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We All Tested Emily’s All-Time Favorite Hair Tool And This Is How It Went

When Emily gets excited about a product and HIGHLY recommends it, like most of you, we are equally as excited and curious to try it! I mean after all, we were fans of Em before we were employees:) So when Emily got her hands on The Mermade Hair Waver which is essentially is a 2021 modern-day crimper (but wildly better) I think all of us secretly were scheming to get our hands on one. But Em, being the extremely generous boss that she is, beat us to the punch and offered to pay for us to try one (there are a couple of brands that have them) so we could do a fun post about it. And guess what? This is that fun post! So here are our real deal reviews.

But first, let’s get into your different options:

1. Mermade Hair 32mm PRO Waver | 2. Aima Beauty 32mm (1.25″) Triple Ceramic Curling Iron | 3. Double Ceramic Triple Barrel Waver | 4. CHI x Barbie 1.25” Triple Barrel Titanium Deep Waver | 5. amika High Tide Deep Wave Hair Crimper | 6. Tidal Hair Waver

Now we have only tried #1 and #2 on our hair. But all of the other ones have at least 4 out of 5 stars on their reviews. #1 is The Mermade that Emily has and truly loves. It’s under $100 but if you want a less expensive option then go for #2 and #3. The most expensive is #5 at $120 which to be honest I’m not sure why but it’s well-reviewed and I want to give you all the options. Basically, there’s a hair waver for everyone:)

Ok, you have your tool options. Now let’s get into Emily’s tips and tricks…

Emily

Ok, so it’s definitely big but don’t be nervous. It’s not scary once you start using it and the results are worth it:)

Matching the wave is VERY important but also very easy. You just want to be careful about those crease lines so tilt the top slightly away from your head. Then BAM, awesome hair in a few minutes (granted I’ve really gotten the hang of it and also have short hair, so it would likely take more time on longer and thicker hair)

So yes, I LOVE this tool a lot. Especially for summer, I feel like a lot of people want an effortless, beachy wave and this achieves that so well. But like Jess said, I wanted to let the other EHD gals try it out and see if they felt the same since no one head of hair is alike:) Let’s see what they have to say for themselves!

Ryann

I joked the first time I tried the Mermade tool that it made me look like Alanis Morisette. Tbh, I don’t think I am far off?? But in all seriousness, I don’t think this tool is the most effective one for my hair a few reasons. 1) I have extremely thick hair that does not hold curls well even if I douse it in hair spray (which I don’t want to ever do). And 2) Since I have thick hair, curling it with a hot iron takes A VERY LONG TIME. The after photo you see above was took me about 25 mins and I really rushed through it if I am being honest. If I did it properly it would probably take about an hour which is just not productive IMO. I am pretty sure I get better results when I just sleep with braids in my hair. BUT THAT’S JUST ME. I think the Mermade tool is best for anyone who has thinner, short to medium length hair, but the EHD gals told me I look very cute so that made me feel good:)

Mallory

Okay so originally I bought the SMALL Amazon waver hair tool which is much cheaper than the OG Mermade tool (which is great since I was 50/50 about how it would look on my hair so I didn’t want to invest a ton). I learned a huge lesson from this first tool: SIZE MATTERS. I had accidentally bought the 26mm and not the 36mm and boy is there a difference. The 26mm made my hair look way more crimp-y and very Cleopatra-esque which would be great for a 90s party but was a little much for me every day. I then ordered the 32mm once I realized my mistake and things really turned around for me. Well until I learned another valuable lesson….use heat protectant!!! I signed up to destroy (I mean bleach) my hair back in high school, so I can’t say I’ve got the healthiest keratin in the game. I was kind of just living with the fact that my hair was going to break off so I never used heat protectant — until I used this tool and it actually really started breaking off. No one else on the team had this issue (probably because they were smart and actually used a heat protectant like their hairstylists say) but be warned: if you’re like me with unhealthy, dry, and kinda damaged hair USE HEAT PROTECTANT and then all will be okay.

