Smooth and sleek hair in a single stroke, but at a price
- Cordless design, great for travel
- Flexing plate technology straightens hair just one pass
- Styles hair fast and with less heat damage
- High price tag
Dyson as a company is still best known for its cordless vacuum cleaners, but the brand has recently been making inroads into the electrical beauty market with its Supersonic hair dryer and Airwrap curler. Released last year, the Corrale makes use of the cordless battery expertise developed in Dyson’s vacuum cleaners to create a straightener with revolutionary promise.
As well as being portable, the Corrale uses a new system of flexible plates to gather hair into the tool and evenly distribute heat over each tress. This in turn means that hair can be straightened with just one pass of the tool, reducing both damage to hair and the time needed to style.
Is this the most innovative hair straightener to enter the market since the original GHD?
Dyson Corrale review: What you need to know
The Corrale was released last spring following seven years of development, and is Dyson’s third hair tool (and first not to use hot air). The key thing to note about the product is its patented flexing manganese copper alloy plates, which mould around the hair and gently grip it as it passes through the tool. This means hair can be straightened, or curled, in just one stroke with no flyaway ends. Dyson says this reduces both the length of time it takes to straighten or style hair as well as the damage to hair from heat.
Unlike the majority of straighteners on the market, the Corrale uses rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that allow for cordless styling, making the tool super-portable and particularly handy for travel. The battery charges fully in just over an hour, and runs for up to 30 minutes on a single charge.
Finally, the Corrale has three heat settings suited to different hair textures, as well as an intelligent heat control system that takes measurements 100 times per second to ensure that the plates are always at the correct temperature for optimum hair health. Heat is distributed evenly over the whole copper alloy plate, which further helps reduce the need to go back over sections when straightening.
There are also two colour options to choose from: a mixture of black and fuschia, or purple, all presented with a stylish semi-matte metallic finish.
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Dyson Corrale review: Price and Competition
In terms of cordless straighteners, there’s relatively little in the way of competition: the BaByliss 9000 lithium-ion straightener with ceramic floating plates (£200) is a good-quality tool with a choice of three heat settings, similar to the Dyson. However, a full charge takes three hours rather than the Corrale’s 70 minutes. British brand Revamp also has a similar cordless ceramic-plate product (£99).
There are more options available when it comes to premium-quality heat styling. The best-known straightener brand is still GHD, whose Platinum Plus styler retails at £175. Like the Corrale, the Platinum Plus also boasts a smart heat control system for improved styling power with less damage to hair, with a floating-plate technology that adjusts to the hair. The Platinum Plus is, however, a corded model.
At present there’s no other straightener that boasts the portability of a cordless product together with flexing plates and smart heat.
Dyson Corrale review: Design and key features
Straight out of the box, the Corrale looks and feels different to most straighteners on the market. Owing to the cordless batteries it feels a little fuller and weightier in the hand – not unpleasantly so; the tool is well-balanced and feels robust and well-made. The tool comes with an angled charging dock which uses a proprietary cable. Also supplied in the box is a handy velvet travel pouch.
Set up your Corrale by plugging in the small square-shaped flight-ready tag, which – when removed – disconnects the battery so that you can carry the Corrale safely on most flights. As a note, Dyson recommends that you check with your carrier before flying, and notes that the tool cannot be carried onboard flights in or out of Japan. The controls will be ready to use once the tag is plugged in.
To use the Corrale, flip the hinge lock open and press the power button to begin heating. Temperature can be selected by using the + and – buttons. Thinner hair will straighten well at the lower temperature setting of 165C; thicker or curlier hair may prefer the medium setting of 185C; and the highest temperature of 210C is suitable for afro-textured hair. A small LED display clearly shows the selected heat setting and the tool chimes to let you know it’s reached the desired temperature. If you leave the tool unused for longer than five minutes, the Corrale will turn itself off and chime to let you know.
When you open the Corrale you’ll notice the copper alloy plates, which are thicker and set more prominently than the plates on most straighteners. This is where the flexing technology lives. The spring-like plates adapt to the hair’s thickness as you draw the tool down each tress, moulding around the hair and gathering (or “corralling”) it together. This means that heat and controlling tension can be evenly applied all the way down the tress without flyaway ends escaping, reducing the need to go back over sections of the hair more than once. This in turn means quicker styling, and less exposure to heat resulting in less damage to hair.
One of the biggest differences between the Corrale and the vast majority of straighteners currently on the market is the cordless design. This makes the tool perfect for travel or for styling on the go, if you want to change your look up after work, for example, or after heading to the gym. It also makes the straightener easy to use at home. Getting the tool round the back of the head is simpler without a cord to get in the way, and the Corrale can be used in any room of the house, including the bathroom, if that’s where your best mirror happens to be – you don’t need to worry about where the nearest plug socket is. The cord that attaches to the charging dock can also attach directly to the tool itself, if you run out of battery power or simply prefer to use it in corded mode. The Corrale takes 70 minutes to fully charge and a full charge provides up to 30 minutes styling.
If you like to use your straighteners as a curling tool, the curved body of the tool is ideal for creating barrel curls or beach waves.
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Dyson Corrale review: What it’s like to use
The key benefit Dyson is pushing with this new product is that each section of hair needs only one pass, or one stroke with the tool, to straighten – or curl – the hair as desired. This claim certainly stands up. In our tests, we found great straightening results on dry, shoulder-length curly hair with just one pass of the tool at 185C. We found that 7-8 seconds was long enough to glide the tool over each tress. Between the portability of the tool, which made it very easy to reach around tricky sections at the back of the head, and the single-pass straightening power, we were able to straighten the hair fully in around 20 minutes – a significantly shorter time than usual.
Our hair did feel soft and comfortable after straightening, and didn’t have the slightly ‘toasted’ smell that can result from heat styling. The copper alloy plates did, in general, glide well over the hair. The result was a little less glossy than we’d usually see from ceramic plates, but certainly soft and smooth. Flyaway ends, in particular, straightened well on the first pass, and it’s easy to see how a reduced need to pass the tool multiple times over the older, more fragile ends of the hair would result in less heat damage over time. The results lasted well; our hair stayed smooth and straight all day.
Charging the tool is easy using the angled dock, which keeps the tool safely upright when it’s not in use, and it’s clear from both the light-up display and the chiming sounds when the tool is charged and when it’s at the right heat.
The Corrale does feel a little bulky in the hand compared to cordless straighteners, but not unpleasantly so, and as the tool works so quickly you’ll be holding it for less time in any case.
Dyson Corrale review: Verdict
The Dyson Corrale offers a genuinely innovative way to style hair. Between the cordless technology, which makes styling a breeze whether you’re at home or out on the go, and the flexing plates which gently but effectively grip hair to make straightening in one pass a reality, the Corrale means hair can be heat-styled quickly and with less heat damage. The results speak for themselves – our hair was ready to go in 20 minutes, and felt soft and healthy after styling.
The biggest downside is the price. At £400, the Corrale costs twice as much as any comparable tool on the market, cordless or otherwise. That price is likely to make the Corrale a significant investment for many customers. However, if you heat-style your hair often, the reduction in both time spent styling and heat damage to hair may very well mean the Corrale is worth the extra expense.