Best hot brush 2022: Great hot air brushes for a salon-style blowout at home

Lise Smith
9 Aug 2022

These hot brushes make it easy to get a beautiful blow-dry at home, whatever your level of hairstyling skill

You’ve finally got to a salon and, on the day of your haircut, your hair is beautifully blow-dried by a professional stylist with an expert wrist-twirling technique. But, without years of salon training, how can you replicate that glamorous blowout at home? The latest and best hot brush styling tools are the answer. Look to one of these clever hybrid styling tools that combine drying and brush styling power.

The best hot brushes give a salon-standard style without the fuss of using a hair dryer and round brush. All it takes is a couple of strokes through your stands (use it like you would any brush) and you can wave goodbye to the traumatic experience of making your tresses look even frizzier than before.

But what is a hot brush? It’s a hybrid styling tool that combines a round or paddle brush with either hot airflow or a heated plate, similar to a hair dryer or straightener. These clever tools are designed to speed up hair styling, so you get a professional finish with minimal effort. Choose the right hot brush for your hair type, texture and desired finish and you can achieve a bouncy blow dry or a sleek and silky style in the comfort of your home.

Below, we’ll help you pick the best hot brush for you and your hair. Once you’ve swatted up on all the hot brush jargon, take a look at our bite-sized reviews of all the best hot brushes and hot air stylers.

READ NEXT: The best hair straighteners

Best hot brush: At a glance

  • Best multi-use hot air styler: Dyson Airwrap | Buy now
  • Best hot brush for travel: John Lewis 2781JLU Volume | Buy now
  • Best hot brush for volume and shine: Babyliss Hydro Fusion | Buy now
  • Best hot brush for an at-home blow dry: Revlon Pro Collection One Step | Buy now

How to buy the best hot brush for you

What are the different types of hot brush?

Hot brushes come in a few broad types that give different results. Choosing the right hot brush depends on the style you want to achieve: a round hot air brush dries your hair with boar or nylon bristles to lift roots and smooth and shape your locks into a bouncy do, while hot brushes that resemble a paddle brush use ceramic plates (as found in your straighteners) to give a poker-straight style.

How do you use a hot brush?

Most hot brushes work using either warm air (like your hairdryer) or hot plates (like your straighteners) to heat the surface of the hair. You simply pull the brush through to create either voluminous curls or smooth, sleek locks. The easiest to use round brushes rotate and wrap hair automatically, taking the work out of heat styling.

Brushes that produce warm air usually work best on damp hair, which has been washed and towel dried to around 80%. Section the hair, then start at the root and pull the brush slowly through it. As with blow drying, the tension from gently but continuously pulling creates the style.

Straightening brushes usually work best on dry hair. As with a straightener, start at the top of the hair and glide the brush slowly down, pulling straight as you go. Whichever style of brush you’re using, start with a spritz of heat protector spray in advance to prevent heat damage and stop your hair from snapping or splitting.

What features should you look out for?

There are a range of optional features and materials that will improve your hot-brushing experience. Keep an eye out for hot brushes that use ionic and ceramic materials as these are gentler on the hair. Hot air brushes that can be used on wet or damp hair are great time-savers as, with these, you skip blow-drying and get straight to styling. Tools with different temperature settings are great for hair health, allowing you to select a lower temperature for finer hair. For safety, look for an automatic switch-off function.

Anything else you need to know?

It’s important to use heat protection before using a hot brush on your hair, as it helps to prevent heat damage and stops your locks from snapping or splitting. Our favourite is GHD Heat Protect Spray, because the lightweight mist gives a no-product feel that doesn’t weigh down the hair.

READ NEXT: The best hair oil

Best hot brushes and hot air stylers to buy in 2022

1. BaByliss Hydro Fusion Hot Air Styler: Best hot brush for volume and shine

Price: £60 | Buy now from Argos

This rotating hot air brush from BaByliss is great for an effortless blow dry that will leave your hair looking shiny and healthy. The brush rotates around a smoothing ceramic barrel that distributes heat evenly over each tress as you blow, while ionic technology promises to hydrate hair and reduce frizz. The direction of the rotation can be changed at the flick of a switch, so you have the option to flick out or curl under. The tool is fantastically easy to use, and certainly results in great volume and shine.

The BaByliss Hydro Fusion includes two air speeds and three heat settings, plus a cool shot to set your style once your hair is dry. The tool also comes in an attractive ice-blue colour that will look great on any dressing table, and has a handy brush-cap to keep bristles safe between uses. A great product for silky-soft blow dried hair in minutes.

Key details – Material: Ceramic barrel; Heat settings: 3; Cool blast: Yes; Cord length: 2.5m; Auto switch-off: No

Buy now from Argos

2. GHD Glide Hot Brush: Best hot brush for thick hair

Price: £160 | Buy now from Look Fantastic

Fans of poker-straight locks will love the GHD Glide. In fact, we think this hot brush will give your straighteners a run for their money. Designed to be used on large sections of hair, the GHD Glide uses a combination of shorter and longer bristles to speed up styling thick hair. Its ceramic plates evenly maintain an optimum styling temperature of 185°C to prevent heat damage, while its ionising technology tames and defrizzes hair to make sure your locks look and feel their best.

The Glide Hot Brush works especially well on second-day hair, which is great for delaying a hair wash, and it has an automatic sleep mode that switches off after an hour of non-use. Overall, girls with thick hair will love the GHD Glide since it’ll give a silky-smooth style that doesn’t look lifeless.