Here are a few recs from us and our hairstylists:

1. Bb.Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil Heat/UV Protective Primer | 2. Briogeo Farewell Frizz Blow Dry Perfection Heat Protectant Cream | 3. OUAI Heat Protection Spray | 4. Oribe Royal Blowout Heat Styling Spray | 5. ALTERNA Haircare CAVIAR Anti-Aging® Perfect Iron Spray | 6. UNITE Hair 7SECONDS Detangler

Also, sorry if that scared you — you should also know on a less intense note that I actually love how quickly I can do my hair (and have it look good). I almost never styled my hair before I got this and now I style it all the time — and in under 5 minutes!!! This thing honestly rocks and is totally worth the money (especially if you get the cheaper Amazon one) I love this thing!!!

Jess

Finally my dreams of becoming Ariel after watching The Little Mermaid 1,500,062 times as a child are getting closer and closer. Ha, well sort of… so big hair tools are VERY intimidating to me and this one is definitely a big boy! But practice makes perfect. Now, Em and Mal were the first ones to try this waver out and their hair looks SO CUTE. But they both have shorter hair so I wasn’t convinced it would have the same fate for my long, thin hair. The first time I tried the real deal Mermade brand tool I looked like I was going to Homecoming in 2006… it was pretty funny but not my ideal look in 2021. However, what I realized (and Mal told me later too) was that I had the wrong start height. I was way too high up for my length! To avoid this early-aughts look, I needed to start it right below the eye like I did in the right photo. Muuuuuch better. I’m still getting the hang of it but like the look of the more horizontal waves. Feels a bit fresher and beach-ier than what I was doing before the pandemic.

a little sneak peek from our last shoot and photo by miss veronica crawford:)

I think this photo maybe sells it more? It’s a little more relaxed after a couple of hours which I prefer:)

Ha! you thought I was done talking.

Now, you really want to make sure that you hold the top of the tool tilted away from the top edge of your hair or else it WILL leave a crease and not the one you want (as you can see on the left). The good news though is that you can always give it another go and smooth it over a bit:) All in all, if you are not really a hair person like me but want to try something different I think this is a really great option! Just don’t give up too easily and play with it. We can do this together:)

So that’s all folks! A new hair too (to us at least) that most of us really love. Have any of you tried one of these? Any other tricks or tips? Or is there maybe another awesome hair tool we should know about? Let’s talk!

Opening Image Credits: Photo by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | From: After Three Years We Can Actually Use Our Upper Deck (Because We Finally Have The Right Outdoor Furniture…And Fabric)

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Emily Dunnack
2 months ago

This was a fun post! I am notorious for buying hair tools and never using them. They always look SO EASY and then I try it myself and don’t have the patience and they sit in a drawer until I eventually give them away to a friend or niece with more interest and commitment to hair styling. I have long, finely textured hair but there’s a lot of it and it looks good enough with basically zero effort so that’s where I always land. This seems like a good option for medium length hair.

Stacy
2 months ago
Reply to  Emily Dunnack

I also enjoyed this post 🙂 – it’s fun to see how the tool works on a few different hair types.

Sally
2 months ago

I can’t tell you how disappointing it is to see a new blog post and it turns out to be about what hair tongs Emily uses. I dislike these product pushes excessively. I don’t know if these are sponsored products or you earn money from the advertorial style or not, but in the spirit of ethical and honest business operation, I think this information should be openly and clearly disclosed either way, as on YouTube.
I’m letting you know because as a marketer, I know it’s better to get the feedback than have people simply stop using your product/service and others will soon respond if I’m an outlier here.
Others may differ but I come to this site to read the great design stories and see the rooms.
Jess, no offence meant – I think you write great articles, I love how you decorated your last apartment and I can’t wait to see your balcony but it’s such a let down to get these advertorial style posts that are unrelated to interiors or design.

Cheryl
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

Here is how I use Emily’s product/service: I read her free content. Or I don’t. It’s so so simple. I’m always delighted that blogs I love to read are free and updated almost daily. It’s delightful. If I don’t like the content I wait until the next one. If I want content perfectly tailored to my wants, needs and desires, I’ll write my own blog.

Nicole
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

I actually like the non-decor posts. Everything has a design connection and feels like it’s about living a more design-y life.

