When it comes to leading hair brands, ghd is synonymous with being one of the best on the market. So, although its curve tool has lots of great reviews, it is on a different scale to that of its straighteners that are a staple of many a woman’s styling kit.
One of several hair curling products from the brand, it's a great wand for anyone who wants to create a wave in their hair, without the need for any additional accessories.
The wand can create bouncy curls and waves, but we found tight ringlets were difficult to achieve. Although it heats up to its maximum temperature of 185C very quickly, beeping to let you know when it’s done, it claims not to damage hair. I was not aware of any burning smell or sizzling sounds that I have experienced on using other heated hair tools.
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The product uses an ultra-zone technology system that recognises the hair type you have and adjusts the temperature accordingly. I did feel though that my hair was being exposed to a lot of heat, which left me conscious of it getting frazzled, but that wasn’t the case.
What did provide a massive drawback was the intensity of the heat on the barrel. Although the tool does come with a pair of styling gloves, I found myself accidentally touching the product during the process of curling my hair and the burning sensation can probably scald you if you don’t handle the tool correctly.
The ghd wand is very slim fitting so is easy to handle. It is small enough to take on your travels.
GHD Curve Wand Creative Curl review: Design
As you’d expect from ghd, the Curve Wand features the same black and gold logo of the brand. It is presented in a narrow box that is as sleek as the tool itself. It is pretty basic once out the box, the only thing accompanying it is one black styling glove.
The styling kit consists of:
- 1 x styling wand with a barrel measuring 28mm at the base to 23mm at the tip
- 1 black satin styling glove
The Curve Wand comprises a 38mm – 26mm oval-shaped barrel and a ghd heat protective glove.
Depending on what type of curl you want, the way you manoeuvre the wand and use the barrel is the key. That may sound a bit strange, particularly as it is a pretty uncomplicated looking tool but to produce a classic wave, you hold the wand vertically; for soft waves, you flat-wrap the hair around the barrel and for a defined curl, you twist hair around it. And then if you want voluminous curls, you hold the tong horizontally.
The wand heats up literally in seconds to 185C, but has a cool tip to enable you to hold the hair at the top of it. It also features a timer that switches it off after 30 minutes to stop you from forgetting to turn it off.
The tool fits easily in the hand and can be used on all hair lengths, but you have to be careful not to burn your neck if you have short hair.
The product itself is mains powered, black in colour, lightweight in the hand, and has a cord length of 2.7m. Its dimensions are 18 x 6 x 20.5 cm.
There’s an on/off button that sits near the top of the handle but you have to be careful not to touch it when styling your hair as it can turn off easily.
There are two things we didn’t really like about the wand; the first being that it is difficult to use to style the back of your hair (this may come though, with a lot of practice) and also, it is so hot you can easily burn yourself by mistake. So keep in mind, this is one product where a lot of practice will be needed to be made perfect.
GHD Curve Wand Creative Curl review: Features and Technology
To recap, the wand can only be used on dry hair to create curls of different sizes. It heats up in seconds to its maximum temperature of 185C, with a beep alert to let you know it is ready for use.
This heat works the minute it comes into contact with your hair, which you then hold for around five seconds to create a defined curl. The temperature is monitored by technology that recognises the thickness of the hair.
Its tri-zone technology means it has a more even heat distribution than regular curling wands, so you can use the full length of it and achieve a consistent style along the length of the hair. All of this is done to ensure that you get a longer-lasting curl without damaging the hair.
When it comes to creating the curls, you have to wrap your hair around the barrel yourself. As someone who has used the Dyson AirWrap, I actually found it difficult to go back to this way of using my hands to control my hair and even with the styling glove, kept brushing parts of my exposed skin across the heated wand.
Even though the product is very light and easy to hold, the process took a long time to completely curl my hair as I introduced small sections of my hair into the barrel. I think the cooling tip at the top of the wand needs to be a bigger area to ensure no skin comes into contact with the product.
So that’s the basics behind the ghd curve wand, but how does it function in real life? Let’s find out…
GHD Curve Wand Creative Curl review: Performance
We tested the wand on shoulder-length, straight hair that’s prone to breakages.
