The Difference Between Ionic, Ceramic, and Tourmaline Hair Dryers

Shopping for a blow dryer can be overwhelming, especially when you’re faced with the huge selection that most stores offer. Product packaging using buzzwords like ‘sleek’, ‘anti-frizz’, and fast drying. They may sound appealing, but to find the best dryer you must look past those words and look for the words ‘ceramic’, ‘ionic’, and ‘tourmaline’. These words describe the features of a dryer that will actually help your hair. So what do these words mean and why they are beneficial in a blow dryer? Below is a brief overview of each type.


Usually made from clay, ceramic is a non-metallic solid. With ceramic heated blow dryers, the heating coils are made of ceramic rather than copper. Ceramic heats both evenly and quickly.

What’s the benefit of using ceramic?

The infrared heat generated from ceramic hair dryers is actually able to safely penetrate the hair without damaging or burning the outer part of the hair shaft. Also, because ceramic evenly heats up, it won’t burn parts of your hair or cause damage.


Ions can either be positively or negatively charged. With ionic hair dryers, water molecules are broken up by negative ions into smaller drops. These small drops evaporate from the outer layer of hair more quickly. This process also helps your hair to retain moisture by sealing the hair’s cuticles.

What’s the benefit of using ionic?

Since the water is broken down by the negative ions into smaller droplets, the water evaporates quickly and reduces the amount of damage and heat to the hair. Due to the negative ions, the cuticles remain flat. This eliminates frizz and makes the hair feel and look healthy.


The mineral, tourmaline, only generates negative ions when it is heated. As mentioned above, negative ions are amazing for your hair. You’ll either find tourmaline in a hair dryer in the form of a coating inside the dryer or whole parts made of the mineral.

What’s the benefit of using tourmaline?

Tourmaline is incredibly effective at producing negative ions. This means your hair will dry extremely fast and your hair will be left shiny and healthy looking. Since tourmaline is a costly mineral, these hair dryers will cost a bit more than an average ionic or ceramic dryer.

Bottom line – Each of these features are necessary when maintaining the health of your hair while using heating tools. At least consider buying a ceramic dryer to provide you with the most basic protection against heat damage. A higher quality hair dryer with ceramic and either ionic or tourmaline is worth splurging on. The results will amaze you!