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About Face: Time to Go All High-Tech


Hanukkah already started. Christmas is three days away. Down to the wire? Take a look at these tools.


by Roxana Hadadi

If you’ve procrastinated with your holiday shopping up until this point, I’m impressed. No stocking stuffers? (Read our suggestions!) No smaller gifts? (Read more suggestions!) And seriously, you haven’t even bought a set yet? (More. Suggestions.)

Well, well. You’re better at putting off stuff than I was during finals week in college. But I’m older and wiser now — I turned in all my assignments for my first semester of grad school early, yay! — and I’m sure you too can bounce back from holding out so long. If you need to grab one gift, think about something high-tech: So many brands offer fancy, sleek and stylish products now, and you’ll certainly look like you put a lot of time and effort into purchasing them. Only you (and I) will know about the delay. For shame.

rsz about1+ Curl, straighten or both (first photo). Unless your giftee is a serious hippie with no interest in anything but dreadlocks (no judgment), every woman can benefit from a curler or flat iron. Both tools can cut down on prep time and, obviously, will help your giftee create any hair style under the sun. Of course, someone shouldn’t overdo it (the heat from the tools can damage hair with excessive use, after all), but having a fancy tool in one’s arsenal is always nice. Consider the amika Zebra 19mm Tourmaline Clip-Free Curler, which heats up in 10 seconds and keeps your hair frizz free ($149, amika); the T3 SinglePass Compact, a smaller flat iron that is perfect for travel and adaptable to world voltage ($79, T3); or the Sultra Seductress, a 1-inch straight iron that can curl or straighten the curliest and thickest of hair ($210, Sultra). They’re investment pieces, but they’re worth it.


rsz about2+ Dry it (second photo and bottom of third photo). Even if your giftee doesn’t have the time to straighten or curl her hair every day, clearly she needs to dry her hair. I mean, right? Isn’t that just nature? Or something? Anyway, a serious dryer can last years, and you don’t have to shill out the big bucks — good products come at various price points. The T3 Featherweight Journey Dryer isn’t the cheapest option, but the product offers up solid stats: compared with air drying, T3 dryers are proven to reduce frizz by 79 percent, increase shine by 28 percent and increase style retention by 52 percent ($130, T3). So scientific! John Frieda, whose products have truly revolutionized how we battle frizzy, dry and oily hair, recently developed the Frizz-Ease Full Volume dryer, with three settings and a lightweight design that works for taking it on the road ($49.99, Drugstore.com). And if you’re buying for the most serious hairstylist, consider the Sultra Sophisticate Power Dryer, which offers settings for fine, normal or thick hair, as well as other fancy options that help the tool dry hair super rapidly ($245, Sultra). It’s not cheap, but I doubt it will ever do you wrong.


rsz about3+ Grab some product, too (third photo, top row). Tools are great, but you can’t continuously use heat on your hair without proper protection. Brands that create curlers, flat irons or dryers often develop their own products meant to work with heat — like Sultra Cleanse Shampoo, Condition Hair Moisturizer and Heat Safe Protective Spray ($18 each, Sultra), or amika Heat Defense Serum ($30, amika). They’ll heal your hair while protecting your style, so if you decide to go with a high-tech tool, don’t forget the accessories. Just don’t procrastinate so much next year, you know?


EDITORIAL NOTE: The product/s reviewed in this post were provided to Chesapeake Family’s About Face blog by the manufacturer or their public relations company for review. Chesapeake Family’s reviews are inspired by personal experience and opinion, and are not paid for or influenced by the manufacturer, PR company or any other organization unless mentioned.


Product photos by Adam Fried.


In middle school, Roxana Hadadi was a cosmetics-scorning tomboy; in high school, a glitter eye shadow- and black nail polish-loving trend kid; in college, obsessively committed to dying her hair unruly colors that upset her mom. Now a bit older and a bit more mature, she’s trying to figure out what hair, body and cosmetics products will work for her, you and your family in About Face, Chesapeake Family’s new beauty blog — and she’ll leave the sparkle makeup and neon highlights in the past. Roxana also writes movie reviews for Chesapeake Family’s Popcorn Parents blog.

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