Safety of Ionic Hair Dryers

Written by karen sweeny-justice
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Safety of Ionic Hair Dryers
Hair dryer. (dry image by musk from

In the late 1800s, Alexandre Godefrey, a French hair stylist, created a hair dryer that clients could sit beneath while their salon styles dried. Handheld dryers were introduced in the 1920s. Ionic hair dryers are the latest development in hair styling.

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How Hair Dryers Work

Hair dryers speed up the evaporation process by focusing a narrow stream of hot air over wet hair. Traditional dryers work by pulling room temperature air in through vents, passing the air over a coiled wire heating element, then blowing hot hair out.

Ceramic Hair Dryers

Ionic hair dryers are also known as ceramic hair dryers. Their heating element is made of a tourmaline-infused ceramic coating.

How Ionic Hair Dryers Work

Air is drawn in as in a traditional dryer, but rather than just reusing room temperature air, the ceramic heating element creates negatively charged ions. These ions limit the amount of static electricity discharged.

Ionic Hair Dryer Safety for Fine Hair

There is no scientific proof that ionic hair dryers make hair smoother or silkier. The negative ions do shrink the size of water droplets in the hair, so it is important not to over-dry. Fine hair, in particular, can be damaged easily with an ionic dryer.

Ionic Hair Dryer Safety for Chemically Treated Hair

Many models of ionic hair dryers have multiple temperature settings. Because the ceramic coating on the heat element heats faster than a traditional hair dryer, it is important not to over-dry hair that has been treated with a perm or colouring. There have been reported cases where ionic hair dryers have made hair brittle and prone to falling out.

General Safety

As with any electric product that will be used near a water source, care must be taken that the electrical cord not come in contact with water. Always hold the dryer by the handle, never by the barrel which can retain heat.

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