The Braun Satin Hair 7 was one of the best among the 4 hair dryers we reviewed. A common problem with many conventional hair dryers is that the air gets hotter and hotter the longer you use it, leading to overheating, uneven drying, or worse, damaged hair. With Braun's proprietary SensoDryer technology, Braun claims that the Satin Hair 7 hair dryer maintains the optimum heat and precise airflow by continuously monitoring and adjusting its output to stay at the optimum temperature. It also comes with IONTEC technology, using active ions to combat the static that occurs with conventional dryers, helping to combat frizz and achieve smooth, shiny hair.
APPEARANCE & BUILD QUALITY
Our first impressions of the Braun Satin Hair 7 were pretty good. The hair dryer looked solidly built. We were a little concerned about the glossy black being a fingerprint magnet, but our concerns were allayed after testing. A glossy finish will always retain fingerprints, but in this case, the fingerprints did not show up as prominently as one would have expected.
However, the Braun Satin Hair 7 felt a little top heavy at the part where the motor and fan is situated, compared to the Panasonic EH-NA65 whose weight felt more balanced and evenly distributed.
The unit that we bought from an online retailer came with a 3-pin plug, and the cord was thick and heavily insulated, although this added to the weight of the product itself. Braun's website did not list the weight of the Braun Satin Hair 7, but our unit weighed in at 780g, within the range of what other websites describe. Weighing just the product itself with the cord and 3-pin plug off the scale, the hair dryer itself weighed in at 620g, heavier than the body of the Panasonic EH-NA65 which weighs 560g.
The air inlet grill at the back of the hair dryer comes with a removable and washable protective filter. Removing and replacing was as simple as twisting the grill.
COMFORT & USABILITY
Braun included a built-in cooling system to help keep the surface cool, which Braun claims allows you to hold on to the head of the hair dryer. We are not sure why anyone would want to do that, but we tested this anyway. We ran the Braun Satin Hair 7 on it's hottest setting for 10 minutes and touched the surface of the hairdryer. We did not feel any appreciable difference in temperature of the handle (the part normal people hold on to). However, there was a slight increase in the temperature of the head (the part Braun claims to be a "new holding position for more convenience"). That said, the increase in temperature, though noticeable, was small enough to still be comfortable enough to hold on to.
Braun included LEDs, on both sides of the hair dryer (Yay for lefties!), allowing you to see the heat setting currently in use. The LEDs were intuitively displayed. A single red LED lights up when the lowest level of the heat setting is in use, increasing to four red LEDs at the highest heat setting. When switched to the cool setting, the red LEDs are replaced by a single blue LED.
HEAT & SPEED CONTROL
The Braun Satin Hair 7 comes with 2 speeds, 4 heat settings and 1 cool setting. The 2 different air speeds that are controlled by a slider switch. The slider switch on our unit performed decently well. Switching from OFF to LOW and from LOW to HIGH gives a satisfying click. However, switching from HIGH to LOW is a hit or miss. The slider switch has a tendency to skip pass the LOW setting and go straight to the OFF setting.
The heat settings are controlled by 2 rubber push buttons. Pushing the + button increases the heat, while pusing the - button decreases the heat, allowing you to adjust across 4 heat settings. A set of 2 buttons sitting higher up allows you to switch between heat and cool settings. We were baffled by the inclusion of 2 buttons to switch performing the exact same task. So we flipped through the instruction manuals provided to look for an answer.
"Both buttons offer the same function. Depending on your preferred way to hold the appliance (A or B) you may press the cold button that is within comfortable reach."
Ah. Braun doubled down on the "alternative way of holding the hair dryer", literally.
Braun claims that it's cool setting produces colder air compared conventional hairs dryers, and we found this claim to be spot on. In fact, it was the only hair dryer out of the 4 that we tested to truly generate cool air instead of slightly-higher-than-room-temperature air. When the cool-shot setting was activated, the air from Braun Satin Hair 7's cool setting felt significantly cooler than the room temperature. In a pinch, one might even use it as a fan!
We found it difficult to test Braun's SensoDryer heat control claim (it's difficult to get a consistent reading of fast flowing air), so we did our best by putting our hands in front of the hair dryer (real scientific, we know) at the start, after 5 minutes and at the end of 10 minutes to feel the temperature. All 3 testers did not feel any noticeable difference in the heat of the airflow across all the tests.
The Braun Satin Hair 7 also generates the hottest air at it's max setting, at an advertised 130°C. Using our incredibly scientific hand test, the air from the Braun Satin Hair 7 felt the hottest compared to the other hair dryers that we tested. However, the hottest setting can be rather uncomfortable for longer duration use, hence it is debatable if such a high temperature is good for our hair and scalp.
The Braun Satin Hair 7 comes with 2 attachments included in the box. A slim nozzle and a diffuser.
Braun claims that the narrow nozzle creates a more directed airflow, leading to more precise styling. The nozzle opening measured at 0.8cm wide and 6cm long, significantly narrower than the 3 other hair dryers that we tested. In actual use, the airflow indeed felt more directed and precise.
The diffuser attachment is claimed to come with extra long bristles to help in the creation of curls and to add volume. However, when compared to the other hair dryers we reviewed, Braun's diffuser had less bristles, and the bristles were not as long as the some of the competitors. Braun's diffuser had 12 bristles averaging around 3cm in length. In comparison, the attachment that came with the Panasonic EH-NA65 Nanocare hair dryer had 32 bristles, each averaging around 4cm in length.
The Braun Satin Hair 7 is reasonably priced and packs in a bunch of technology. We were most impressed with its real cool shot function that was a step above all the other hair dryers we tested. The all black design means it will not look out of place in most bathrooms. Hence, we have decided to award the Braun Satin Hair 7 as the BEST OVERALL hair dryer out of the 4 we have tested.
The Braun Satin Hair 7 HD785 Professional SensoDryer is available from online platforms such as Lazada and Shopee for $119 at the time of writing.