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Dyson targets hair beauty market with $500 styling tool

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By Reuters
Dyson targets hair beauty market with $500 styling tool
FILE PHOTO: Britain's Queen Elizabeth presents James Dyson with the insignia of members of the Order of Merit, during a private audience at Buckingham Palace, London July 19, 2016. Dominic Lipinski/Pool via Reuters   -   Copyright  POOL New(Reuters)

LONDON (Reuters) – British vacuum-cleaner maker Dyson is making a second push into the high-end beauty market with a $500 hair styling tool that it has engineered to create curls, waves and smooth blow dries without extreme heat.

The Dyson Airwrap Styler harnesses a phenomenon known as the Coanda effect, whereby a high-speed jet of air attaches itself to a surface, to curl, wave or smooth hair, Dyson said.

The company, which was founded by entrepreneur James Dyson in the 1990s to make his revolutionary bagless dual-cyclone vacuum cleaners, is one of Britain’s most successful manufacturing start-ups of the last three decades.

It reported an annual profit of more than 801 million pounds ($1.05 billion) last year on 3.5 billion pounds of sales of products like its air purifiers and its battery-powered cleaners.

Dyson entered the hair market two years ago with a dryer powered by one of its digital motors. The Supersonic dryer – which is priced at $399 – had been a “runaway success”, it said.

“We have been obsessively manipulating airflow for more than 25 years,” James Dyson said on Wednesday.

“Harnessing the power of Dyson’s digital motor we have engineered a unique styling tool which prevents extreme heat damage when styling.”

Dyson, which is working on its first electric vehicle, said it had taken six years and 24 million pounds ($31.4 million) to develop the Airwrap Styler.

The Airwrap will be available in two variations priced at 399.99 pounds in Britain and $499.99 in the United States, or in one package that includes all accessories for 449.99 pounds or $549.99.

(Reporting by Paul Sandle; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)