes be a bit annoying!
The only other big criticism I have is the joy stick controller and where it is located. As mentioned above it is incredibly easy to adjust the settings without realising it. Fortunately it hasn't bothered me enough to buy a different hair dryer it just means you have to hold the handle slightly differently in order not to knock the joy stick. Other than that I can't find fault with the product of course I realise that newer models have come out and it is probably out of date in terms of fashionable products but it is lasting incredibly well, it still works perfectly and looks as good as new so I really can't moan.
Overall, my hair looks lovely after using it, shiny, soft and manageable which is all that I want. The fact that the hairdryer is easy to use (except the annoying joystick issue!) I can't really complain at all. It does the job it is intended to do so I am happy! Definitely a hair dryer I would recommend if you want to buy a new one that won't break the bank. 4 stars from me - knocking a star off for the design as to where the joystick controller actually is.
~ Useful Info ~
Brand: Toni & Guy
Availability: Seems to be limited now - best bet is to Google
Price: Having looked today (May 2012) from £35.00 upwards depending where you buy