In our opinion, the wand takes a lot of getting used too – and patience – to achieve the ultimate curl. It’s not that it is hard to use, more the fact you have to learn what works best in terms of the type of curl you want and how to position the tool.
The fact it heats up instantly is a bonus, particularly if you are travelling on the go with it, you can use it instantly. However, we found the heat was an issue and that more than once we burnt ourselves on the wand. The use of the glove is absolutely necessary but it is still easy to touch the tool by accident. This was its biggest drawback.
When it came to styling the hair, the wand did what it says on the tin; you can be as creative as you like to get big curls, smaller ones, waves and volume. With just a tiny instruction manual in the box, you need to access online videos or look over the ghd website to understand how to achieve the best results.
There are plenty of videos showing you how to style your hair with the wand but, because it is super slim, you need a lot of time as each section of hair needs to be separated and wound around the wand, otherwise you are left with some straight and some curls in the hair which looked ridiculous.
It is recommended that you use styling spray to keep the curls in place and is was excellent advice. On the days I didn’t use a spray my hair went limp a few hours later, whereas with a spray the curls stayed in place overnight.
As well as the heat factor, the other difficulty we had was curling the back of our hair. The front was fine and was very easy to do – take note that the cord is very long so if your mirror is far away from the plug socket it won’t be a problem.
The issue we had doing the back of our hair was that we were so nervous about getting burnt whilst trying to manoeuvre the wand almost blindly, it didn’t work very well. We took to putting our head upside down and attempted to do it that way but without seeing what you are doing it is very tricky.
For our money, this setback was not appealing as although the front of the hair looked amazing, the back didn’t. So, unless you have a willing partner to help you style it, the end result is uneven.
As for styling the front, it is pretty self-explanatory. Depending on the style you want to create, you insert each section of hair, wind it around the barrel and leave it for between five and eight seconds. You need to properly follow instructions online on how to hold the wand to achieve a specific curl. I liked the wavy look so followed advice to hold the wand vertically, wrap hair around it, hold for five seconds and then release. I loved the effect.
The ghd website suggests you twist wrap the hair around the barrel to create a beachy wave effect and this worked really well but again, holding the cool tip of the wand to hold the hair in place was a bit fiddly as we were so conscious of brushing our wrist against the heat.
Curling hair using the wand is very odd to begin with, especially if you have been using other tongs and wands. Your natural urge will be to want to garb larger pieces of hair but this only really works well if small sections are used at a time. It definitely takes practise to get right, and you need hair clips on hand to section off the hair, but once you get the hang of it, this can produce a lovely result. However, you really need someone else to help you with the back bit.
During our testing, we found that the barrels didn’t burn the hair at all and all wispy bits of hair did not fray out. In fact, the wand seemed to smooth out frizzy ends. The brand suggests using the ghd curl hold spray to prep hair before curling - to protect the hair from the heat of the curler – but we used a different brand and it worked fine.
In our experience, the wand held the curls in better on freshly washed hair, than dirty. The beachy waves we loved lasted all day and even when brushed out the following morning looked lovely. No mousse or hairspray was needed. And even in the very humid weather, the hair did not frizz.
GHD Curve Wand Creative Curl review: Verdict
Unlike other ghd appliances we have used, we felt this wand didn’t tick all the right boxes we are used to when it comes to the brand.
It doesn’t offer a new way to style the hair as there are other brands out there that do the exact same thing and work far more easily and effectively. But that is not to say it is a bad product; just not what we expect from the amazing hair brand that we normally don’t have a bad word to say about.
Perhaps the bar has been set high because the ghd hair straighteners are renowned for being one of the best on the market. Although the front of our hair looked amazing, the back let the overall look down.
We loved the beach wave effect, the fact they stayed in overnight and that the product didn’t damage our hair. You just need to rely on a partner or friend to complete the look.
Is this wand right for you? I’m not sure. If you can look past the fact you need a lot of practice to stop yourself burning your skin and feel confident you can master doing the back of your hair yourself, then yes. Just don’t have high expectations as this product is not on the same wow factor scale of what we are used to from ghd.