hairdryer treatment

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From hairdryer + treatment (the image being of shouting at someone so close to their face that your hot breath could dry their hair)

Noun[edit]

hairdryer treatment (plural hairdryer treatments)

  1. a confrontation where someone stands very close to a subordinate and lambasts them very loudly.
    • 2004, Gaynor Morgan, The Real David Beckham: An Intimate Biography, John Blake, →ISBN, p. 52,
      Of course, sometimes the hairdryer treatment can be taken with a pinch of salt.
    • 2013, Dave Simpson, The Last Champions, Random House, →ISBN, p.57,
      He insists Wilkinson's hairdryer treatment did the trick. He...points out, 'When I got back in, I stayed in.'.
    • 2013, John Prescott, Ed Miliband is Labour's Alex Ferguson and he needs to give any slacking ministers the hairdryer treatment, in Mirror online, 20 Aug 2013,
      If Shadow Cabinet members aren’t pulling their weight, give them the hairdryer treatment and kick ’em out.

Usage notes[edit]

This phrase was at first only used about the UK football manager Alex Ferguson's dressing room rants at his players, but later spread to similar action by other football managers, and now even outside the sport.