A Beauty Beginner’s Review Of Shark’s Hair Tools — With An Exclusive Discount

Super Sale AlertGet 15% off the FlexStyle with code REFINERY15 and 25% off the HyperAIR with code REFINERY25 at Shark, now through July 1.

The internet has no shortage of crazy-looking hair tools, from $10 headbands that give you heatless curls to fancy gadgets that can eat up the better part of your paycheck. Floating around in the sea of styling devices are Shark’s two new-ish tools, the Shark HyperAIR and FlexStyle. Expensive (but not outlandish), promising dramatic results (but with apparent ease), and futuristic (but available for purchase now), the attention-grabbing tools certainly intrigued me, a self-proclaimed no-to-low-maintenance beauty gal. Will these tools really work for folks like me and help me achieve those luscious Farrah Fawcett curls or a professional-looking salon blowout?’

Shark very graciously gifted me the HyperAIR and FlexStyle with attachments, allowing me to put my beginner beauty skills to the test. It was quite interesting to see if these doodads could take me from sleeping in wet hair and waking up with flyaways galore to a ‘clean beauty queen.’ If your attention is similarly piqued, you can enjoy the same tools I used at a deep discount. Until July 1, Shark and Refinery29 have partnered up to offer readers an exclusive, never-before-seen discount of a whopping 15% off the FlexStyle (code: REFINERY15) and 25% off the HyperAIR (code: REFINERY25). Just note that the discount code is case-sensitive, and it also applies to already-discounted options, like the HyperAir in pink.


Why I Was Due For a Beauty Upgrade

Beauty has always been somewhat of a difficult undertaking for me. I was a swimmer growing up and never had much time between five-minute, ice-cold morning showers and running to class to work on blow-drying my hair or applying make-up. For reference, here’s a photo of me at homecoming with what I thought was hair and makeup.

Today, my hair routine usually consists of showering, letting my hair air dry, brushing it when dry then applying hair oil, and just maybe if I’m going out, haphazardly curling my hair with an iron my college roommate taught me to use. The resulting ‘do is a far cry from the frizz-free Instagram-perfect hair you see on social media, and I’ve been largely okay with that. As I get older, however, I want to start upping my beauty routine and putting effort (and sometimes cash) toward investing in myself.

But is a 14-piece hair care system really a beginner-friendly way to make me fit in in the Big Apple, amongst the most effortlessly chic people I’ve ever seen? I put both of Shark’s haircare systems to the test to find out.

Meet The HyperAIR

What Is The HyperAIR?

The Shark HyperAIR Dryer styles and dries your hair with two attachments: the 2-in-1 Concentrator and the IQ Styling Brush. The 2-in-1 Concentrator attachment allows the appliance to function essentially as a blow dryer, while the IQ Styling Brush allows you to brush, dry, and straighten your hair all at once. While you can use the HyperAIR without the attachments, I see no reason to do so. However you use it, you can adjust the temperature and the airflow to your personal preference, though the attachments will also auto-adjust to the ideal settings when you use them. There are three heat levels as well as a ‘cool shot’ function to finish off your style. The machine itself is very intuitive (thanks in no small part to its integrated smart technology) and not as heavy as you might think such a high-tech piece of equipment would be.

My First Impressions Of The HyperAIR

The first time I used the HyperAIR, it was a true Cinderella moment. I’d just taken an evening shower and was ready to go to bed, but something told me it was the right time to test the HyperAIR I had just received in the mail instead. I had just showered and my hair was ‘towel dry,’ the perfect state to start using the HyperAIR, per its instructions.

I started by roughly drying my hair with the 2-in-1 Concentrator on the attachment’s ‘Pre-Style’ setting. It took about the same amount of time that it would with a blow dryer, and even with the attachment on it, the device felt about the same weight as a conventional blow dryer. Unlike a blow dryer, however, I could move the 2-in-1 concentrator’s head around to fit whatever angle my arm was at and easily press the cold blast button, conveniently located on the other side of the handle I was already holding. The attachment can be switched easily between the ‘Pre-Style’ and ‘Precision Style’ settings, adjusting the direction of the airflow for whichever step of your routine you are in. While the HyperAir automatically sets the temperature and airflow to the ideal level for each attachment, you can adjust both easily via buttons on the back of the device.

After drying my hair sufficiently, I pulled the 2-in-1 Concentrator off the HyperAIR and attached the IQ Styling Brush. This is when the magic started. Once again, the styler automatically set the temperature and airflow to the optimal levels to style my hair – and it worked great! The styling brush felt just like I was brushing my hair as I styled it, but, like with the pre-styling attachment, the brush can be adjusted as you use it. This swivel allowed me to adjust the brush angle depending on what side and arm I was using while keeping the brush head in that fixed position.

The results were similar to a flat iron, but it was way easier to use. My frizzy beast had finally been tamed, and unlike the results I typically achieve with a flat iron, the difference was noticeable enough that I could actually see which parts of my hair I had gone over with the brush and which ones I hadn’t. I also liked how I didn’t have to brush my hair beforehand – it was all done with the attachment!

