Does the Instyler Live Up to All That Hype?

by Theresa on May 5, 2009 · 86 comments

Instyler is supposed to be the hottest hairstyling tool since the flat iron came out on the market. The big attraction is that it supposedly saves you time styling your hair by drying and styling it at the same time. I see that this company is trying to slam flat irons... their claim? It doesn't damage your hair because it uses less heat. You know this company should get an award for their extremely clever marketing tactics both online and off. The hype they've created is unbelievable!

Is the Instyler a Deal or Dud?

Is the Instyler a Deal or Dud?

Instyler Claims

  • Uses a rotating heat cylinder with a brush and uses less heat than a regular flat iron.
  • It can straighten, curl, add volume, lift and shine.
  • Will not burn your hair.
  • Rapid heat upgrade allows you to heat up your Instyler in 3 minutes or less.
  • Flat irons while polishing and curling your hair in seconds.
  • It can also be used to both dry and style damp hair at the same time.
  • There's 3 different heat settings for different hair textures.

Instyler Review

What are Ladies Saying About the Instyler?


  • It does work for volume at the roots.
  • The one thing I am impressed with is the detail and quality videos that Instyler put out. They've got a whole series of tips and techniques  specifically for different hair types. You can find them here right here on the tips page.


  • It’s very expensive and most ladies only want one Instyler. They end up paying around $150 in total for two.
  • It's very noisy and annoying as the barrel rotates.
  • The tip of the barrel is very hot and it's easy to burn yourself on it.
  • It doesn't really make your hair shiny.
  • You  need to upgrade to the hotter iron otherwise it won’t be hot enough to style your hair.
  • It's bulky and takes you longer to style your hair than what the infomercial shows.
  • The fact is if you don't use heat protecting spray while using a hair dryer, curling iron or flat iron, you're going to damage your hair. Several good hair stylists have told me time and time again that ceramic irons are best for your hair. In one of the Instyler videos on their site they are advising you not to use any hair product. Don't do it!
  • There are tiny grooves between the tip and the [tags]instyler[/tags]barrel that catch strands of hair and breaks it while the barrel turns.
  • Be aware of the costs just for the initial 30 day trial period. They include $14.99 for the trial plus the shipping. When you return it you again pay the shipping plus insurance to send it back. The total cost ends up being around $40 total.
  • It's much easier and healthier for your hair to use a flat iron. Flat irons easily create a curl with a flick of your wrist.
  • You also get shiny, frizz free hair with heat protecting spray [tags]beauty products[/tags] when using a flat iron. Why do we need the Instyler??
  • It takes patience and time to learn how to use it. You have to use the proper combination of the right hair product and know- how for your hair type to get the results that you see in the infomercial.

WZZM 13 News did a really thorough video review of the Instyler.

How-To Videos - Styling Your Hair With Instyler

Instyler tips page
Youtube channel

Final Verdict

Instyler has many mixed reviews although it seems that there's a  majority of ladies that don’t really care for it and would prefer to use their own personal straightening iron or hair curler. Be aware that it appears to me that there are people who are paid by the company to leave positive comments on the Instyler. Although I have no way to prove this and want to be impartial towards the product so I leave both comments for and against a product. Just remember the company is very clever with its marketing. Many times you don't know if reviews are real reviews or just company representatives promoting their product through fake comments.

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{ 86 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Rose September 13, 2010

I have not purchased this product from TV. I think if I do purchase it, it will be from a store. At least you can return it if it doesn’t work the way you want it to. The infomercials always state that it can’t be bought in stores. Eventually, all the products get to the stores. You might have to wait a little time, you don’t have to pay shipping and handling.

2 Mary September 23, 2010

I love the Instyler! I believe you should comb pieces of your hair before using it…you get better results! I did not see them doing this in the video. The Instyler provides you with a comb for that purpose. As far as I’m concern the Instyler is great and I love the fact that I don’t have to put in any antifrizz serums or heat protectants as I find them to build up on my hair which feels awful. With the Instyler I can go longer periods with my hair feeling healthy and not weighed down because of the serums I used to use. I’ve been using this for awhile and still my hair looks better than ever, no frizz or dullness. As far as the heat is concerned they are saying this is way too hot, there are different settings and there is a protectant shield, which they didn’t mention on the video. Flat irons are just as hot!

3 Barb September 25, 2010

I agree with Rose! I watched the infomercial and was ready to call and order right away. I am so glad i read all these comments. AND eventually this product will wind up in the drug store isle so i am waiting until then so at least if it doesn’t work i can get a full refund!

