Product Type: GHD Hair Straightener
Newest Review: ... wanted GHD's but wasnt sure what type, when i saw these ones with the extra wide plates i knew these would be perfect for me as after using... more
Straight hair, straight away
GHD IV Salon Styler
Member Name: kiss_me_now9
GHD IV Salon Styler
Date: 09/05/12, updated on 11/05/12 (64 review reads)
Advantages: They work fantastically and look amazing; what more do you want?
Disadvantages: Expensive, fakes are deadly
The GHD brand has pretty much sky rocketed since it was first launched a decade ago. Standing for 'Good Hair Design', it's now the best known brand of hair straightener and is almost certainly the cause of most of the poker straight hair styles we see today. Celebrities endorse it, the public love it, but for nearly 5 times the price of a regular pair of straighteners, is it worth it?
GHD straighteners come in many different styles and sizes, from the mini styler to the salon styler (with the widest plates of all, great for thick and long hair). Not only do they come in different sizes, but periodically GHD creates and releases new designs; currently you can get a 'peacock' design (in teal, lavender or blue), a 'gold' series design or red gloss/black gloss. The different designs come with different packaging, plate or plastic body colour and are a nice gift if you don't mind paying a little extra. Some of them come with extra clips and heat protection mats but these aren't standard to the normal GHD straighteners. Personally, I can't tell the difference between the 'gold' series and the normal straighteners apart from a little more detail on the barrel, which I don't think is worth the extra £20, but there we go.
The first thing you'll notice when you buy a pair of GHDs is the packaing. Mine came in a silver and black box with the logo on the front, inside the straighteners were nestled in to their plastic home very safe and sound. Out of the box they look sleek and very professional - I have the standard salon styler IV model and whilst they're not pretty colours like some you get, they are instantly recognisable as GHDs. The outer casing is tought black plastic and the plates are a lovely gold colour, with the logo on the handle. The cord is fairly long - 2.8 metres long in fact - so you get a decent reach on them and can plug them in anywhere. The barrel of the plates is slightly rounded which means you can make curls as well as straightened styles, and the end of the barrels have finger holds on which make for easy gripping without burning your fingers. It is recommended that you use a heat proof glove when using these though as your hair will get very hot! The plates are also incredibly, skin melting hot. Don't leave them around children!
The only thing that I dislike about these straighteners is that there's no heat adjuster on them; it's one heat for everything. Sometimes I feel that my hair doesn't need such a high heat on them and so I'm reluctant to use them. As a result of that, I would never use them every day, I only use them for special occasions. However with a good heat defense spray, there's no real reason you couldn't use them a few times a week if you took care of your hair. It might be a good idea to look into a deep conditioning treatment if you're going to use these very regularly as well.
The way I straighten my hair with these is quick and easy, and even though I have fairly long (past shoulders) hair it takes at most 5 minutes to do it all. I spray all my hair with heat defense spray and plug my GHDs in, once I've sectioned the bottom part off I turn them on. By the time I've got that sorted, they've heated up - yes, from cold, these straighteners take about 1 minute to heat up, if that. I then grab sections of the hair I've left out of the clip and just run the straighteners down my hair from the root to tip; each section only really needs one or two going over. I make sure I have a heat proof mat to rest my straighteners on when I'm sorting out the rest of my hair and away I go, with the next section! It really is easy and simple. This is where the GHDs really come into their own and shine out from other straighteners. Others take a long time to heat up, or they simply don't work as well. Whilst this may not be a massive pro to some people; there's nothing worse than being in a rush in the morning and having to decide between good hair or good make up, which this almost instant heat up stops!
I've tried to curl my hair with my GHDs before (if you're interested in this then have a look on youtube for a decent tutorial) but I simply can't get it to work consistently! And as my hair doesn't really hold curls very well, I never try very hard with it. Personally I'm more a fan of no heat curls that you leave in over night, they hold better in my hair too! I've heard that others have better results than me with the curls though, so it probably just takes practice. I also occasionally use them to run down over braids to make sure that the crimp I want is going to be really set; this works pretty well though you have to be careful if you use plastic braiding bands as they will melt. Apparently you can create waves with them too but again this is something I have never managed to do.
GHDs currently retail for around £100 and if you're not paying this for them, you really need to question whether they're genuine or not. There's a massive problem with GHDs at the moment with fakes in the market place; make sure that you buy these off a genuine website if you're going to buy them online. A tip is to see where they're coming from as most of the fakes are from China (but don't be fooled, there are some sellers in the UK). To be safe buy them either from the official GHD website (ghdhair.com) or from a salon that's a trusted GHD seller. On the internet you can find websites that will verify whether your purchase is genuine or not by the serial number; if in doubt check them out. The problem with fraudulent copies is that they're often not made properly and so can be very dangerous, with the plates heating up to unacceptably hot temperatures, becoming lose, the electric supply being dodgy or the safety gauge that stops them turning on at any time not being in place. In short - if you want to save money on straighteners, don't buy fake GHDs, just buy a different, cheaper brand. There are various mid range hair straighteners that do the same thing for half the price, and you're not going to hurt yourself or burn your house down with them.
Overall, I am massively impressed with my GHDs and think they are probably one of the most useful and cost efficient Christmas presents I will ever receive. I'm expecting to keep my GHDs for at least another three years which will total five years of use, more than worth it I think. Plus they look pretty smart!
Summary: If you've got the cash and you're looking for a long term straightener, you can't get better.
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