Key details – Material: Ceramic plates; Bristles material: Mix; Heat settings: 1; Cool blast: No; Swivel cord length: 1.7m; Auto switch-off: Yes, after 1 hour of non-use

Buy now from Look Fantastic

3. Dyson Airwrap Complete: Best multi-use hot brush

Price: £480 | Buy now from John Lewis

The Dyson Airwrap, launched in 2018, revolutionised hair styling by using airflow to curl hair rather than direct heat from metallic plates. This new 2022 version of the cult product has improved airflow for faster styling, and the styling kit includes a volumising round brush and smoothing paddle brushes as well as Dyson’s signature Airwrap barrels for creating natural-looking ringlets.

The updated Airwrap adds some clever features, including a new switch that allows for the direction of airflow to be changed making it easy to alternate between clockwise and anticlockwise curls for a natural effect. The box ships with a gentle drying attachment to rough-dry wet hair, two different barrel sizes to create looser or tighter curls, two paddle brushes for smoothing, and one round brush for salon-style volume. There are three heat and three speed settings that can be independently selected for maximum control over styling.

The switches to control the heat and speed of the airflow are built neatly into the handle and very easy and intuitive to find and use while styling the hair. There are three independently adjustable heat and airflow settings, plus a cool shot mode to finish each curl. This is an expensive hair styling tool; but the speed and quality of the curls produced by the Airwrap, plus the benefits to hair health, make this worth the investment if you do curl your hair regularly.

Key details – Material: Tourmaline-ceramic barrel; Barrel sizes: 30mm and 40mm; Bristles material: Mix (soft and firm); Heat settings: 3; Cool blast: Yes; Swivel cord length: 2.6m; Auto switch-off: No

Buy now from John Lewis

4. John Lewis 2781JLU Volume Air Styler: Best hot brush for travel

Price: £30 | Buy now from John Lewis

This simple but effective air styler from John Lewis is lightweight, tipping the scales at just 500g, and comes with a handy travel pouch, which makes it ideal for travel or weekend getaways. The ceramic barrel gives hair a smooth and sleek finish, and the styler has two brush attachments, two heat, and two air settings to tackle most hair styles. As it’s so lightweight the tool may not be best suited to very long or thick hair, but, on short to shoulder-length hair, it is great for adding volume and bounce. It won’t break your bank balance or luggage allowance, either.

Key details – Material: Ceramic barrel; Heat settings: 2; Cool blast: No; Cord length: 2.5m; Auto switch-off: No

Buy now from John Lewis

5. BaByliss Flawless Volume Hot Air Styler: Best hot air brush for short and thin hair

Price: £35 | Buy now from Boots

Trust the BaByliss Flawless Volume Hot Air Styler to revive flat hair. Its large 38mm titanium ceramic barrel creates a full-bodied style without damaging the hair shaft and, with ionic control, there’s no need to worry about a static finish. The hot tool uses a mix of soft and firm bristles to add a subtle lift at the root while smoothing the hair cuticle to achieve a style that looks like you’ve been sitting in a hairdressers chair for an hour.

The Flawless Volume airstyler can be used on damp and dry hair (although it works best on hair that’s mostly dry) and it has two heat settings, as well as a cool blast that sets your style into place. Those with very fine hair should choose the lowest temperature setting and position the tool close to the root for extra volume. For a smooth and sleek style, be sure to keep a tight grip on your hair and the tool.

Key details – Material: Titanium-ceramic barrel; Barrel size: 38mm; Bristles material: Mix; Heat settings: 2; Cool blast: Yes; Swivel cord length: 2m; Auto switch-off: No

Buy now from Boots

6. Braun Satin Hair 7 Iontec Brush: Best hot brush for gentle styling

Price: £30 | Buy now from Look Fantastic

Like the look of the GHD Glide but not prepared to spend that much money? Let us introduce you to its cheaper cousin from Braun, the Satin Hair 7 Iontec Brush. As its name suggests, the brush releases negative ions onto the hair to calm frizziness and leave your tresses looking shiny and smooth. The natural bristles are gentle when detangling your hair – which is perfect for thin to medium textures – but curly hair types may find it gives a static finish after styling.

This battery-operated hot brush has an automatic power-off function to preserve its runtime and with a dinky size that fits in your handbag, it’s perfect for on-the-go hair touch ups – especially if you’re constantly battling flyaways. Overall, the Braun Satin Hair 7 Iontec Brush is great for tidying up your style and stowing away in your hand luggage; it packs a real punch for its relatively low price, too.

Key details – Material: N/A; Barrel size: N/A; Bristles material: natural; Heat settings: 1; Cool blast: No; Swivel cord length: Cordless; Auto switch-off: Yes

Buy now from Look Fantastic

7. Revlon Pro Collection One Step Dryer & Volumiser: Best hot brush for an at-home blow dry

Price: £63 | Buy now from Boots

This hot air brush is our go-to for a voluminous hairstyle. With a unique oval shape and large, natural bristles, the hot tool adds volume at the root of the hair, smooths the lengths and creates a bouncy curl at the ends – the winning formula for a bouncy blow dry. Its hot airflow is boosted by clever ionic technology to protect the hair and speed up styling, while the ceramic barrel ensures that there’s an even heat distribution.

The tool also uses an overheating cut-off function that automatically stops airflow once it reaches the optimum drying temperature, helping to protect your hair from damage. For ease of use, the Revlon Pro Collection One features two heat settings and a cool shot, a nifty swivel cord that makes it easier to reach the back of your hair and a cool-touch end to ensure you keep a firm grip on the tool (which is handy considering it’s the heaviest hot brush in our list).

Key detailsMaterial: Ceramic barrel; Barrel size: N/A; Bristles material: Natural; Heat settings: 2; Cool blast: Yes; Swivel cord length: 2m; Auto switch-off: No

Buy now from Boots

Read more

Best Buys