British vacuum cleaner/hand dryer titan Dyson has unveiled its latest innovation, the Airwrap, a $500 hair curler. According to Fast Company, $31.4 million worth of research and development went into designing, creating, and testing the device, with 642 prototypes made over a six-year period.
The Airwrap is Dyson’s solution to an age-old problem: straight-haired people wanting curly hair. But one of the risks attached to using standard curlers is hair being permanently damaged by heat.
That’s where the Airwrap and Dyson’s science boffins come in. The device uses tightly controlled streams of air that stay below 300 degrees Fahrenheit, the point at which heat damages hair. Instead of relying on extreme heat and physical effort, the gadget uses the Coanda effect, the phenomenon that causes aerodynamic lift in airplanes.
High-pressure jets of air come out through six slots on the Airwrap’s cylindrical barrel, flowing in a circular motion around the barrel and creating a mini vortex. When the device is placed near hair, strands automatically wrap around the barrel, with the lowered heat then causing the hair to curl.
Dyson claims the Airwrap makes it much easier to style your hair at home and is safer to use than other curlers, with a lowered risk of burns.
The standard Airwrap models retail for $500, while the Complete model will set you back $550.
For more information about how the Dyson Airwrap works, head to the company’s page here and watch the video below.