Revamp iGen Cordless Hair Curler Review: Auto Styling
- No skin burn
- No frazzled hair ends
- 3 hour charge
- 40 minute battery life
- Trial and error learning curve
This cordless automatic hair curler is a wonder for days when you want to change your look. Still, you won’t get the root lift of a more conventional curler and it might not be suitable for people with very long hair.
Price when reviewing
Not yet available in the US
The iGen Automatic Hair Curler is Revamp’s latest offering, and it solves all the pesky problems of a conventional hair curler. It’s cordless, so you don’t have to try to style your hair with a cord wrapped around your wrist. It automatically feeds your hair around the curling barrel, so you don’t have to twirl around. And since it starts the curl of your scalp, you won’t suffer from frazzled and burned ends.
You may be wondering: what is the problem? Well, there isn’t. However, the automation of curl rotation means the iGen behaves a bit differently than a conventional curler in a way you might not expect.
The iGen wireless model is not yet available in the US, but you can purchase the wired model for $119.99 from Revamp.
Design and appearance
- Two ways to charge by USB: the bottom of the curler and the charging base
- Keratin, Argan Oil & Coconut Infused Barrel
When you first unbox the curler, the intriguing shape may seem reminiscent of a Maglite: that iconic tulip-shaped flashlight you see in nearly every American crime drama. Of course, it helps that the iGen is matte black and nicely weighted, with a diamond-patterned grip.
The curler itself is 25cm long. It measures 5.5cm in diameter at the top where the automatic curling unit is and 3cm in diameter at the bottom where you hold the curler. It is easy to hold and maneuver as the weight rests in the curling unit while you hold the end. The curl barrel itself is 7cm long, which has implications if you have very long hair: you may need to curl two-part sections of hair.
You get interchangeable UK/EU pin plates for the mains adapter, which is ideal for holidays and trips to Europe. The USB power cable is 190cm long and you can charge the curler by plugging it directly into the cable or into the dome-shaped charging base.
The battery is lithium ion. One of the only downsides to the iGen is that it takes over three hours to fully charge to 100%. It will take about three hours if you plug in the curler directly and three and a half hours using the stand. From there you get 40 minutes of curling time.
This short operating time is due to the energy required by the curling tongs: not only is the maximum temperature 210°C, but there is also a motor that turns the curling barrel.
Revamp has added hair-protecting ingredients in the ceramic and ionic curling barrel: keratin, argan and coconut oils to ensure maximum shine and shine to your curl. Still, like other Progloss products, we don’t know if it will fade over time.
- Four temperature settings
- Rotation of the right and left loops
- LCD display
Alex Greenwood / Foundry
On the front of the iGen, there’s a single power and temperature button, an oval LCD screen, and two top buttons: one for left rotation and one for right rotation.
When you turn on the curler, it beeps and automatically displays 190°C flashing on the LCD screen. Simply press the power button again to cycle through the four temperature settings – 150°C, 170°C, 190°C or 210°C – and choose, then let it heat up. The temperature will stop flashing when it has reached the chosen heat setting.
Revamp suggests you use 150°C for beach style waves and 210°C for tighter curls.
The LCD panel also shows you the battery level in percentage and as a battery icon indicator, and you use the left and right spin buttons to control the direction of your curls.
One quirk, however, is that if you place the curler in the base holder while you’re curling your hair, it turns off. It confused us the first few times, but it’s a safety feature designed to prevent you from accidentally leaving the curler on.
Performance and style
- learning curve
- Loop effect similar to hot rollers
- Even Curl Results
On how you use the curler. The advice is to part your hair into 2cm wide sections, which for most people will require dividing the hair into top and bottom sections first. You feed the top section of the hair over the front plunge, down the side of the curl barrel and out of the back niche, so that most of the length of the hair falls from the back niche, then you press on one of the rotation buttons. The curler will then automatically wrap your hair from the top down, not the end up.
It’s not a difficult process, but it can be quite confusing at first because it’s the opposite of how you would curl your hair with a conventional curler. We’ve found it helpful to watch a few YouTube videos to see exactly how to put the hair on and where to position the curler in relation to your hair (the front plunge should always face your head).
Another tip is that if you want a more durable set, you’ll probably need to pin your curls until they cool down.
After a while, we started to develop our own technique, which made donning faster and easier, although we were a bit panicked at first.
The biggest advantage of this curler is that your fingers never come near the heated barrel, and the barrel never comes near your ears, scalp, forehead, or neck.
We started our test at 190°C on European type 1A hairs that reach to the bottom of the shoulder blades. It took about 40 minutes to do the whole head, plus pinning time, so you might want to go for a drawstring style if your hair is longer than that.
At this temperature, we found that the iGen gave us perfect curls of the same diameter all the way down the hair shaft, which was easier to reconvert and pin to the scalp. Because the curler curls down from the top of the hair, the ends of your hair aren’t directly next to the heated barrel, so there’s no frizz or flyaways.
However, since this process means that the curl starts two or three centimeters from the scalp, you don’t get the lift from the roots that you might get with a conventional curler. The process also means you can’t curl the hair at all. So if you use a large barrel curler primarily for root lift and volume, you might want to look elsewhere.
We let the hair cool and the result when loose was extremely curly, very fun and very 17e century. The shine, softness and feel were outstanding. A shake and a swipe of the comb made her look more like Farah Fawcett in the 70s, and an extra brush stroke calmed it all down.
We felt the effect at this heat was very similar to ragged hair or using medium heated rollers. There was a terrific amount of body and movement that lasted all day without hairspray, even until the next morning, and there was no static or dryness that often accompanies a heated curling process. .
One caveat though: while the oil-infused barrel gives incredible shine and seems to protect the hair, it also seems to coat it. So if you have fine hair, you may find that you need to wash out the style after a day or two to get your natural root lift back.
Price and availability
The iGen Progloss Cordless Hollywood Curl Automatic Rotating Hair Curler model is Revamp’s latest model in its hair styling range and it’s pricey, at £149.99.
As of this writing, you can buy it direct from Revamp, or from Very, Amazon, or Sephora. But if you like the idea of the curling mechanism but aren’t convinced you need a cordless model and want to save some money, there’s a corded model available for £89.99 at £90. As of this writing, it is in stock at Very and Argos.
The cordless model isn’t available in the US yet, but for $119.99 you can purchase the corded model from Revamp.
Revamp manufactures a whole range of good quality, mid-priced hairdressing tools. We also tested the Liberate cordless compact straightener, the hot ceramic straightening brush and the steamcare straightener.
For perfect curls, the iGen is terrific. You get shine, softness and we have found that the hair itself is not damaged by heat and you just can’t burn your fingers. That said, you pay for security by losing the tool’s flexibility. You can’t really curl up and curl size is limited by the slim body.
But overall, it’s a great hair styling device.
To see some multi-styler options that will let you style curls with ease, take a look at our reviews of the Dyson Airwrap and Shark FlexStyle.
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