I Replaced My Deathtrap of a Curling Wand with YouTube's Favorite Heat-Styling Tool

Being able to swap out the different-sized barrels is quite handy!
Publish date:
May 12, 2016
heat styling, YouTube, hair styling tools, curling wands, Nume

If you watch YouTube beauty videos, there's zero way you haven't heard of NuMe. It's either a brand that makes really good hot tools, or a brand that enables easy affiliate revenue, depending on which way you want to look at it.

They operate on a similar pricing structure to discount stores, where all the products have "standard" prices, but you'd be a fool to buy them at full price because there is always — and I mean always — a sale. For the handful of New Zealanders reading this, they're like Briscoes. For Americans, think JC Penney. And there's nothing objectively wrong with this pricing strategy; it worked so well for JC Penney that the company nearly collapsed when they did away with it.

Beyond blow-drying, I don't use hot tools on my hair very often. I have the same straightener I've had since I was 18. My curling iron — well, calling it a curling iron is generous. "Instrument of great danger" is more accurate.

Its origins: I was going to a Halloween party as Betty Draper but realised the day of the party that I had no way to curl my hair, so I asked my boyfriend to buy me a curling iron while I was at work. I came home to find he'd picked out a wand with a plastic spiral guide on it, which essentially prevented me from doing anything useful with it. Ripping the plastic off was a bigger undertaking than I expected, and left me with a bare one-inch metal wand complete with sharp edge and loose wires at the end.

Needless to say, I haven't been curling my hair all that often in the past few years, but getting my haircut back into a bob and rediscovering this photo of myself from a couple of years ago made me realise I actually really like how my hair looks curled. I figured I was probably overdue for a new curling iron.

Because the universe likes to mess with me, Maricar wrote about the best affordable curling irons about a week after I'd made my decision to try a NuMe wand. I figured, sure, YouTubers make money from people buying them, so of course they'll say they're amazing, but surely if they were genuinely terrible, there would be fewer people shilling them, right?

I went with the NuMe Titan 3, a clip-less wand with interchangeable barrels in 19mm, 25mm and 32mm diameters, because the $300 Octowand seemed like overkill. The Titan 3 retails for $199, but like I said, they're always on sale, and the weekend I got mine they were going for $89.

I won't lie: I was really excited about the heat-proof glove these sets come with. Clip-less wands can be a little dangerous otherwise, and because I am a sucker for novelty factor, I expected the glove to protect me from any and all styling-related burns.

Unfortunately, life isn't like the movies, and while Shannon Harris may be a pro at wrangling her hair around a curling iron while wearing a glove, I most certainly am not. The glove made me a million times more clumsy than I usually am, and to top it off, I could still feel an uncomfortable level of heat on my hand through it. The glove also doesn't protect you from where you hit your face, ears and neck with the end of the wand. (Or is that just me?)

As far as its curling capacities go, the Titan 3 certainly does the job. You can change the temperature (or just wing it, like I do), and the cable has a 360 degree swivel that works most of the time. Being able to swap out the different-sized barrels is handy, but with my hair as short as it is at the moment, I'm getting most of my use out of the middle-sized one.

Danielle might disagree with me, but to me, a curling wand is a curling wand. The NuMe one is adequate, but I imagine if I'd bought a Remington or Babyliss my experience would be much the same.

I've been offered an affiliate code for NuMe, but I'm not particularly excited about inciting people to buy things, so you won't find it here. I'd suggest following their Instagram tag for discounts that don't advantage anyone else but you, or pick your favourite YouTuber because doubtless they'll have a code you can use.

  • Have you tried any NuMe products?
  • Was it because of YouTube, or otherwise?
  • What do you think of their kind of pricing strategy?