The L’Oreal Professionel Steampod Steam Straightening tool turned the beauty world on its sort-of-straight-and-slightly-burnt-haired head when it launched. The USP is clear: to deliver smooth tresses with 78% less damage than ceramic hair straighteners do, by harnessing the power of steam as opposed to high heated plates that singe strands and cause split ends. And it works.
In November 2019, the latest and greatest iteration landed – the L’Oreal Steampod Steam Straightening Tool 3.0 – and we’ve been hooked ever since. And PSA: it’s currently discounted from £235 to £159 (!) in the Amazon Prime Day sale, saving you a whole £76. Really.
Our dream to achieve Rachel Green from Friends‘ poker straight locks means that we’ve become dangerously familiar with the faint smell of smoke from our hair over the years, so L’Oreal’s revolutionary use of steam was the first and most compelling difference. Here’s the science-y bit.
A regular straightener burns the hair to the core (the steam you see coming off is moisture leaving your locks), which means that when you go outside your hair will desperately seek out any water it can to recover and turn frizzy. In other words, you’ll look more like Monica after her trip to Barbados than Rachel. L’Oreal’s Steampod, on the other hand, uses a continuous steam flow that doesn’t dry the centre so that it stays healthy and won’t need to cling on to any humidity it finds. Bonus: the tool works on all hair types from short to afro, and you can adjust the temperature from 180-210 degrees.
Styling-wise, it can be used for a silky straight finish, or voluminous waves. This is where the advancements of the 3.0 update come in – it features a cord that rotates 360 degrees meaning you won’t have to manoeuvre the plates into awkward positions, while it’s 14% thinner and 37% lighter than the previous design.
If there was one flaw to its predecessor, it would be that it was pretty heavy to use since the steam comes from an integrated water tank, so this is a major plus. Said tank is part of the Steampod 3.0, too, but it’s considerably less bulky, and if you’re worried about the pain that is refilling it, know that it holds enough water to last five or six styling sessions. There’s also an inbuilt comb (that can be removed) to help tame any knots as you go through each section of hair.