4 Sarah September 27, 2010

I bought the Instyler at Target yesterday for $104.00 including tax. I have been chemically straightening my hair for over a decade. I also have used a wide variety of hot irons, particularly CHI products. The Instyler is different because it gives me hair so much body! It gets very hot however and I’m afraid to go near my roots. Also, they advise you not to use products which could be damaging. However, the end result is nice. My hair is full and bouncy. If you are the type of person that likes a super straight sleek look, this is not the iron for you. Also, my iron was making strange noises tonight and would randomly shut off. If this keeps happening, I may have to exchange it for another one.

5 Jenie September 29, 2010

I bought this product nd was really dissappointed. It was very diffiult to use, and did not give the the results that were promised. I returned it (at my own expense). It is basically a rip off- dont bother!

6 Mykelle Moore October 1, 2010

This is a horrible product. A straight iron works better, faster and gives a better look. I took me 45 min to straighten my hair and it was pulling my hair thru the entire process. Do not waste your money. In addition they say buy one get one free which is clearly not true. My total bill was right at 200.00 for the buy one get one free. when you call their billing dept they are extremely rude and said my 30 day trial was up yesterday the 30th and I now have to pay the full amount which is 3 more payments of 47.00 on top of the 64.00 initial charge. I learned the hard way.

7 Corina October 7, 2010

All this negatives reviews are scaring me, I just bought the Instyler I hope I don’t regretted.

8 Jennifer October 8, 2010

I bought the Instyler a couple of weeks ago at Bed, Bath and Beyond. Believe me I hesitated when I saw the price tag…$100! When I got it home I was somewhat intimidated by it, and it sat there for about a week before I used it. I have never taken the time to write a review before-positive or negative-but this product is ABSOLUTELY AWESOME! It’s easy to use and my hair is smooth, shiny and gorgeous. I have curly hair, course in texture and not too thick. I have used a flat iron many times and i hated it because it was so laborsome. This is easy, I mean it, I am as shocked as the next person that it measured up to my expectations. My hair stays straight till I wash it. I use it when my hair is dry, no product. I am surprised by the negative reviews…I guess nothing works for everyone…but wow, it is a miracle find for me.

9 Paula November 2, 2010

I have been using an Instyler for over a year now. I have sprial curls natural long hair. I love it very much b/c it does a great job if you learn how to use it. However, I must warn you it does burn the crap out of you badly!! And it will over time fry your hair. Split ends, breaking hair burns hair. (over time) I would suggest anyone using it use some type of heat protection on your hair reguardless of what their infomercial says. Trust me, you will be greatful in the long run. Its too late for my hair now. Ill probably have to get it cut short.

10 Jamie November 4, 2010

I just bought my Instyler a few days ago and have had great results so far. The first night I got it, I straighten my hair and then a few hours later got bored and curled it. With any product that has exposed metal, you have to be cautious and read the directions. I was even on the website today looking at tips and for most of the hair styles that are in the “Dean’s list” he states to prep hair with product so I don’t know where the reviews that say it says to not use anything are coming from. I bought mine from Target.

11 Laurie November 15, 2010

I also got my InStyler from Bed, Bath & Beyond using my 20% off coupon. My hair is a mix of curly/wavy/frizzy and I was always all thumbs when I tried to use a round brush and blow dryer. I have been using the InStyler for 2 weeks now and I love it! It gives me body and bounce with no curls and I feel like a new woman! It takes me about 20 minutes to do but in my opinion that is 20 minutes well spent. I have gotten so many compliments and everyone thinks I’ve just been to the hairdresser. I do still see a bit of frizz on the top, I am thinking of getting an anti-frizz finishing spray to see if that helps.

12 Jennifer November 15, 2010

Well, I use a very high quality dryer and straightener and I got this as a birthday present because I like the idea of having the “flip in” at the ends of my hair and it’s hard to do for me. I already had my hair straight from the day before and after running the in styler through it made my hair frizzy. It did curl the ends but the fact that there is a ton of steam or burning or whatever that is coming off of my hair when it is dry with no product in it freaks me out. I just feel like it is frying my hair. Noooo thanks! Taking it back!

13 Stephanie November 17, 2010

After about 3 uses in 13 months, my InStyler literally fell apart this morning. With half my hair straightened and the other half curly, the rotating iron portion came loose, the top cap popped off, and screws came out. I waited for the iron to cool and tried to fix it, but to no avail. So I called the company, only to find out that the 12 month warranty expired one month ago! I asked for the supervisor, explained the story and number of uses, and was told there is nothing he could do. I said, surely you can send me a new one, since you are the supervisor, and its just 13 months since purchase. He told me he was “sorry I feel he cannot help me”, to which I replied, “I dont’e FEEL you cannot help me, you literally are NOT helping me”. HE held his ground, so I told him I would blog about this and email all the women I know. Do Not Buy this piece of cheap crap made in China…3 uses and 13 months later, and your $140 is in the toilet :(

14 voctoria wren December 1, 2010

the instyler sucks it braces so easy i mean just to day it fell apart on me and all i was doing was straitening my hair!!!!!!

