2024 Beauty Awards

The 8 Most Innovative Beauty Tools Of 2024

From high-tech hair straighteners to curling gadgets.

Written by Bustle Staff
Caroline Wurtzel/Bustle; Stocksy; Product Images Courtesy of Brands

We know our wallets would be a lot happier if the devices and gadgets category would stop progressing at such a lightspeed pace, but too bad for our bank accounts because the technology just keeps getting better. Makeup brushes that do everything short of applying the makeup for you, at-home LED masks that actually have an impact on fine lines and wrinkles, a blowdryer specifically designed for textured hair — 2024 spoiled us with tools and devices that truly surprised and excited our judges with their sci-fi worthy tech (not to mention how much fun we had playing with these futuristic toys in our daily beauty routines). Thanks to these gizmos and gadgets, we’ve turned our living rooms into makeshift medspas and our skin, hair, and bodies have never looked better. Ahead, Bustle’s picks for the best beauty tools of the year.

Best Makeup Application Tool

Foundation brushes don’t seem like the most high-tech of innovations, but look more closely at this dual-ended tool from makeup artist Mario Dedivanovic and you’ll see the thought and craftsmanship that went into the cosmetics application essential. The larger brush end features a unique sloped shape that was designed to “hug” the curves of your face for easy application and seamless blending, while the smaller brush is specifically made for layering and building for more detailed work. “I'm obsessed with this brush,” says BDG senior lifestyle and beauty editor Rachel Lapidos. “It's super soft and helps make my foundation look natural, thanks to its magical blending capabilities — I'm talking *zero* streaks.”

Best Eyeshadow Brush

If you’ve been relying on your fingertips to apply your eyeshadow, now’s the perfect time to upgrade and see what you’ve been missing out on. This soft oval brush is versatile enough to use for the eyes or as a concealer brush, and at under $2, it outperformed brushes at 10 times the price. “This brush is a dream to use — it feels like lightweight aluminum, so it eases the application process, especially for those of us who prefer a slow and steady approach,” says BDG staffer Alex Pollack. “The adorable red color and rubberized grip ensure the brush stays securely in your hands during use. I have been using the thin edge for more precise eye lines and the chunky side for broader, all-over shadow.”

Best Face Device

At-home LED masks are by no means a new concept; however, the past few years have seen countless advancements to the category. Therabody’s TheraFace mask won major points with our judges for its ease of use and massage function. The clinically tested gadget is pain-free and boasts red light and red infrared light to stimulate natural collagen production, plus blue light to fight acne-causing bacteria. “This is the easiest-to-use high-tech beauty tool ever,” says Lapidos. “I love that you get to reap the science-backed benefits of LED light therapy while simply wearing a (rather comfy) mask — and while enjoying the soothing, tension-melting perks of the vibration therapy.”

Best Body Device

Why should your face get all the anti-aging attention? HigherDOSE gives your neck and chest a dose of concentrated red light therapy with this specially-designed mask for the neck area. This all-encompassing, portable treatment features two powerful wavelengths with red and near-infrared light to stimulate collagen, diminish fine lines, reduce redness, and enhance your glow. “Honestly, I'm annoyed by how well this works, because it's expensive, but the results on my chest and neck are so noticeable,” says BDG staffer Jamie Kenney. “It's easy to use and easy to just pop on for 10 to 20 minutes while working.”

Best Flat Iron

The days of having an arsenal of hot tools to craft your desired style are well and truly over, thanks to multi-purpose styling tools like this cheekily-named iron from celebrity hair pro Jen Atkin’s Mane line. Made with one-inch ceramic nano-coated plates to distribute heat and a temperature range of 200 to 450 degrees, the iron can be used to straighten, curl and wave all hair types — including synthetic hair, chemically treated hair, and coiled hair. And at under $100, it’s a steal.

Best Curling Tool

We know this looks like a very elaborate torture device, but it’s actually an ingenious new way to curl your hair that requires absolutely zero effort on your part. Just section off a piece of hair, pop it inside the slot, press the button, and this gadget does the work by gently wrapping your hair around the barrel for a perfect curl, every time. It even has a safety cover to protect you from dreaded neck and arm burns. “Every time I used it, the curls always managed to stay in place, even when I slept on the ringlets for two nights straight,” says BDG staffer Jillian Giandurco. “I got so many compliments with each use.” Adds BDG staffer Julia Meslener, “This took a second to figure out, however it works amazing! As someone with curly hair, I typically have to straighten my hair before curling, but I can just curl from curly!”

Best Hair Dryer

In the past, blow dryers for those with textured hair were often an afterthought. Most were simply traditional dryers with an attachment included (or, more often, sold separately) that was marketed for curls. Pattern up and changed the game with its entry to the category by releasing a tool specifically designed for those with textured hair. It has a powerful AC motor made to cut down on dry time and an ion generator to help smooth the cuticle. But the real stars are the four unique attachments that are specifically designed for curly and coily hair to help shape, stretch, smooth, and define curl patterns of all types. “Truthfully [this product] is one of my favorite dryers on the market,” says celebrity stylist Kahh Spence, whose clients include Kelly Rowland and Kehlani. “The price point, attachments, ability to dry hair without burning the scalp — I’ve tried a few dryers on the market, but this one is in my top three. The packaging is super sleek and minimal, which is a great seller if you’re into aesthetics. The attachments that come with the dryer are perfect if you’re looking to diffuse and/or straighten. I enjoy that there are multiple straightening attachments for different textures.”

Best Hair Tool Under $20

PSA: Brushing is one of the more common causes of hair breakage. A thoughtfully-designed detangler, like this one from Wet Brush, is just the ticket to help keep your hair healthy from the start of your styling process. It features a 20 percent larger surface area than the brand’s OG detangler to help cover more hair in one pass, plus ultra-soft and flexible bristles to glide through tangles without getting caught. “As someone with thin hair, I need a brush that quickly detangles my wet strands without damaging or breaking my hair in the process,” says Bustle beauty writer Olivia Rose Rushing. “This brush effortlessly detangles my hair in seconds with very little hair fallout. Love.”