Irene
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

Sally, I voted you up because there’s been way too much time between farmhouse updates. And what about the river house? That seems to have gone totally down the memory hole. I’m disappointed every day when the topic is unrelated to the progress of the two Portland projects. Often I can read about the farmhouse, at least, on Emily’s Instagram stories, but today’s content only had more hair tool stories!
Usually I can overcome my frustration and enjoy the topic of the day (and yes, we are so fortunate that EHD posts daily) but not with this one — I spent so much time in the late 60s and early 70s trying to overcome my natural waves, and here are people paying good money and spending good time to put the waves into their hair. Mallory’s “before” was my ideal in high school and college. (Okay, Boomer, right?)

Erin
2 months ago
Reply to  Irene

I loved hearing about the river house too but the team might want to take a break from that for a minute because their designer was really kind of run through the mud after an off the cuff comment made during the last update. I get it, people have their opinions. But his rad designs seemed to have almost completely been overlooked by many of those commenting. Could also be that due to the pandemic and demand/shortage/cost of building supplies/contractors is slowing things down. Homeowners may still have budgets to maintain despite our want for all the new details of their project. My most favorite part of living in the United States of America is that we can speak how we want and read or not read whatever we want. Feel free to not read the posts that you don’t dig on and just come back for the design dessert. Personally, I am stoked that EHD can employ people with product reviews and think that this is a much more honest way of advertising. AAANd, one more post from an EHD team member means one more day Emily got to spend with her kids while they are still kids and… Read more »

Teresa
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

Sally, the posts that are unrelated to design are clearly marked: “lifestyle,” “personal,” etc. She and the other contributors have also been very clear about the role affiliate marketing plays in the financial viability of site. They even publish monthly run-downs of the best sellers. More careful attention to close reading and comprehension on your part will do much to alleviate your disappointment.

CGinAZ
2 months ago
Reply to  Teresa

Amen sista.

Beth
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

I agree that sponsored products should be clearly identified, but this isn’t pushing a product, it’s reviewing a type of product. Also, Saturday posts are always about fashion and beauty.

I’m glad they posted this because I’ve been wanting to try one of these tools. It was very helpful.

Shannon Murphy
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

You know, I don’t really care that much for the lifestyle/personal posts either. But I also don’t expect that every blog I read will tailor every ounce of their content exactly to me. Like, I subscribe to magazines but I don’t read every single article. Also I think that Emily IS super transparent about sponsored content and partnerships. My impression, because I trust her, is that this post is not sponsored and these folks are not partners (since they are showing all of the competing products, why would one competitor sponsor that?).

Stacia
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

Style by Emily Henderson… (Home, Lifestyle, Personal). Seems pretty self explanatory to me… Can’t please ‘em all Emily!

Sally
2 months ago
Reply to  Stacia

Thanks to all for responses. As well as believing as a marketer that consumer feedback provides colour to analytics, I also believe that respectful and open debate, diversity of views and dissension are healthy and beneficial and that groupthink is the enemy of all that is good so this has been a great mini discussion! I’m not from the US and don’t live in the US so may have a lower threshold for being advertised at. But will happily accept that’s my problem as a minority and will pipe down and suck it up when the lifestyle/personal/product stories are posted and wait with bated breath for the reveal of Caitlin and Jess’ balconies, and more stories like the one on Sara’s mother’s living room.

Sona
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

way to go Sally. I admire your graciousness in reading others’ feedback.

Vera
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

This is a really edifying thread overall and a gracious response from Sally. 😊
Unpopular opinions should not be told to quiet down. As long as someone is respectful we should welcome their perspective.
It is good for the content creator to receive honest feedback. And of course a little healthy debate is evidence of reader engagement which is good too!

Marin
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

There are very specific rules around very clear disclosure of sponsored or gifted items for bloggers/influencers/whatever. If it isn’t obvious, it isn’t sponsored.

Cece
2 months ago
Reply to  Sally

Sally, one thing this blog doesn’t do as far as I have ever noticed is push sponsored products without clearly disclosing it. Also, if you read this most you’d find the reviews are honest and fairly mixed, not sure what company would pay for opinions that unfiltered! I suppose the links might well be affiliate? But that’s about as far as it’s going to go on that level.