15 meow December 25, 2010

those women are using it WAY to fast. if you watch the commercials or bother to read the directions, you will see they tell you to go slow (esp. if you are used to a flat iron)

16 marie December 25, 2010

I used my 5 times and it also fell apart (the tip fell off and I can Not get it back togetheir). I love what it does for my hair but the workmanship of the product is awful, for something to fall apart after 5 uses is worth no type of money (the tip also gets Very hot, so have to control with one hand). would love to find a product that works as well as this and does not fall apart Only after a few uses.

17 Amanda December 28, 2010

Those 3 girls were not holding it long enough. when i first got this product i didnt like it then i watched the DVD and turned the setting down the girls on this demo were not using it correctly i love my instyler know that i know how to use it and now that i know which heat setting is appropriate for my hair type.

18 Diane December 30, 2010

Do yourself a favor and get this product. It is amazing! However, you do need to learn how to use this appliance to get the results you want. Spend a night when you have time, playing with it to see what style works best for you. The DVD that comes with it walks you step by step. View it as many times as needed. Some people can be a bit impatient and think it should be as easy to use as a curling iron or flat iron. It is after awhile but you need to learn the basics then the rest is smooth sailing. This product gives my wavy hair the straight shiny hair full of body that I have received many compliments on. People have asked me what I use to make my hair so shiny and healthy.

A few tips… make sure you work in sections. Too much hair on the iron will not produce the results you may want. Use your wrist to turn the barrel down as it is gliding down the section if you want the ends to have a curl. When using it on a section of hair move it SLOWLY down the section adding a bit of tension. Also, be very careful as the barrel does get very hot. And lastly, give yourself time to adjust to it. Once you do you will wonder how you lived without it!

19 Diane December 30, 2010

I should have seen the video before posting but now that I saw it I know why the three girls they randomly chose to try the product didn’t like it. They were using it way too fast with too much hair in the sections and not giving it the turn in their wrist to achieve the desired curl. Also, I suspect that the one girl who said that it didn’t make her hair shiny was because she may have had product in her hair. It works best on hair that does not have a lot of product in it; maybe just a dab of something to protect it from the heat. As I posted before…you need to learn how to use this appliance. Do not take it out of the box and think that you will get the desired results without educating yourself on how to use it.

20 Jen December 31, 2010

I got the InStyler from my nana for Christmas and so far I’m impressed! It doesn’t cut back on my time, as before the InStyler, I’d use a flat iron to straighten my naturally curly, unruly, hair, then go over it again with the curling iron to make soft and neat curls. With the InStyler, I just have one product that does both jobs at the same time! The only thing that makes this time consuming is the pieces of hair have to be smaller than what I’d use with a flat iron and a curling iron; from 45 minutes to an hour and 15 minutes with the InStyler. I’m sure with practice, I can cut back the time, but right now it’s consuming! It’s a little awkward having to roll the hair in the direction that the barrel is rolling, and they should make a switch for you to control over which way you want the barrel to roll; it’s like a left handed person using a right handed persons things sometimes. Other than that, I love the look I get with the InStyler! The curls stay in longer vs. My previous way of doing it, and I don’t have to use loads of hairspray to keep it looking good.

21 Jessica January 7, 2011

My hair type is the thinnest, flattest, drab, blonder hair ever!

I bought the INstyler 2 days ago….and didn’t use it the first day I had it…

I showered, blow dryed, and put mousse and thickening product in my hair. Usually, I use a curling iron to to just tame my ends because if I curl it, it will fall flat, and if I straighten it, it will look even rattier. I have used just about every thickening product out there, and I finally found one that works….the INstyler. I have used every single volumizer….from cheap to SUPER EXPENSIVE! and after blow drying and using a regular volumizer, and then using the instyler correctly… was an INSANE difference! Everyone at work was asking me what i did to my hair and telling me how amazing and full it looked! If you use it right, it really does do wonders for thin hair, although, I might have to agree with the people who have curly, thick hair when they say they have problems with it…..I have thin hair and I even have problems with the straightening part!

22 Theresa January 8, 2011

Don’t mean to be rude but…are you getting paid to write these comments? How could Instyler possibly be all that great?? Judging from others who have used it and by the video review above, it DOES NOT WORK AS ADVERTISED!

23 Kim January 13, 2011

I wanted the INSTYLER for a long time, the infomercial sold me. My straighting iron was good, but i was convinced that the INSTYLER was perfect for me, and that i would never use another straighteneing iron again. I WAS WRONG!!! DECIEVED!!! It takes 3 times as long to straighten my hair with that thing. I’ve resorted to an iron…yes a clothing iron…works like a charm until i get my old straighteneing iron back. DON”T LET THEM FOOL YOU!!!SAVE YOUR MONEY!!!