After using the 2-in-1 Concentrator, then the IQ Styling Brush, my hair was the most flyaway-free that I had ever seen it. It was shiny and straight and sleek. I felt like a million bucks – and that was after just using the brush attachment. I could only imagine what results I would reap from the FlexStyle. 

Is The HyperAIR Worth It?

As I have continued to use the HyperAIR these past few weeks, my love for it has only grown. The FlexStyler will have a permanent spot in my bathroom moving forward (with a little shelf holder and everything!).  While this may seem dramatic, I think the results warrant the response. Imagine going from only air-drying your hair and being left with a frizzy tangled Cousin It mop to having this sleek just-woke-up-in-a-TV-show ‘do. While $299.99 is definitely on the pricier side for a blow dryer, it’s worth the splurge, and one I would highly recommend to beginner beauty and hair babes.

Meet The FlexStyle

What Is The FlexStyle?

The Shark FlexStyle is a no-heat-damage hair styling system that allows you to curl, volumize, smooth, and dry with different attachments based on your hair type. You can adjust the airflow and temperature to three different levels each as well as do a “cool shot,” the same as with the HyperAIR. But while the HyperAIR has only two attachments, the FlexStyle has eight possible attachments that work with naturally straight, wavy, curly, and coily hair. While it gives you way more styling capabilities, it definitely won’t replace a dryer. Instead, it provides targeted airflow for a wide array of styles and looks.

While you have the option to purchase every attachment, I really like that you can select a bundle that includes specific attachments based on your hair type. You can choose the Straight & Wavy system ($299.99) with three pre-chosen attachments or the Curly & Coily system ($299.99), or you can build your FlexStyle bundle ($279.99) and choose any three attachments out of the eight available that best fit your hair type and styling needs.

My First Impressions Of The FlexStyler

After mostly drying my hair with the HyperAIR 2-in-1 Concentrator, I got to work. Though I learned to curl my hair with a curling wand and iron from my college roommate (god bless Maya), these autowrap curlers are a whole new ballgame. I started out by sectioning off my hair like I usually do when curling and using the 0.95″ Auto-Wrap Curlers. As I was starting off with my left side, I grabbed the curler marked ‘L’ and I easily snapped it onto the appliance, where it automatically set the heat and airflow settings.

The tricky part is actually getting the hang of using the device on your hair. You absolutely cannot just put it next to your hair and expect it to work. I highly recommend reading their provided guide, which contains a lot of good information on effectively using the FlexStyle. It recommended starting out by holding the middle of a 1/2- to 1-inch section of hair and letting the ends wrap around the curler. From there, the bottom of that strand wraps around the curler, after which you move the curler up to grab the rest of the strand. You have to be patient with the technique and not grab too much hair at once or it will mess up the curl. It took me a few tries to get the hang of it.

After doing my whole head, I really liked the curls. They were bouncy, curly, and cute and did indeed make me look like a toned-down version of Farrah Fawcett after some trial and error. Overall, it was pretty easy once, it was just a matter of curling my whole giant-ass head, aka the same problem that I encounter with a curling iron.

Another day, I tested out the oval brush to add some volume. Again, I began with rough-dried hair (achieved using a spray bottle). I followed the instructions for the oval brush, sectioning my hair, then moving down from my roots with a curling motion. (Beware, the brush is hot hot hot!) I did my whole thick head of hair in about 40 minutes, including the time it took to read the instructions. I was very impressed with the results: there was volume and zero frizz. Using the FlexStyle brush/dryer combo was way easier than when I tried to replicate what I’ve seen my mother do with an oval brush and hairdryer. It takes the thinking and coordination out of holding two separate tools, making it more efficient and very easy for a hair beginner to achieve nice-looking results.

I also tested the paddle brush, which is similar in function to the IQ Styling Brush that I used with the HyperAIR, albeit bigger and wider than the HyperAir attachment. I’ve never really used larger paddle brushes, so this was a new experience, but it didn’t feel too awkward in my hand.

Is The FlexStyle Worth It?

First off, I really liked the FlexStyle. There are so many different uses and the ergonomic handle feels so good in your hand! But there is definitely a learning curve and it took some time to get the hang of the attachments in order to achieve my desired result. After using the FlexStyle a few times with the different attachments, I feel confident in my mastery of the device’s brushes, although I’m still working on my use of the curlers.

If you curl your hair or use heat tools a lot, the FlexStyle is a good investment, as it promises to cause less damage than traditional curlers or drying tools. The number of available attachments (three come with the FlexStyle and additional ones are available for $29.95 each) also gives you more functionality from a single product than you’d get even from purchasing both a blow dryer and a curling iron.

For true beginners, I’d recommend starting with a curling iron or another inexpensive gadget to see how often you actually use it, then upgrading to the Shark FlexStyle once styling your hair becomes part of your routine. As a beginner beauty girly who already does my hair for events, social outings, and other occasions, the FlexStyle is definitely worth it for me, allowing me to save time and money (and saving my hair from heat damage, too!).


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