Chelsea Barnett
2 months ago
Reply to  Cece

Cece, they’ve been better recently but there have definitely been instances in which a post is essentially an advertisement/developed in partnership with a brand, and it hasn’t been disclosed until well into the body of the post (ie not clearly marked at the outset)… they’ve also taken on partnerships with brands where the connection to EHD is tenuous at best (the water partnership around 2018/2019 was controversial, if I remember correctly). Sally offered honest feedback and was gracious in hearing others’ responses; EHD is a company that can support, what, ten employees as well as allowing Emily and her family to own and renovate several properties, they should be able to handle the feedback. My two cents.

Lori
2 months ago

I love these type of posts! I have an Amazon dupe of the mermade version. I learned to avoid the crease is to turn the clamps bit underneath, if that makes sense. It’s awkward doing it at first but helps to prevent that line. Thanks for teaching me that I really only need to do effort to the top layer. It’s all that really matters.

Janine
2 months ago

I love this thing too! I got the Mermaid as an xmas present…added it to my wish list after seeing emilys stories about it. It is such a quick, easy tool to use, especially after you try it out once or twice. I really love it for adding something more for my second hair days, when my hair is usually wanting to hang flat haha. Ive been growing out a bob, so im glad to see your pics as examples of how i can keep using it as my hair will change too!!

Lisa
2 months ago

This was such a fun and simple post! Really enjoyed the hey lets-chat-about-this-thing friend-group-hangout vibes of it 🙂 I can absolutely not be bothered to do anything to style my hair though this does seem comparartively low effort. It was really fun to see it on yall’s different hair textures and read about your troubles and process 😀 Happy weekend everybody!

Jess
2 months ago

I really liked this post!! I liked seeing how the tool worked on different people’s hair. I actually bought one of these wavers (and really like it) but didn’t know that trick about starting below the eyes!

Vera
2 months ago
Reply to  Jess

Same, that trick was super helpful Jess!

Cindy
2 months ago

I appreciate the post – it’s like girl talk and so many of us can use a bit of advice from someone that has tried things. Why reinvent the wheel, if someone can comment on a product honestly, I appreciate it. I can’t tell you how much I loved the self-tanning product post – didn’t have to ask a friend what they use! Golden ( no pun intended!)

Sarah
2 months ago

Next up try the robe twist thing! And no heat required! It creates gorgeous mermaids wave curls. I couldn’t believe it when my friend did this for her graduation. Her mom tried it too lol and it was amazing.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=X8o9oExf39k

DeniseGK
2 months ago
Reply to  Sarah

Thank you for this! I don’t use heated tools on my hair at all, but I clicked anyway bc I knew someone would help me out in the comments – and you did! I’m definitely going to try this for the first time I can be in a group social setting again.

Dena
2 months ago

I’ve been wanting to try this, thank you for posting!! I have the littlest bit of natural wave so I usually do the scrunch method but this would define the waves so much better I think!!

2 months ago

Thanks for giving us a full run down! It’s nice to see how something works on different hair lengths/types and with different people’s priorities in mind. My hair stylist used to ask me if I used one of these to make waves, but I actually just use a flat iron for all the things. I don’t have the space for a big tool like this (1920s bungalow bathroom that used by 3 other people!) and I enjoy learning to use one tool in different ways, especially since I already use the flat iron for the ends of my hair like Emily showed. I usually keep a pretty standard length bob too (shorter than Mallory’s), so that also makes a difference. For anyone looking for other easy ways to make waves with a tool you might have on-hand, you can google “flat iron S waves” or “flat iron beachy waves.”

Vera
2 months ago
Reply to  Lashley

Thanks Lashley! I will look this up!

Vera
2 months ago

Fun post! I especially appreciate seeing four different people’s perspectives, with candid commentary and photos. You EHD ladies are so awesome. ❤️

Tori
2 months ago

I use the Amazon one and then straighten the very ends of my hair with a straightener! I turn them both on at the same time so it adds hardly any time even though using two tools feels like overkill 🙂 makes it look a bit more styled and current imo!

priscilla
2 months ago

In a video on Amazon (or maybe it was youtube???) a professional hair stylist demonstrated how she gets more natural looking waves by using the thingy at different angles around the head. If you get this tool, it’s worth looking at for useful tips

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