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How Do I Choose the Quietest Hair Dryer?

Anna B. Smith
Anna B. Smith

To choose the quietest hair dryer, consumers should purchase a model with a low decibel output level that also features multiple speed settings and a removable filter. Lower decibel output numbers indicate a quieter operating motor. Speed setting controls allow consumers to dry hair more slowly to achieve the lowest possible noise levels. Removable filters protect the motor, providing a longer life and quieter fan.

Sound is measured in units called decibels. The decibel scale ranges between 1 and 180, where louder sounds receive higher numbers. A chainsaw can create up to 110 decibels of sound, while city street traffic tends to generate 80 decibels. A quiet whisper can be as low as 20 decibels, and the sound a person makes while breathing normally often registers at 10 decibels.

The quietest hair dryer models attempt to decrease the noise level output to between 40 and 50 decibles.
The quietest hair dryer models attempt to decrease the noise level output to between 40 and 50 decibles.

A standard hair dryer normally puts out between 60 and 80 decibels of sound. The quietest hair dryer models, sometimes marketed as silent, attempt to decrease that noise output level to between 40 and 50 decibels. The decibel number at which the dryer operates is sometimes printed on the outside of the product labeling, so that consumers will know how to gauge the device's output prior to their purchase.

When the decibel output level is not made available to consumers, they may benefit from purchasing a model that has adjustable speeds and a removable air filter. The maximum speed at which the dryer operates is typically always printed on the package labeling. Higher wattage output levels blow very hot air at faster speeds to lower the overall drying time. These models are equipped with faster fans that can generate a great deal of noise during usage. The quietest hair dryer should provide the user with speed setting controls to allow her to slow the speed at which the fan blows, and thereby decrease the noise output level at her discretion.

Hair, dust, and lint can collect in the motor of the dryer, causing it to increase in operating volume as particles begin to interrupt the movement of the inner working parts. Air filters prevent these dirt and dust particles from reaching the intricate moving parts of the motor. Once the filter has become completely saturated with particles, however, it can no longer protect the motor adequately. Removable filters are available on the quietest hair dryer models so that consumers can clean or replace this part as it becomes dirty, prolonging the life of the motor and allowing it to work smoothly and quietly.

Discussion Comments


The best hair dryer I use for my hair, is the one where I can attach a diffuser. I have a lot of natural wave in my hair, and this is the easiest way to style my hair.

With a diffuser attachment, you still use heat, but it allows the air to flow around your hair in a circular motion. This is perfect if you have curly or wavy hair and want to show off your curls without the frizz.

You can buy diffusers as a separate unit, or as an attachment with your hair dryer. I put some gel in my hair, turn my head upside down and work the diffuser through my hair.

I always get a lot of compliments on my curly hair, and this is much easier than using a hair dryer and flat iron to straighten my hair every day.

Using the diffuser is also much quieter than using a regular hair dryer. It may take a little longer, but is the best way to keep my thick, wavy hair styled.


It doesn't matter how many settings my hair dryer has, I only use the highest setting. I don't have that much time to spend trying to get my hair dry on a low setting. It is pretty loud though.

I have noticed that the professional hair dryers seem to make much less noise. I have just never given much thought the the amount of decibels a hair dryer has when I have to buy a new one.

I have always had good results with a Conair hair dryer, and don't have to replace them very often. Once I bought another brand, and it quit working after a few months, where the Conair kept working for years.

The next time I get my hair cut, I am going to make it a point to see what kind of hair dryer my stylist uses. It would make sense to get something that works well and doesn't make quite as much noise.


I would think that talking to a hair stylist would be the best way to find a quiet hair dryer. They have more experience with all the various models than just about anyone else.

This is good too because you can get an honest, unvarnished opinion. Lots of manufacturers will claim that their hair dryer makes a minimum amount of noise, but you really won't know until you try it out for yourself. Hair stylists have been around this block. hey can help you cut through the sales pitches.


Has anyone else had a problem with quiet hair dryers taking too long to do their job? I bought one last month because I liked the idea of less noise, but it took a long time to get the moisture out of my hair.

I have since gone back to using my super noisy dryer. My family hates it, but the sound doesn't bother me.

With this dryer, I can fully dry my long, thick hair in ten minutes. The quiet dryer took at least twenty. I just don't have that kind of time to devote to drying my hair!


My stylist uses a silent hair dryer. It's so quiet that it's hard to believe it can do any good, but it does.

It is an ionic dryer. She told me that it sends out negative ions, and since wet hair is positively charged, the ions attach to each other and trap the moisture inside the follicles.

It takes just as long to dry hair with this as it does with a regular dryer, but the ionic dryer makes your hair much shinier. I think that it smooths out the follicles better, so the light can bounce off of the strands easily.


@Oceana – I don't see how you have the patience to dry your hair on low. I have to use the highest speed, because my arm gets so tired from holding the dryer.

I have really long hair, so it takes me awhile to dry it even on high. I do have a quiet dryer that I use, and I think that's why no one in my house is bothered by it. The highest setting on my quiet dryer is equal to the lowest setting on the old loud dryer I once used.

It is nice not to have hot air forced loudly into my ear as the dryer moves past it. I don't think I could go back to using my old dryer now.


I use a quiet hair dryer, because I usually wash my hair after my husband goes to bed, and the noise from my old hair dryer used to wake him up. My new 50 decibel hair dryer doesn't bother him at all, though.

It has three settings, and I use the lowest one. It takes longer to dry my hair this way, but at least I don't have to listen to complaining about the noise level.

The dryer also has three different temperature settings. I put it on the hottest one, and this decreases the amount of time it takes to fully dry my hair on the lowest speed setting.

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    • The quietest hair dryer models attempt to decrease the noise level output to between 40 and 50 decibles.
      By: fuzzbones
      The quietest hair dryer models attempt to decrease the noise level output to between 40 and 50 decibles.