I tried Dyson's 'most intelligent' hairdryer yet, which promises to look after your scalp

Dyson Supersonic Nural hair dryer on grey background
(Image credit: Dyson)

In 2016, Dyson entered the beauty space with the Supersonic hair dryer. During a global launch in Seoul today, founder James Dyson unveiled its latest evolution, the Supersonic Nural. 

Dubbed "Dyson's most intelligent hair dryer", the Nural has three new smart settings and a new specialty attachment for curly and wavy hair. 

Dyson's latest tool uses a network of 'Nural' sensors to activate heat modes, recognize the user's head, apply preferred settings and more. The company also claims these sensors improve the styling experience, enhance hair shine and prevent heat damage. 

Dyson Supersonic Nural in Ceramic Patina and Topaz

(Image credit: Future / Lucy Scotting)

Notably, the most interesting new feature is the Scalp Protect mode. This mode automatically reduces heat to 55 degrees Celsius — the Dyson-identified optimum temperature for scalp comfort and drying speed — as the hair dryer gets close to the scalp. Using a time-of-flight sensor, the hair dryer projects an invisible infrared beam to measure the distance between the machine and the user's head. But for ease of reference, the dryer illuminates a yellow light from the end cap to show that this mode is indeed on.

Lucy Scotting testing Dyson's Supersonic Nural LED lights

(Image credit: Future / Lucy Scotting)

The illuminations do change color to show different heat settings, too. The LED light color will flick between cool blue, yellow (low heat), orange (medium heat), and red (high heat), depending on the heat settings, the distance the machine is from the head, and learned user preferences.

Getting hands-on with the dryer myself during a press event last week, I found switching between heat modes was pretty easy. Plus, if you don't want to activate Scalp Protect every time you use the device, it has a separate switch at the top of the end cap. The switches are pretty seamless, and like the older model, the airflow and heat settings are great too. 

The Supersonic Nural also introduces a new pause detect mode, which switches off heat and decreases airflow and noise when the dryer is placed down. Dyson notes this mode is ideal for users who need to section their hair while styling or even when conversing over a hair dryer (I mean, who hasn't tried this and failed before). 

When I tried the Pause Detect mode for myself, I was astounded. The dryer goes near-silent, limiting heat and airflow within a millisecond of putting it down. This feature will be a saving grace for products (like powders or makeup) on a counter space, and for taking breaks between hair drying (because sometimes it feels like an absolute chore). 

Dyson Supersonic Nural attachments

(Image credit: Future / Lucy Scotting)

Another smart feature in the Nural is the newly learned setting preferences that coincide with the new and improved attachments. When a user inserts an attachment, the device picks up the styling preferences and remembers the user's last-used heat and airflow settings for each attachment. From there, the dryer supposedly applies these settings the next time the attachment is used. 

Speaking of new attachments, Dyson has designed a new Wave+Curl diffuser that helps define and shape natural hair patterns in two different modes. The attachment allows the user to pop out the pronged insert and use it in 'dome' mode, which promotes elongated waves with reversible vortex airflow. In 'diffuse' mode, the pronged insert helps provide airflow into the roots for deeper, defined curls. 

Dyson Supersonic Nural in Vinca Blue / Topaz and Ceramic Patina / Topaz colorways

(Image credit: Dyson)

Surprisingly, the new Supersonic model won't debut in the usual Iron / Fuschia colorways we've seen in previous products. Complementing the new embedded sensors, the model will feature a new clear end cap to show the tech within — similar to that seen in the latest Dyson stick vacuums — and comes in two vibrant colorways, Ceramic Patina / Topaz and Vinca Blue / Topaz. 

Launching first in Australia, the Dyson Supersonic Nural hair dryer will be available from midnight on Thursday, 11 April 2024. Retailing at AU$749 (around $491 / £385), it comes with five attachments and other accessories will also be on offer. In terms of price, the Supersonic Nural will cost an extra AU$100 more than the standard model, but with added intelligent features and new tech, the inflated price checks out (despite it being a tough pill to swallow for a hair dryer). We expect US and UK releases to follow later this year. 

Lucy Scotting
Staff Writer

Lucy Scotting is a digital content writer for Tom’s Guide in Australia, primarily covering NBN and internet-related news. Lucy started her career writing for HR and staffing industry publications, with articles covering emerging tech, business and finance. In her spare time, Lucy can be found watching sci-fi movies, working on her dystopian fiction novel or hanging out with her dog, Fletcher.