24 helen January 24, 2011

My hair is naturally straight but has a few uneven waves and I like my hair bone straight, so I usually use a flat iron, but mine recently broke after 3 years of daily use.
So, I saw that the instyler was able to work wonders on very curly hair, and my daughters hair is very curly, so I thought I’d buy the instyler for her and use it too. I mean, if it works on curly hair, then mine should be a breeze right? NO! Absolutely not! The bristles of the brush made my hair more frizzy and it actually felt like it made my hair drier.
Now, after one use the bristles on it are not even straight anymore, so how long would they last if used daily?
I am just thankful that I bought this at a beauty store, so that I can RETURN IT tomorrow and get back my full purchase price.
I may be one of the few who hate this product, but I am sorry, I have had better STRAIGHTENING results from a plain ol’ curling iron.
I am very dissapointed. :(

25 Emma February 20, 2011

omgg i cannot agree with the negatives they’re wrong i bought this product about 2 years ago and i have long and amazing and shiny hair. I cannot believe it! i could just kiss it. this is amazing.
Emma´s last blog post ..See the Rotato Express Potato Peeler In Action!

26 Kav February 24, 2011

I got the instyler as a christmas present from my hubby/…i love my hair perfectly straight and have been using a regular flat iron for over 3 years now..and i was actually quite happy with the results….when i saw the infomercial i was impressed! When first used the instyler, well thats another story…I dont like the results at all….quite a huge disppointment, it leaves my hair frizzy at the end which I dislike…i would say a flat iron is the better investment and cheaper too!!!

27 Barbara Banach February 24, 2011

I love my Instyler I got 2 about 2 years ago and when one broke down I had the other one, I like it much more than a flat iron, I just ordered 2 more because i can’t go without one, it is my most favorite hair apparatus, bar none. It does make my hair shiny.

28 julie March 2, 2011

i just order the instylier and lookin and readin people comments im a little scared that i waiste my money on this product but if it dont work on my hair it be goin back to the company i think that it is high but if it is worth the money then im all for it

29 JoJo March 10, 2011

They were using it wrong. They went way too fast.
Idiots. Find smart people to use the product correctly.

30 Gretchen Nelson March 11, 2011

I tried the instyler and I have 3 burns and may seek legal council. Not to mention it does not do what it claims, I cannot believe they would be able to put this thing on the market!

31 Melina March 17, 2011

I’ve wanted to buy this for a long time and I finally got it today from bed bath and beyond only because I had a coupon and if I didn’t like it I could return it with no hassle….I really like it!
I just make sure I blow dry my hair first just a quick 2 min job so it’s not wet the use the Instyler….it’s pretty much a flat iron that gives your hair body which I love…usually I use a flat iron after I blow dry but then end up with flat hair feels very soft and full with the instyle…just don’t use it on wet hair because it gets so hot and I noticed it burned a small part if my hair while it was wet that’s why I blow dried it first!

32 LilyPad March 22, 2011

I just ordered my INStyler but I haven’t used it yet… I honestly think that if you’re a potential buyer, you should do the 14 day trial first. Don’t go off other people’s reviews because everyone has different hair!

33 Kim April 10, 2011

I have been using the in styler for about 2 months and I am noticing I am starting to loose my hair, it has broken off very short in places, while it does add volume to my thin hair type, it isn’t worth loosing my hair over.I would like ot know if anyone else is having this problem.

34 Sonja May 2, 2011

My Instyler started making popping electrical sounds and smelled vaguely of smoke less than 6 months after purchase. Instyler refused to honor my warranty claim because I purchased the unit on Amazon. I liked the product before it broke, and I would have been ok if they had kept their word and honored the warranty. You would have a better experience with a conair from Walmart. Don’t waste your money!

35 Dene May 8, 2011

I got the instyler on sale in an electronics store here in Trinidad…only paid $200 TT for it which is about $15 US so i was really glad that it didnt abuse my wallet…tried it on my black hair and it took me HOURS!! (but mainly because I have sooooo much hair on my head :P ) anyways, I used it with a heat protectant spray and it got my hair pretty straight..for a little while. idk if it’s humidity of the caribbean air but my hair was back to normal in about 10 minutes…so Caribbean women, I would be a little careful about buying this product, but if u get it for a steal like I did, why not try and see if it works for u..

36 Tamika November 29, 2011

I recieved one of these INstylers as a present just the other day and was very dissappointed.

I have been a long time user of GHD’s, so I had a high hope for this machine too. I was VERY wrong. I have moderately curly hair and to find a straightener that works is quite the challenge. The INstyler not only left my hair looking like I put fire to it but it tangled my hair also. After an hour, my hair would return to its natural state (curly) and touching it would make my scalp hurt.

If you are looking at getting this product, PLEASE RECONSIDER!