Latest in Gear

Image credit:

Dyson's first beauty product is a hair dryer

The company expands beyond fans and vacuums. A little.
54 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Dyson teased its press event this week by sending out tiny, sharp motor parts to journalists (including this one). Now we get to see the rest of the thing. The company's first foray into beauty is, perhaps predictably, a hairdryer. The Supersonic, as it's called, has all the design hallmarks of a Dyson: It's circular and smooth, with a metallic finish and a splash of loud color. Compared to everything that's come before it, however, it's so... small.

Gallery: Dyson Supersonic hair dryer images | 13 Photos

All told, the company spent four years and $71 million to make its hair dryer, with the sort of specifications and research backstory of a car. The press release explains the 600 prototypes, over 100 patents pending and a cast of 103 engineers that worked on it. It helps to explain the price ($400), but even salon-level hair dryers hover around the $300 mark. Founder James Dyson reckons existing dryers can be "heavy, inefficient, and make a racket."

"By looking at them further, we realized that they can also cause extreme heat damage to hair." He believes the Supersonic solves those issues. Three magnetically-connecting attachments can adjust the output for different hair styles, and include a diffuser and... can you tell I'm out of my depth? Those accessories have a "double skin," so that while the inner part gets hot, the outer stays cool.


However, the engineering jewel inside is a new V9 digital motor -- Dyson's smallest, lightest motor yet. The company even drafted in a team of aero-acoustic engineers (new career goal) to tinker with the noise the Supersonic makes. The team increased the motors' blades from 11 to 13, which meant that one of the tones made by the motor was rendered inaudible for humans. Sir James Dyson also noted at the press launch in Tokyo that with a speed of 110,000 rotations per minute, it moves fast enough to classify itself as ultrasonic.

The entire dryer has also been weight balanced for easier handling -- something that isn't usually the case for hair dryers. You'll get to handle one for yourself later this year: The Supersonic will launch in the US exclusively at Sephora this September.

Mat once failed an audition to be the Milkybar Kid, an advert creation that pushed white chocolate on gluttonous British children. Two decades later, having repressed that early rejection, he moved to Japan, learned the language, earned his black belt in Judo and returned to UK, and soon joined Engadget's European team. After a few years leading Engadget's coverage from Japan, reporting on high-tech toilets and robot restaurants as Senior Editor, he now heads up our UK bureau in London.

54 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save
Comments

From around the web

ear iconeye icontext filevr