InStyler MAX Review

The InStyler MAX makes the 3rd hair gadget I’ve tried out in the last year and a half. I think this means that I love technology and anything that promises to make my hair look cool with minimal effort. InStyler recently sent me their newest incarnation, the InStyler MAX, 2-way rotating iron. I was excited to try this magical spinny thing. Keep reading to find out if I think you should buy one and if you can really replace your flat iron and curling iron with the InStyler MAX alone. instyler-max This $100 device promises to straighten hair better than a flat iron via a rotating tourmaline barrel and ionic bristles. It has 4 heat settings, going all the way up 450 degrees. It straightens by feeding the strands through the bristles while simultaneously smoothing it with the rotating barrel. The barrel can be adjusted to rotate both ways by “double clicking” the device. If I straighten my hair, I usually use a CHI flat iron from legit 2005. It just won’t die, I’m telling you. I have wavy hair on the bottom, straight on top so the bottom is always a battle. I sectioned out my hair the same way I would for a flat iron sesh before using the InStyler MAX. I then went about taking 1-3″ sections of hair and slowly working the InStyler through my gnarly locks. I like that you can smooth the ends under or flip them up, depending on the placement.

I found that the InStyler did straighten my hair decently. It gave a more finished look to the ends, making it look as though I may have had a blow out. I do think it could have straightened my bottom layers more though. When it comes to curling my hair with the InStyler, this proved a bit more challenging. You are to wrap the entire section around the barrel, clamp it down and let it rotate for 5-10 seconds. Even when following these directions, I still ended up with something that looked more like a half bend/half wave. I won’t say it was a bad thing necessarily as I love a more lived-in, undone look. For layered hair or shorter styles, I actually think whatever this is creating would be adorable.


  • Smoothes hair without frizz
  • Comfortable to use
  • Adds shine
  • Gentle on hair
  • Can create an undone, lived-in wave that looks nice on short-to-medium styles
  • Comes with heat mat
  • Auto-shutoff
  • 30 second heat-up time
  • 4 heat settings


  • Noisy when in use, can get annoying
  • Cool tip attachment causes hair to get stuck in it. I recommend you don’t attach this.
  • Doesn’t create true curls
  • Slower to use than a flat iron
  • Doesn’t create truly pin-straight hair
  • Cannot double as a curling iron

instyler-max-sideDid the InStyler MAX straighten better than a flat iron? Not necessarily. Make sure you watch my video to see for yourself but that laser straight look can only come from a flat iron for me. Can you replace your flat iron and curling iron with it? Maybe your flat iron for a softer look but not your curling iron. This doesn’t perform like a curling iron or wand can.

Next up, I’ll be reviewing the InStyler BLU, a Turbo Ionic Dryer that claims to dry hair twice as fast. You’ll definitely want to check back for that post because I’ll be holding a giveaway to win one!

Thanks for reading!

InStyler MAX provided by InStyler for review purposes. No financial compensation was received nor was a positive review encouraged. All opinions expressed are my own.


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