REVIEW: Why would you pay $500 for a new GHD Chronos when your old one from school still works?
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What's Good

REVIEW: Why should you pay $500 for a new GHD Chronos when your one from school still works?

I put the latest model through its paces while my old GHD judged me from the corner of the room.

Much like Glassons, Vodka Cruisers and Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse foundation, GHD hair straighteners were - and remain - an iconic part of many Kiwi gals' formative years. 

Millennials like me might remember when GHDs first hit the scene back in 2001. If you were lucky enough to snag one for your bday or Xmas, it wasn't long before you were straightening the ever-loving heck out of your hair until you looked more hedgehog than hottie. 

Still, those suckers WORKED. Not only did they quickly develop a reputation for being able to tame the most unruly locks to emo-straight levels of perfection, they also could take a beating.

The GHD Chronos vs The Original GHD The GHD Chronos vs The Original GHD

As we grew out of our cringiest choices and traded poker-straight tresses for slightly softer styles, the GHDs came with us, and they could do it all. The thrill of being able to create CURLS with a straightener was unmatched. 

It's not at all uncommon to hear that people are still rocking GHDs that are 10, even 20 years old, so why would anyone need to upgrade? Especially when the new versions aren't cheap. 

Turns out you can teach an old dog new tricks. The Chronos claims to have all the good stuff we know and love about GHD, with some fancy modern technology that makes styling faster, safer and shinier. 

I got my millennial mitts on the Chronos to put it through its paces to see what all the fuss was about, while my old GHD judged me from the corner of my room. 

The biggest aesthetic difference between the original and new versions of the straighteners is the rounded barrel, which makes a world of difference when it comes to creating curls. 

The GHD Platinum plus from 2018 did feature softer edges to help with this, but it's not nearly as ergonomically designed as the Chronos. The curling power on this puppy is outrageous - but more on that soon. 

Testing out the straightening power of the GHD Chronos Testing out the straightening power of the GHD Chronos

The first thing I noticed about the Chronos was how well it backed up its key claim of being able to produce results in just one stroke. I have coarse, curly and unruly hair and was legitimately shooketh by how there was no dragging or pulling on the floating ceramic plates as I ran it though. The Chronos undoubtedly made faster work of my whole head of hair than any other styling tool I've tried. 

Also, it really was shiny. Like, WAY shinier than my hair ever looks on its own. Serum who? Never heard of her, don't need her. It also felt like the straightness was really 'locked in' to my hair, even when battling Auckland humidity. 

The Chronos says it has 'HD motion-responsive technology' which meant nothing to me on paper, but apparently means it maintains the perfect styling temperature of 185c exactly, which is a big win in comparison to older GHDs. That's also meant to avoid any extreme heat damage - music to the ears of someone who uses heat tools as often as I do. 

My Chronos curls before I let them cool and brushed them out My Chronos curls before I let them cool and brushed them out

The best bit about the Chronos, though, is undoubtedly the way it creates curls. (The second best bit is that it turns off after 10 mins of no use, meaning you never have to have a panic attack wondering if you've left them on again). I challenge you to find another straightener that creates such defined, bouncy curls that don't drop out. 

I went full 'Toddlers and Tiaras' ringlets when I curled my hair first thing in the morning, let them cool completely while I did my make up and then broke them up with my fingers. I wore the style all day with no product or hair spray whatsoever to put it to the ultimate test, and was very impressed with the staying power. 

Broken up Chronos curls after I ran my fingers through them Broken up Chronos curls after I ran my fingers through them

This is me in the work bathrooms after a full day in the office - you can see the eyes are tired and the lipstick is totally gone but the hair is still fire. Even after chucking my hair up in a bun for a shower and getting into my PJs that night, it was still looking good! 

Left - My hair after a day in the office and right - after a shower, just before bed

Now for the not so good: The price point. The Chronos is gonna set you back $500, and while it does it's job really well, it only does the one job.

Sure, you can straighten and curl, but with multi-tools like the Dyson Airwrap and the Shark Flexstyle, you can dry, curl, smooth, diffuse and more.. Plus, you're getting that bouncy blowwave volume that even the best straightners can't provide. The Shark retails for between $370 - $600 (depending on the sales) and the Dyson is closer to $900, but its reputation precedes it and it has many, many bells and whistles. 

With the Chronos, you're also limited in not being able to control the temperature or any other setting, if that's something your hair type needs or just an option you like to have. 

Whether or not the allure of extra shine, better curls, and less time spent in front of the mirror  is enough of a drawcard to replace your old GHD battler will come down to you, but there's zero doubt styling with the Chronos is a luxurious experience that uses the very best of new straightening tech on offer. 

The Edge was supplied with a GHD Chronos for this review.