This Hair Straightener Is Nothing Like You've Ever Used Before - Here's Our Review

Steampod 3.0 reviewSteampod 3.0 review

Some of my favourite things in life involve steam. Hear me out.

Dumplings. A good facial. A hot bath. That scene from Titanic. You know the one. And now, my hair straightener.

After years of straightening and curling and crimping and blow drying, my hair deserves a bloody medal. But we’ll take a hair tool that can deliver good hair days, faster and with less damage, too.

Enter, L'Oreal Professionnel Steampod 3.0

The concept of a hair straightener powered by steam isn't new, but it was when the brand released their first Steampod back in 2012. Eight years on and the newly-launched Steampod 3.0 reckons it’s managed to make the best steam styler even better.

But can the Steampod really work as well as a regular hair straightener? Is steam even good for your hair?

Keep scrolling for everything you need to know about the Steampod 3.0, plus our road-test and review.

What Is the Steampod 3.0?

Steampod 3.0 reviewSteampod 3.0 review

L'Oreal Professionnel Steampod 3.0 is the newest iteration of the brand's revolutionary straightener that delivers sleek, glossy hair using steam. Kind of like how ironing your shirt makes it look 1,000 times better.

Where traditional straighteners rely solely on heat to straighten and style hair, Steampod 3.0 uses a combination of heat and steam = faster styling, minus straw-like ends and the potential for that awful burnt hair smell.

How Does the Steampod 3.0 Work?

The Steampod 3.0 works its magic by distributing a continuous flow of steam evenly throughout the hair during the styling process via a refillable water cartridge.

(FYI use demineralised water as it’ll protect the tool and minimise the chance of not clogging the inside mechanism that allows the steam to flow through.)

When you press the straightener against a section of hair, it projects steam from small vents in the plates to straighten the hair fibres. This technology infuses moisture into the hair cuticle before the heat and pressure from the ceramic plates smooths everything down for a frizz-free finish.

The result? Long-lasting styling that makes hair feel soft and silky, and look super shiny and visibly healthy.

Steampod 3.0 Benefits.

Aside from really, really good-looking hair, the main Steampod 3.0 benefits include:

  • 78 per cent less damage.*

  • Long-lasting frizz control.**.

  • Styling is twice as fast and twice as smooth as what you can achieve from a blow-dry and brushing.ˆ

  • More efficient results at 180°C compared to a traditional straightener at 230°C because the steam detangles as well as straightens hair.ˆˆ

  • A detachable comb for faster and smoother styling.

Steampod 3.0 reviewSteampod 3.0 review

Steampod 3.0 vs. Steampod 2.0 - How Is It Different?

How is the Steampod 3.0 different to the Steampod 2.0, you ask? The answer is entirely practical.

L'Oreal Professionnel Steampod 3.0 styles, straightens and curls still using steam technology, but the device itself has had a glow up. Think: a new ultra-sleek design that’s 37 per cent thinner and 14 per cent lighter than the previous model.

Plus (and this is a game-changer), the previously separate water cartridge has now been fully integrated into the handle of the tool, making it lighter, easier to use and more convenient to store and travel with.

How to Use the Steampod 3.0.

The best bit about the Steampod is, it can do everything your traditional straightener can, but in a way that's better for your hair. Use it to achieve a straight sleek look, or add glossy, bouncy waves or defined curls.

Watch the video below to see how Brand & Content Manager Hannah Furst and Senior Editor Amy Clark created two different styles using the Steampod 3.0.

The easiest way to figure out how to use the Steampod 3.0 is by watching our very helpful video above. Too busy? No stress, here's the quick(er) version:

Step 1. Remove the water cartridge from the Steampod handle and fill with demineralised water using the provided bottle before reattaching. (FYI even though the cartridge looks small, it can straighten up to 192 metres of hair before running out.)

Step 2. Switch on the Steampod and select your chosen temperature, from 180°C for finer hair through the 210°C for coarse or textured hair. The LED panel will stop flashing when the tool is ready to use.

Step 3. Prep the hair with a heat protectant spray before sectioning into manageable sections, and then again into smaller pieces to ensure each hair strand receives optimal contact with the tool.

Step 4. Run the Steampod slowly over the small section of hair. This will allow the steam to pre-smooth the hair as the heated ceramic plates straighten. IMPORTANT: Ensure the arrows on the side of the Steampod are facing down during use.

Step 5. Repeat for each section and voila! Swishy, smooth TV commercial hair.

Steampod 3.0 Before and Afters.

That's all great in theory, but I know what you really wanna see... Before and after photos.

So here they are - the first image shows how the Steampod straightened Hannah's coarse, frizzy hair, and the second, how I used the tool to create glossy waves.

Steampod before afterSteampod before after

Steampod before afterSteampod before after

Steampod 3.0 Review.

Let's start with the cons. If you want to use this tool to curl your hair, it's a bit trickier to manoeuvre than thinner tongs or wands.

And if I'm gonna be really picky, the fact you have to fill up the water cartridge before use could be annoying if you're running late, styling on the go, or just plain forgetful. That's it.

Onto the good bits. Other than being able to get great hair 2x fasterˆ and with 78 per cent less damage* (tick, tick and tiiiick), you don't really have to sacrifice on any features in order to get these results.

The Steampod heats up just as fast as any hot tool I've used, the wide-style plates mean you can get through more hair quicker, and the swivel cord makes reaching the hair at the back of your head easy.

And yep, it does sound a lot like an iron, but that's how I knew it was working.

While Hannah found the tool did a great job of straightening, I was impressed by the shape of the waves I was able to create. Once I got the hang of the technique, I really enjoyed my loose, bouncy JLo hair.

Hot tip: If you've got long hair like mine, you'll get the best waves from curling each hair section in two parts rather than in one long motion.

But the thing that sealed the deal for me? I got (almost) three days of smooth, shiny hair out of the one styling session, and anything that prolongs hair wash day is a solid win for me.

*vs regular styler after 15 applications.

**vs natural hair.

ˆvs blowdry + brushing.

ˆˆInstrumental test with Steampod at 180°C vs traditional straightener at 230°C.

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