Average Rating 5.0/5
Review by alisha_the_kitten
I should note that my Cricket Friction Free Dryer is a couple of years old, so I have no idea if it's the same as the ones being sold nowadays. They may have made some changes or additions to the newer ones.
Some basic features of this dryer: I would say it's about mid-priced, as it's usually sold for $70-80 USD. It comes with removable concentrator and straightening pick attachments. It has a 1 year limited warranty, though I didn't get any confirmation of the activation after I sent in the warranty paper. (Never had to actually use it, so I can't say if they honor it.) It has a "high-torque" DC motor, 1875 watts, and 125 voltage. The cord is a reasonable 8 feet long. They claim that it has ceramic for faster drying time, and ionic tourmaline for shine and frizz reduction. There's two heat settings, plus a cool setting. Two speeds.
I was hesitant to buy this dryer after reading some negative reviews online. Some people said that it wasn't long lasting, so I bought an extended warranty from SBS (and sent in the manufacturer's warranty as well). Two years later, it's still going strong. No problems here - except that the extended warranty was an unnecessary waste of money. I use this dryer every day, so it gets a fair amount of use and everything. I do make a habit of cleaning out the dust/hair trap in the back whenever it's necessary, which probably helps extend the lifespan. I guess it's a gamble as to the longevity of this dryer... Apparently it died early for some people, but that didn't happen to me.
I love how extremely lightweight (15.7 ounces) this dryer is. It doesn't strain my arm/wrist at all. The fan is fast but not overly loud. My hair doesn't seem to get as tangled with this dryer, either. It leaves it looking shiny and relatively sleek. I like the heat and speed settings on this dryer. The hot setting doesn't get excessively hot, but gets *just* hot enough to do the job without causing damage. One of the main selling points is the straightening pick attachment, which is supposed to help with straightening the hair. (I think by using ions or something?) To be honest, I never really use it. I think it's really awkward to try to use it without poking my scalp or getting it through my hair without tangling.
Another thing that makes it unique is that it has a "high-torque DC motor." (From what I've seen, most hair dryers have AC motors.) This means that this Cricket dryer is able to heat up very quickly and is lightweight. I believe DC motors are harder to fix when something gets broken, so it is important to send in the warranty stuff. The wattage and voltage are pretty high for a DC motor, so you're not losing out there.
I'm not sure if I will repurchase this dryer again or not. Just because I lucked out this time doesn't mean that it will work out the next time I get a Friction Free dryer.
UPDATE: As of late 2013, this dryer is still working. My dad has cleaned the inside of the dryer out a couple of times when it got dusty and started smelling a little like burnt hair/dust. So I might have thrown it out if I didn't have someone to clean it for me, but thankfully that's not the case. Haven't had any problems with the motor or anything else. Still works as good as the day I bought it.
LAST UPDATE: As of late 2014, it finally just broke. The heating element just stopped working one day, though the fan still worked. I got a good number of years out of it, so I am really happy with it overall. Can't say that they all work this well but mine did.